At yesterday’s family Thanksgiving gathering I turned to Jen as we sat down to eat and said quietly, “Happy Thanksgiving. I’m thankful for you.”
I meant it with my whole heart and sincerity. And I didn’t intend for anyone else to hear. But next thing I knew Jen’s cousin and aunt were melting from my display of romanticism. And before long, both the kids’ table (where we sat) and the grown-ups’ table were alive with cheers and jeers aimed at me. The women praised me; the men accused me of making them look bad.
Driving home we cruised up the Northway doing about 80, not an atypical speed for a mostly empty road in the country. We got passed by a car sporting a plethora antennae.
“That’s a cop,” said Jen.
“No, it’s not,” I shot back. “It’s just some dude with a bunch of antennae.”
Sure enough, a New York State Trooper was hiding in the divide between the north and south directions, as they so often do.
“Here he comes,” said Jen, right again.
Determined not to be ticketed and to keep my New York record clean, I high-tailed it off the Northway at the next exit. Before I knew it, there were headlights quickly approaching in my rearview mirror and then the ominous, flashing red lights. Frustrated, I pulled over and awaited my doom.
The young trooper (probably a lonely rookie suckered into working Thanksgiving night) approached the car, nearly laughing.
“Was that you doing 88?” he asked.
With the utmost confidence and without missing a beat, I calmly and truthfully replied, “No, it was the car next to me.”
“Damn it!” yelled the young trooper, returning to his car. The flashing lights went off and the trooper sped away into the night.
With winter on the horizion and much talk of snow blowers at Thanksgiving, I was eager last night to familiarize myself with my Ariens 8524 8.5-horsepower machine. It’s in Ariens’ Deluxe Snow-Thro category (replaced by this year’s 8426 model) and can handle up to 12″ of snowfall. When we bought our house, we wrote the blower into our offer since the former owner (moving back to Texas) would no longer have a need for it.
So last night I attempted to start it for the first time, without having read the manual. No luck. The electric starter seemed to work fine and the engine was trying to start, but wouldn’t turn over.
This morning I studied the Ariens manual, topped off the fuel tank and boom! Not long ago I successfully got my new toy started. I feel quite a bit more confident about it now, and am eager to give it a whirl when the first real snowfall comes.
I have so much to be thankful for.