After reading my post about back yard clothesline poles yesterday, my friend Vince sent me this great little story. He had me smiling all evening long. So read it and enjoy. I assure you, you will be smiling too.
The man on the clothesline pole reminded me of my first trip to Carroll Gardens. I believe it was 1973. I was in college at Pratt, lived near there and was new to Brooklyn. I had a part-time job in a printing and box factory in Queens as a sample maker. I got to know the printing foreman very well. A nice Italian man named Johnny De Martino. He had a proposition for me. He would bring me home to his house where he lived with his wife and 2 children and feed me a wonderful home cooked Italian dinner but he wanted a favor in return.
The house belonged to his mother and father his mother still lived on the garden and first floors. Johnny lived on the 4th floor. I believe it was on 2nd Place, it was definitely between Henry and Clinton. My part of the bargain was to climb to the top of the clothesline pole and replace the spinny wheel that the line travels on.
Being from upstate NY this was an exotic proposition for sure and I had no idea of what I had gotten myself into until I was standing at the base of the pole looking up. I had a few tools and the new wheel stuffed into my trousers so my hands were free and I started the climb.
It was a little scary 4 stories up, Johnny’s wife and 2 small kids encouraged me from the open kitchen window while Johnny gave instructions from below. About ½ way up I realized why Johnny, who by the way weighted about 300 pounds did not do the job himself.
Thanks, Vince. Keep your tales coming!
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