All abuzz about navel-gazing

The Café in Hooterville was simply buzzing when I walked in the other morning. Puddin’ Pye was tipped back in the head chair at the debating table, his cup out for his third refill.
“Well sir, let me tell you, did ya’ see it?” quizzed the Hooterville Sage in a hoarse whisper as he fired up another coffin nail and expelled a cloud of smoke out over the table.
“Yep! Clear as bell. Used my new night vision huntin’ binoculars,” stated Puddin’ as he settled his chair down on all four legs.
This action was prompted by a warning glare from No Nonsense, Café proprietoress, who is always on guard for any damage to her new linoleum flooring.
“What did yer wife, Cupcake, think of the whole shebang?” continued the Sage, his hands shaking with more excitement than he had exhibited since the PCs–Politically Crass–won the last election but not the Drizzle Creek seat.
“Oh, y’ know how wimmen are . . . .” murmured Puddin’ as he raised his cup and mentally took a trip off to a better place.
“How about you, Stretch? Did ya see it?” repeated the Sage as all eyes turned towards the 6’6” Stretch Stringbean, who had just draped his body over a chair.
“Oh yeah, I got a close-up photo. Used my telephoto lens and high-speed film,” uttered Stretch dreamily as his eyes glazed over and he drifted off into another world.
“Did ya get it developed yet?” “Kin I see ’em?” and “How about a copy fer me?” came the requests from around the table.
“And how about you, Studley?” asked the Sage, turning his attention now to Studley Steelbuns, Hooterville’s most eligible bachelor.
“Oh yes, of course,” replied Studley matter-of-factly. “Up close and personal . . . later on,” he added smugly before entering his own private trance.
Had an alien spacecraft visited Hooterville? Was this close encounters of the third kind?
Well not exactly. It was just the state of the good percentage of the male population who made the pilgrimage to Winterpeg the previous weekend to attend the Shania Twain concert.
And the object of their attention was Shania’s navel. All that pulchritude and talent in one package was more than the male population of Hooterville could take without straining what little sanity they still possessed.
On Sunday afternoon, Stretch Stringbean was seen burning all his old Dolly Parton and Michelle Wright posters in a big bonfired. Portly Flabbergast, proprietor of the Hooterville Emporium, was busy restocking the perishable shelves with Shania CDs.
Frank and Jesse–the James Boys–were considering giving up iron peddling in favour of running away and becoming Shania roadies.
The female population collectively was rationalizing this male daydreaming as “an old man’s fantasy.” But hey, we’re all entitled to the occasional bit of navel-gazing, right?

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