Skeeter Skates Torn Be­tween Greater Metropoli­tian Pooler And Ryo

The Standard Journal - - COMMENTARY - By DICK­YARBROUGH Ma­ri­etta Daily Jour­nal

This world is full of sur­prises. I just got a call from Skeeter Skates, owner of Skeeter Skates Stump Re­moval and Plow Re­pair in Greater Metropoli­tan Pooler. That alone is rare. Skeeter doesn’t call me much be­cause he doesn’t par­tic­u­larly care for those of us in the media. He thinks we add lit­tle value to so­ci­ety. That doesn’t make him unique. Ac­cord­ing to my mail, quite a few oth­ers share his opin- ion.

As far as Skeeter Skates is con­cerned, if you don’t know the dif­fer­ence be­tween a Shaver Model SC-25 StumpBuster™ with 24-inch-di­am­e­ter cut­ting wheel or a King Kut­ter Gear-Driven Re­verse-Tine Ro­tary Tiller, you are wast­ing time and space in this world. I have tried to tell him that putting com­mas in all the right places is no walk in the park, but to no avail.

The sec­ond big sur­prise was that Skeeter told me he is con­sid­er­ing mov­ing his oper­a­tions from Greater Metropoli­tan Pooler to Ryo, in Gor­don County, not far from Ranger. Why in the world would he want to leave Greater Metropoli­tan Pooler af­ter all these years?

“Hoss, I have al­ways said if you ain’t mov­ing for­ward, you ain’t go­ing nowhere but side­ways,” Skeeter said. I have no idea what that means but when Skeeter gets in one of his philo­soph­i­cal moods, it is best just to lis­ten.

“I’m keep­ing my op­tions open,” he told me. “I love Pooler but with that new port com­ing along over there in Sa­van­nah and all the peo­ple mov­ing in, I don’t fig­ure there is go­ing to be much space left to plow and I’ve al­ready dug up most of the stumps in the area.”

But, why Ryo, I asked? “There’s still a pretty good amount of farm­ing that goes on around there and where there is farm­ing, there is gen­er­ally go­ing to be a plow or two in­volved,” Skeeter told me, “and where there are plows you are go­ing to need some­body to re­pair them when they break. They’ve got a bunch of trees, too. That means sooner or later there will be a bunch of tree stumps to re­move. Tree stumps just don’t get up and move them­selves. I sus­pect this is over your head, but it is the kind of thing we stump re­moval and plow share pro­fes­sion­als look at very care­fully.”

I told him I ap­pre­ci­ated his shar­ing his thoughts with me but I was a bit cu­ri­ous as to why since my opin­ions don’t seem to amount to much with him. “Hoss, you know I ain’t much use for you news­pa­per boys,” Skeeter said, “but for rea­sons I don’t un­der­stand it seems some peo­ple read them fancy words of yours around the state.” That ad­mis­sion alone was worth the call.

“I was just won­der­ing if you might let folks know that whether I’m in Pooler or Ryo, they can still get a set of fly­wheel knives for a WoodMaxx 8-inch PTO chip­per,” he said. I told him I didn’t get many re­quests for things like that and I don’t have all that many fans, but I would do what I could to help.

He wanted to know about the po­lit­i­cal cli­mate in the Ryo area. Skeeter views politi­cians about like he does the media, only worse. I told him I thought most of the politi­cians around there were ba­si­cally harm­less and would leave him alone un­til re­elec­tion time, when they would show up and tell him how hard they are work­ing to lower his taxes and en­cour­ag­ing him to take his gun to church.

“That don’t sound no dif­fer­ent than the politi­cians around here,” he growled. I re­minded him that politi­cians are pretty much the same wher­ever they are.

I asked Skeeter Skates when he would make a fi­nal de­ci­sion about mov­ing. He said he is wait­ing for the lead­ers in Greater Metropoli­tan Pooler to make a pitch to keep his busi­ness there and then for a coun­terof­fer from Gor­don County. “It’s a fact that ev­ery town in Ge­or­gia would en­joy the pres­tige of be­ing known as the world head­quar­ters of Skeeter Skates Stump Re­moval and Plow Re­pair,” he said proudly.

Be­fore you scoff at his sup­posed naiveté, you should know that Skeeter Skates is a proud man who con­sid­ers stump re­moval and plow re­pair a pro­fes­sion not un­like medicine or the min­istry. And to his credit, do you know a doc­tor or a preacher who can re­place the bear­ings on a Bradco Model VP-10 with a one-inch cle­vis vi­brat­ing blade? Nei­ther do I.

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