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Wednesday, Jun. 08, 2005
According to the website, a portable air compressor just like the one owned by the Outfoxed Crew weighs 60 pounds or so. It has a handle, but it’s large enough to make portability not fun.

For years, even while carrying things even heavier and larger, the dead weight of the compressor has been an unspoken issue with the Crew. Nobody wants to move it. Everything in the arsenal will be moved or rolled or toted before somebody winds up with it, the last thing to go.

So Stu was surprised yesterday when I grabbed the beast, first thing, and walked it toward the power pole at the jobsite. “Feeling a little frisky today, aren’t we?” he called. “Haven’t seen you volunteer for that sumbitch in forever.”

He might not see it again for a while either, since as I swung it to the ground that old banjo twangin’ feeling rippled through the middle of my back and I sucked air through teeth suddenly bared in pain.

“Fark fark fark!” I hissed, and immediately began walking like Popeye on a three day bender. “God Almighty I hate it when I do that!”

It’s a funny kind of muscle or tendon or whatever, I can go for years without anything happening to my back but boy, all it takes is a little twisty movement while carrying something and that sucker pings. I swear you can almost hear it when it goes and begins making complicated the little things like breathing.

I worked the day out, over Stu’s increasingly plaintive requests like “Doesn’t this mean we get to go home now?” but waved the white flag this morning. Staying in the recliner I am, and muttering to myself about how I’m too old for this.

The Lab has been having increasing problems with his hips, to the point where he will occasionally just flop down mid-stride with a puzzled sort of expression on his graying snout. He walks painfully. We’ve started letting him crawl up on the old sofa and stretch out, something vehemently denied him as a pup. And last night, Ally and Maggie couldn’t resist the comparison betwixt the two elderly males in the house.

“Look, here come the ancient ones”, they crowed last night as the Lab and I hobbled in from the backyard. “Gettin’ so you can hardly tell em’ apart, isn’t it? Wait wait, bet they both go in the living room and heave themselves into their chairs.”

Well, we did. But I was the one with the remote.

It’s the heaviest thing I’ll be lifting today, I can tell you that. Unless a beer wanders by.

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