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community, people / two steps, social commentary, writing

Two steps removed; Encounter of Mr. Half-Ass kind.


If you don’t do it right the first time? You will only have to spend more time and expense of doing right the second time, or third time, and so on, and on..ect. That’s assuming that you even know how to do it right, or have a willingness to learn how to. Most people are concerned about the tasks that they have on hand to do. Or even somewhat of the same concern with the ones they’re doing on a daily basis. Doing it right is a savings, and doing it a second time, is just a waste! To the local Mr. Half-Ass, time is.. well for lack of another term. “Short on hand”. Procrastination is the credo, in order to have leisure time to waste, as the life style of choice. Every neighbourhood has one of these individuals. Who’s over indulgences of just such a life style is how the world operates, as their over rated opinion of how things really work in it. It isn’t that they have a ghetto like home and yard so to speak. Yet this appearance of just such a ghetto like look, is a given when money is short. As the number one, of first thoughts to the onlooker. Mr. Half-ass would rather spend money on having someone else to do it. When money is short! Time is shorter! Time to spend on these maintenance tasks would just be picking the ripe low-hanging fruit, if that fruit wasn’t picked already. Looking at all of the things on the to do list, and weighing them out against the game on TV leaves the mind questioning. “Do we have to”? With questioning like that, going on in the minds of people. Who’s opinions of life are such. Mr. Half-Ass  is born, and comes to life in a neighborhood near you.

Aubrey was assessing the damage done in a wind storm to his fence. The wood fence was old and need to be replaced. Because the fence also was the dividing line between 3 different neighbors property’s. Aubrey thought the cost should be divided between the property owners, according to the amount of and the length of fencing. Gathering the materials list that they would need be purchased. Aubrey then prepared the individual neighbors replacement cost, divided in half with Aubrey’s cost. Aubrey thought it is a fairly easy job to do, and a great additions for everyone’s property’s. Little did he know that, “easy” would turn out anything but easy.

“Hay Aubrey.” Mr. Smith called out from his deck. ” Are you going to rebuild the fence?”

Looking through the broken fence in the direction of Mr.Smith’s house Aubrey answered. “Ya! Just working up some numbers so you can know just what it will cost all of us. A fence that is thirty years old has truly seen its days, and it needs…”

” You know that we have, to have it done right?” Mr.Smith said. Cutting Aubrey off.

” Sure! Sure it will be.” Aubrey answered. Doing it right? Wouldn’t think of doing it any other way. Aubrey thought as he squeezed through the wreck of the fence. Boards everywhere, fence leaning over, and trees that came down on top of it all. ” You could pitch in with the work, I’m sure it will get the attention you’re looking for then?” Aubrey commented, while offering a friendly smile.

Mr. Half ass didn’t offer any response to the comment given. He didn’t think mocking was a good way of beginning a neighborly encounter. Brushing his hair back in an attempt to tidy up a bit, as Aubrey came up to the deck and introduced himself.

” Mr. Smith.” He said. After wiping his hand first on his shirt, he extended his hand offering up a handshake in greeting. ” Quite a storm eh? ”

” In deed it was! I worked up a cost on replacing the fence or just a repair of it. Either way I think we can get it done with…”

” You know that, not everyone has a lot of money these days?” Mr. Smith cutoff Aubrey in mid sentence again.

Aubrey thought of a new way to present it to Mr.Smith. ” Well I’m confident that it will not cost a great deal, splitting the cost so no one has the whole thing to deal within their budget.” Aubrey said. Watching Mr.Smith, Aubrey was looking for an opening to close the deal.

” It isn’t something we can do right now the cost is too much for us. Maybe in a month or so? ” Mr. Smith interjected. ” If you are willing to fix and we will repay you at a later date? Just reusing the timbers that are useable I guess will cut cost some?”

Aubrey just stood still, taking the comments in, while wondering if this guy was just a con-man. ” As long as it doesn’t get half ass’ed! I don’t care if we use them. The timbers! The good ones you know? Aubrey replied with disbelief. He wondered was he calling himself, Mr Smith or half ass. ” Well because the budget is tight. I’ll make an attempt to cut the cost down by using more of the timbers then.” Aubrey shook Mr.Smith / half ass hand, and maneuvered back through the wreckage into his yard again. Amazed at the encounter he just had.

