Here we go again. Every day, I feel as though I have to deal with annoying people on campus. Either leaving from class or just trying to get some West Union noodles, someone decides they have to bother me. One day I just want to walk across the bridge without Wild Coyote Jones challenging me to a duel at high noon.
Don’t get me wrong, Wild Coyote Jones and I met during rush my freshman year when I was rushing ATO, and he was rushing the Jesse James Outlaw Gang. He was a nice guy, always cleaned up his spittoon, and he hitched his horse up outside Alspaugh out of the way of the mopeds and bikes. But every single time I try to get some Il Forno, he yells “City Slicker!” at me, and shoots his pistol right at my feet. I always guessed he just really loves Clint Eastwood movies or something.
And I understand that Durham isn’t big enough for the two of us, but why does he feel the need to single me out? We were acquaintances at best, so is there nobody else he would rather have a shootout with in the middle of the BC Plaza? I’ve gotten fairly good at avoiding the duel, by saying things like, “Hey man, I have to get to office hours real quick, I’ll Facebook message you to duel later” or “Uh, I’m probably free, like, next Friday?” These usually send him off, but of course I’ve never followed up.
He’s cool, but we’re not that good of friends, and I always see him practicing shooting old bean cans in the Gardens so he’d totally kill me first. I’m worried he will realize I’m avoiding him, and he’ll just shoot me in the back!
The worst part is that I always see him going out. He’s always chatting with freshman girls in the line at Devine’s or setting up dynamite charges around the vault in Metro 8 to steal their vast gold reserve. Every time he sees me, he runs up and lassos me to the ground. We always have a good chat after that! While he may refer to most people as “Injun” which is pretty f**ked up, we always have great conversations when I’m out, and he always shares his hand-rolled cigarillos. I always promise that I’ll totally duel him sometime next week.
So maybe I’m the bad guy! What’s the worst thing that could happen if I do duel him? I mean, yeah, I’d be bleeding out with my face down in an Au Bon Pain Southwest Chicken salad, but at least I got to do interesting stuff in my last semester at Duke. It would be nice to do something different and branch out of my usual friend group, but every time I hear his spurs jangle in the hot afternoon sun, I just want to get some crepes.
I should go out to his old hideout in the Duke Forest, and just let him know that I’m not that big into dueling and would rather just grab some coffee. But I’d hate to let the guy down; all he ever seems to do is play with his six-shooter on the bridge. I mean I’ve only actually seen him shoot one kid, but he was kind of a d**k to me during an IM basketball game so I wasn’t too upset. I also heard Jones saved a girl sophomore year after she was tied to the train tracks by Dastardly J. Villainous, so he must be a chill kid.
Next time I see him, I should just go ahead and duel him. Not sure where someone buys an 1873 Colt .45 Peacemaker Revolver in 2017, but maybe he has a spare! I know his friend Billy—another chill kid—could teach me a few tricks. I’ve heard him and Jones talking about planning to rob that Saloon down near Devine’s so I’m sure he can grapple with a pistol.
I heard Wild Coyote was working out West in California doing some sort of data mining job with the 49ers, I’m not really sure. Next time I see him at the Wild West Union, I’ll be sure to have my cowboy boots ready just in case I see Coyote putting new horseshoes on his trusty steed, Wan-neigh-maker. And, I better start practicing with the Duke Shootin’ & Hog-tyin’ team if I don’t want to make a fool of myself. Next time at the Union, I’ll be sure to get there right after 11:20 class break, so I’m on time for high noon. If I don’t duel him I’m worried I won’t get to know Wild Coyote any better before he rides off into the sunset shooting his pistols in the air right after Rubenstein finishes his graduation speech. After that who knows where he’ll end up, I actually heard Duke put a bounty on his head after he stole utensils from Penn Pavilion freshman year, hopefully the sheriff never catches him.
Nick Younger is a Trinity senior. His column, “Medical Professionals Hate Him!” runs on alternate Fridays.