Just A Man Wearing Suspenders



If you read Tuesday’s post, you know I am sad. Very sad. The man that was all at once friend, father, and grandfather died Monday. This man always wore suspenders. He had a pair for dress-up and another for work. If he had a scent, it was the essence of Humility, plus sawdust. He could take a simple piece of wood and fashion it into a clock or a rubber band gun or a pull-along grasshopper or a spinning toy top or a carved nameplate or an intricate replica of a wristwatch. He was also fascinated by handheld puzzles with pieces that could never fit together but in a simple twist, he demonstated how they did. I once showed him a photo of a homemade lantern crafted from two mason jars, some glass glue, some sort of glass cutter, and a piece of wire. I asked him if he thought I could do it. The next time he came over he handed me a mason jar lantern. His wife had glued a red ribbon around the glass seam. But, not entirely satisfied with the initial outcome, he made another, this one had a blue ribbon.


Speaking of ribbons, it’s fair and rodeo season. He took us once, ya know, about three years ago. My husband was gone and he didn’t fancy my son and I galavanting all over the countryside, unsupervised. We all sat at a sticky picnic table and ate mostly food we had brought from home. It seemed like he and his wife knew every other vendor and most people in the crowd and the parents of the young ones in the arena. I reckon that happens when you are born and raised and live in the same community for decade upon decade. We took a walk down carni-alley and I shuddered at the thought of whirling on a mere carousal. Images of tossed cookies were large on my mind’s eye. My then-four-year old son pleaded with big eyes and our suspender-clad friend scooped him up and rode one of those silly up & down hard plastic ponies next to my son. Ridiculous, I thought. We have flesh & blood horses back home in the pasture. And what a waste of money. But then I saw my son’s smile and his helper’s eyes. Pure. Joy. And. Happiness. I looked at his wife standing shoulder to shoulder with me and I saw their joy reflected in her eyes. I learned a lot that night.


If I could hand out a blue ribbon for Humility, Talent, Kid-tastic, Helpful, and Love, it would go to this man. Come over to my piece at All The Church Ladies for more, including some images.



Mr. W, I love ya like you were my pa and I am ever so grateful God blessed me with you. You taught me so much in just a few years. For that, I am thankful. And whenever my son and his daddy wear their suspenders, the first thought I’ll have is of you.




12 thoughts on “Just A Man Wearing Suspenders”

  1. Pingback: If Humility Wore Suspenders… | All The Church Ladies

  2. “…the essence of humility. plus sawdust.” That’s about as perfect a description as I’ve come across, Darlene. Great post — both of them.

  3. It’s sheer grace when men like this step into those empty places in our lives and the lives of our children. Hugs to you.

  4. I am so sorry, friend. I am a few days behind on everything this week and just got your posts read. My prayers are with all who loved this special man. Hugs and love!

  5. Oh, girl-ie, I did not know. I’ve been scarce of late. My love to you. And traveling mercies and so much more.

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