happy new year to all! i thought I would send along a story to everyone about our new year's day last year (2004). i wrote this story last year after having lived through the most idiotic experience of my personal life, I think. i always keep it in mind for those days when i think things are not going my way. anyway, my family always gives people a hard time when they do something stupid. i figured if i tried to hide it, they would all know that it would bother me to be teased about it. so, i just typed up a story version of the event and sent it out to everyone in my address book. amazingly, only 2 people gave me a hard time about it. everyone needs a little excitement in life, right?
so here's the deal – i decided to buy a big screen tv (65" mitsubishi) instead of keeping the bose system, as i figured that if we get robbed again the bose would go right out the window, but the tv would be a little more difficult. in reality, i just wanted it, but the reasoning does sound good, doesn't it? anyway, we (mike and i) went and picked one out about 2 weeks before christmas. summer and i went back on december 28th to purchase it and they had to order it for us. the tv was due to be at the “big electronic store” in joplin on january 1, so i asked mickie if we could borrow her truck (you know the dodge ram that now has the camper topper on it) and she said it was fine. we went to town to get the keys, as she was having christmas dinner with galen's family. anyway, galen's daughter told us that these big tv’s are not supposed to be tipped. it would have to lay down in mickie's truck. so, we called teresa and asked if they had a pickup we could use for a couple hours and they let us take the big ford 4 door (turns out to be a good thing, as the box wouldn't have fit in her truck anyway).
raven stayed with teresa, who was going to try and run the combine, and we (me, summer, and her new bf, lucas) headed to joplin to get the tv. the tv was in and ready, so i pulled up to the front door and they loaded it for us, pushed it up against the cab, as it was too big to lay down in the pickup bed. we also got a free leather lane recliner with the purchase, so it was wedged in the back of the truck with the tv. i eased the pickup out of the lot at “big electronic store” and i'm watching the tv in the rearview mirror the whole time. we stopped at the gas station with the a&w and car wash as i had to put some gas in the guzzler before we headed home. Lucas went in and bought some drinks and snacks; summer sat in the truck like the little queen of the nile (this will be important later). as we carefully left the gas station, i watched the tv in the rearview and everything went fine. About this time, lucas said, "have you ever noticed how people look at you when you're hauling something like this? like, man, i wish i was going to their house or something." We made good time heading north on rangeline through webb city, and everything was going great.
we rounded the corner at the stop light in webb city that i've never made it through on green. after we stopped, i carefully and slowly rounded the corner and headed toward stone's corner. Well, along about the airport as we traveled about 40 mph, in the rearview mirror i saw a huge box (big enough to hold a 65" tv) sail out the back of the truck. and i mean sailing, as the tailgate was shut. The wind (and it was a gusty crosswind at this time) picked that 200+ lb. tv in that huge box up out of the back of the truck and sent it like a frisbee, sailing along the ditch and toward the airport fence. i cannot even begin to describe my feelings about this time to you! i have a $3000 purchase sliding along the ditch just about as fast as the pickup I was driving! anyway, i checked the rearview mirror and no one was coming in my lane (thank God, or they might have been dead by tv), and I backed up about 40 yards to where the tv skidded to a stop. at this point, lucas and i looked at each other and he said, "what do we do now?" and i answered, "well, i guess we put it back in the truck." i didn’t want to get a ticket for littering or spilling a load, so we needed to hurry!
so, lucas (who's about 5'7" if he's standing up for measurement and 150 pounds maybe - soaking wet) and i walked across the ditch to fetch the tv from where it landed after bouncing off the airport fence. now the tv itself was not really that heavy, but the box was extremely awkward and was now mostly falling apart from the impact. we decided that the best method would be to "walk it" (as we couldn't just lift it) down the ditch, up the ditch, then to the back of the truck, so we could tip it in. at this point, we're not worried anymore about whether it was supposed to be tipped or not. so we're manhandling this tv and box down the ditch and that went fine. but the "up the ditch" part was much steeper. i held the weight of the tv while it was slightly tipped back and lucas did the walking of both ends up the ditch. did i mention he's a sagger? well, i noticed that he took time a few times to pull his pants back up where they "should be," which is about 3 inches lower on him that where i think they should be. regardless, i didn't want to be standing at the edge of the road holding the weight of this tv and box if his pants fell down, because i just don't think i could've held it together at that point. i would've been reported as "laughter kills -- tv crushes laughing woman at edge of road". that would've been the straw the broke the camel's back on this day, i think!
about the time we have the tv and disintegrating box maneuvered to the back of the truck, a woman stopped to ask if we needed some help. lucas got in the back of the truck to pull on the one remaining plastic strap that held the box together while the other woman and i lifted the box off the ground and pushed it into the back. we just laid the box over, which meant it just hang over the edge of the bed about 12 inches or so. as lucas and i were standing there laughing and surveying our work, i pointed out to him that summer (the little queen of the nile) had not moved from her spot in the front. in fact, i don't think she even looked back to check on our progress! he said, "yeah, i noticed she wasn't helping us any." i told him to count himself lucky, because if she had gotten out to help, she would have just been ordering us around and we would both want to kill her. anyway, we got back in the truck, lucas and i were breathing heavy and sweating (with mud and grass all over us) and summer looked at both of us with that beautiful little face and said, "well, that wasn't so bad, was it?" lucas and i just lost it, especially since my sense of humor was near hysteria by this point.
we went on home, backed the truck up to the front porch, and laughed and made jokes about not dropping the tv and such while we unloaded this monster mess. every place on the box where we touched started to fall apart in our hands, so we just set the box up, tore off the box and packing, and lifted the tv on to the porch. it had wheels, so we wheeled it into the house to survey the total damage. we plugged it in and it worked fine, but the top corner has been scuffed and there is a small crack in the top of the box that holds the screen. i called “big electronic store” and told them that we just got home with our new purchase, removed the packing (what little was left, but I didn't mention that part), plugged in the tv, and noticed that the top corner was scuffed off and upon further inspection found that there was a crack in the top of the tv. the woman that helped me was so nice and the final verdict was that they would replace this tv and even bring the replacement to my house and pick this one up at no charge (just for the inconvenience). I thought, "whew, if they only knew the inconvenience it was to get that tv home!" but of course, i didn't tell her about the whole trip home with the tv!!! in my defense – she didn’t ask, either.
and the whole way home i'm wondering how in the world i'm gonna deal with this? i asked the woman if we needed to put it all back in the packing that we just tore all apart. she said, "oh heavens, no. we'd just have to take it off again when it gets here. just leave it like it is." i was really thanking God at this point, because i didn't know what i was going to do with all of the packing that had mud and grass stains all over it! and the styrofoam that was packed tightly around the TV in the box must have exploded upon impact, as there wasn’t one single piece bigger than a baseball. anyway, yesterday did certainly turn out to be an exciting new year's day! now we have to wait until the 6th for our new tv to be delivered.
well, if laughter is good medicine, i've provided your dose for today! sending lots of love and happiness your way for the new year!
jill & family
p.s. - the only thing that would've made this escapade better would've been if scott could've shared it with us! unfortunately for him, he missed the excitement because he was babysitting.
p.s.s. -- make sure and keep us in mind if you need help moving!