Wretched Class RingI decide to take a drive into the country. I put on my jaunty road cap and goggles hanging in the garage.
I push the Model T out of the garage and stop in the driveway of cobbled brick. The steel hand starting crank is in the cab and I fetch it, whistling an old melody from the Spanish-American War. I insert it into the front of my car below the radiator.
With a grunt I twist the handle and the crankshaft twirls. After numerous rotations I stop. Nothing. I become incensed and walk into my garden I planted with varicolored petunias. I watch a little bee buzz by and land in one of the flowers.
As the bee extracts the nectar and emerges covered in yellow pollen, I recollect I did not set the choke! I waltz over to the window and reach in and pull out the choke knob. Then back to the starting crank.
The engine gives a rude snort and kicks back and snaps my prized 1911 High School Class Ring. It tumbles to the brick and its beautiful amethyst stone splinters into tiny pieces, lost in the gap of the brick.
I roar oaths to the Gods and scoop up the ruined ring. As Class President it was my pride and joy, lustrous in the sunlight. Now it is only a split shell with tortured prongs. A tear dribbles down my face.
I pick up a rock to hurl at the car when a latch turns and my wife shimmers out. "Do you see what has..." but she cuts me off with a laugh and steps into the garage. "I have no sympathy for that greasy, loud, smelly and violent jalopy, dear," she chortles. She trots to her Electric Car and hums away as I slump down alongside my ICE horseless carriage to stare at my wretched Class Ring.
**Note, at the beginning of the 20th century hand cranked gasoline cars existed alongside electric cars that mostly women drove. They went about 50 miles on a charge, even back then.
Short story by Stephen Jay
Read 580 times
Written on 2012-04-09 at 20:19
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