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All I wanted

by Randall Beaird

My cousin Joe worked for the Highway Department. A few years back they were “shooting sealcoat” early one morning, a process of spraying oil on the road before dropping rock on it. The oil has an enamel base making it very sticky.

An older man parked his truck across from a marina and didn’t hear Joe shouting to stay clear of the hot and sticky oil. He took two steps across the black molasses and was stuck, wobbling back and forth. By the time Joe and his crew reached the man he had stepped out of his shoes and was pasted to his knees trying to crawl to freedom.

He was screaming, “What kind of darn stuff is this anyway!” Joe said, “He was like a fly on flypaper.” The more they struggled to free him, the more stuck he became. It was soon clear something was going to have to give. Joe heard something rip and thought it was the man’s overalls coming apart at the knees. If only the old man was so lucky. Everyone soon saw the overalls coming apart at the straps and he was coming on out! Was he ever–the frantic situation turned to sheer desperation as the man screamed out, “I aint got any drawers on!”

Before they knew it the guy was standing beside the road with nothing on but a T-shirt. Joe and his crew were trying hard not to laugh, and definitely not to stare, but the smiles were thick chiclets across the board.

Shaken and frustrated, the man walked back to his truck hollering, “ALL I WANTED WAS A DADBURN NEWSPAPER!” Well, Joe bought him a paper and sent him home wearing only his Tshirt.

Think of the story he told his wife showing up wearing that. We’ve all had one of those all I wanted was a newspaper mornings. My worst was a rooster dancing on my head before breakfast. But, being pasted onto hot oil is hard to beat.

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