Pulled into Lowe’s the other morning to buy an extra ceiling fan to replace one that’s caving after about sixteen years of faithful service. Started down the parking aisle when I spotted two signs at two spots at the front.
“Veterans Parking Only,” they read, “Thank you for your service.” A waving American flag topped the signs.
Probably meant for new veterans of the Middle East, I thought, not old farts from Viet Nam like me. Still, I’m a genuine veteran, so I parked in one of the two empty spots. All set to whip out my VA card should it become necessary. It didn’t.
Mr. Boy and I got up early and headed to the local Lowe’s for a Cub Scout session billed only as a wood project of some kind. We joined about twenty other boys in the store’s spartan management conference room and received pre-cut wooden castle kits, small hammers and plastic safety goggles for each boy. It was Mr. B.’s first time with a real hammer and he made the most of it, pounding away at the small nails that held the castle’s wooden walls and turrets together. I had to start the nails with my thumb through pre-drilled holes, then hold the pieces while he hammered. I kept worrying that he would hit my fingers but he never did. Walking out with our completed eight- inch X eight-inch castle, he thanked me for helping him. Politeness is not a given with a six-year-old so it was a pleasant moment. Really nice of Lowe’s to do it, since there was no charge, and some manager had left some figures on the conference room’s chalk board showing the store had recently lost almost $300,000. A notation said most of the loss was in the tools department. I am resolved to go back this weekend and buy a tool of some kind or other.