My later brother-in-law Leon "Gunny" Gunn offered to teach me the art of hunting.
As it was he had shown me a few tricks about fishing and that was one sport I loved. However, when it came to hunting I just didn't have the intestinal fortitude to kill poor innocent animals.
As it so happened a gentleman by the name of Cliff "Sam" Huston, who was an ardent fisherman and hunter, talked me into giving hunting another try.
I went to the East Ward School with his daughters Helen and Francis and their mother used to cook up the most wonderful Banana Cream pie that a fellow could ever wish to eat. Well, as a result of those pies I came to meet their father and learned how much he loved fishing and hunting.
One Thanksgiving Week-end "Sam" asked me if I would like to join him along with Jim and Clark Endicott (his brothers-in-law) and spend the week-end at their cottage on "Endicott's Island" on the Scugog River. Here, "Sam" explained, we would have a week-end of fishing and hunting, along with a few games of euchre and cribbage. How could I refuse to go along and enjoy myself with the exception of hunting and perhaps killing some poor innocent birds? But, fun is fun.
We arrived at the cottage, and that night we played a lot of cribbage and euchre and after mid-night we decided to call it a night and went to bed.
The following morning I woke early, as did the other guys, and after we had a great breakfast of cereal, eggs, toast and coffee, I decided it was time for me to go to the "back forty." As things turned out I had just nicely seated myself on one of the two-holers when I heard a "bang" against the door with the half-moon cut into it. It was a barricade and I hollered "what's going on, I can't get out of here; then I heard a banging on one of the walls and a voice saying "No that target is too damn close, move it back farther, Jim." I didn't know what was coming off but suddenly I heard a shotgun blast and a noise against the outhouse wall. Well, you can imagine how I felt "My God, what are those damn fools doing?"
In a few seconds I heard a voice say "now it's my turn." Well, another shot took place and more noise against the little building. I must admit I was going crazy wondering what in hell are those damn fools were doing. Finally I heard a discussion and a third shot fired; same thing, a noise against the outhouse wall.
Finally the door opened and Sam said "come on out Jack" and when it did I asked "what in -- are you guys doing; are you nuts or something?"
Well, I come to find out that what the guys were doing was firing a shotgun blast in the air while another threw light gravel at the side of the outhouse to make it sound like shotgun pellets. This was the normal initiation for anyone who visited "Endicott's Island" for the first time.
Need I tell you that I didn't need an Ex-Lax for some time to come. Oh yes, that year we didn't shoot nor catch a thing that week-end.