Finding a dry place to eat

“Christ, Dad,” I remember saying a few days before the Fourth, “don’t over-engineer this.” He always does that. A simple process, such as meeting at the train station, becomes a major fucking project, with Plans A, B and C– all of them far-fetched. So, when we started talking about the possibility of rain, he was in McGyver heaven. Of course, eating inside was not an option.

With the skies clouding over, I had to admit that my father was right about both the rain and the need for a solution. Yes, I was forced to concede, buying tarps was a good idea. But, he stopped short of figuring out how we would use them. This is probably because I said, “This is not a big deal. We’ll figure something out if we need them.

Well, this is where it would have been smart to plan ahead. We had to figure out a way to put the damned tarp up without banging too many holes into the shed. Also, of course, the shrubs next to the shed took up space that would have been useful. So, we had to improvise. Unfortunately, the pictures tell the story just fine.

We wound up having to prop the tarp up in the middle with pieces of bamboo. My brother Jake is working with what would become the center pole.

Bam Bam and Jake are trying to get the center bamboo “pole” through the center of the table.

Yes, and they’re still at it.

Bam Bam and Bret smile with accomplishment.

Jake finds a way to make the lamp his own.


One thought on “Finding a dry place to eat

  1. Der Alte

    Oy, listening to a five-day weather forecast prior to the Fourth is now over-engineering? I stopped short of determining how to use the tarps I so wisely purchased in advance? I don’t think so. What I did was delegate to my West Point-educated Army Ranger Captain nephew, my two USMC sons, and the ever-reliable Bam. Not to mention that I grew the bamboo they used for poles far in advance of need.

    But you, Tom, were a big help, sort of like when you won the gold medal for the shower competition at the Woodmont Olympics some 25 years ago.

    You might also have mentioned that amidst all you cigar smokers, I was the only one with a lighter. I guess I over-engineered that, too, huh?


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