By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News
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When she gives him a list of unwieldy things to buy for their farm — to carry home by hand, since they have no car — he does it.
The list includes one steel washtub, three geese, two laying hens and an anvil.
He totes it all: geese and hens inside his jacket, tub hanging from his head, anvil in arms.
Then a 93-year-old woman, also walking home, asks to lean on his arm for a while.
She wonders, as they’re walking through the woods on the Peabody Creek trail, if he might be about to make a pass at her.
I’m not that kind of guy, he says, and even if I were, how could I with all of this stuff?
Put the anvil down, put the tub over the geese, and I’ll hold the hens, she explains.
So went Truett’s first-place tale — about her mate, Josh McLean, seated in the audience — during the second annual Liars’ Contest at the Sons of Norway hall on Friday night.
Married last summer, the couple in fact do have a small farm. And they have been car-free for years.
So there was a kind of epilogue to that “Farmers” story Friday night. Truett, who entered the contest at the last minute, carried her prize home on her bicycle. That wasn’t easy, as the award was a large golden shovel.
Her husband pedaled right beside her with his own cargo: the trophy for his story, “The Boarded-Up Window.”
As it turned out, McLean, who won the 2012 Liars’ Contest first prize, came in second behind his wife this year.
“Window,” set in Kodiak, Alaska, was inspired by a scary story his grandfather told when McLean was a young boy.
In it, a mysterious woman tangles with a cougar — a phantom cougar, since those lions are rarely, if ever, found in the Land of the Midnight Sun.
Another story about being without a car — and without a cellphone — won third place Friday night.
Port Angeles actor Ean Henninger spun a tale of riding the bus in San Juan, Puerto Rico, with a man carrying a Taser and an inflatable blue monkey.
The man makes him nervous, so he gets off the bus in a scary neighborhood. He tries to hitchhike home, then dangerously misuses his Spanish verbs and almost doesn’t make it back.
The story, titled “How a Blue Monkey Almost Got Me Killed on a Tropical Island,” got Henninger a trophy that, like the other prizes, came from Goodwill.
The Liars’ Contest, hosted by the Story People, drew eight competitors from Sequim and Port Angeles this year.
It’s an annual fundraiser for the Oct. 18-20 Forest Storytelling Festival at Peninsula College, which has “a great lineup,” promised organizer Cherie Trebon.
One of the storytellers is coming all the way from Queensland, Australia, she said. And that is no lie.
To find out more about the festival and the Story People, phone 360-417-5031.
Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz, who was one of three judges for the Liars’ Contest, can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.