Randy Mac’s Livin’ It Up!: Varmint combo turned carnivores into veggiesaurs

Randy Mac

Randy Mac

Most likely few, if any, who read this installation of “Livin’ It Up!” will know that for several years I was the voice of “PaPa Mac” with “Jon Rivers and the Morning Gang” on Dallas Christian radio, KLTY.  Three or four times a week I’d do a call-in visit and share bits of “wisdom” and clean jokes. (I used a voice comparable to the late Walter Brennan.)

Before becoming “PaPa,” I’d call in throughout the week as just me, Randy Mac. I’d tell funny stories from my life and often would talk about the various critters I’ve eaten through the years.

In fact, that’s how it ALL got started. One Friday morning during our early days on church staff in East Texas I was listening to the “Morning Gang.”  I didn’t really know the folks, as KLTY’s signal didn’t make it as far as Haskell. But on this particular morning, Jon was asking callers to call in with funny bumper stickers they’d seen.

I made my first call to the station, and when connected with Jon, I simply said, “I’m kinda new around here.  I like armadilla, coon, rattlesnake, bobcat…,” at which point Jon interrupted me.

“Wait! You mean you EAT that stuff???”

“Sure do,” I responded.  “And the other day my preacher said he saw a bumper sticker that reminded him of me.  It said, ‘I love cats. They taste a lot like chicken.’”  It was well received.

My recorded comment was played back at the end of that particular show and within days was a part of a promo for “Jon Rivers and the Morning Gang.”  From then on, I was kind of a regular on the show.

One time when I was talking with Jon off-the-air, he commented that he and a Dave Tucker (the news guy) weren’t really sure whether to believe me or not about my wild and sometimes unusual eats. I assured him it was true. He said if so, they wanted me to bring some to the studio sometime for them to try. I promised I would.

That winter I caught an armadilla in my in-laws’ yard. I dressed it out. I knew I had some other “specialties” already in the freezer, so now I’d be able to “bless” Jon and Dave with some special treats. I called in a day or two later and we decided on a day for me to drive to the KLTY studios in Dallas.

The night before, I fried up a “sampler platter,” which included squirrel, armadilla and rattlesnake. I got up early the next morning and headed out for the hour-and-a-half drive. With my platter of goodies, I buzzed the buzzer on the back door of the building, waiting for someone to let me in.

I walked in the studio, foil-covered plate in hand, excited to share some culture with the guys. When I pulled the foil off the plate, Dave Tucker announced, “I’m a vegetarian.” Jon immediately chimed in with, “I just became one.”

They ate not one bite. (Fine. More for me!)

Life’s an adventure. I’m livin’ it up!

Randy McLelland, known as “Randy Mac,” is pastor of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship and and entertainer. He can reached at randymac@randymac.com.

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