The Unauthorized Biography of Rosco P. Coltrane

When it's my moment in the sun, I won't forget that I am blessed, but every hero walks alone, thinking of more things to confess

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Location: Owensboro, Kentucky, United States


Monday, November 12, 2007


I got a splinter in my hand last week. Not too bad, just a small splinter in the palm of my hand. It hurt. Not a lot, but noticeable.

It made me laugh. I began to think about my mom, and how great she was at getting splinters out. Even though I would squirm and toss, she was always steady. She wielded that needle like a surgeon with a scalpel. Precise, quick, and always successful. I just got a little edge of a blade and got the splinter out. It wasn't as good as what my mom can do, but it worked.

But the thing that I couldn't get past, and still can't get past, is the fact that my mom never tried to prevent me from getting splinters. She never told me to stop playing out in the woods. I was never told not to play outside because I could get hurt. When my friend Jeremy came over, Mom never said I couldn't go outside.

And outside, there is all kinds of trouble. Much worse then splinters. When I was home about a month ago, Jeremy stopped by and we talked about all the trouble we used to get into. At one point, I looked at Jeremy and asked a very simple question.

How in the world did we survive?

He just shook his head.

We sat there for a second thinking about all the dumb things we did as kids. We thought about all those three wheeler wrecks, tree house demolitions, damming sewage ditches, firecrackers, tobacco sticks, fish hooks, and B B guns. How did I make it to this very point in which I am typing with all my fingers still intact? And for the past month, I have been wondering how in the world can little boys like Jeremy and me go through childhood generally unscathed.

And I didn't realize the answer until I got that splinter. And I realized how my mom always got those splinters out of my hand. She never tried to prevent splinters. She just fixed it, made it all better. And now, I realize how big of a deal that was. How she loved me enough to make my own mistakes, do my own things, and get my own splinters. And I wonder how hard that must have been for her. I can't even imagine. I can't imagine how much faith it took for her to know that I was going to mess up and hurt myself, and that she would have to make it all better. It's staggering.

And I don't really know what to say.


Thanks Mom, for all those splinters removed and love that let me roam.


So I was at a nursing home today. And I had to get into an Alzheimer's unit. I asked the guy what the password was and he told me it was 2007.

I never thought a password could be so sad.