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The Clothes Line Murderer

April 28, 2010

This is my sweet man, Hunky Farmer Boy. He’s the lone source of testosterone amidst a sea of about five dozen females of various species. I think you’ve met previously.

This is Hunky Farmer Boy on his Tonka Toy. (This is where you hear the Tim the Toolman Taylor grunting sounds.)

Boys and Their Tonka Toys

My Hunky Farmer Boy with His Big Tonka Toy

For reasons never fully understood by me, HFB likes to use his Tonka Toy to pull things out of the ground. You’d think he’d get enough of that working as an electric lineman, but apparently not. Apparently, they put more poles in the ground than they get to pull out of the ground, leaving him somewhat unbalanced. So he has to spend his leisure time on the farm pulling stuff out of the ground. Big stuff. Or at least sorta big stuff. Most of the time, I’m okay with that, because as his director of operations (aka bossy britches wife), I am usually giving my approval to what he removes and often times I’m assisting in the process. Most of the time.

Sidenote: Men should never be allowed to function without a woman telling them what to do. It just isn’t natural, and truth be known, it’s dangerous. Someone could get hurt. Or worse. Get pee-ode. Like me.

This is the back yard of my wellness center/vacation home. It’s six blocks from the four bedroom mansion where we sleep.

Backyard Lake with Clothesline Pole

Notice the bright yellow clothes line pole amidst the lake of our recent rains. Sorta hard to miss, isn’t it? I did that on purpose. I like clotheslines. I haven’t used one since I was…oh…say….10 years old, but I like clotheslines. It’s a strange obsession.

Did I mention I like clotheslines?

I’m not sure why I like clotheslines. Since the incident last night, I’ve been trying to analyze why I like clotheslines. I’m not really sure. Maybe it’s representative of a piece of my childhood. Maybe it’s part of my obsession with wanting to be self sufficient. Maybe I get some sort of sick humor out of watching a sexy 6’4″ hunk of man hang himself or bip his noggin’ on it.

Whatever it is, it is serious. I like my clothesline. I’ve begged for one at the mansion for years. Never got one. My wellness center/vacation house came with one pre-installed. Someone loves me.

Back to Tonka Toys.

Did I mention that HFB does not share my obsession with clotheslines?

It’s a detail relevant to our story here.

HFB has mentioned pulling it up a couple of times. The first time, it was because you couldn’t see it. So I painted it John Deere Yellow. As evidence by the photo above, you can see it now.

He’s hinted that the edges of the cross pieces are dangerously sharp and it needed to go. I diverted that conversation with a discussion of options for padding the ends of the poles.

Then I did something really dumb. I left him alone with his Tonka Toy on a beautiful spring afternoon while I went to relax my mind in the peaceful tranquility of yoga class.

Note to self: Bad idea.

We all arrived back at the mansion at about the same time. Conversation initiated. I had purchased some books at Barnes and Noble after my date with strength and peace. He had tilled, and mowed, and hammered, and pulled the clothes line up.

Hunky Farmer Boy with the Big Tonka Toy say what?

“You did WHAT??????????”

Now realize, that I don’t get mad at him. I just don’t. It just doesn’t happen. I pout occasionally when things don’t go my way (okay I pout every time things don’t go my way), but there just isn’t much in this world worth getting truly mad about.

Except extricated clotheslines. Apparently. Yeah.

He might as well have ripped my heart out of my chest, sacrificed my first born, and sold the horses.

“I thought we agreed to pull them up.”

“No. YOU agreed to pull them up.”

“We can set them up farther back out of the way.”

To myself: There’s a guy for ya. Who in their right mind wants the clothes line on the east forty, three hundred miles from the house?

To make matters worse, my girls were witness to this rare, almost unheard of episode of psychosis towards my sweet, hard working man. (I say those things to remind myself that I really do love him, murdered clothes line and all.)

And to make things worse still, #3 daughter, to whom I had preached just hours earlier about getting over her “mad” with her sister, a mad she had nursed for well over 24 hours, began to preach to me about how I needed to get over it like I told her to do.

Child, I birthed you. I can snuff you out. Better choose sides wisely. Besides, this is different. This is my precious CLOTHESLINE!!!!

Don’t you have a horse to ride or something?

And so the evening wore on. I grieved over my poor un-anesthetized clothesline being ripped from its ancient roots. I grieved over being mad at my sweet husband for something so…..<gulp>…trivial. I psycho-analyzed what kind of sick human could overlook a thousand other reasons to be angry in over 20 years, yet let Mr. Helpful rip out her precious clothesline and she blows an aneurysm.

I thought about his offer to “replant” it elsewhere in the yard. That made my chest tighten up with resentment. It doesn’t belong elsewhere in the yard. It belongs where it was. Where it’s been forever. It belongs right smack dab in the middle of the yard where every 6’4″ hunk that walks through can be tatooed with a divot in his forehead.

No. Just forget it. It’s gone. My precious yellow poles are gone. Send flowers. Memorials to the Murdered Clothes Line Association are also appreciated.

And then……


A moment of sanity.

Simple solution.

Mr. Tonka Toy could just put them back exactly like he found them.


In concrete.

That’ll teach him to pull up my baby with is big Tonka Toy.

