On an achingly bright and sunny Sunday morning back in 1972, my friend, David Coleman and I set off for a short road trip back to the country. David had just gotten a new .22 rifle similar to one I already owned so we headed up to an unincorporated area of Collin County to hone our sharp-shooting skills on a case of beer cans.
I should divulge three minor items of context from the beginning. First, it had been raining for the past eon and this was the first clear day either of us could remember in our lives. Second, these were not the days of jacked-up pickup trucks and four-wheel-drive Jeeps. These were the days of high-powered, ultra-shiny muscle cars with macho powerplants and wide rear tires. Third — and this is so unimportant, I hesitate to even mention it — the beer cans were not yet empty.
Certainly, you’re doing the math in your judgmental head and saying to yourself, two underaged high school boys with a case of beer and a case of bullets is nothing but a disaster in the making. It was, but not for the reasons you believe, and let’s not pretend you never did anything stupid yourself.
So there we were, headed up highway 78 in David’s souped-up 1969 GTO with massive engine and requisite wide-as-hell rear tires. What could go wrong other than some redneck smalltown sheriff catching two high school boys with a half-finished case of beer and guns? Fortunately, that didn’t happen. David exercised masterful self-control in keeping that beast below the speed limit and we used beer koozies that looked like coke cans.
We reached our destination safely and without incident … until the asphalt ended and we headed down what was once a dirt road. David was particularly excited about how his manly automobile would drift sideways around the curves on the damp road just like a stock car on an oval track. That satisfaction ended when the right rear tire drifted ever so slightly too much and landed us at an angle in a muddy ditch. That wide rear wheel buried itself in the mud right up to the quarter panel. After the initial panic of having scratched the paint job, or worse yet, having spilled beer on his leather seats, we set about assessing our situation and planning our escape.
Escape seemed eminent since the car had a massive engine and posi-track rear end, assuring that both rear tires always turned in unison. The result was that very soon, both rear tires were mired to the point that the fine posi-track axel was resting in the mud. But I had actual Boy Scout experience (at least I had read Boy’s Life Magazine) so I knew how to get us out of the dilemma. In no time, I found and retrieved a five-foot section of a large limb from a downed tree. We shoved it under one tire and prepared to depart. If you’ve never witnessed the Earth consume a five-foot limb like a dog ingesting a hot dog, you’ve never really been stuck. I kid you not, that Pontiac’s massive engine simply drove the limb into the wet mud and I began to become mildly concerned to the point I opened another beer.
To make a long story short, we spent over four hours trying everything we knew to get that useless car unstuck. It was way too far to walk back to the highway and the sun was already casting sideways shadows. We were both covered in mud, filled with anger, and saturated with angst. That’s when it happened. Out of nowhere, a middle-aged farmer on a rusty John Deere tractor, appeared grinning from ear to ear.
Salvation arrives in unexpected packages and it sometimes comes with strings. Turns out, this guy had been sitting on his porch “up on top of that hill there” watching us through binoculars all afternoon. We were his entertainment for the day. The worst was yet to come. He informed us that we would have to dig out some mud so we could wrap a chain around the axel which happened to be three feet from the rear bumper. If you’ve never been on your belly, under a car, in mud with both the texture and odor of Mother Nature’s bowl movement, you’ve never really been stuck.
Afterwards, my mud-saturated friend stripped down to his underwear, wiped away as much mud as he could and jumped in to start the car. In no time, farmer John pulled that GTO back up onto the semi-dry dirt road. All it cost us was the other half of our case of beer (those strings I mentioned). After David insisted that I too strip down before sitting on his leather bucket seat, we headed back to Garland — two half-drunk teenage boys in their whitey tighties and faces covered with mud, hauling guns and twelve empty beer cans. Fortunately, the sheriff was still asleep and we made it home as the sun set on an achingly bright and sunny Sunday back in 1972.
So, my question to you is, “How are you stuck right now?” Maybe that high powered business of yours is off in the mud. Or maybe your drive to do the things that need to be done is stuck in neutral. My friend, Kevin Bullard, specializes in one thing — getting businesses and business professionals unstuck. He won’t sit on his porch and laugh at you and he won’t relate your mud-faced, whitey tighty story to anyone else. He’ll just throw a chain around your business axel and pull you out of that ditch. Contact me and I’ll introduce you to Kevin but don’t wait til the sun goes down. Getting unstuck only gets harder the longer you procrastinate, and the more beer you drink.
First Ever Retraction
You don’t normally see retractions in newsletters but if you know me, you know I’m a stickler for the truth and would never, ever, under any circumstances, sway from presenting only verifiable, double-checked, empirical facts. It seems that in a recent article about Cushman engines, I erroneously referred to my older brother’s newly restored Cushman scooter as being black. I assumed he’d painted it black to match his original scooter from back in the 60’s and I only referred to it as “A black clad dominatrix” to provide readers a mental image of how black and shiny it is. Shortly afterward, my brother’s cadre of shyster lawyers, sniffing the potential for a lucrative lawsuit, served me with legal notice of my sins. Turns out my brother’s new scooter is red and in no way related to any “sexual” vices. I have provided a photo of it below and will refrain from commenting lest my observations be mischaracterized once again (other than to remind you that is is propelled by the Cushman series 500 engine which could be characterized as the very spawn of Lucifer).
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