Monday, December 13, 2010
Oh, to be me
yeah, seven inches of em.
it's like Johnny Holmes sayin, "what? this little thing?"
right away, at first glance,I knew i had no chance of making it.
so, me being me, I tried anyway.
you see the results.
you don't have to be a truck driver to know it's best when all wheels touch the ground.
I ran to the house in a panic-cuz that always helps.
"quick! she's gonna go! call a wrecker and tell him NOW!.
well again, that's like telling Johnny Holmes not to put it in too deep.
good luck with that!
"yep" he said. "leavin right now" he said.
ten minutes later I called again.
he answered the phone.
"leavin pretty soon"
FUCK FUCK FUCK
listen said I, you can't do anything from the front. you need to come around the back way.
"I don't know no backway" he said
I'll tell you, I said
"No" he said. "I'll come the front way to look er over"
"hey dad, the cops are out there"
I walked through the icy creek in my tennis shoes to assure the officer all was fine. not as bad as it looked.
he spit his coffee all over the windshield
I went back to the house (through the icy water-yeah, well fuck you hypothermia) to call the fine people who own the truck and were responsible for the load to tell them there had been a tiny mishap.
"we'll need pictures"
fuck fuck fuck
how can I make this not look bad?
I raced through the bastard creek to take the pictures before she toppled over.
I needn't have hurried as my daughter raced eagerly to take pictures. She seemed quite amused by the whole thing.
I tried to shoo her like a fly after my hamburger but she just laughed harder and clicked faster.
When the wind blew, she'd waver and creak and I'd turn away, preferring to just hear the crash rather than see it. the cop was on his radio taking bets.
I raced back through that mother frikken creek to call the, yes, BS Towing service.
"should be there any time"
well, anytime seemed a little vague to me so i ran back through that shittin creek to chase the sparrows off
little bastards-go find a power line. I swear they were trying to knock her over.
a half hour later Frank showed up.
I swear I had told them that it was a fully loaded semi about to plow a field.
but here comes frank in a tow truck that seemed far more suited to sports cars in the median.
all at once i became chief brody in jaws needing a bigger boat.
but frank seemed unconcerned.
now frank was somewhere between 82 and 113. it was hard to tell. his face looked as if he'd been on every arctic expedition since the poles were discovered. I'd never seen a face with crevasses like that.
"I need to get behind her"
yes, frank, you do. that's what I TOLD YOU.
at this point, some doves had taken roost too and I feared the end was near. it was a full twenty miles around on ice packed winding roads. I foolishly pulled an ace out of my sleeve.
well frank, said I, right over there on that little road is another bridge. if you cross that, you can drive through my field-i swear it's solid-and come up behind.
"how bigs the bridge?" he asked
it's pretty sturdy, i lied.
"whats it made of?"
he seemed to take to challenges.
oh, it's concrete, I offered, without telling him it was seven feet wide, one foot thick, supported by three broken pillars and had no sides.
"well, let's go look at it."
frank was gettin into it.
maybe we should walk down there, I suggested, knowing he'd rebuff anything beyond.
"augh! we'll drive"
frank made it six feet down the tiny road before he slid sideways into and through my neighbors fence.
the only neighbor I got along with and his cows wandered over.
once frank figured he'd done about all the damage he could, he put on some chains and got out and
on we inched to the bridge.
I was sure he'd find good sense; say, "no pardner, that ain't gonna happen"
but no, frank grinned like a mad man and said he liked our chances.
well, um, er, should I walk ahead and guide you? I offered.
"nawwww," he countered. "we'll be fine.
as we started across the bridge, I realized he had nothing to lose. He'd had a long good life.
we both had cigarettes dangling from our lips. I looked over to him grinning and damn near pissed myself.
"what's the load limit on this here bridge," he asked
how much you weigh? I quivered back.
"thirty two thousand" he nearly flirted.
I looked down to the river below, before answering.
I'd say that;s the new limit.
damned if we didn't make it
the field too.
then he backed that thing across my bridge while i fastened my eyes shut.
we got out and watched the big rig waver back and forth like a sailor on leave.
Frank loved the beauty of it all.
I surrendered to fate.
frank took his time hookin her all up then played with some levers to get the feel.
he hit the wrong one and the wrong end lifted and I began to cry
this pleased him and he laughed
"relax sonny, just testin the waters"
it became ever clear that this fuckin little piece of shit was not going to lift my truck and I prayed for an angel.
he came in the form of James, the road grader operator turned snow plower who was lookin for a little fun.
frank took him under his wing and they bonded.
"we'll hook a chain to you," frank invented. "and I'll lift her all I can and you drag her back on the road.
I had become the stunned audience.
as frank began to lift, the trailer crunched and buckled. metal bent and lights popped.
frank squinted through his pall mall
"knew that was gonna happen. can't be helped"
but frank couldn't lift her enough for james to drag her, so he gets another idea.
"you" (that being me) "when I lift her some, you take these wooden blocks and prop her up. then we'll get another bite"
ah, so this is where it all ends. with eighty thousand pounds teetering over my head I was chosen to be the hero. They'd throw me the timber from the high ground and, well, just see what happens.
I no longer cared. I was wishing for a quick end and down I went.
as I looked up to the behemoth hovering over me and james and frank admiring my courage, I offered a strange prayer.
well, God, if you're lookin to kill me, here's your chance.
but gawd damn if after an hour of this crazy game, the truck inched its way more and more onto the road.
the cop sipping coffee up front
me propping boards like a bomb expert waiting for the kaboom
my daughter gleefully snappin pictures
franks truck half tipped over but the cables holding
james pulling into the woods on his grader like the little train that could.
my only consolation was that if my truck went, so did theirs.
a semi, wrecker and grader all tumblin down the hill together with chains flyin and cables snappin.
but it didn't happen
somehow the whole frikken circus worked and to frank, it seemed a let down. Like sex without the orgasm.
just too easy.
the cop grew bored and left as did my daughter.
james wouldn't take a nickel
frank gave me a bill for $600.00
and we all trudged on with our day.
and winter just started.
oh, to be me