Thursday, January 11, 2007

A Lost Cause

My parents divorced when I was ten years old and soon after that, my younger brother, my mother and I went to live with my grandmother who had been recently widowed.

Soon after we were settled, one of the deacons in our Baptist church, a man in his 50’s or early 60’s decided that I needed a male influence in my life. This insight of his was probably due to the fact that (1) I was being raised by two women and (2) I was already playing the piano for the congregation and obviously not playing football. Not playing football in small-town Texas is very suspect, let me tell you.

So, one night after dinner, I was instructed to ride my bicycle over to their house just to hang out with him. He and his wife had just finished dinner and he took me to his wood-working shop behind the house. I asked him what this was for and he just said we were just going “shoot the breeze.”

It was all so apparent and my little eleven-year-old mind already had this guy figured out. He was hoping that by just getting me to hang around a manly woodworking shop, that such an activity would ward off any chance of me becoming, well, one of those. As a deacon in a Baptist church, I’m sure he felt it was his duty to make a man out of me; this poor little boy being raised by women who played the piano.

I wanted to tell him that I had a dad who lived only 30 miles away was a perfectly good male role model. I wanted to tell him that my dad had already exposed me to years of woodworking, which was fine, but I still enjoyed the piano and loathed football. I wanted to tell him that I didn’t want to be a carpenter. I just wanted to date one.

So, we just hung out in his shop which was excruciatingly boring, especially since I had this bozo figured out. Deep down, I knew that this dolt was trying to make a vain attempt to make me straight. He was trying to recruit me!

Finally, I had an idea. I was working on this arts & craft project and had it in my pocket. It consisted of four colored rubber strips that I was plaiting into a decorative keychain. I pulled it out and used one of his table vices to secure it while I went on with the plaiting. I was thinking, “This’ll show him!”

He sent me home after that and never bothered me again. He was probably proud of himself for doing his duty as a Baptist deacon, but I was a lost cause.


At 2:08 PM , Blogger Lorraine said...


At 7:26 PM , Blogger Iwanski said...

This is brilliant.

At 9:05 AM , Blogger Kyle said...

I laughed at this.

A lot.


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