Tuesday 8.17.10

I never had a damn BB gun.

After a few days on the mend from my recent quick introduction to the concrete floor in the back of the shop, I took a trip to Illinois this morning. At my last visit to the Doctor, they set me up with some other pain medication that they thought might work better with my tender little insides. The hope was that I would not feel the need to purge everything. So far, so good as long as I remember to eat when taking this stuff. One is a pain reliever and the other, I’m not sure. I think it probably is some kind of drug that makes it so even if you have pain, you don’t give a shit. What fun.

So, I took my drugs and had my breakfast ( I usually never eat breakfast ) and headed to Illinois to take care of some business. The drive is about an hour. Once down there I kind of had the feeling that I should maybe take a break and walk around or something as I was starting to feel a little loopy. My Dad lives down there, so I decided to stop in and see if he was around. He was. I told him the whole stupid story about the accident and then went to check out a new light he is using in his photography. ( He is a photographer as well ) We walked into his studio, checked it out and walked back to the house. We had to go through a 3 stall garage to get from the studio to the house. On the way back through I noticed that in some stack of stuff he had a box for a Red Ryder BB gun. I asked what he was doing with this…

He told me that he had purchased the BB gun to get some parts for his other BB gun. Other BB gun? “Since when do you have a BB gun?”, I asked. He told me he has had one for a long time. “What the hell do you shoot with it?” All kinds of varmints, mostly gophers. Really. Then he showed me the fixed up gun and how and where he used it. “I just pop open the window here and keep them out of the back yard, I have not seen any in a while so either I got them all or have scared them off.”

No shit.

Which reminded me of another story.

A man I used to work for came to the USA from Germany when he was 4. He grew up in Long Island, NY. When he was old enough, he joined the military (this was late 40’s) and pretty much was out of Long Island from that point. At some point his parents moved out of Long Island and somewhere in rural New York state. On one of his visits home – the new home, which was an old frame structure farm house somewhere – he discovered that the home had no insulation and no screens on any of the windows. During the summer it was unbearable but his folks would not open the windows because they did not want bugs and critters in the house.

Being the responsible son that he was, he went to the local hardware store and purchased a bunch of screen material. At that time all screen material was metal and it probably came in a roll. I don’t think he was a very good repair guy but he managed to cut the screen and staple it up on the outside window frames of the house. I’m sure it was a real hack job but effective. The folks were able now to open the windows and let the air flow. What a relief.

Sometime later on another visit he noticed that the new screen was full of holes. Big holes and lots of them. “What happened to the screens?”

Apparently there were also a lot of deer in this rural New York area. His Dad had shot through the screens in attempts to bag some venison. Why go out and hunt for them when they just come up to your window?

Anyway… as a kid I never had a BB gun or a mini-bike, two of the most awesome things I could think of to possess as a kid. This was even way before “A Christmas Story” and “you’ll shoot your eye out.” And here Dad is with a damn BB gun. I never had a damn BB gun. I suppose next he’ll be getting a mini-bike.

One response

  1. I really enjoyed your story and although I did have a mini bike as a kid I didn’t have a BB gun. But now as an adult I have had the opportunity to shoot squirrels out of my bedroom window (I take the screen out first of course). I also wanted to tell you that I think your photographs and ropework are out of this world!

    August 28, 2010 at 9:59 pm

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