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TideWriters Tales
Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III
By Jean H. Brydge

     Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III was a very big name for a teeny-tiny pig, and he was teeny-tiny, you see. Sometimes when Mama Pig has a large litter, all of the piglets cannot get to the table. This usually results in the smallest or the “runt” not receiving sufficient nourishment.

     Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III was such a runt. When Lee and Jean were asked if they wanted a pig, they were delighted and Lee rushed to the farm to acquire this new pet.

     When Lee arrived back at home, he was accompanied by the dirtiest, smelliest, hungriest, squeelinest pig anyone had ever seen! Immediately Lee’s Mother said, “He has to have a bath!” So she socked him in a bucket of warm, sudsy water and he turned into a little pink wiggler. For good measure, they put some baby powder on him, sort of a touch of perfume, you know. Next a baby bed in the form of a shoe box with a baby blanket was prepared. Rexford snuggled in but kept crying so next item was a baby bottle. He gulped down weakened condensed milk and then went to sleep.

     At this point, everyone looked at everyone else and chorused, “He has to have a name.”
Jean said, “I like Rexford. It sounds English.”

     Lee said, “I like Roquefort. That’s what he smelled like.”

     Jean’s sister, Helene, spoke up with the suggestion of ‘Gastone.’ “It sounds sort of French.”

     Jean said, “We’ll call him all three but let’s make him the ‘III.’ That has a distinctive ring to it.”
Thus, this wee piglet, about the size of Jean’s hand, became Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III. Later that evening, Lee, Jean, Helene and Ted (Helene’s husband) decided to go to the Drive-In Theater. The time frame was late fifties and the musical “Oklahoma” was playing.

     There was a perplexing problem: this little pig had to be fed every half-hour. What to do!
Someone said, “We’ll take Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III (they always used his full name because he hated to have his name abbreviated!) with us to the Drive-In.”

     Helene and Jean mixed sufficient formula, they snugged the pig into his bed and away they went. There were several factors they had failed to consider! It was summertime so they had to have the car windows down and baby pigs squeal! Finally, the musical started. Unfortunately the pig started squealing.

     Jean told Helene to keep him quiet and they took turns patting and talking and feeding him but he wouldn’t shut up. By this time, people in surrounding cars were trying to figure out where that pig was.

     The pig guardians kept looking around as though they were also searching for the source. But, it’s difficult to be nonchalant when there’s a pig in your car screaming his head off. He was actually drowning out the movie.

     Lee and Ted kept insisting that Jean and Helene “keep that pig quiet!” But not having been pig parents before, Helene and Jean didn’t know what to do. Finally, after one prolonged loud squeal, he gasped and died.
This presented a new set of problems. Jean and Helene didn’t want to sit in the back seat with a dead pig. Four people couldn’t sit in the front seat and no one dared get out and put Rexford Roquefort Gastone III in the trunk. After disrupting an entire theater, they were afraid they would be stoned. Solution: leave the movie.
Alas, it was never determined what killed Rexford Roquefort Gastone, III. One of the husbands suggested it was the music. Someone else said perhaps the bath gave him pneumonia. There was even the thought it could have been his name.

     But for a short while he lived the life of royalty—just as his name implied. 

© 2001 Jean H. Brydge All rights reserved

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