Just One Of The Guys

Just One Of The Guys

Hunting Buddies Are A Thing To Cherish...but Bob brought new meaning to the term

I first noticed a difference in Bob the day I rode with him in his pickup truck to a big sporting goods store to take advantage of a pre-season sale. Bob had been an over-the-road trucker at one time and could handle anything from an 18-wheeler to the dinkiest subcompact, yet he seemed to be having trouble parallel parking. He backed and filled and backed and filled some more until finally he just gave up and left the truck at a funny angle, quite a ways from the curb.

I didn't think any more about it until one day, about a week into duck season, we were sitting in the blind, killing time and trying to decide whether to bail out or give it one more hour. It was one of those days when the ducks weren't flying and about all there was to do was drink coffee, pet the dog, and shoot the breeze. I could tell something was on Bob's mind.


"There's something I have to tell you and the other guys," he said.

I figured he was going to say he was changing jobs, had a health problem, or something like that.

"I've had an operation," he said.

Naturally I'm thinking gall bladder, appendectomy, all the usual stuff. I was totally unprepared for what came next.

"Oh?" I asked. "You doing OK now?"



"Oh yeah," he said, sipping his coffee. "I'm fine. But you don't understand. I've had a'¦well'¦ I'm not Bob any more. I'm Bobbi Sue."

It didn't hit me immediately, probably because I was in shock. "You mean'¦." I fumbled for the right words. "You've had one of those'¦ those'¦ whatchacallits?..."


"You got it," replied Bob. "I've had a sex change operation. But I don't want it to change anything as far as our duck hunting is concerned. I just want everybody to keep thinking of me as one of the guys. In fact, if you'd like, you can keep calling me Bob instead of Bobbi Sue."


Well, let me tell you, it's awfully hard to think of a guy who is six feet, three inches talls and tips the scales at 240 (and chews tobacco) as Bobbi Sue.

"How is Alice taking this?" I asked. This had to be quite a shock to his wife.

"You mean Al?"

"Oh Lordy, no", I muttered, with my head in my hands. I was starting to have trouble dealing with this.

"When I left the house she'¦ I mean he, was lying on the couch drinking beer, belching, and watching NASCAR on TV."

Bob continued to hunt with our group all season and there were no major problems. He was a likeable guy and a good, safe hunter, which is about all we require in a hunting partner. But as the season wore on we began to notice a few subtle changes. Once, when we drove out-of-state for a guided duck hunt, we got lost and Bob cheerfully volunteered to go into a service station and ask directions.


"When nature called, Bob started getting out of the blind and walking back to our trailer to use the bathroom. In fact he once drove all the way into town and back. And, when it was my turn, I started going as far away from the blind as possible and hiding behind a big tree"
 

Something else was different, too. The rest of us just sort of voluntarily started cleaning up our language when Bob was around. One morning when a flock of teal buzzed our decoys and I never even had time to get off a shot I found myself saying, "My goodness! Those little fellas are certainly fast, aren't they."

We noticed some other changes, too. When nature called, Bob started getting out of the blind and walking back to our trailer to use the bathroom. In fact he once drove all the way into town and back. And, when it was my turn, I started going as far away from the blind as possible and hiding behind a big tree.

And later, after the hunt was over and the guns were put away, when the rest of us had a beer, Bob would sip a glass of white wine. Once he even asked for a Singapore Sling but nobody knew how to make one.

About once a month Bob got sort of cranky but we just overlooked it and tried to stay out of his way till he felt better. And you wouldn't believe some of the things he started carrying in his blind bag.

So, aside from these minor changes, Bob is pretty much the same. He looks about like he always did, if you can ignore the occasional touch of lip-gloss and eye shadow. He still chews tobacco in the blind but he doesn't spit the juice on the floor anymore, and I can't remember him breaking wind once all season.

We're already looking forward to September and teal season. It'll probably be ninety degrees, sweat will be rolling off the rest of us, and the dogs' tongues will be hanging out. Someone will look over at Bob and say, "Aren't you sweating, Bob?" and he'll say, "No, but I'm perspiring a little."

Recommended for You

Make summertime barbecues super easy by grilling up one of these duck recipes from Scott Leysath, Recipes

2 Easy Duck Recipes for Summertime Grilling

WILDFOWL Online Staff

Make summertime barbecues super easy by grilling up one of these duck recipes from Scott...

Take it from a pro: Less is more. For Dogs

Dog Discipline Tips & Gear

Joe Genzel - June 20, 2019

Take it from a pro: Less is more.

A dainty English setter suited for the uplands has the drive for waterfowl. Stories

The Accidental Duck Dog

Jack Ballard

A dainty English setter suited for the uplands has the drive for waterfowl.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Women

Women's Waterfowl Lineup

SITKA Gear waterfowl product manager Jim Saubier shows off the company's full line-up of women's waterfowl hunting gear for 2019. From warm and moisture-wicking base layers to water and windproof outer layers, this is a complete system for women who love to chase fall and wintertime ducks and geese across the four flyways!

Puppy Training Getting Started

Puppy Training Getting Started

Puppy Training Getting Started

Cowboy Fernandez Commemorative Yentzen Classic Duck Call

Cowboy Fernandez Commemorative Yentzen Classic Duck Call

As Groves, Texas duck call maker Sure-Shot Game Calls celebrates their 60th anniversary during 2019, company CEO Charlie Holder shows off the limited edition Yentzen Classic aimed at commemorating the life and times of company founder Jim 'Cowboy' Fernandez. With a special autographed box and a laser engraved call body, the Cowboy Classic is a perfect way to honor the legacy of the 1959 world duck calling champ and inventor of the double-reed duck call.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Let's face it, that old mud motor from two years ago isn't cuttin' it any longer.

Of course, it Boats

8 Best Mud Motors for 2016

David Hart - May 26, 2016

Let's face it, that old mud motor from two years ago isn't cuttin' it any longer. Of course,...

Check out our picks for the best new waterfowl guns from the 2019 SHOT Show! Shotguns

Best New Waterfowl Shotguns for 2019

Lynn Burkhead - January 23, 2019

Check out our picks for the best new waterfowl guns from the 2019 SHOT Show!

While there's no guarantee they'll make you a better shot, these 8 newly-designed shotgun choke Accessories

8 Best Choke Tubes for 2017

Wildfowl Online Staff - October 25, 2017

While there's no guarantee they'll make you a better shot, these 8 newly-designed shotgun...

See More Stories

More North America

On the edge of the Prairie Pothole Region looms a buffetof trophy ducks on public land that hardly North America

Nebraska: The Hidden Sand Hills

Mike Gnatkowski - February 23, 2018

On the edge of the Prairie Pothole Region looms a buffetof trophy ducks on public land that...

The cool thing about mallards is they can be found and hunt them in just about every state in the North America

7 Must-Hunt Mallard Meccas

Brad Fenson - August 05, 2016

The cool thing about mallards is they can be found and hunt them in just about every state in...

Here's how to find duck hunting hot spots the easy way, with today's new high-tech mapping links North America

New High-tech Ways to Find Waterfowl Hot Spots

Bob Humphrey - January 20, 2017

Here's how to find duck hunting hot spots the easy way, with today's new high-tech mapping...

See More North America

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×