Monday, September 15, 2014

The Master Builder Makes a Supply Run

Hick had no sooner come in the back door this evening than he went out the front door. He could pick up some side work with the circus. He already has a red round nose (probably got it at the auction), and with this entering and exiting skill, he could do the work of six men in the clown car.

"I've got to go back up the road. I saw some windows, and I'm going to try to get them."

"Windows? Where? In the ditch? On the right-of-way? You'd better be careful."

"No. They're in somebody's yard. Sitting by the trash. For people to take."

I think I heard the faint phantom cheer of bald men throughout the county who need haircuts every Saturday morning. A window in a barbershop is a necessity, lest a fistfight between two old geezers over road rage should occur without the proper audience.

Let the record show that Hick drives his Pacifica to work, and had stopped by the pharmacy in town on his way home. He was off to fire up the Ford F250 long bed extended cab, the official vehicle for picking up windows along the road. Not to be confused with my old Toyota Corolla, the official vehicle for picking up J-channel from the middle of the road.

A couple hours later, after Hick returned from his scavenging and barbershop-building and T-Hoe-doctoring (more on that another time) and animal-tending...I told The Pony to holler upstairs and ask about the windows. Because inquiring minds want to know. And I'm already halfway through the story.

"Hey, DAD! Did you get your windows?"

"No. Didn't get them."

"Why not?"

"They were gone. I knew I should have got them this morning."

Therein lies the problem. One man's junk doesn't last long in his front yard. Somebody is always on the lookout for treasure. I know why Hick didn't stop this morning and come back for the truck. He was already late. I saw him hit the brakes halfway up the driveway. Then he went on. But 15 minutes later, he was back home. He forgot all of his medicine vials that he was taking for refills. Not one to use the modern convenience of an automated call-in number is Hick. Since he was already late, he could not run the risk of being double-late and actually getting to work after time to start. Even though he's salaried, and can get away with quite a lot.

I cried because I had no punchline to finish my story. And then I met a man who had no free discarded windows for his Little Barbershop of Horrors.


  1. To bad; the barber shop could have used those windows. Now I'm gonna cancel my haircut.

  2. A master builder is so much better than a master of his domain...

  3. Hick and I should go junking. Yesterday I found a perfectly good 4'x2' purple plastic bin on rollers. It fits perfectly under the bed. I will find something to stuff in it.

  4. There is a house along the way to town here that always has a lot of windows in the side yard. The front yard is enclosed by a chain link fence that usually sports a message for the season via Styrofoam cups shoved in the openings created by the chain link. I was partial to the message reading "Jesus Saves" with the "J" backwards. I have often wondered about those windows and actually stopped once with a friend to inquire. She was brave enough to tromp through the tall grass, I stayed near the car for a fast exit. And how did we get to this? Oh, I remember, Hick needs windows.

  5. Barbershop windows work both ways. Barbershop windows can come from any source. Beauty shop windows, on the other hand, are usually covered with flowers and sparkly lettering so info of scandals and gossip worthy events can be embellished with greater imagination.

  6. My son is a picker. He stopped at one persons yard to take a perfectly good bench just sitting way up in the front yard. An old lady practically smacked him with a broom, "That's my bench, I wait there for my grandson to come home from school." He is now a bit more careful with his picking.

  7. Love it, especially the punchline ending.

  8. Stephen,
    Well, don't come cryin' to Val if a fight breaks out and you're not there.

    Yes. Thank goodness Hick is no Hipster Doofus. Not even a Humpty Dumpty With a Melon Head. No bets for him!

    I hope this is not a thinly-veiled attempt to lure Hick to the city, and put HIM in your purple plastic bin. Rolling him around to flea markets and Goodwills and curbside trash receptacles is, technically, not "going junking with Hick."

    Good thing that place is in your neck of the woods. I fear that Hick might help himself to those Styrofoam cups.

    But...won't the glitter impair their vision when a fight breaks out?

    That ol' gal needs a refresher course on One Man's Junk.

    It was painful to hear the dejection in his voice. Not that I cared enough to go up the stairs from my dark basement lair to console him...