Trina Machacek: Just a Swingin’

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A few weeks ago my older-than-dirt double person hammock finally swung its final swing. After more than 25 years of afternoon reading, many hours of rocking with my favorite cat, Two-eee, (see next paragraph for more) and a recent overly rambunctious couple of boys and their “I can swing until it goes upside down” contests along with ozone, water, heat and just life in the fast lane of my back yard, the all-cotton rope masterpiece came undone and could not be resuscitated. Very sad to say goodbye to my long time summer friend.

Wait a minute. I cannot pass up this opportunity to discuss naming pets. Yes I had a cat named Two-eee. He was black and white and had two white paws and a brother who had three white paws and he was of course named One-eee. HAHA I just wanted to say that I need to start naming my pets names that have a natural spelling. I have spelled Two-eee like that because Twoey, or Twoie, or Tooie, or Tooy are not recognized by my spellcheck. Before computers I had all sorts of names, Skitty, Mousiepie, Butterbut and the like. None of which are liked by spellcheck. The only time I had to worry about spelling was when one had to go to the vet. After many pets with unspellable names the gals usually just wrote down, “another one of Trina’s cats.” As pet names come up more often now I am trying to stick with Fred, Ralph, Sam, you know regular names. Just saying. Let’s get back into the swing of things…

After many tries at repairs where I would feel safe at sitting and swinging, and failing greatly with said repairs I ordered a new all cotton hand tied hammock. Within just a few days a brand new South Pawley’s Island super-duper two person — because of the cat — hammock arrived. Yippee. But! Yes a swinging “but.” HAHA But apparently the litigious, sue-happy society we now live in has swung into the hammock world. OK, here’s the silly story. Finally…

Thankfully the hammock came fully assembled. I mean it’s a hand tied and knotted thing of beauty. I can tie a knot. It’s known around my house as a Trina knot. Kind of an under handed double, triple back twisted over the top thing that takes a knife and fork to get undone at the end of the day! So it’s a good thing the new hammock is all tied up and ready to be hung on the hammock stand. Which is precisely what I did. Stepping back to make sure it was even I noticed a bright eye popping yellow tag attached to one side of my new afternoon nap chamber, just hanging there swaying in the light breeze. I thought, oh how nice it must be a thank you for purchasing the product. Silly me.

I took out my trusty box cutter that I carry everywhere with me — it’s another story — and I sliced off the tag and then read it. Now I have to remind you this was a hammock. You know hang it up and swing on it and it is comfy and relaxing and I hazard to say everyone buying a hammock knows what it is and what it does... The tag was not a thank you oh so kind and precious consumer for purchasing our product we hope you swing until your heart’s content. Oh no. To the contrary and to cover the manufacturer’s bottom, uh bottom line in case of accidental injury, here is what it reads in bold black letters set on that eye popping yellow…

CAUTION Improper installation may cause you to contact ground with initial use. Please refer to instructions for proper hammock hanging instructions.

Seriously? You mean to tell me if I don’t hang my hammock up high enough or secure enough the back of my front may come in contact with the ground with a predictable thud? Who knew? So I looked in the box and lo and behold there were the instructions as to be sure to hang the hammock high enough that when you sit or lay in the confines of the all-cotton ropes your backside doesn’t come in contact with the ground. Not only would that be uncomfortable — it would undoubtedly hinder the ability of the hammock to swing freely. Hey, not even I can make this stuff up! So swing on — just please read all directions if for no other reason than to have something to giggle at as you swing — with your cat, alone or your favorite swinger.

Trina lives in Eureka, Nevada. Find her on Facebook, Instagram or Really!


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