Getting ready to leave for an overnighter, up the Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland for a visit with Sandy and Macy. I wrote about them in my very first entry here (and no, I won't shamelessly endorse its' reading by linking it, hehe. Use the extra mouse click and find it in the archives!) Details, of course, to follow.
I never seem to run out of tales about corporate partner and good buddy Stu. Which isn't surprising. The man is a walking, talking comic book of life and the joy of living as a child in an adult's body.
He also posses two of the strongest hands I've ever been witness to. I mean, this guy can rip a door off the hinges with hand strength alone. Crush a beer can without a thought. The hands are big and work roughened and imposing. Very helpful for the construction work we do.
In the ying and yang of living, there is a trade-off for all this kung fu gripping ability. Stu tends to drop things.
Not 100 lb. chunks of steel, not drills or hammers or saws. The little things - a lighter, a scrap of paper, a nail or screw. These things are foreign and underweight to those great mitts of his. They get lost in the vastness of the wingspan that he has at the end of each wrist. Like a robotic metal claw, they have no purchasing surface for his fingers, which splay sausage-like in all directions. Which led, of course, to the inevitable tagging of a nickname.
We call him Stonehands. With great affection.
Drill bits, car keys and pencils are the very devil for Stu. They fly away from his hands as if by reverse magneticism. He generally follows their flight with a weary shake of the head, as more nimble colleagues take up the chant.
"Don't give it to Stonehands!"
Which led to the funniest wedding incident I've ever been involved with. Stu and I have a good friend, who's only flaw is an inability to remain married. When invited to attend wedding number four, we kinda giggled and set off in search of suitable attire. Black T-shirts over a red union suit came to mind.
Until Fred, the erstwhile groom, called up Stu and informed him happily that Stu was to be the best man. With a tux. It seems that I recall Stu inquiring as to the availability of extra large pockets for the pair of flasks he intended to bring along.
The church was packed with friends and family as Fred appeared at the front, accompanied by a grinning Stu. I happened to know that the two of them had consumed large amounts of potables at a local tavern just hours before. I happened to know this because I had been tapped to drive them to the church after the fact. At wedding number four, things tend to get a little bit unserious.
All was proceeding nicely. The bride was radiant in a designer wedding dress, the grooms and maids lined up smartly, the minister beaming with practiced joy as he zipped through the service. Right up until he uttered the fateful words.
"Is there a ring?"
I had been slumbering gently away in the warm sun filtering throught the large sanctuary windows up to this point. I jerked my head up in time to see Stu fumbling in his pocket for the required jewel.
I couldn't help it. I tried to stifle a laugh, but it only made me sound like I had a whoopee cushion in full exhaust stage. In a gleeful stage whisper, I uttered "Oh God, don't give it to Stonehaaaaands!!"
Fred literally collapsed. A frequent witness to the litter left behind by the hapless Stu, the groom bent double and brayed laughter. The congregation and wedding party hesitated a millisecond before falling into paraxyums of chortles and hooting.
Only the minister and Stu's mother, a wonderful lady, looked puzzled, and somewhat alarmed.
Fred snatched the brides ring out of Stu's hands just as he appeared ready to let it fall, which re-doubled the mirth.
Hours later, at a reception which was one step short of police raid in terms of noise and inebriation, the Stonehanded one approached. Asked for his car key which I had appropriated for the evening.
Dropped it, and nearly into the punch, too.
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