A postman by profession, Andrew Waller was a philosophical man. “Life was like a bird,” he liked to say. It looked pretty cute and all until it pooped on your head.
That was what happened to Mr Waller last Monday. Well, in a metaphorical sort of way that is. While crossing the road to the post office in Paris, Texas, he was hit by a runaway cow which then jumped over him in its desperate attempt to get away from four police cruises that were chasing it.
Mr Waller was shaken but not stirred and otherwise unhurt. But he was shocked. Actually, at the precise moment the steer ran into him, he involuntarily exclaimed: “Be fruitful and multiply” but not exactly in those words.
You couldn’t blame Andrew. This wasn’t New York or Kuala Lumpur where a person might get run over while walking on the pedestrian sidewalk.
This was Paris, Texas where cows had hooves instead of feet because they lactose. In fact, in that part of rural America, cows outnumbered people and almost never jumped over the moon not to mention pedestrians. Indeed, the only accidents that occurred there occasionally caused people.
Still, Andrew was grateful to the stampeding bovine, which had vaulted him from Texan obscurity into national prominence. That was no bull either because it won him his five minutes of national fame – it was covered by the national media – and you could say he milked it for all it was worth.
Without trying too hard, he came across as modest, diffident and deprecating, a latter-day Forrest Gump.
“I started off with nothing,“ he told the national networks when asked what he was pre-Bessie, for that was the name of the cow that flattened him, “And I still have most of it left.”
It all started because Bessie was bored and fed up with her lot in life. It was one of those days when everything came in through one ear and out the udder.
While being loaded on to a sale vehicle, Bessie made a dash for it. It led Texas police on a miles-long chase through city streets and was caught on video hurdling over a pedestrian (read the modest Mr Waller).
A police dashboard camera recorded Bessie, running at a high speed through the streets, and running directly into the hapless Mr Waller.
Andrew “I Had A Beef” Waller was knocked to the ground and the cow jumped over him in a leap not seen since Carl Lewis.
Alas, there are no happy endings to this story.
Police said the cow managed to give officers the slip and was on the loose for more than 24 hours before it was hit by a car and killed.
And this being America, people actually mourned for Bessie. Even Donald Trump tweeted that he’d “bet” that the driver of the kill-vehicle was a Democrat.
Bessie was being loaded on to a sale vehicle prior to heading to the abattoir.
That was why she was running.
She was running for her life.