Thoughts on Trade Offs

                      A Word from Curt

“Son, there are two things you should never sell: a dog or a gun. You’ll regret it later.”

-Louisiana Rural Wisdom

Life is full of decisions, and each decision you make is a trade-off.

You’ll gain some things while losing others.

Seldom in life is any decision “a complete win.”

To move ahead, you must necessarily leave something behind.

The best way to make these tough decisions is to seek God’s guidance, list out the pros and cons for your decision and then make the best well-informed choice you can.

There is never a guarantee that your trade-off will be seen as wise by others.  You own it. It’s your decision to make, and live with.

Additionally, there is no guarantee that you’ll see it in a year as a good decision.  That’s why life is risky and exciting.

As usual, I have a story for everything, including the following on trade-offs.

I’m calling this one, “When Two Fools Meet,” and it was related to me by my son Clint.

The story concerns a prized squirrel hunting dog.

Evidently, a very good one. It’s considered the best in the area, if not the entire state.

So good that a man drove across the state and offered the owner $5000 cash to buy the dog.

The squirrel dog owner politely refused.

The elderly father of the dog owner shook his head,  “It’s an amazing moment when two fools meet. One, a man that would pay $5000 for a dog, and two, a man that wouldn’t sell for that price.”

Stories like this are why I love Pineywoods Louisiana.  Some folks might not understand the joy of hunting squirrels with a gifted treeing dog or frown at even eating a squirrel, but I understand all about the story.  It’s because some things are priceless.

It’s a story of priceless things in the rural area I call home.

Where we value things a little different than folks in Houston or California.

May it always be so.


Ivory, the best dog I ever had. A gifted retriever but so much more than just a hunting dog.  Would I have sold her for $5000?  No way. Some things are priceless.


  • I’m writing a short book for my four grandsons entitled, A Pineywoods Manifesto. It contains brief stories and insights I wish to pass on to them. They are blessed with strong fathers who are already modeling these qualities of our part of Louisiana, but I wish to add my two cents.
Additionally, I’m writing A Pineywoods Manifesto: Field Notes on the Full Life for the many young men I encounter daily who have no positive male role model. My prayer is that this book will serve as a guide to what a real man believes and does.
I’d love your feedback, criticism, and ideas for future chapters. Let’s write this book together!
Earlier The Pineywoods Manifesto chapters:



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