Things Aren’t Easy

Hey Larry,

How’s my favorite cousin? 

Things haven’t been too easy the last few years for me. I thought I’d be sittin pretty after I got my degree. Suppose I am, thinking about where I was thirteen years ago. Let me tell you, thirteen years ago, I was twenty-one years old, living with y’all, no job, no school, watching a whole lotta The People’s Court. Maybe the best part about daytime TV is that everyone wants to help you. It was 3:12PM when my life changed. An advertisement for Penn Foster Career School came on, and I realized my true calling: TV/VCR Repair.

I sent away for my packets, filled out my work, watched my videos, and before I knew it, I had a degree. Things really started looking up. Jan let me move back in, I was drinking less, and I even started jogging. My girlfriend bought me an ad in the phone book and a nice frame with beveled edges for my diploma. We found an old bookshelf and a workbench in the barn at Jan’s house, and I even sprung for a separate phone line. I started my business, “AAA Nice Guy TV/VCR Repair.” Things were great! The whole family, my friends, and our neighbors came to me when they needed their TV/VCR fixed. And I did it, “fast, for cheap, and with a smile.”

But you know that story, and those days are over. People don’t get their TV/VCR repaired as much; they buy new ones. I took a class on DVD player repair, but people just buy new ones of those, too. I think it’s a waste and a damn shame, if you ask me. Don’t worry about me, though. I’ve found a few new ways to spend my time:

  • Building new things out of old parts, selling em on I sold a bike I made for $75 the other day. Not bad for a pile of junk.
  • Shooting cans with slingshot out back.
  • Taking free classes at the library. We made Valentine’s Day cookies last week, and Jan said mine were real good.
  • Watching lotta The People’s Court. Learning a lot about the legal system.
  • Building model planes.
  • Learning how to repair Singer sewing machines, in specific.
  • Bringin Jan’s dad down to the sandy side of the lake with his metal detector.
  • Checking out the free museums in town.
  • Reading the poetry of Robert Frost.
  • Collecting small taxidermied animals from estate auctions and garage sales.
  • Hiding the taxidermied animals around the house to scare Jan. Shit, that’s funny.

So, really, don’t worry about me, Larry. I got Jan, I got my hobbies, and AAA Nice Guy is still doin okay by me. Thanks for the X-mas card. Sorry I haven’t gotten back to ya until now. Hope things are good with the kids and with Larry Senior. Wish you guys would come down and see us more often. Try to get a chance this summer and come down to swim at Caesar’s Creek.

You’re a good guy, Larry. Remember that.

Your cousin,


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