Just Shut Up

 Posted by at 6:39 am  Nick's Blog
Feb 272009

Back in our old hometown of Show Low, Arizona, I had a couple of good buddies who would occasionally tell me to shut up. This usually happened when I was teasing my wife or secretary about something, and teetering on that edge where one verbal misstep could lead to very bad results. I always appreciated those guys. They saved me a lot of grief over the years, and more than once I’ve wished they were along for the ride in our bus.

I think a lot of other people need someone to tell them to shut up now and then, for their own good. It amazes me how many people get themselves into dumb situations just because they can’t shut up.

Case in point – I got an e-mail from a reader who wanted me to blacklist a campground in California. As he explained it, he and his wife had a week’s reservation, and when they arrived, he noticed an Obama campaign poster in the office while he was registering. He said he is a dyed in the wool Republican, and wasted no time in telling the campground owner that she and people like her were ruining this country. One thing led to another, and they got into what apparently was quite an argument. Then he wondered why his reservation was cancelled and he was told to leave. Maybe somebody should have told him to shut up.

A couple of years ago I got a Letter to the Editor complaining about another campground, this time in the Midwest someplace. My correspondent reported that while checking in, he noticed in reading the rules on the campground’s map that firearms were not permitted. As an avid proponent of the Second Amendment, he felt it was his duty to tell the campground owner what he thought of their rules. He too was told to take it on down the road. Why did he even have to bring it up? Did he plan to sit outside his rig at the picnic table cleaning his shotgun? Maybe somebody should have told him to shut up.

We also knew a couple who were headed to Alaska, and just by chance they happened to spend their last night before crossing the border at the same campground in Washington state as another RVing couple we know who were also headed north.

The subject of not taking guns into Canada came up, and one of the men said he owned a gun, and had left it with his son while he was on the trip. The second gentleman said he too had stashed his guns someplace, but he planned to tell “those damned Canuks” what he thought of their country’s gun laws. Both wives and the other man advised him not to say anything, but some people just can’t keep quiet.

The next morning they both approached the border crossing at the same time. When the Canadian customs inspector spoke to the first couple, he noted their Texas license plates and asked if they had any firearms onboard. They told him they had left their gun at their son’s house, but that he was certainly welcome to look though their rig. He nodded, gave them a cursory inspection, and waved them on.

When the inspector asked the second fellow about firearms, he told them (in his own words, later related to me), “God, guns, and guts made America free! And if you damned Canadians had guns, you wouldn’t be answering to any damned queen!” Several hours later, his rig nearly disassembled, they told him he was free to continue on his trip. Wouldn’t it have been a lot easier to just shut up?

I learned early on as a young driver that if a police officer stopped me, not to argue. “Say yes sir, no sir,” and otherwise keep my mouth shut. It took me a couple of bad marriages to learn that same lesson at home. And I might not have learned it then, if it were not for my pals who were always ready to say “Shut up, Nick.” 

I’ll shut up now.

Thought For The Day – Four wheels move the body. Two wheels move the soul.
Add to Technorati Favorites

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  8 Responses to “Just Shut Up”

  1. While we all shut up, the America we knew & loved all our lives is vanishing while those who espouse “Political Correctness” are getting their garbage transformed to “truth” in all aspects of our society. By the way, I really enjoyed living in the United States of America—–I shall miss it.

  2. I am really intent on telling you what I think about your blog today….but I think I’ll just shut up.

  3. Interesting. I was just telling a friend yesterday that one of the things I’ve learned to do in this RVing life is keep my mouth shut. I don’t always have to blare out my opinion and the older I get the less confrontational I get. Good advice, Nick.

  4. I tried that “yes sir” trick at home about 40 years ago and all I got was a fat lip. I have since changed the sir to madge (which is short for majesty) and that seems to work OK.

  5. Funny post. I’m usually the guy telling others to ‘shut up’ but once in a while I need the advice myself. It’s also true that if you DO go to far it’s usually a good idea to first stop shoveling!

  6. I think some of your best blogs concern the many quirks of we the people. Today’s entry was excellent.

  7. Good words to live by.

    I hope I remember them the next time I need them…

  8. […] blog readers may remember a post I wrote on February 27 titled Just Shut Up, in which I said that sometimes silence is, indeed, golden. A Gypsy Journal reader at the Affinity […]

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.