Schlitz Hunt and Raccoon Penises

Ah, Montana. That land of the free and home of the brave. Or buffalo. Or odd water fountain signs.

Or something like that.

Or something like that.

I haven’t been home in two years and on a semi-spur of the moment decision last week I decided to get my Arizona ass up there.  Up to the land of my people. Rough hewn cursers and tobacco chewers. PBR and Hamm’s. Antlers and guns. I am from this world. And I love it.

I used to live there. But now I just visit it.


With abandon. Visits to my family typically involve food, booze, and a lot of laughing and cursing. I tried to cram as much as I could into a five-day visit.

And as can be expected, shenanigans were had.

The Airport, The Trip

I did not spy any wrinkly elbows like my last time here but you can always recognize the folks going back to Montana. Camo, cowboy hats and bejeweled tees, oh my.

Oh my, indeed.

Oh my, indeed.

Once on the plane, I ordered a drink and finished up Hell’s Angels by HST. Halfway through, I realized I was mumbling to myself about Cassady and Kerouac as I sipped a bloody Mary, while the woman next to me read the bible and typed up Psalms on her iPad.

Traveling the right way.

It was…awkward.

My sister, Chrissy, and her boyfriend were there to greet me at the airport. They whisked me away for a delicious sushi dinner at Asian Sea Grill. When we got back to my sister’s house I was given the most precious gift I could ever have wanted.

A raccoon penis.

“We got you something,” The sister said.

Her boyfriend held it out to me. “Guess what this—”

“IT’S A PENIS!” I roared, snatching it away.

They were baffled. I was proud to have recognized the appendage.

As you can see this penis clearly resembles a J. It’s a J-Boner. And I shall make a necklace of it.

"Just the tip."

“Just the tip.”

The Garage/The House

When we all get together at my dad’s house we hang out in the garage and in the kitchen. Things get wilder than Lindsay Lohan’s cocaine eyes on a Saturday night. Beer, food and beer pong is the typical MO.

And my dad’s garage is amazing. It’s a true man cave. This is where everyone hangs out. Not the house or the living room. We’re in the garage, bitches. You can’t take a picture in the garage without being photo bombed by a naked chick.


I didn’t do it.

And what a garage it is.

And what a garage it is.

It has an A/C and a heater and a stove and three fridges. The only thing missing is a toilet. But I bet we’ll get that soon.

and did I mention a shit ton of alcohol?

and did I mention a shit ton of alcohol?

Cooking dinner takes place in the actual house and my sister and I manage to make it an elaborate affair.




Dinner got out of control fast.

Dinner got out of control fast.

So we ate. Then it was a beer pong face-off. Words are not needed.

241 247 253

The Sister

My little sister who uses the word “gal” with a frequency I’ve never heard is a doll-face, blue-eyed…gal. We can make any situation fun. If I’m on a desert island I’d want her there, not only for the laughs, but for the possible cannibalization factor.

But I digress…

FACT: We went to an antique store and caused trouble. But they were asking for it. On a table they had block stickers spelling out H-A-R-T-S. This is not how hearts is spelled. Strike one. Strike two – you’re just setting it up for us to spell SHART with that ill-spelled combination.

You just got shart attacked.

You just got shart attacked.

Needless to say many shart references were made the entire trip.

FACT: We took a road trip to Powell, Wyoming to see The Mother.

"You call those mountains, Wyoming? Fuck you."

“You call those mountains, Wyoming? Fuck you.”

The sister, mother and I met at a coffee shop called Uncommon Grounds, which seemed fitting since when the three of us get together it can be slightly crazed.

This sign's advice did not bode well.

This sign’s advice did not bode well

But I 80% jest. It was a great trip. I dug seeing the town where my mom lives and her college. She’s a baller.

After making our mark on the city…


Screening a phone call from my grandmother… (side note: the last time my grandmother and I spoke she called me chubby and I called my mommy to be soothed.)…

MY mother gave us a tour around her apartment, the tiny campus and led us through many, many alleyways. The woman has a healthy obsession with alleyways as do I. Nothing good can come from them.

She's plotting our alleyway shankings.

You’d never know it but she’s plotting our alleyway shankings.

Fact:  We stopped at the Little Cowboy Bar and Museum in Fromberg, MT.


Swinging the front door open, five old men swiveled their heads our way, judging whether “our kind” was right for their bar. Grudgingly, they nodded their assent and we entered, giddy to be accepted into their barland.

