YARBROUGH COLUMN: Skeeter Skates talks up Uncle Coot for President

Published 10:30 am Tuesday, April 30, 2024

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When the telephone rings, you know it is Skeeter Skates. It doesn’t just ring, it jumps up and down. Skeeter can do that to a phone. And to people, too.
In case you are new to this space, Skeeter Skates is the owner and operator of Skeeter Skates Tree Stump Removal and Plow Repair in Ryo, Georgia. He is also the presiding facilitator of the Ryo Morning Coffee Club. Membership includes Walleye, who runs the bait shop in Red Bud; Booger Bledsoe, who operates a roadside vegetable stand over on State Route 53; and Uncle Coot recently retired after a long and distinguished career in the porta-potty transportation industry.

Skeeter has a low opinion of anyone who makes a living without getting grease under their fingernail, most especially those in the journalism profession, as he has reminded me often times.
So, I was in shock when Skeeter told me why he was calling. “Hoss, me and the boys met this morning and have decided to run Uncle Coot for president and want you to handle it,” he said without preamble. Skeeter isn’t big on preamble.
President of what, I asked? “Of the whole country,” he growled. “What did you think I meant? We think he is just a qualified as them two yardbirds running now. Me and Booger and Walleye are all still working and don’t have the time, but Uncle Coot, being recently retired from the porta-potty transportation business, don’t have anything else to do. It would be good for him and good for the country. The vote was unanimous.”

I asked how Uncle Coot felt about this. “We ain’t told him yet,” Skeeter admitted. “As you know, Uncle Coot spent a number of years in the porta-potty transportation industry and as illustrious as was his career, he comes across a little ripe-smelling, if you know what I mean. Walleye is scrubbing him in the Coosawattee River, as we speak. Booger thinks it’s a waste of time. He says politics already stink so bad, nobody would know the difference.”

Any idea where Uncle Coot stands on the issues that concern most Americans? Skeeter said, “Well, for one thing, he knows we ain’t got 54 states like that squinty-eyed guy running things now claims, and he traveled in the porta-potty transportation business enough years to say without a doubt that Argentina is really a country and not a good guy like that orange-headed fellow who never shuts his mouth says. That ought to scare the dickens out of people.”

On that we are agreed. One candidate who doesn’t know how many states there are and another one who thinks a South American country of 44 million people is a ‘good guy.’ Uncle Coot was looking better and better, olfactory challenges notwithstanding.

I was curious how they plan to get the word out that Uncle Coot is a viable choice to become Leader of the Free World. “That’s how come we called you, Hoss,” Skeeter said. “I know you ain’t got the foggiest idea of how to replace the center tooth in a Power King PK0803 stump grinder but you are always bragging in the newspaper about how smart you are. We thought you might tell us.” I need to be more careful what I put in print. I forget people read this stuff.

I told Skeeter Skates it takes a lot of money to run for president. He asked how much. I told him that just last month, the current president raised $43.8 million and the former president, $15.3 million. There was a long pause. “That’s a little more than we expected,” he said. “Me and Booger and Walleye pooled our resources and came up with $58.73. That ain’t going to be near enough it looks like.”

Skeeter said he would convene a meeting of the Ryo Morning Coffee Club as soon as Walleye got back from scrubbing Uncle Coot in the Coosawattee River and explore their options. But it didn’t look like running Uncle Coot for president was going to be doable, after all.

I told Skeeter that would be America’s loss, but the coffee club’s gain. With Uncle Coot cleansed of his porta potty residue, they would no longer have to seat him downwind. Skeeter said, “Hoss, for a guy that don’t know a Youxmoto spindle assembly from a broom handle, sometimes you make sense.” That was a rare compliment from the man. Skeeter Skates is a good guy. Just like Argentina.