George Worthy

You know I like to start off with a nice story about someone local or something good that has happened here in Gonzales or South County. I can’t do that this week because of some reprobates that don’t understand that firecrackers and cherry bombs are dangerous, not just to the idiots that use them but to the general population.

This year’s celebration was going along swimmingly, what with the band playing in the park and the food offered being consumed. That’s good news for the nonprofits that were selling the different specialties. Everyone seemed to be in a good mood, and that’s a good thing. It was peaceful and sunny and life held little surprises.

Everyone had been inundated with the idea of using only the “Safe and Sane” fireworks sold off Highway 101 by the gas station or Taco Bell. Folks were waiting for the sun to go down so they could change the color of the night. “Safe and Sane” fireworks had been used in Gonzales for many years, and as much as the mantras went out that only those kinds were to be used, there are always a couple of reprobates who think it is smart to set off these dangerous explosives for some reason. 

Even as a child I couldn’t understand why. In Wasco there was always one guy who showed up for work after the Fourth with a bandage on his hand.

My children were no different than some, but I set them down and told them of the danger. A cherry bomb contains almost as much power as a hand grenade. I told them they only got one issue of hands and eyes. They weren’t perfect, but I never had a reason they were as dumb as a few that used the Fourth as an excuse to do something really stupid. 

I don’t know whose kids they were, but a few reprobates showed their intelligence this past Fourth. Their fun ended up costing one family everything they own. The Davila family had a firecracker land on their roof and the end result was a conflagration that took everything. Fire is the ultimate cleanser. You can dry out from rain and do without just about everything, but fire is the last thing. 

I cannot fathom what caused anyone to light a firecracker and throw it up in the air because this could be the result any time it happens. It wasn’t just that they wiped out everything from the Davilas, they also destroyed all the items that were left stored at the home. They were holding on to some items for their children. I cannot imagine the pain they must be experiencing. Your whole world turned upside down because some moron thought it would be cool to hear the bang.

Believe it or not, even if you know me as a guy that talks all the time, I don’t like crowds. This has something to do with things that happened a long time ago. When the crowd starts getting closer, I stay very close to my sweetheart as she knows what I suffer from. She will kiss me and see me at home. What ruins the Fourth for me is the morons that live near me throwing these huge explosives apparently just to hear a bang. 

I wish my dogs could talk; they would tell them how mean they are. Dogs have really sensitive hearing. They hear these explosives as though they were right next to them. It not only scares them, it hurts. Even the “Safe and Sane” fireworks hurt their ears. I have to wrap them in a quilt and lay with them to assure them they are safe.

The reasons I have enumerated should at least let these hooligans know that the explosive fireworks are not toys and no one I know wants to hear them all night. But the reprobates will never learn it seems. This Fourth was no exception. Just think about a home that was the last refuge of an entire family wiped out completely. 

It is wonderful that the Metzer family has put up a GoFundMe page called, “The Fire Disaster Fund for Davila.” It is easy to find if you are called to donate something to help this family. If you have nothing extra and every little bit will help, you can always pray for them because prayer helps everyone.

Some other things have been happening, and I will say they are on a much happier note. You remember that I have this old truck, and though it is 66 years old, it doesn’t look it. You see there are always new doodads that one can always be convinced are needed.

I saw in one of the magazines that they are selling new chrome-plated steering columns that will fit right in my truck — or so they told me, it didn’t turn out that way. Especially the part where it would fit perfectly. If Juan from Agri-Frame had not helped me, I would still be in my driveway trying to figure out why it wouldn’t steer the way I was turning the wheel.

So, since I was suffering a spell where if I worked under the truck one day, I was bedridden for two. Isn’t it amazing how we grow so stiff with old age? I mean I can mow the lawn, paint something where I don’t have to bend over. But if I get under the truck with a 1/2-inch wrench, it is as sure as the wind blowing in the Salinas Valley that I need a 9/16th-inch wrench.

So here we enter a strange world. I am what you call a “Baby Boomer.” You might remember what our contributions are. Rock and roll, TV, drive-ins, vinyl records, I could go on. But we all know it’s the good stuff.

God Bless.

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Gonzales columnist George Worthy may be reached at [email protected].


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