She thinks my tractor's sexy ...greenspun.com : LUSENET : TB2K spinoff uncensored : One Thread
His name was Andy, and at 63 he was an attractive man. An outdoors man, living in a farm environment, making his living by clearing brush. Nice tractor, he was proud of it, proud of what he did. Strong man, with kind eyes, thoughtful.
When he came to mow our lots, he left me with brand new gardening gloves. A gift. Showed concern. Looking out for his customers.
I know it is going to be a strange day when those odd coincidences start to occur. I wondered where Andy had been. Not a call for a long time. I went to throw out some old newspapers this morning, papers I never had a chance to scan.
The front page of the local section: A nice picture, brushy field, blue gulf water. I almost tossed it away right then. No story of interest there.
Then I saw an overturned red tractor in the brush, hauled from the gulf. THEN the headline, finally. Bradenton man, 63, killed in accident with tractor. It was Andy. The name said Andy.
The red tractor had overturned, spilling him over a seawall, into the water, falling on top of him, crushing him to death. Relatives are out of state. Notification was difficult. Date of the paper: August 12. He lived alone. He worked alone, preferring it that way. He died alone.
I probably would never have learned what happened to him, if not for that chance, last minute glance at an old paper. What prompted me to catch that story this day, so much later, I may never know. Of the handful of people I have grown to appreciate in this small town, he was in the top two. It was just one of those intuitive, internal things.
I looked at the picture again. The tractor I used to like, that he looked so good on, expressing an honest day's work, was upside down. Now, I truly hated it.
Got dressed, went to the store, clicked on the stereo that somehow, some way had been jarred to an obscure country western station, one I never listen to. Sound blared from the get-go, hijacking my attention. The song, lyrics, something I had never heard before.
"She thinks my tractor's sexy." Cruel words, perfect timing.
"She even likes my farmer's tan.."
I have to tell you, we talk a lot on this forum. We talk in Bok's. We talk true; we talk shit. (Guilty here.) Some of us pray for each other, exchange e-mail, meet in person, help each other out to the last farthing. I know, and I thank you for all our connections. Some fight, and threaten, some hide, some don't do e-mails, some toy and confuse, enjoy the fun. No angel here, either. Just another person. One person's reality is another's fantasy holodek.
Which is as it should be. To each, his own.
But I have to wonder. People drop off the radar screen all the time, in real life, online too. Usually, we never know where they go. We assume all is well; they just moved on.
Maybe not. Connections are connections. To those who are shadows here, but pleasant shadows, I have to say thank you now. Not later. You have added to my life. I think we must be aware of the radar screen. At any moment, any of us may be gone forever.
"She thinks my tractor's sexy."
To Andy Vogeney ... man of the earth ... salute and farewell.
-- Oxy (Oxsys@aol.com), August 29, 2000
I must say "THANKYOU", for being a friend, for Bok's chat, for Prayer, for all the thoughtful posts, the concern YOU have shared.
Your timing is perfect. I was thinking the same about people who 'drop' off the radar, and how we think all is well, when sometimes it is not.
I too lost a dear friend recently. He was 87 years old. He used to come and pick me up when I was 16, he and his wife. They took me to church when I didnt have a ride, they held my baby while I cried. I saw him at a thrift store passing out tracks to the cashiers and declaring proudly his love for God.
He used to drive a O-So Beverage truck. He delivered sodas to the bar my mom worked at. Each time he delivered he would tell her that Jesus loves her. I watched her as she died praying for many. He had reached her in love.
Funny, even the small things in life mean so much. For my mom, it was Joe, the O-So soda dude. To me, he was Elder Piazza the small but gentle 87 year old man, who showed me love when others spoke poorly of me for having a child out of wedlock.
Small in stature, but BIG and GIANT in love. Thats how I remember him.
I guess we all have the 'special someone' sent to us to allow us to be touched. He loved my son, I thank God I didnt see him for awhile, I didnt want him to know about my son, it would have hurt him terribly.
