Old Sly was a son of a bitch. That’s what Dan’s father said, anyway. Dr. Johnson had a way with words around us kids — he was the only grownup in our uptight little East Texas neighborhood who’d dare curse in our presence. He wasn’t a doctor. He was a dentist, and after a glass of Glenlivet, he’d proffer up nuggets of wisdom that, as the son of an oil-field traffic manager and a “damn Yankee,” I couldn’t get enough of.