Uncle Mort: ‘Non-Profit’ for 103 Years

Published 10:23 am Sunday, July 12, 2015

(Commentary by Dr. Don Newbury)—–

Predicting my Uncle Mort will ever succeed with his zany, “off-the-wall” ideas is the rough equivalent to believing that one day, Wile E. Coyote will outsmart the roadrunner. It’s not going to happen even in dreams–wildest or tamest.

On the cusp of his 103rd birthday–one he observes on Independence Day—he phoned feverishly, hoping I’d have a “straight line” to Southwest Airlines. “You know–the kind of line a big bass stretches tight trying to get rid of a lure.”

He claimed he had few hours until unveiling his latest project at his birthday party in the thicket. “Don’t bring a present, but be sure to bring your handgun and iPhone,” he advised.

I didn’t tell him the only gun I own is a gag gift that has a yellow flag with “BANG!” written thereon, falling limply from the barrel’s end when triggered. Or that I’ve drawn the line on the new cell phones, doggedly clinging to my old flip-top. (Further, I want to learn a few more of its features before my bucket list is replaced by my bucket kick.)

Excitedly, he told me how he could “help out” Southwest—the airline that lightened its load and saved $100 grand annually with elimination of lemon wedges served with drinks until five years ago. Now, it is making charitable use of leather taken from 80,000 plane seats–some 500 planes–donating the 43 acres of leather to non-profit and social enterprise organizations for conversion to handbags, soccer balls and such.

“I didn’t plan it that way, but I’ve managed to remain ‘non-profit’ my entire life,” Mort joked. He wanted to see if SWA has any remnants left; he’s “heck-bent” for leather needed to make his “six-in-one” handgun holsters..

“It’s a ‘one-size-fits all’ concept,” he said. “It has side pockets where cell phones of all sizes slide right in. Another pocket holds fingernail and toenail clippers. Still another has fold-out mesquite limbs with iPhone attachment for making ‘selfies’.”

As usual, I made the mistake of offering a correction. “If my count is correct, that’s a ‘five-in-one’ item.”

“I plumb forgot,” he explained. “I’m going to use mesquite limbs with mistletoe on ‘em; that should pump up pre-Christmas sales. I’m gonna give AT&T a shot at ‘em first; they’re always looking for other things to sell.”.

As he droned on—he does so easily without a plane—it dawned on me why guests were asked to bring their handguns and cellphones.

“When we serve ice cream, cake and punch, they won’t know what to do with their side arms and phones,” he said. “That’s when I’ll roll out the sales pitch urging them to be the first to own six-in-one handgun holsters,” he laughed.

He claims they’ll never become obsolete, but forever practical, since size/shape changes in iPhones will still fit in the spacious pocket..

Mort hopes to “makes good” on a seventh feature that might be worth touting.

He’s working on a toggle switch with dual use–turned one way, it silences the gun, and the other, the phone.

“If I can figure out how to attach it, I’ll throw it in at no extra charge,” Mort promised.

Somewhere in the background, Aunt Maude—a few months short of her 103rd birthday—shakes her head. Whatever keeps him busy without harming himself or others is OK, she always claims.

She’s been at his side for more than 80 years, watching his “inventions” fail—one after the other. “I’ve seen so many ‘plosions’,” she said. “Plosions?” I questioned.

“Yep, both implosions and explosions,” she cackled, comparing his enthusiasm to an “Amway salesman on steroids.”.

Maude claimed to be ready for the party, the giant cake still warm from the oven. She’s going to serve Blue Bell ice cream she’s been saving, and lemonade won’t take long to prepare.

“I’ve still got to paint a sign Mort wants nailed on the gate,” she said.

The sign reads. “Open carry is permitted here. If you don’t have a gun, I’ll rent you one.” It’ll be nailed next to the sign with this wordage: “When crossbows are outlawed, only outlaws will have crossbows.”..


Dr. Newbury is a speaker in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Speaking inquiries/comments to: newbury@speakerdoc.com. Phone: 817-447-3872. Web site: www.speakerdoc.com. Columns archived at venturegalleries.com, newbury blog.