Sunday Evenings With George Thatcher – American Bad-Ass. When Your “Flashlight” Starts To Dim. . .

Ever Ready, Ever Bright

I’m sort of your ordinary flashlight of the three-battery type, with a bulb at the end for illumination and a case of about eight inches in length. The rest of my features are pretty ordinary, but I’m rather proud of the case. It allows for a firm grip and instant response to The Boss’s commands. You might say that he and I have been inseparable over the years.

And haven’t they been some interesting years! But here lately my light isn’t shining nearly as brightly, and my batteries seem not to be able to last more than a few clicks before they cry out that we’re disturbing their nap. This is embarrassing for both The Boss and myself, as I’m accustomed to performing on demand. We’ve even tried using battery supplements and some kind of little pill. All they do is give us the feeling that there’s hope for new brightness, but they really don’t amount to more than a brief fizzle of light. It’s become such a predictable disappointment that The Boss is actually thinking to trade me in for a newer, extra long-duration model. I’m beginning to wonder if The Boss hasn’t lost his sense of loyalty. After all, he’s had me in his hand on a near-daily basis for more years than most others have been in use. I’m hearing mutterings of “useful life” and “obsolete model,” and that kind of traitorous talk.

But don’t we have some memories, he and I! From the very beginning of our awareness of each other, we’ve learned to explore some of the most dark and mysterious nooks and crannies that one could imagine. I’m proud to have brought light to his darkest moments. Day or night, through all kinds of adverse conditions, I was at his beck and call, All he had to do was flip my switch and I would shoot a beam of such intensity that sometimes I would actually hear screaming in the background. But I was never deterred; I had a job

to do and I was relentless in pursuit of the mission. Quite often I was called upon to re-explore familiar places. In those situations, the screaming turned to laughter and other sounds of something like enjoyment that I never figured out. Anything to accomplish the mission, and I never was one to complain. All I ever asked for was an occasional re-charge to my power system. It was such a compatible relationship that I could actually feel myself re-energizing during those periods when The Boss was resting up from his near-insatiable quest for exploration.

Those were the days, but I guess we’ve had our run. These days I just hang here, limp and inert, in the special compartment that The Boss had designed especially for my own rest periods. He still tells me not to lose hope, that he’s only kidding when he talks that trash about a replacement. He’s only trying to give me incentive to perform. But I’m afraid I’m beginning to see the dark at the end of the tunnel, so to speak, and I can no longer get excited about exploring new and exotic places. The wall charger is being converted into a monument, since it’s now obsolete and no longer capable of providing the critical anode-diode stimulation.

And maybe I’ll be okay with my new nest in the bottom of the old tool kit. I’ll admit that I need a lot more rest these days, and the other old tools will be good company, as we reminisce about the glory days – and nights – of our years in the prime of life. So if you’re ever browsing around in The Boss’s old tool kit, which he keeps pretty private these days, try not to shine a light in here. We’ve learned to embrace the darkness, and we’re just a little bit set in our ways. Just ask The Boss.

George Thatcher January 2023George is an American Bad Ass. He grew up in Jersey, flew B-52s in Vietnam, taught English, Spanish and other languages to children around the world, makes his own salsa, has been known to enjoy a beer or two and has called Lubbock home for a few years, just to entertain the locals. Welcome to Raiderland, Major. We are going to feature some of his writings going forward. Some new, some old. Some rhyme, some don’t. When it comes to George, there’s no box. So… enjoy our friend and enjoy his writings! – Hyatt