beech-nut She learned to tread carefully around the little house on Pungo Creek. Grandmama and Granddaddy weren’t particular about where they put their spit cans. The spit cans had been around since before she was born and they had the right of way. Grandmama spit Peach Tree Snuff and Granddaddy spit Beechnut Chewing Tobacco. Both spits looked the same in the cans. When she wasn’t spitting Grandmama polished her three remaining teeth with a “toothbrush” she has gummed into a functional device from a green twig. “This is what the Indians used to clean their teeth,” she explained to her granddaughter who, as usual, was standing a safe distance away. When she wasn’t polishing her teeth, Grandmama kept her “toothbrush” in her Bible. She was never far from her Bible or her spit can. Granddaddy preferred Our Daily Word.  It was more portable than a Bible. He kept a copy in the pocket of his blue chambray shirt. Unlike Grandmama, Granddaddy sometimes misplaced his spit can and when that happened he just spit. Sometimes at the woodstove. Sometimes in Grandmama’s can. Sometimes in the pots of cactus that lined the windowsills. Sometimes he missed. It was fortunate that Granddaddy spent most of his time outdoors.

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