He sat behind the table, all his guns laid in a row. I spotted him, across the room,
at our yearly town gun show.
The sign clamped to his table read, “Gunsmith and his ware.” The gunsmith
looked the human version of a grizzly bear.
He turned my way, gave me a nod, then stood up from his chair. I said, “You
gotta 12 gauge at a price that might be fair?”
His dark black beard and giant frame were daunting at first sight. He picked me
out a shotgun. Looked to brighten up my night.
The grizzled man gazed at me, then handed me the gun. He said, “You’ll like this
shotgun. Take a closer look for fun.”
The shotgun was a beauty, just what I was looking for. The gunsmith said, “Don’t
need to look for shotguns anymore.”
A Remington 870 with a shorter barrel to boot. With the butt snugged to my
shoulder, then I asked, “How does it shoot?”
He offered me a smile, and then he pinched another chew. He said, “There ain’t
none better. This old gun is meant for you”
I slightly uttered, “What’s the price?” He asked a worthy fare. But my wallet fell
a little short. I’d spent the cash elsewhere.
I feared someone would snatch the shotgun if I stepped away. So, I asked how
much he’d need to hold while getting cash to pay.
He reached, then opened up a hand. His grip as hard as lead. “A handshake’s all I
need today.” And he meant just what he said.
His eyes dang near stared through me with a keen but gentle look. Pure honesty
conveyed to me. A handshake’s all it took.
I found the nearest ATM and pulled out all my cash. Then hurried back so
doggone fast! A record ten-yard dash!
His shotgun now belonged to me. The gunsmith held his word. Another
handshake clinched the deal. A marvel had occurred.
‘Cuz I’d found someone who wasn’t always out for number one. His handshake
was his moral creed. An act that’s all but done.
Now, when I shake another’s hand, I’ll look him in the eye. And hope he’ll know
that talk ain’t cheap. A handshake shouldn’t lie.
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