I was over Cyril’s there the other day helpin’ him work on his truck. Now, that’s usually the code word we use when we’re just gonna go sit in his garage and drink beer all day. We’ll prop the hood up and open the toolbox so it looks like we’re doin’ somethin’, but it’s almost always just us gettin’ away from the wife and kids for as long as we can.
It’s a great scheme until there’s actually somethin’ wrong with one of our trucks. Now if it’s somethin’ simple like replacin’ the wipers or puttin’ a new bulb in the headlight, we’ll get that done in a few minutes and then sit there for hours tellin’ lies and tryin’ to throw our beer caps in the grate on the old wood stove, or the tobacco can full of screwnails, or anything at all, really.
But if it’s somethin’ complicated and the wife needs the truck to go for groceries or somethin’ else then all of a sudden they think yis should be expert mechanics just because ya spend all your free time in the garage.
Now, with me and Minnie, we know we both make mistakes, so when one of us messes up really big, ya might make a little dig or somethin’ – nothin’ too serious, but ya don’t go too far down that road because you know you’re gonna mess up just as much soon enough. Anyways, Cyril and Joan ain’t really like that, eh. Joan hardly ever makes a mistake in her life, so she makes fun of Cyril every chance she gets when he does somethin’ stupid.
But – and here’s where you young fellas should pay attention – when Joan does make a mistake, Cyril goes on like he won the lottery. He’ll bring it up over and over and make jokes about it and make fun of her and everything else. And if ya seen the way she does the same thing to him all the time, you wouldn’t be surprised he goes on like that. But it don’t get him any further ahead.
Anyways, here’s what happened. Minnie and Joan go to the stores together all the time, eh. Usually Minnie drives because Joan’s eyes aren’t that great. Cyril says she needs glasses but she’s just way too stubborn to get them. Anyways, for some reason, Joan picked Minnie up instead of the other way around, and when they went to back out of their parkin’ spot at the mall, Joan basically ripped the whole front fender off the truck, scrapin’ it up against one of them cement posts.
It just happened me and Cyril was at our place watchin’ the ball game when they came back, and that’s when we found out about the whole thing. Now the fender was just barely hangin’ on by a rivet and it was all bent and crinkled – it looked like a beer can somebody smashed against their head.
Look at it! Cyril kept sayin. It’s frigged! It’s just frigged!
After the shock of havin’ his truck half-wrecked started to go away, that’s when it dawned on Cyril that he had pretty much free reign to make fun of Joan for the whole mess. And that’s right about when all the jokes started. I won’t even get into all of them, because I don’t want anybody to get their panties in a knot, but they were pretty much all about bein’ blind, and Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, and even Ronnie Milsap all made appearances.
Needless to say, his victory dance didn’t last for long, since she told him she needed the truck fixed because she had to do all the deliveries for one of her bake sales, and it was only a couple of days away.
So fast forward to the next day, and there’s me and Cyril up to our necks in the junkyard tryin’ to find a fender that would fit Cyril’s truck. We musta checked out twenty five of them before Cyril looked at one and said it would fit perfect.
It was a different make, different model and different colour, so I’m not sure what made it perfect, other than it was hot out and we had a cooler full of beer home in the garage.
We get back home and I look at the fender, look at the truck. Look at the fender, look at the truck. It was like one of them kids’ games where you’re tryin to fit a square through a circle or somethin’.
How in the hell are ya gonna make that fit on there? I said.
Easy, he said, and pointed in the corner. We’ll just weld it! I got a lenda timmy’s welder last night.
Of course, neither one of us wanted to pipe up and ask if the other one ever used a welder before, because we never. But how hard could it be, eh?
Now, anytime ya see somebody weldin’ on TV or somethin’, there’s always two things ya see – a great big, bright spark where the weldin’s happenin’, and one of them great big masks over buddy’s face with the little black window. We only had one of them things, and it was the great big spark.
I could feel the light burnin’ my eyeballs pretty much right away, but for some reason I kept lookin’. I don’t think we lasted ten seconds before Cyril shut ‘er down and we both realized we we couldn’t see a damn thing.
Minnie! I said, stumblin’ in the back door. We’re blind! We were weldin’ and we’re blind! she said.
And ya know what they did? They started laughin at us.
Well if it ain’t Ray Charles and Ronnie Milsap, eh Joan? Minnie says.
We spent four hours with wet tea bags on my eyes. Me in the chair and Cyril on the couch.
Ya know what I just thought of, Cyril said. There’s supposed to be a mask ya where when ya do that.
G’way, I said.