John Paul Rubberboot

We got a new cop in town one time.  He was from a really small town in Quebec somewhere.  His real name was John Paul Robert Booth.  But when he says it, it sounds like John Paul Robber Boot.  So they called him John Paul Rubber Boot.

John Paul talk kinda funny and some people laugh at him.  But me and Chubby like to “ang” around with John Paul and talk about “ockey.”  John Paul Rubber Boot was the stick boy for the Montreal Canadians from around the 1970’s for five years, when they used to clean up the Stanley Cup every year.  Me and Chubby been Montreal fans since the days we stayed in the hostel and we get pretty excited listening to John Paul’s stories about Rocket Richard, Evann Cornwhyyea, and Guy The Flour.  We sit in Effie’s Café, drink coffee, and talk about “ockey” for two, three hours a day.    One time we were all sitting at Old Steamboat’s General Store whe got so tied up in the 1972 playoffs that Harvey Dog Pot walk out of with a bail of dried muskrats, right in front of us.  He even walk into Effie’s and eat a piece of pie. 

John Paul stick around all winter and pretty soon we’re all “anging” around John Paul’s place and drink his beer and listen to his stories.  He said one time after they won the Stanley Cup, a woman in a biniki jumped out of a cake and fell right on top of Toe Blake.

Before long all the outlaws are coming around too, but we don’t let them have any beer cause they sure as hell gonna fight after one or two for sure. 

John Paul like to talk “wit” his “ands” and boy just like watching a show in Old Steamboat’s theatre.  When he tell us a story he stand up when he get excited and give us play by play of how Jean Bellevue deke out Gordie Howe and snap a wrist shot to the top shelf against Detroit Red Wings.  Boy me and Chubby is just about crying we’re so happy to hear “is” stories. 

We get word John Paul is being transferred to another town next month.  We give him a surprise goodbye party.  We lock him up in jail and bring in a couple of cases of beer.  We all sit around and he tell us story after story about all our hockey heroes.  John Paul is getting drunk and he tell us he’s going to miss us.  We let him out and he give us all a big hug.

It’s been six months since John Paul Rubber Boot left our town and the jail is getting filled up again.  When John Paul was around all the criminals were so busy listening to “is” stories that they forgot to go commit a crime.  But now they’re bored again and getting into trouble.  We start a petition to bring John Paul Rubber Boot back to our town but big shot RCMP don’t listen to little people like me, Chubby, Harvey, and Amos Boots.  I never thought I’d ever like RCMP let alone sit around and talk with them.  But I guess they’re just like you and I.  They sure like hockey anyway. 

We finally got a new RCMP. His name is Buphinder Singe, he is one of them other kind of Indians.  He’s kind of shy and don’t come around for coffee at Effie’s Café or stay more than a minute at Old Steamboat’s General Store.  I was waiting in the dentist office the other day and I read a little about India.  I buy some currey from Steamboat and I get Effie to make curried moosenose.  We bring it over to Constable Singh at his office.  Boy, he don’t know what the hell to make of the situation.  Here he was being offered a mooses nose cooked in curry.  He is hesitant to eat it but after a couple of bites, he’s licking his fingers in no time.  He tell us the only other Indians he’s ever seen was in Western movies where they scalp people and burn them out.  So he admit he was kind scared at first.  Harvey Dogpot freak him out by jumping up and doing war whoop.  But we all laugh like hell at him.  He invite us back to his place for a beer later.  We eat snatchos and drink beer all night while he tell us about growing up in India.  He say they used to go to school on an elephant.  Boy I laugh like hell.  Then he bring out a sitar, a funny looking guitar, and start to sing “Indian Blues.”  We all wobble home a few hours later singing one of the Indian blues songs.  Maybe the jail not going to be so full anymore.



About inuvik61

Filmmaker, apprentice bluesman. columnist, father, husband, master, and champion to all those who missed their boats.
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