Setting fire to the city trash truck
One nice thing about being sixty is you might have done so many funny, stupid, and idiotic things that you can tell true stories for hours. That is, if you lived through them.
When I was young and sensitive I took it personally when my friends asked if my parents had any kids that lived. Now I know what they were getting at. Doesn't bother me a bit today.
Sometimes other people get mad for no reason, like the day Nancy made them think she set fire to the city trash truck. Her heart was in the right place, however, and those coals and nails weren't hot when the unfortunate incident happened.
This is an educational story. I'll tell you what not to do or say after the trash truck driver thinks you set fire to his truck. It is important information that most city dwellers don't think about.
We tore down and burnt some out-buildings on a couple of acres we had out in the county. The fire was a little hotter than I thought it would be, but it did not blister the paint off of the barn. Hell, the barn didn't catch on fire so it was a success.
After about three days we had those big burnt circles and a pile of ash, and a lot of nails. Looking back at it, we probably should have buried all of it. Instead we decided to spread the ash while sorting the junk from the ash.
A good redneck will wait for a very windy day, and then you drive the riding mower through the ash with the blades engaged. Use some fix-a-flat when you are done. Just wear old clothes and a SARS mask those Chinese people wore. A pair of welders goggles will protect your eyes and guarantee you will look funny when you are finished. And keep your mouth shut.
What we had left was about 400 pounds of nails, other metal, and a little wood. But we also had automated trash service and a big green bin like the one the trash truck picks up automatically. That's where the problem started.
I do not know how much that big green bin weighed, but I had to hook it to the tractor to get it to the curb in front of the house.
You know you are up to something when you are looking out the windows when the trash guy drives up to your house. I was thinking the truck might blow a hydraulic line. I did not expect what happened next.
The ash and nails hit the inside of that truck with so much force that a big gray cloud came out. The driver thought it was smoke, and thought his truck was on fire.
A word to the wise - DO NOT say anything like "I was surprised you didn't blow a hydraulic line" or "I woulda helped you put it out." Even asking the guy if he wanted a cup of coffee didn't help. Then the fella turned on the wipers to clear the windshield, but his mistake was using the washer fluid. It looked like a backup from Mount Saint Helens.
"Just pull it in the driveway Bubba and I'll get a hose!" A few days later I got a warning from the county, saying I should never do that again. I'm not the brightest guy on earth but they could have saved the stamp on that envelope.