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The Hawk's Nest

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The Hawk's Nest

Ernie explains how "got" happens

Several years ago I came home and one of my stepdaughters said, “Ernie, the kitchen sink sprayer got into the garbage disposal.”

Any parent with kids, over about five years of age, know that “got happens.” I’ve heard “my backpack got up on the roof,” and “my bike got into the lake.” And one that will run a chill down any parent’s spine: “My retainer got into the school lunch garbage.”

We learn very young that got happens and there isn’t anything that can be done about it. It has even happened to me, which I, of course, had no control over. For example, as a kid I got grounded—often. One time it happened right after dad’s new car got a dent in it.

I thought I was over it when I became an adult. Then I bought my first home. It was a cute little rancher with a full basement. At the time of the purchase, I didn’t have a real concept of what a full basement was. After a couple of years I walked down the steps and, low and behold, got happened. The basement had got full. So that’s what is meant by a full basement, I couldn’t even walk through it. 

It wasn’t an immediate crisis because I had just started building a two-car garage on the end of the place. I could say it got finished but that isn’t quite true. It was completed because of hours, days and weeks of hard labor on my part, nothing so random as it got done.

However, a few years later I opened the double-car garage door and, wouldn’t you know it, got happened again. It had got full too.

This arbitrary got doesn’t just happen to me. The other morning I was visiting with an acquaintance who was complaining of feeling nauseated with a bad headache. I asked when it came on and he said “well, last night I was sitting and laughing with friends and I got drunk.” I didn’t ask if alcohol was involved.

He did go on with another scarier case of got happens; “I don’t know how I got home.”

Got sounds quit innocent doesn’t it? For example, “I was walking through a field of daisies and got hit by a meteor; no one is responsible, right?”

It seems to just happen. I don’t think it is something one can look for or try to prevent. Here is what happened last summer to me: my wife was gone for a week. A few hours before she was due home I looked around the house and got happened. It had got filthy, even by my standards. When I walked outside, guess what? Got happened again; the yard had got so tall that large animals were hiding in it.

A friend of mine got the answer she didn’t want when she asked “How did you get pregnant?”  “Well mom, I got ......ed.”

My car insurance went up a lot this year because I got stopped by my radar buddies.

One time I asked, “Where is your boyfriend?”

“Got busted.”

“Gotta lawyer?”

“Gotta new boyfriend.”

I wonder how I got this old, but I’m glad I did. But then I looked in the mirror only to see got happened again; I got donelops disease… my belly done lops over my belt.

Sometimes you want got to happen but it doesn’t for some reason. We have lived in our home now for over five years; right now I’m looking out windows that still haven’t got trimmed, and I’m getting tired of looking at raw edges of sheetrock. Maybe it’s time I got after that project.

Whoa, I just read that last sentence. Got couldn’t possibly be my responsibility could it?

Okay, I got it.


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Author info

Ernie Hawks Ernie Hawks is a former theater director who has branched into the creative fields of writing and photography. He lives in a cabin in Athol with his lovely wife Linda, and feeds the birds in his spare time.

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