Thanks once more Ox, for a great reminder of how short life is and how a gentle giant can touch our lives.
Thanks to EACH one of you here, for the prayers, the debates, the laughter and the tears.
And how bout this for the GRAND FINALE? I just had a STRANGER on a bike ask if my son lived here. I said "yes who are you?" He said, I just found this on the street. He held my sons date minder and inside of it contained ALL of my sons ID's and my bank/check card, he could have went to town with it, but he returned it. I told him to please come back around 5:00 I wish to give him a reward.
THERE ARE STILL KIND HONEST PEOPLE. Thanks to this 'stranger' for being one.
-- consumer (email@example.com), August 29, 2000.
This piece should be required reading for all who visit the forum today.
Thank you, Oxy, for waking me up once again to the impermanence of this unreality, to the potential joys of connection with other bipeds for however long this play of light and shadow lasts.
May Andy be given the opportunity to read your sweet prose written in his memory. You know he is smiling and embracing you, Oxy. Blessings to you both.
-- Bingo1 (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 29, 2000.
So now I have read two posts on one thread which bring tears to my eyes. Sumer, that was beautiful. And the fact that you see God's work in the return of your son's effects makes me smile big and wide. His works are everywhere if we but open our eyes, ears and hearts. Keeping you both in my heart, sumer.
-- Bingo1 (email@example.com), August 29, 2000.
I am sitting here at work just short of losing it-tears in my eyes. Thanks you sumer and oxy for sharing this-time to go into the bathroom...
-- FutureShock (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 29, 2000.
Your journalistic skills are showing. That was a beautiful story.
-- Lars (email@example.com), August 29, 2000.
Oxy and 'Sumer,
I really, really was done posting for a day or so. Until I happened upon this thread.
You know, I was going to add some things from my own thoughts, but I was afraid it might detract from the exquisite beauty of your messages. As Shakespeare said, you shouldn't go throwing perfume on a rose. You said it all; thank you both so, so much.
...from just another soulmate who's holding a wet Kleenex.
-- eve (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 29, 2000.
Oxy, thank you.
-- helen (email@example.com), August 29, 2000.
Oxy, this is one of those special nugget of a thread this forum gets once in a while that erases in my mind all the uglyness written on it, and keeps me coming back for more.
I'd like to add my thanks to everyone too, the bad and the good, for enriching my life. The mean and petty teach me about life as much as the good and the wise.
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), August 29, 2000.
Oxy & Sumer,
Thank you for these posts - a gentle refocusing on what is truly imporant in life: compassion and humility.
God bless and keep you all.
-- Deb M. (email@example.com), August 29, 2000.
Great story Oxy
My son knows that if I ever can't get online to check in, he will come on and let all of my online friends know. =0)
-- cin (cin@=0).cin), August 29, 2000.
Oxy and Sumer,
I just wanted to add my "thanks" for your posts. The title didn't begin to hint at the treasures I would find on this thread and I nearly passed it by. I am so glad that I didn't. I am also glad to know that I'm not the only one wiping away tears!
-- Grace (SincerelyGrace@aol.com), August 30, 2000.
Thank you for adding to our life Oxy and Consumer. You have enriched my day.
-- Joy (Joyinthought@happiness.com), August 30, 2000.
TO THE TOP....
I had someone else find it....hope you enjoy. thanks for the conversation.
You know whom.
-- (FORFLINT@ok.here), September 17, 2000.
to the top, AGAIN
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 17, 2000.
UP UP AND AWAY TO THE TOP
-- (email@example.com), September 17, 2000.
Moving sentiments. Thank you, Oxy.
-- I'm Here, I'm There (I'm Everywhere@so.beware), September 17, 2000.
TOP TOP TOP
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), September 17, 2000.
I was going through my favorites and saw this post-it's prophecy is spooky, as oxy concluded it by saying any of us could be gone in a flash. And she almost was.
Here's my wish that you are all safe and well on this holiday.
-- SydBarrett (email@example.com), December 25, 2000.