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If It Ain't Broke, It Probably Will Be

Updated on January 29, 2015

Spring in Indiana

It is Spring in Indiana. I love Spring and Fall. It is even better now that I am a home owner. I was a renter for twenty five years...most of my adult life. There was a lot less responsibility as a tenant. Whenever a door handle fell off, the family just called the landlord. It can be a lot more stressful to be my own landlord. What happens when the roof starts leaking and we don't have money to fix it? Bubble gum and popsicle sticks aren't going to be much help. As we speak, the garbage disposal is broken, the hot water nozzle in the hall bathroom needs attention and the light in the dining room keeps flickering.

The last time we had company, the lights flickered and all of my guests stopped eating and talking (which is amazing in itself).

I said "That means it is 3:00. The city turn the lights on and off every day so we know what time it is."


Some of my friends are a little gullible.

I am not all what any one would call handy. Just ask my kids. They still won't let me forget how I broke the toilet while trying to fix a leak.

I am five left thumbs and not exactly smart when it comes to mechanical things. In fact I am extremely challenged. This is a problem because I have a penis.

Something about having this anatomical feature is supposed to bestow a person with mechanical artistry and engineering genius. That is the attitude I get when I go to the hardware store and ask "stupid" questions. When my wife goes, they are polite and more than willing to help with any problems she may have and give her detailed instructions. I know she is gorgeous, but I don't think she is promising sexual favors to the 73 year old clerk at ACE Hardware.

When I couldn't get the power washer that we rented to work, I sent the female of the household back to the store to find out why. If I would have gone to The Hardware Man and admitted that I could not get more than a dribble out of the hose (no sexual innuendo intended) I would have gotten demerits on my Man Club membership and had my privileges revoked. I am not sure what those privileges are. I haven't been let in on the secrets since I can't pass the driving test.

Anything Worth Doing

I am not completely emasculate. I can check the oil in the car. Erica changed the flat tire we had last month, though. My wife had a grandpa who was a mechanic, She used to hang out in his garage as a little girl. I, on the other hand, was my mother's baby, the youngest of seven with five older sisters. I was raised in a fog of hair spray and make up stains in the sink.

You know the old saying, "Anything worth doing is worth doing right"? My father's philosophy was "Anything worth doing is worth hiring someone to do it." I didn't see my first wrench until I was twelve and Bobby Kelly, the neighbor kid across the alley, said he could fix my bike. He took out a wrench and started pounding on it.

My dad then decided to take my ride to the bicycle repair shop. The repairman took one look at it and asked, "Has one of the Kelly Boys been working on this?"

The Graveyard

The Kelly House was quite an active one. Nine Children, six of them boys. Their yard was a graveyard for GI Joes. There were GI Joe body parts in the garage, on the wiffle ball field and especially in the sandbox. The Kelly kids always had the coolest toys on the block. At Christmas, or when one had a birthday, I made sure that I got over there fast to help them play with the latest and greatest from Mattel, I had to get over there right away because, by the end of the week, all of the toys were broken. I don't know how they did it, but they could break the most indestructible toys. Must have been that wrench.

It must have worked for them, though, Bob and Larry own a sheet metal company, Kelly Metals. I imagine they have better tools now, I think that original wrench is framed in the front office.

Jim is a professional artist. Some of his work is displayed in downtown Indianapolis as portraits of famous Hoosiers. I suspect he practiced drawing all of the body parts of the plastic soldiers laying around.

Dan is a lawyer. He used to handle all of the civil suits of the toys who had lost their arms, legs and heads.

I became a writer. Those who can, do. Those who can't write about it,

Now I am a home owner and I do love it. It is nice to take pride in my yard and be able to say that I am a stable part of the community. Okay, "stable" is probably pushing it a bit, but I am doing my best.

So, if anyone iut there has any plumbing skills, I am willing to barter. I can write a letter to your mother fo you or even check the oil in your car. Just let me know.


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    • russinserra profile imageAUTHOR

      Russ Inserra 

      3 years ago from Indianapolis, In

      Thanks for the comments, folks. Your wit makes the article so much better.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Haha Patrick, I can so relate. My wife keeps asking me to make her stuff....and I just moan already knowing the outcome, but I give it my best shot.

    • Patrick Haymich profile image

      Patrick Haymich 

      3 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      I am somewhere in the middle, but I feel your inadequacy in the manly men category. I can shoot a gun, but I don't hunt. I can watch TV, but I don't like sports. I can turn a wrench, but not without usually injuring myself. I tried the chainsaw thing out last year, might I say, we no longer have that chainsaw.

      Although I will give anything a solid try, it does not always mean it will turn out the way I envisioned it in my mind. I am meticulous to a fault, and I think that's the only thing that saves me sometimes with handyman work. I should feel so blessed, my mother thinks enough about my skills, she's planning on calling me over to replace her kitchen sink, whenever that might be.

      I consider myself a jack-of-all-trades, yet a master of nothing. So although I may have the basic know-how, does not mean 'I' should be the one to do the job. A little bit of knowledge is a DANGEROUS thing!

    • askformore lm profile image

      askformore lm 

      3 years ago

      I would love to barter with you. However, I am as much a handyman as you are, ... so where would such a venture take us?

      PS: I can NOT change a tire

    • russinserra profile imageAUTHOR

      Russ Inserra 

      3 years ago from Indianapolis, In

      Thanks, Jodah. Humour is one of my assets. Unfortunately humour is not a big seller.

      I did take some creative liberty with this article. I can change a tire.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Funny Hub Russ. I have had to learn how to fix a lot of stuff around the place by trial and error, but there are still plenty of things I can' being the top of the list. I can change a tyre and the oil and water, and light bulbs but apart from that...not a lot.


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