Aubrey fixed the fence, with as much wood as he could reuse. But the main timbers were broken so he repaired then by scabbing other wood onto the sides of them. Giving out a slight chuckle. Aubrey said to himself under his breath with his best impression of the neighbor. ” As long as it isn’t half ass’ed! ” The fence looked like it did before, but the stability was on its last legs despite of Aubrey’s best efforts to reuse and repair.

One month went by. Still no money offered by Mr. Half ass as Aubrey renamed him. Then another month went by. Aubrey considered confronting him. But then decided to give it more time just to look more like he was trying to be considerate to the economic tough times that everyone seem to be having.

Almost a nother month went by when another storm came through the area. Knocking down the fence with wind this time. The maine timber was totally broken. unrepairable this time, even in a half ass way. Confronting the neighbor the next time Aubrey saw him in the back yard. He received the same excuse.

” Still don’t have the money! If the fence wasn’t half ass’ed then it might have stood the winds test of the repair.” Mr Half ass / Smith said. Rubbing it into Aubrey, that he could have done a better job with the repair. ” Tell ya! I’ll get into the change bucket, and fix it this time. Maybe later next summer we can fix it, by replacing the whole damn thing.”

So the deal was struck. Aubrey thought. He didn’t like my fix! Lets see just what he can do then?

A month went by and still no fix. He has small kids and we have a dog. What is this guy thinking? How much longer? Should I just fix it again? Aubry again was thinking. Should I confront the situation of the fence with Mr. Half ass?

But then life happened and another week went by. “Surprise! Surprise! The fence was fixed. Look! It is up!” Aubrey exclaimed. ” Honey the fence is up! Lets take a look at Mr. Half ass’s job? Come on!” Aubrey throws open the sliding door, out onto the deck to take a closer look.

As Aubrey ‘s wife got closer to the sliding door she heard Aubrey laughing. With a half smiling look, and half way’s laughing herself because Aubrey was already laughing. Aubrey turned around pointing down to the fence.

” This is the crappest half ass job! He thought I couldn’t have done better.” Aubrey was besides himself with amusement with the fix. ” How dare this moron accuse me of half-assing the fence. He didn’t even use concrete for the post. That’s going to come down again.” Aubrey said with laughter. Then thinking to himself. Wonder if the fence lasts as long as mine? This fence thing was truly turning into a half-ass competition!

True to a half-ass job, the fence came down with a slight rain storm. The ground soften with rain, then a slight breeze, down it crashed. In the mean time. Mr Half-ass had a contractor paint the house. The words ” Money is tight. We don’t have the money right now to fix the fence.” Were burned into Aubrey mind.

Aubrey replaced the fence his way. The correct way! With his own designed to it. Even when the neighbor showed up to give his two cents to the project. Aubrey just reminded Mr. Half-ass. “That his fix would be better than the way it was fix the last time.” With emphases on the words ” Last time!”

Looking over the pictures of the half-ass fixes that Aubrey took in disbelief when it happened. Aubrey was starting to smile again with repeating thoughts of those events. Even now, while holding the evidence in his hands. They still got a chuckle out of him.

Why is it plain to see by everyone else in the neighborhood that has had a run-in with their own Mr. Half-ass. That their work, though ment well, was just sub-par work. I know talents may be differently distributed to people. But there is nothing wrong with admitting that some jobs are out of your league. In which case you should never offer your critique of someones elses work. At the very least. Instead of painting the house when you have already explained that money is tight. Just fix the fence, and paint later. As the plan for the unexpected accidents in life.

The total replacement cost for fixing the fence was $400.00 When you split the cost with your neighbor it comes down to $200.00 a pieces. Over the almost 6 months of time that it took. It just wasn’t worth it, to stress the neighborly relationship. But then Aubrey fixed the fence and Mr.Half-ass has yet to cover his neighborly portion of it.

Aubrey remains amazed with people, and the true views they seem to give in to. Without noticing themself, just within the picture they present to others, just outside of their view by two steps.

All the best.

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About mindwarpfx

the truth has no agenda! a mind is a terrible thing to waste! not to pass on a smile that you receive from someone else is a missed opportunity and a lost moment to make a difrence in someone's life! To have choices made for you is to be held captive, to choose, is the first steps in freedom, to except responsibility is to fly and be free to experience life!

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