And in a few years when I decide I want that danged clothesline somewhere else because I’m tired of strangling myself on the way to pick tomatoes, I’ll be more than happy to acknowledge that he tried to move the thing years earlier, but had to put it back IN CONCRETE no less because the nutcase he married had some weird survivalist obsession with a stupid clothesline.

Because if Mama ain’t happy, no one gets to be happy!

Oh, and Hunky Farmer Boy is grounded from his big Tonka Toy.

That’s all I have to say ’bout that.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. April 28, 2010 10:08 AM

    Heee Heee! Oh geez-I am so sorry. That. Is. Not. Funny. LOL. But, it sounds soooo familiar. I, too, never, ever, get mad at my Wranglers man. But…there are some things, like clothes lines, that should not be messed with.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. Our neck of the woods is the S.E. plains of Colo.
    Looking forward to coming back to read some more-you are funny!!

  2. April 28, 2010 10:09 AM

    Oh my! I’ve got tears running down my cheeks from the laughter (oops – I mean the sympathy!) Honey – you can tell a story!

  3. April 28, 2010 10:29 AM

    Darcie, SE Plains of Colorado explains the flat prarie look that seemed so familiar. You probably aren’t that far from me. I’m south of Amarillo. And thanks for respecting the clothesline. It’s serious stuff. 😉

    Melinda, so glad my devastating grief could bring you a laugh. I had to write this so I could laugh, too. Otherwise, ants and other small creatures could have been maimed from my pouting and stomping. I’m much better now. The nice white jacket they put me in is a bit tight, but I’m adjusting.

    JK, of course…..for now anyway.

    His punishment? I printed out the post and made him read it. Wonder if he’s picked up a bag of concrete mix yet? 🙂

  4. Tay permalink
    April 28, 2010 12:44 PM

    Oh my! I absolutely sympathize. The dear heart that I love and adore pulled a good one the other day as well. It goes as follows:
    A week ago I was pondering why God made men and women so different. I was thinking that God must have a sense of humor because he (or she) created us so opposite. He/she is where ever he/she resides laughing his/her hind end off. I should back up. My husband and I decided a long time ago that I would take care of the yard and he would take care of the pool. He is allergic to grass and is OCD so our pool looks phenomenal all of the time. It is a wonderful trade off. About six weeks ago, he says to me, “We need new parts for the pool. We should order them because I need to get started.” My only comment is, “Okay.” I order the parts and put them in the garage when they come in around 4 weeks ago. The day that he discovers them in the garage (3 weeks ago), he says to me, “I need to get the pool drained and refilled because I need to get going with this thing for the summer.” My comment again is, “Okay.” Two weeks ago, he explains to me how cold it has been (apparently he was unaware that I go outside everyday) and says that this next week he really needs to get the ball rolling on the pool or we will be out of luck for the summer. Once again, my comment is, “Okay.” Fast forward one week…that same week that I was pondering about God and the differences between men and women…my wonderful husband gets home from work at seven in the morning and has to be back at work at seven that same day for a full shift. When I come home for lunch, to my surprise, he is awake. I instruct him on the detrimental effect his attitude will have on our family if he doesn’t get some good sleep…(He appreciates this)…and I go back to work. When I arrive home at four, he is draining the pool. He is wet, dirty, exhausted and grouchy. The wind is blowing 1400 miles per hour and the sides of the very hardy VINYL pool are literally caving in on him. Our yard is standing in a foot of water. At this moment, I begin to think back to when I was pondering God and his creations. I look at my husband and ask him, “Do you think that this is the appropriate time to do this?” His response… “Well, you TOLD me that I was going to have to get out here and get this done!!!!” I said, “You’re right” and walked away.
    A week later, I am still questioning God and if the differences between the sexes were really necessary. However, I am happy to report that our pool is filled and ready for the summer.

    • April 28, 2010 12:50 PM

      That’s too funny. Poor guy. Gotta love ’em anyways. They cause more good things to happen than frustrations.

  5. Tay permalink
    April 28, 2010 12:59 PM


  6. Charlyn permalink
    April 28, 2010 3:57 PM

    Oh, Sweetie. I heard your voice in ever word I read. And I laughed my butt off! But, I must say, my mom has the same obsession! (Don’t tell!) She invaded the backyard of a for-sell-but-not-sold neighbors house to pull out their clothesline. Ya know, the kind with the metal T posts? The “old-school” ones? They were put into our backyard. In concrete. (Granted, it got used.) Then we removed them when we bought our new house and planted them in the backyard – obviously still in concrete. And there it sits. Unused. In the way. But she won’t get rid of it.

    • April 28, 2010 4:26 PM

      I knew I loved your mom for some good reason. A woman with good taste and values. A clothesline lover, indeed!

  7. Viv permalink
    April 28, 2010 5:54 PM

    I will not even BEGIN to regale you and Tay with stories that would make your hair curl! Me- even tempered- uh, not exactly. Do I live with someone who straps a loading press to my beautiful dining room table? – uh yes I do. I could tell more, but he would be mad at me about spilling his secrets on the internet. He is quite paranoid, besides being just a little bizzare. I, of course, am perfectly normal!

    • April 28, 2010 7:26 PM

      Ya know….Tay and I might be the only people on the planet that even know what that is! And my mother would certainly feel your pain, b/c my dad would have done (and probably did) the same thing. Oh, I am laughing so hard right now!

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