A gorgeous old gal named Shirley Smith with Dolly Parton nails and Liz Taylor hair seemed delighted when we asked to tour the museum. She led us back to a dust filled room full of cowboy thangs, which included alien fetuses.

This is a face of fear.

This is a face of fear.

After our tour, we sidled up to the bar and ordered two Coronas. My sister tried to sweet talk a dear old man and I think the women’s restroom was clearly and exceptionally marked.


“Sir, you look in need of a good time.”

"This is the women's restroom, correct?"

“This is the women’s restroom, correct?”

Fact: We ate and drank at Uber Brew. Montana has good beer. And what better place to get it than a delicious brewery. But the main reason for choosing Uber Brew wasn’t the beer. It was the cheese crunchies, bitches.

Behold my glistening beauty.

Behold my glistening beauty.

I’ve never heard of this sandwich anywhere other than Billings. A grilled cheese sandwich that’s dipped in mayonnaise (I think) and then deep fat fried. All you get from this sandwich is third degree burns and a healthy case of guilt. But it’s so worth it.

The Father

My dad proved how much he loves me by spending one afternoon driving around and looking for Schlitz. Why? you’re asking. Well, because I have always wanted to try this beer. I write about it in stories and hear it referenced. It’s research, damn it.

My grandmother, dad and I piled in the car one bright day. “Where are we going?” I had asked.

“South side,” dad grunted. “I’m taking you down where the Schlitz drinkers live.” I dug fingernails into my palms to keep from whimpering.

Now the south side is the part of town that everyone refers to as, “across the train tracks”. You know you’re in a good part of town when every window has bars on it.

IMG_20130218_134042 IMG_20130218_134059

In the end we couldn’t find any original Schlitz. Instead, like all good fathers, my dad brought me back Colt .45 and Schlitz High Gravity.

Fancy cans for such shitty beer.

Fancy cans for such shitty beer.

My dad is the only person I can talk with about hutterites and boiling skulls. He’s learned me well. And though it’s a shame I see him far too often, nothing can beat the times I have when I’m there. (Collective AWWWW, everyone).

He’s really pissing. But he makes it look good.

He’s really pissing. But he makes it look good.

And so, that concludes just a fraction of my trip pictorial.

But I’ll be back. I’ll be back and I’ll find a real Schlitz. Montana would have it no other way.

No Comments
  • Reply


    February 24, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    LMAO The J-boner necklace. And that sandwich looks sinfully delicious. Kind of like the Double Down sandwich KFC released a few years ago.

  • Reply

    Marcus Speh (Birkenkrahe)

    February 25, 2013 at 9:12 am

    Honest and hilarious. I especially liked your grandmother’s face and your dad’s garage (two things that’re missing from my life, amongst others).

    • Reply


      February 26, 2013 at 2:33 am

      Thanks Marcus. You’re welcome to the garage anytime.

      • Reply

        Marcus Speh (Birkenkrahe)

        February 26, 2013 at 6:44 pm

        …half the time I didn’t know what you were talking about (while I was with you all the way in Dublin!) but the pin-ups helped me understand…

      • Reply

        Marcus Speh (Birkenkrahe)

        February 26, 2013 at 6:45 pm

        …that your dad is no feminist (I’m glad).

  • Reply


    February 25, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    When you’re all out of Bud… it’s tough Schlitz.

  • Reply

    Jennifer Trela

    February 26, 2013 at 8:56 am

    You had me at “raccoon penises.”

Leave a Reply

Leave A Comment


  • Best. Concert. Ever.  @thedevilmakes3
  • The Devil Makes Three.  Kill me. ❤❤❤
  • Pre-concert beers. #thedevilmakesthree #beer
  • I am breathing deep and sharing the first line of my (currently) unpublished book - "The Ramblin' Hand of Sherry Anne." After rewriting 75% of my last draft in three months, edits are finally fucking finished and I feel calm and peaceful and light. Typically, I tend to not want to share for fear of failure BUT I am freaking psyched. No more white knuckling this novel. Here goes nothin'. #teasertuesday #amwriting #amediting #manuscript #writerlife #writer #writermama #novel #publishedorbust
  • Bukowski, bath and bubbles. Book #1 of #2017. #amreading #bookstagram #bookworm #bathtime #bukowski #booknerd #books #reading #read
  • Pretty much my life's motto. #coffeeaddict #coffee

Follow Me