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‘So I Go’ by Shane Brown


I’ve built and created things in my life that are incredible. The two of the most are my kids and I hope they learn some of the things I know.

The first of it is love and the second is work. I hope they combine both together to see with love and work, anything can be done. I think those two come from a few things: ethic, a want and a desire – all of what I try to go by. But to each is its own…

I’ve just sat down with Anthony and Earl at a house in a subdivision in Oxford. Mrs. Erma, the owner of the house, has iced down some cold Budweiser in a tin bucket and has placed it on the patio table. It was a small gesture of gratitude and appreciation for our work that she has watched us finally complete in four weeks.

It was four weeks of the hardest work I’ve ever done. I’ve built one retaining wall before with Anthony and Earl, but this retaining wall we recently did was the toughest for me.

We even had an extra hand with the new guy, Grant, but it still was tough work. Grant learned the first day how tough the work was. I was proud of Grant for sticking out the project with us too. I think that experience showed a little bit of some hard but honest work to him at an early age of 22. As I sat with my other friends drinking a cold beer I wished Grant was sharing one with us. But he was already gone by the closing of the day project.

So, we closed the day without him and sipped our beers and smoked a few cigarettes with a few laughs. We enjoyed the prideful finish of the retaining wall.

I don’t build retaining walls anymore now and I don’t get to see Anthony and Earl anymore on a regular basis and I wished I could. But things change. Anthony understood my want and decision and thanked me for my help I gave him for a year. I’m working for my brother now. I was told by people to not work with family, but I laughed at that. That person doesn’t know my family. We have that want, the ethic, the desire…

I’ve been traveling about a thousand miles each week since I started at Brown Family Dairy my brother and Paula created. My pin points from East to West are Fulton, Mississippi to Clarksdale to Cleveland, Mississippi. And there are so many pins in between them. But I don’t stop. I never stop. I load the milk and then I deliver. I do my best to be polite to our customers, and I am, but I don’t stop to talk because I’ve got another town waiting on me and then at five o’clock in the evening the dairy cows are waiting for me to be fed and milked.

So I go.

I’m tired right now and I’ve got be up early in the morning to purchase some plastic bottles in Grenada that need to be brought back to Yocona to be filled with milk and cream and then delivered to Hugh in Clarksdale. We could have told Hugh “no” because plastic bottles were not coming to Oxford until tomorrow afternoon. But instead, we called friends and various connections to get plastic bottles for the milk and cream so it can be delivered on time to his perfection at Sweet Magnolia Ice Cream. Hugh has that want and desire too. Neither of us wants to be disappointed.

And we go…

I’m up at 6:30 a.m. and headed to Grenada so we can load milk… I hope my kids do well at school today. It’s their first day of school. I hope they have that ethic, the want, and desire to be… They know love and they know work.

Shane Brown

Shane Brown is a HottyToddy.com contributor and the son of noted author Larry Brown. Shane is an Oxford native with Yocona and Tula roots. Shane is a graduate of Mississippi State University. He has two children — Maddux, age 9, and Rilee, age 7 — and makes his home at “A Place Called Tula.” He can be reached at msushanebrown@yahoo.com.

Copyright Shane Brown, 2016.

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