Ethel and Earl

It was a dark and stormy evening, right around dinner time, and Steve The Shutter Salesman, was out in the middle of it. Driving across the midwest, in one of those many counties, those flat, “where is the horizon”, counties. It was many years ago, before cell phones and computers, when being stuck out in the middle of nowhere was a much more dire circumstance.

The rain is just coming down, and of course, his car starts acting up, then simply stalls out, leaving him on the side of the road. He is in the middle of nowhere, not a gas station, or anything else in sight. He tries to get it to start, but to no avail. Realizing it is time to start walking, he remembers having passed a couple farmhouses a few miles back, and, girding his loins, starts the rain soaked trudge back.

Couple hours later, completely soaked, and freezing, he sees the farmhouse on the horizon. To his relief, the lights are on in the house, meaning someone is there and hopefully, they have a phone.

he approaches the house, and sees there is smoke coming out the chimney, jackpot. He bounds up the steps, and knocks.

He waits a couple minutes, then knocks again. Still mothing… He tries knocking yet again, still no response. He figures, maybe they are in back, or have already gone to bed. So , he goes around the side of the house, figuring he will go knock on the back door. As he approaches the back door, he passes by a bay window, drapes open, with the lights on. Stopping briefly to look in, to see if anyone was home, Steve got the shock of his life.

He looks in, to find an elderly couple, sitting in their comfy chairs, in an otherwise normal, midwestern country sitting room. The bizarre part is the couple. You see, the woman is sitting there, with her blouse wide open, vigorously massaging her breasts and gesturing at the old man. He in turn, is sitting in his chair, looking angrily at her, while holding an open umbrella, and masturbating..

This was too much for Steve! This was a freak show…. The next farmhouse had to be saner than this one, fuck the rain! And off he went.

The next farmhouse, as he had hoped, was much more normal. Bill, the man of the house, agreed immediately to drive him back to his car to see if he could help. Once they were in the car headed back to his vehicle, Steve, unable to hold it in any longer, blurted out the scene he had witnessed at the first farm house, wondering if maybe they should call the authorities or something.

Now Bill, he just starts chuckling, and builds up to laughter and tears that force him to pull the car over momentarily. Steve, a little annoyed, snaps at him, “What is so god damned funny? What?”

To which Bill replied, as best he could through his laughter, “Oh my god man, that is just Ethel and Earl, and no, we dont need to call the authorities, they are just fine! Geez.”

He continued, “Ya see, Ethel and Earl are both Deaf and Mute, been that way their whole lives….. She was telling Earl to go milk the cow, and he was saying, fuck you Ethel, it’s raining!”


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