Best One Line Of Advice I Ever Received


“Oh no! This can’t be happening! Please, not today!”

That was the first thought I had when the bomb dropped.

You see, there was a hard and fast rule at my house growing up – no playing on Saturday until the lawn is mowed – period, no exceptions.

So, when the lawnmower decided it was done for the day, game over. My big Saturday plans with my friends were toast. I was doomed to a day indoors – alone. At that age, a fate comparable to death.

My exceptionally wise, though mostly uneducated grandfather walked out to the driveway where I was sitting, staring at the wounded mower in tears, and inquired what the problem was. I explained.

I went on to beg for an exception to the ‘no mow, no play’ rule citing unavoidable mechanical difficulties.

His response?

“A rule is a rule, young man. But, where there is a will, there is a way.”

“But how?” I said.

He would not comment further, no matter how much I pleaded. He simply turned and went back into the house.

I thought about what he had said. He was a man of few words but the little he did say was always powerful, always full of wisdom and truth.

So I made a decision, right then and there. If he said there’s a way, I’m going to find it.

I drained the fuel from the mower and flipped it upside down in the driveway. The first thing I realized was the belt was loose and so stretched that the tensioner could no longer be adjusted enough to compensate.

Now that I understood the problem, I began searching my young mind for a solution. It didn’t take long.

I went into the house and asked my grandmother for her honey jar. She looked at me puzzled, but handed it over.

My grandfather didn’t look up from his newspaper but I detected the slight, very slight, smile he tried to conceal. I knew I was on to something.

I used the honey applicator to coat the inside of the belt then let the sun do it’s work for about 10 minutes. The honey became the stickiest substance on earth.

I slipped the belt back onto the pulley, flipped the mower back over, put fuel back into the tank, pulled the cord, and she sputtered to life.

I crossed my fingers, engaged the blade lever, and BAM! She was spinning – and MOWING!

I only needed her to last long enough to finish the back lawn and she did! HOORAY!

The yard was mowed, I was free, and with a new HUGE lesson which I have carried with me to this very day – it has served me incredibly well.

That pearl of wisdom from my grandfather, with his eighth grade education, has opened many, many doors for me that I would have otherwise deemed as forever closed.

I sure miss him.

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