Boom and Busted

A couple pf weeks ago, my son-in-law was mowing our lawn when our lawn mower suddenly stopped working, for no discernible reason. I was puzzled, so I sent the attached picture to my brother, who is much more mechanically inclined than I am. (I am a writer and not much good for anything else.)

DSCN6012 (2)

Along with the photo, I sent my brother the following message:

     I don’t know a lot about motors. Since you know more about these things than I do, can you answer some questions:

  1. Is there supposed to be a hole like this in the side of the motor?
  2. Could this be why the mower stopped working?
  3. Can it be fixed?

My brother answered:

  1. Yes.
  2. No.
  3. Yes.
  4. No.

I was still confused. So I wrote my brother again:

     I asked you three questions, but you gave me four answers. Please elucidate.

My brother answered:

  1. Yes, you know very little about motors.
  2. No, there is not supposed to be a hole.
  3. Yes, this is why the motor stopped.
  4. No, this cannot be fixed.

Then he added:

     Many companies have full-time employees who do nothing but answer silly questions like the ones you asked.

I didn’t find these answers very satisfactory. I decided to seek another opinion, one that would at least be less insulting. So, I asked some of my writer friends the same questions. Two of them provided the same answer to the last question:

     Yes. Use duct tape.

Good friends. Good writers. Like me, sadly, not much good for anything else.






About jrcoggins

James R. Coggins is a professional writer and editor based in British Columbia, Canada. He wrote his first novel in high school, but, fortunately for his later reputation as a writer, it was never published. He briefly served as a Christian magazine editor (for just over 20 years). He has written everything from scholarly and encyclopedia articles to jokes in Reader’s Digest (the jokes paid better). His six and a half published books include four John Smyth murder mysteries and one other, stand-alone novel. In his spare time, he operates Mill Lake Books, a small publishing imprint. His website is
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3 Responses to Boom and Busted

  1. Thanks for the laugh!


  2. A jolly good story “cuzin” Jim 😉


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