Buried Treasures

by Torry Martin

Dear B. Log,

My annual gift exchange didn’t go well. I spent weeks looking for just the right present to give my best friend. I even had it professionally wrapped, disguised to look like a blender. But on the big day, he didn’t admire the clever wrapping or thank me for such a thoughtful gift. He took his present outside, dug a hole in the backyard and buried it! Then he walked back inside and licked my face. I’ve got a bone to pick with that dog about the bone I picked for that dog.

For the record, choosing dog bones for Sam isn’t easy. But he’s been begging for a bone from the butcher shop for months. And now it’s covered with dirt. I thought it was a really good gift . . . unlike the purple shovel Bradford gave me. Who uses a shovel in the winter?

To top it all off, Sam forgot where he buried his Christmas bone. Apparently, the yard looked different after I cleared away the snow to build my igloo, and Sam couldn’t recognize new holes from old ones. That’ll teach him not to bury his gifts.

Come to think of it, a lot of folks around town have been burying their gifts lately. It’s not just the dogs and squirrels; people in Odyssey hide their God-given talents. Like Connie, for instance. That girl is one of the best writers I know. But sometimes she gets intimidated by Eugene’s intelligence, Penny’s artistic flair and Whit’s deep faith. So she decides to keep her writing to herself. Which doesn’t make sense—just because Lee Kane draws amazing comics doesn’t mean I should give up Captain Absolutely.

Recently, I’ve been encouraging Connie to share her writing with the world. That’s one of my gifts: encouragement. I come alongside others and help them dig up their gifts. Sort of like dog bones. Which can be dug up with completely useless purple shov—oh. Now I get it.

Gotta run, B. Log. Sammy-boy needs my help. And as soon as I finish helping him, I’m gonna call Bradford and thank him for such a useful gift. Then I need to visit Whit’s End and talk to Connie again, ’cause I really “dig” helping others, and her writing needs to be unearthed. Ha!

Wow. I just realized I’ve been writing to you for three years, B. Log. That’s a lot of stories. I wonder if anybody reads this online stuff, anyway. Maybe if someone put them in a magazine. That would be so cool!

This article first appeared in the December 2012 issue of Clubhouse magazine. Copyright © 2012 by Torry Martin. Used by permission. Illustration © Gary Locke.