Making Waves, Jet Skis and Suspenders

   Written by on December 28, 2017 at 12:55 pm
The stories in this column are true. Averett lives a dull life in rural Southside Virginia with his wife Management, two children and a rotating assortment of goats, dogs, cats, snakes and other local fauna.

The stories in this column are true. Averett lives a dull life in rural Southside Virginia with his wife Management, two children and a rotating assortment of goats, dogs, cats, snakes and other local fauna.

On the day before the day before Christmas which I was calling Christmas Eve Eve (until I realized it wasn’t) it was morning, the son was making waves.

As with everything else in my world nothing is simple. The son who was making waves was our first born and our first son. Then when he was 10 years old he was demoted to our middle child and our second son when we added his older brother.  In any case, there was some adjustment because Son One had seniority but Son Two was older.  The daughter remained the youngest but also had seniority to our eldest.

Management and I had our oldest child last which was somewhat out of the ordinary but I’m certain other folks have done the same.

In spite of some adjustment difficulties all three have grown into responsible adults and we are proud of them.

But back to the waves.  This all started several years ago when I picked up a jet ski motor in a load of scrap. It had to be good for something so I kept it in inventory.  I figured sooner or later someone would want the motor for parts.

Now, you should understand as far as I am concerned a jet ski is nothing but a motorcycle that runs on water. In addition, although I loved riding a motorcycle, I realized thirty years ago that I didn’t have enough sense to ride one so I canceled my license.  I have no interest in owning a jet ski.

I have to agree with a lady friend of mine from 40 years ago who maintained, “If it has wheels, a motor or testosterone, it will give you trouble.”

Once a man has a wife and children he shouldn’t do certain things. Motorcycles and jet skis are two of them.  Ultra-light airplanes on the other hand are safe and suitable for husbands and fathers.

Then, last month a friend of mine gave me another jet ski.  It was at a salvage lot and no one wanted it because jet skis are too expensive to repair. That is it would have been too expensive to repair if I hadn’t accidentally had a spare motor and parts in inventory.

Within a few hours First son or Middle son or whatever he is had made some magic and it was running. Then he put it in the pond to test-drive it.  There haven’t been waves like that in my pond since I had a herd of boy scouts in canoes in it.

Oddly the son has been waiting for a jet ski since he heard a comedian say, “Money won’t buy happiness but money will buy a jet ski and nobody frowns while riding a jet ski.” In this case there wasn’t even any money involved so it was a win for everybody and everybody is smiling.

For Christmas my cousin from Baton Rouge (where cousin is spelled and pronounced coo-zan) sent me a manuscript of a book written by my Grandfather Jones.  Grandfather wrote it about 100 years ago and as far as we know never sent it to a publisher.  That seems to be a family trait. Write a book and never do anything with it.

Grandfather Jones also went to college, got a degree and decided to captain a steamboat on the Tennessee River. That’s another family trait. Get a degree or two and then choose a career that is absolutely unrelated and live an interesting life.

In any case, I read and enjoyed Grandfather Edgar’s book over Christmas. I learned some things about east Tennessee (where my father and mother grew up) and about the river before all of the dams were built.

Oddly, some of the things in his book would be considered politically incorrect in today’s world. Even more oddly, some of them would have been considered politically incorrect 100 years ago. Maybe that’s another Jones trait but one that obviously skipped me since I am usually correct and seldom political.

A few months ago I was told that a particular article I wrote was “The worst you’ve ever written.” My feelings were hurt. That is an unfair and inaccurate accusation. I have written many things worse than that.  I am certain that sometime in the future I will write something that is even worse.  At least I hope so. I would hate to have achieved a record at this tender young age.

Speaking of age I also got a pair of suspenders for Christmas.  I have been avoiding them since I was threatened with being suspended from a tree branch with a rope many years ago.  I was suspended from high school, junior high and a college but the rope offer was too much.  On the other hand, something had to be done to keep me from looking like a teenage thug with my pants around my knees.

They do a wonderful job of keeping my pants up but have done terrible things to what little dignity I had left. On the other hand, they are more dignified than walking like a duck while holding my pants with one hand and at least I can hook my thumbs in them and complain about the Gub’mit like we old codgers do.

Happy Christmas to All and a Merry New Year.

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