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Monday, February 28, 2005 

M&M Snagley

Our small town had only one Catholic Church, Our Lady of Infinite Chores. Father Bruce ran it. The good father was a nice guy, a good fisherman, and coinsure of single malt scotch. He ran the church alone there were only 22 members and he found this was not a problem for one man to handle. My third cousin on my fathers side Mary Margaret was the churches most active parishioner. She had not missed mass in 35 years, since she converted to Catholicism from devout Pagan.

M&M as we called her was more committed to seeing the community join the church than Father Bruce. She went door to door tending to the community, as they would allow, trying in a tasteful way to convince anyone to visit her church.

Her pet project was my Uncle Randall the rascal Snagley everyone called him Rasc. Rasc had not darkened the door of the church in years. He thought that M&M was a nut. M&M in her defense was a kind soul who believed that she was doing the community a great service. She cared for her fellow man and was the first at any crisis to offer help. But, Rasc never liked her. M&M went to his house once a week to visit him, he was her Uncle too, and invite him to whatever was happening that week at her church. She would bring him some cookies or something to get her in the door then she would listen to him cuss for 30 minutes and leave.
She prayed for him every day, and was sure his conversion was imminent.

On this particular day M&M had to drive into Uniontown to get something for her husbands farm. She was driving the truck when she ran out of gas, the gas gauge had not worked in years and this was not an uncommon occurrence. She looked in the back of the truck for the gas can kept there for just this problem and it was gone. Her husband Henry had removed it to fill up his tractor and forgot to put it back. M&M was fit to be tied. She was only a half a mile out of town and it was down hill so she pushed the truck back to the first house she came to. The owner of the house was glad to help; he took her out to his workshop where he had a gas pump. He asked her for the gas can that he knew she kept in the truck, she explained that she did not have one and did he have one. He said he did not need one, he had a pump but he could find something for an emergency. He looked down and saw an old porcelain coated chamber pot. (A chamber pot is what people used to use in the old days of out houses when they did not want to make a midnight trek out to the privy.) He snatched it up and filled it with gas and handed it to M&M.
M&M started out walking to her truck with a chamber pot full of gasoline. Uncle Rasc was across the street watching what was happening. His son Clifford was waiting on Rasc, wondering what he was watching, he knew he did not care for M&M. When he asked Rasc said, Hell boy, if she can pull this one off we are going to have to take another look at that church of hers.
Posted by Hello

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