May 19, 2018

One Year Ago


Step 1: Preparation
Do hard physical labor for 11 days straight, sleeping only six and a half hours a night.
On the 12th day (your day off) get up really really early and work for five hours.
Start your day off at noon, to spend a nice day with your wife.
Yawn all day long, complaining about how tired you are.
Get home around 9:00, start unloading the stuff from the car, and please, please don’t start crying because you are so tired.
Man up!
Start watching a movie with your loved one, and never ever admit that you dozed off a couple of times. If you don’t understand something, don’t ever say “Why did they say that?” because, that would imply that you may have gone to sleep.
Go to bed for real at 11:30.

Step 2: Getting supplies together.
Get out of bed at 10:30. (That’s right, 11 official hours of rest. Who does this? Well, maybe millennials….)
Drink a large cup of coffee, with some of your wife’s new natural coffee stuff that gives brain acuity and energy.
Wow! This stuff is great! I actually want to do something!
Eat a good breakfast.
Go to Walmart to get 4 eighty pounds bags of quikrete. (“While you’re there, would you go ahead and get 10 bags of brown bark?”)
And ten bags of brown bark.
Man, I have got so much energy. That coffee stuff is great!
Load bags of bark at Walmart, then thank the young man who comes to help you right as you load the last bag.
Drive to Ace Hardware to get concrete, because Walmart didn’t have it.
Check the difference in price between 40 pound bags and 80 pound bags.
No price on pallets.
Try to pick up 80 pound bag.
Go inside and pay for eight 40 pound bags.
Go outside to load.
Thank the man that helped you with the last two bags.
Drive home.

Step 3: Doing the deed
Put gravel, shovel, hoe, posthole diggers, and concrete mixing tub in wheelbarrow.
After you turn the wheelbarrow over, shovel the spilled gravel back into the wheelbarrow.
Dig a hole with the posthole diggers, 28 inches deep by 18 inches wide.
When you discover that the sand is too dry, and too fine to be pulled out of the hole with the p.h. diggers, run water into the hole to make mud.
Finish digging the hole.
(Yes, it’s okay if it is 15 inches wide at the bottom and 24 inches wide at the top)
Pour the gravel into the hole about 6 inches from the bottom.
Stick plastic pipe into the gravel, making sure it sticks above the ground about one inch.
BE SURE TO PUT THE PLASTIC CAP INTO THE OPEN END OF THE PIPE. (You do NOT want concrete in your pipe.)
Go get some more water. As you walk by your wife in her rocking chair on the porch in the shade, smile when you hear her say, “Oh, you’re already done with the hole? That wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be.”
You don’t have to respond. Just smile.
But, man, I can’t believe how much energy I still have! That coffee stuff is really great.
Pour 2 forty pound bags of concrete into mixing tub, “making a well to hold 7 pints of water. Slump should be 3 to 4 inches.” I don’t know…don’t ask.
Mix water and concrete together.
Listen to your wife if she says there is an easier way.
Smile. Really, you don’t have to say anything.
Shovel the concrete into the hole.
Realize that you have to do this three more times.
Do it three more times.
Now, when you realize that the two levels you brought out aren’t going to work, go get another level.
Carefully, put the flagpole into the tube.
Take the plastic cap out before you try to carefully put the flagpole into the tube.
Hand your wife the level and have her move the pole back and forth until it is level in all directions. (I know, you want to do this part…let her do it.)
Push the concrete into the gaps.
Stop for a minute to admire your work.
Carefully pull the flagpole from the tube.
The concrete needs to dry for twenty-four hours.
Wait twenty-four hours.
After twenty four hours, slide the flagpole into the tube.
Take a minute to admire your work.
Then, try to figure out how to attach the flag.

Oh, shoot! I just noticed I said 1 simple step.



Skip steps one and two.



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