As Henry got into his car, he sat there thinking about his mom. Wow, what a load of crap
she had carried all these years. No wonder she was so grouchy all the time. She has never forgiven herself. Well, I am not going to let this happen to my woman and me. I will work and take care of everything. I am not running away and leaving her to hang.
Henry started the car, not knowing where he was headed. Last night he had racked his brain trying to think of someone who was hiring. Nothing hit him though, so he was just going to drive around town until he saw something.
He drove by the filling station and saw a couple of his buddies trucks parked there. He pulled in and went inside. He found them in the garage side. They were working on a car that belonged to Tom, his friend.
He walked over and patted Tom on the back and said with a grin,”Hi ya buddy, how’s it hanging”? Tom turned towards him with a jerk and said,” Hey there, you scared the hell out of me coming up and slamming me on the back like that. I am fine. We’re just messing around with Fred’s car here. He says he heard some kind of knocking sound when he was driving around last night”.
Henry walked under the car where it sat up on the rails and looked at the hoses. He didn’t see any drips. He thumped the tires and got out from underneath the car. The two buddies went back to work trying to find where the sound may be coming from. Henry watched, and then soon started for the door. Fred hollered out, “Where ya going buddy? Ya don’t have to leave. Stay around and keep us company. You haven’t got any better place to be”.
Henry turned back towards them and walked back towards them. ” Well, I have to find a job. I need some extra money”. Tom asked, ” What’s wrong with the job you have over at the grocery store? Aren’t you bagging enough ladies groceries”? Tom and Fred started laughing and elbowed each other. Henry said, “No, I need more money, more hours”. The friends both piped up and asked, ” Ya got your eyes on another baby to fix up”? Henry hung his head and then looked back at the guys and said, “Well you are half-right. I am looking for a baby, but not a car or truck, a real baby, my baby”.
The two men looked at him and Tom dropped his wrench while Fred dropped his mouth. They came out from under the car and walked closer to Henry. Fred said,” Come on over here to our little break room and pop a squat. Tell us what the hell you are talking about”.
Henry followed them over to the picnic bench and the three of them all lit a cigarette. Silence followed as they each tried to out do each other with smoke rings. Tom looked at Henry and commanded, “Speak, what the hell are you talking about”?
Henry replied with, ” It’s my woman Jane? She, well, she and I , well we’re gonna have a baby”. His two friends asked, ” How did you get yourself in that kind of spot man? Don’t ya know about the rubber? You do carry one in your wallet don’t ya”? Fred reached for his wallet and pulled out a condom saying, ” Hopefully one day I will get to use this, but I keep it here for all emergencies”. Tom snickered and under his breath said,” Yeah, that will be the day when that thing gets used”.
The three started giggling and went back to puffing on their smokes as they digested what had been said. After putting their butts out in the ash tray the smiles left and Tom asked Henry,” Sounds like you have decided to keep this kid if you are out looking for more money. Got any plans? Have you told your parents yet”?
Henry came back with, ” Ya we told our parents. Fred asked, “We? You both told your parents? Oh wow, how did that go man? Did they want to beat you up and spit you out”? With that Henry stood up and pulled some change out of his pants pocket. He walked over to the pop machine and bought an orange pop. (In those days, orange pop, red pop, and root beer were the favorite sodas). The two followed his actions, getting one for themselves too.
They all sat back down and popped the caps and took a nice big swig. Burping and laughing they got serious again waiting for Henry’s reply. Henry said, ” Both parents took it better than I thought they would. Mine offered for Jane to move in with us until I can find more work”.
You could stick a fork in the silence it got so quiet. All three were pondering on how that was going to work out. Jane living with Henry’s mom. Fred was thinking, this should be better than any movie I have ever watched on the big movie screen. Tom was saying to himself, this is never gonna happen. Henry’s mom is way out there, a real nut case. Henry was thinking, mom may do a turn-a-round. Now that I know what she has been going through, she just may understand.
“So, have you looked anywhere yet”? Tom asked. Henry told him, “No I haven’t. I have thought and thought but can’t think of a place that is hiring”. “Well you’re in luck my friend. The bowling alley is hiring. They are looking for someone to set up pins. It is a shit job but it’s money, and money is what you’re after, right”? Henry thanked him for the tip and turned to leave saying, ” See ya all later. Gonna go over and check this job out”, and with this he walked out the door closing it behind him.
- Merry Christmas From Me To You (terry1954.wordpress.com)
- “Well, You Know, I Heard…” (christineevelynvance.wordpress.com)
- Chapter 7 (terry1954.wordpress.com)