Category Archives: story

Tire Store Epitome

A front end alignment appointment at 8 AM on Saturday seemed straight forward, but trucks, cars and mobile equipment were everywhere. Inside, about fifteen men were waiting. Interestingly, all were wearing boots, jeans and a plaid or denim shirt, except for the tire shop owner who was dressed up because he had on a Magellan fishing shirt. That’s not an endorsement or condemnation of anyone, just a local clothing colloquialism.

When a middle-aged man walked in wearing designer shorts, spotless, name brand tennis shoes and a lime green dress shirt with a fuzzy vest over it, he stood out like a leprechaun at a slam dunk basketball competition. Even more so, his overly bronze face and legs looked more like a tanning bed accident rather than nature’s sunshine reward and he seemed, I don’t know, awkward. Each black and silver hair was perfectly in place and not one of them moved, even in the wind.

Continue reading Tire Store Epitome

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Coffee Kindness

We had a blood drive at work recently.  A co-worker is an avid donor and has donated blood, not just platelets or plasma, but whole blood, 126 times now!  That’s 126 pints, 63 quarts, 15.75 gallons of his blood to help others! That’s incredible!

I’ve always asked why, but he just says he doesn’t do anything for anyone else and this is a way he can do his part, but it’s always seemed there was something more.  The other day we talked about the blood drive and he shared the something more.  Normally he’s a stoic, private guy, whose emotions swing little one way or the other, so it was a privilege to hear his story. Continue reading Coffee Kindness

Calf Roping Little Brother

I’d never heard this story from my four sons until a few years ago, but here’s the true talking points of an ever changing set of “official facts”, depending on who you talk to. The bottom line was they were playing Cowboys and wanted to rope calves. Since we didn’t have calves, they told Clark, who is the youngest and only four years old at the time, that they would give him candy if he would run wild while they chased him down and roped him. “It’ll be fun Clark”, they told him, “It’ll be fun”.

Most of the time when mischief was involved, there was a common thread of how it went down. Blake, the oldest, was the mastermind. Jared, the second born, did it. Todd, the third, got blamed. This time, however, they were all in it together. They envisioned themselves as a hard riding, straight shooting, rough and ready band of true blue cowboys…at least in their imaginations. But in reality, they were a barefooted, t-shirt and shorts, backyard, band of boys 12 years and younger. Continue reading Calf Roping Little Brother

A Short Time To Live

Two and half months ago a lightening strike at work crashed our computer server and immediately brought us to our knees. Within an hour a couple of computer geeks who work for the IT Company we contract with showed up. One started on the main frame and one, Joe, began checking individual computers. I walked in my office to see Joe at my desk.  Joe glanced up and asked if I was having problems. I told him I’d spilled a cup of coffee on the tower and it’s acted funny ever since.  Slightly amused, he retorted that my computer was just low on gasoline and after he filled it up and left he wanted me to plug it back in.

I stood fumbling through some paperwork while Joe kept hacking and coughing. Half joking, half serious, I told Joe if he’d lay off the cigarettes his cough would go away. Without looking up from the keyboard he casually said, “Not this time. I found out last week I have stage 4 lung cancer. It only goes downhill from here.” Continue reading A Short Time To Live

First Massage

It was way, way out of my comfort zone, and certainly NOT my idea! We were on a beach in Cozumel and a lady approached Janet with a brochure about a massage. Janet was all in on that conversation, so I wandered over to the water’s edge looking for any little fish I could spot.

A few minutes later I wandered back and she had booked one – a one hour couple’s massage. Ouch! The lady who made the sale stood staring at me looking like her children wouldn’t have shoes if I refused. Continue reading First Massage

Hurricane Heros

The remnants of Hurricane Harvey are still dumping Mother Nature’s tears on my home town of Angleton.  Houston, an hour north, is getting deluged with rain. Creeks, rivers and bayous are overflowing, and every drop of rain on top of that is making life hard on family, friends and strangers.  Having grown up in the area, this is beyond hard. These are some of the most stressful, difficult, trying days one can imagine!

People are leaving their homes for higher ground, but then they are stranded, including Continue reading Hurricane Heros

Rookie Snorkel Vision

Some asthma as a kid along with a few bad respiratory infections as an adult and wala, it’s the perfect potion for a phobia fear! I hate, hate, hate not being able to freely breathe. Even with that, it never crossed my mind that snorkeling entailed semi-restricted breathing through a tube, and that maybe, just maybe, I ought to think twice about putting a mask over my eyes and nose so you can only breathe through the tube just above water.

Even on the boat ride out to a volcano rim off the Hawaii island of Maui, it never occurred to me that breathing is restricted in snorkeling. Continue reading Rookie Snorkel Vision

Hope For Tomorrow

A friend called to ask a favor.  He went out to dinner with his wife at Chili’s celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. At one point, he told his wife happy anniversary and they touched his glass of sweet tea to her glass of strawberry lemonade as they casually talked over dinner.

They finished and asked the waitress for their ticket.

A few minutes later the waitress returned and said their bill had been paid in full.  Continue reading Hope For Tomorrow

Dog Day Stares

Mango, my black mouth curr dog, has a staring problem.  It’s hard to be stared at. It’s even worse when it’s a longer than average, full fledged, laser stare, the kind where every move you make is calculated and the pupils of the eyes follow you, anticipating every move you make. It gives a shiver down my spine!!  A stare like that from a person or stranger can start a fight, and one like that in a dark alley is why there are concealed handgun laws.

On the other hand, even if it’s a stare full of hope, love and adoration, after the initial amusement, it can get almost spooky, to the point you want to close the curtains and hide.

Mango puts his paws up on the backyard window sill and stands there staring inside the Continue reading Dog Day Stares