With all that is going on in the sleepy town of Cobb these days, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised to hear from my two favorite mules, Jack and Jill. In truth, they are my favorite mules by default because they are the only mules I know.

For the carpetbaggers who have parachuted in from where it snows ten months a year and all the buildings are rusted in order to inform us of what a bunch of overall-wearing, tobacco-chewing rednecks we are and how you are so disheartened by the limited thought we have towards the wondrous things that make life work, let me introduce you to Jack and his sister Jill.

The two mules were brought to Cobb County with much fanfare from Alabama a few years back to demonstrate the lost art of plowing to a generation that likely already has an app for that. They were set to strut their stuff at Hyde Farm in East Cobb but with little explanation were unceremoniously kicked out of Cobb by the same county commission that had so enthusiastically welcomed them just a short time earlier. It was not our finest hour.

Anyway, they ended up in Montana or Canada – I get those places mixed up – where they continue to hold out hope that they can get back to Cobb County one of these days.

The last time I talked to them they were upset that the county’s PR maven had referred to them as “fictional.” Jill said he should know better than to make such spurious claims. I said I would tell him that if I ever see him, which isn’t likely. He doesn’t pay much attention to the local media in general and to me in particular. For all I know he may be fictional, as well.

Jill said she was shocked, given that I am the most influential columnist in the state of Georgia, if not nationally, and that I can make or break careers with a single adjective or adverb. I ask her where in the world did she hear that. She said I told her. I must remember to be careful what I say after a couple of cups of eggnog.

The mules who keep up with local doings through mdjonline.com had read where the current county commission approved building condominiums over the unanimous objection of the zoning commission in an area near Dobbins Air Reserve Base where airplanes are most likely to fall out of the sky. It is called an Accident Potential Zone. What’s more, the Cobb County School District has announced it will construct an Online Learning Academy in the zone. I assume part of the students’ learning will be to know to hit the deck when a C-130 comes roaring overhead.

I wasn’t sure where this call was going until Jack got on the line and said he saw where the developer had written a huffy Letter to the Editor, saying he would have sold the land to Dobbins had they asked. Jack wanted to know if I would get in touch with the guy to see if he and his sister could buy the parcel if they came up with the cash. They have no problem with the possibility of airplanes falling on them as long as it is in Cobb County. Mules are braver than we give them credit.

I told them I thought it was too late for me to intervene. Besides, the guy who got the land zoned doesn’t live or work in Cobb County. He lives in toney Northside Atlanta which is a short hop from his office in toney Sandy Springs, neither of which are in Cobb County nor in an Accident Prevention Zone. I have a strong suspicion he doesn’t give a rat’s hinny about the matter now that he has gotten the application approved.

Jill suggested that if Councilmember Jerica Richardson would approve of building homes in her district where airplanes can fall, surely she could find a tiny plot somewhere for two mules, currently freezing their tushes off in Montana or Canada or wherever they are. After all, she said, you live in her district and are so powerful you can make or break careers with a single adjective or adverb. I simply must watch my eggnog consumption in the future.

I told the mules that Richardson and I have never howdied, although I am included in a lot of her constituent emails that sound like a cross between The Sound of Music and a high school pep rally. Getting her interested in the welfare of two mules would probably take more time and effort than either of us would care to expend.

So, it looks like Jack and Jill are once again thwarted in their efforts to get home. That may not be all bad. Between a tone-deaf county commission and a dysfunctional school board that see no problem with building in an area where airplanes can fall, they should thank their lucky stars they are in Montana. Or is it Canada? I get those two places mixed up.

You can reach Dick Yarbrough at dick@dickyarbrough.com; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, Georgia 31139 or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dickyarb


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