Flash Back 2

At the end of yesterday’s post, I was at a critical moment in the tractor saga.  I had received the great news that I now owned a tractor, but suffered from pangs of guilt over the fact that I had done something that I knew would create marital discord.

I truly don’t know anything about tractors, and about marriage I know about an equal amount.  But, as a hobby I like to do occasional woodworking and make some furniture. If I were to describe marriage as a table, and for it to be a good, solid one that stood nice and stable and lasted for years and years, the four legs holding it up would probably be:  1.  love (of course), 2. a shared sense of fun, 3. understanding and 4. trust.  You can probably quibble about some of these, but not leg number 4, and unfortunately I had just given that leg a good solid kick and left that table a wobblin’.

Well, at this point there was nothing I could do but face up to my indiscretion like a man, so I didn’t do that.  Instead I took the letter, put it at Cindy’s spot at the dinner table, and let her find it on her own; I slunk off to places unknown.  When she found it, I don’t think the full impact sank in immediately, but some of her words at the time were the genesis for the title of this blog.  It took a few hours for the whole “sneaky transaction thing” to fully settle in on her.  Once it did, it was not a situation of a lot of angry shouting, but worse; it was the beginning of several days of “the deep freeze” with few words spoken.  Worse yet, anyone I shared the tractor story with wanted to know first and foremost, “What does Cindy think of this?”  I felt pretty bad, and didn’t know how I was going to get out of this one.  Just when I was thinking this couldn’t be worse, “The Great Laundry Incident” occurred turning a major rift into a crevasse of distrust.  I always carry a ChapStick (Note to Wyeth, this is my first product placement; send money now for tractor rehab fund.) in my pocket, and on this unlucky day I had forgotten to remove it from the very shorts I had worn into the woods that morning.  The little bugger had gone through the washer and dryer and even after Cindy did emergency spot removing and relaundered everything, several of her favorite pieces were ruined.  Oh man….

I’d say two things helped eventually set things right.  First, leg 3 of the table was good and strong and second, my friend Gene (after hearing of my dilemma) offered a home for the Pony that did not involve my house, my garage, or my driveway.  So, lesson learned, I’m not doing anything sneaky again…until the next time.

You’re up to speed now.  Gene and I walked back into the woods today, so I could show him the tractor.  He agreed that it’s neat, heck all guys like tractors, don’t they?  He also agreed that a good towing service ought to be able to get it out of the woods.  I’m thinking my first call should be to AAA (maybe just AA) to tell them that 15 years ago I parked my tractor in the woods and now, unexpectedly it won’t start, so I need a tow.  Think that one will fly?

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5 responses to “Flash Back 2

  1. This is hysterical!!!! The first thing I thought was, why the heck does he need a tractor. Then I realized (duh), it isn’t about “needing it” but about having something so cool!! I hope you write something every day. This is better than some of the novels I read!!!

  2. Pretty d–n good writing. They taught you well at NIU. Talent helps, no doubt inherited.
    I hope you can bring up this comment. I was telling my colleague (at the church office) about it, and mentioned that this restoration (or whatever you plan) should be your brother’s job, since he is the mechanical guy. First, call AAA, and go ahead, lie a little. GOOD LUCK!

    M, in FL.

  3. Congratulations on your new project! Mine is still in the tear down phase as I want to have the parts available before I get into something that very may well work to begin with and then find that part(s) hard to come by or not available at all. I can tell you one thing that really stumped me for a while to figure out…and not that I really figured out why it happened. I knew the engine in my 52 was working when it stopped being used and could have sworn I moved the crankshaft pulley before I trucked it from WV. Upon later and closer inspection it seemed the rings were seized. I found a very nice Gent in Wisconsin that made me a manual start handle and I tried that to break free the cylinders. Fortunately, the position the cylinders were in left the “one way” only slot to fit the starter handle in an excellent position (about 2 o”clock) to hang an eighty pound ballast weight in a sling to tension the pistons movement as I applied a well known piston release compound periodically (over a month) to the cylinders. Nothing worked! A friend of mine was over and suggested fitting a Pipe wrench to the crank nut and turning it the other way and THAT worked. The rings were never seized! No marks on the cylinder walls, rust….NOTHING. Now it turns smooth as a hot knife through butter. SO if you get stuck there…try reverse! Good luck! Visit my photo site to see some pics of the Pony and the progress.

  4. Also – From a number of people seeing photos, my 52 is pretty much all correct in equipment mounted and color scheme. All Massey Harris implements and original paint scheme faded as it is, it is still all original and correct for future restoration reference material.

  5. Bruce, Your best way to turn the engine over will be to jack up one rear wheel, Put the transmission in the HIGHEST gear and you and Gene turn the rear tire. the high gear gives you the most mechanical advantage, Brother Jim

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