The TORO came back from a tune-up. I tempted my son into shoveling the deck and the front walk with the promise of getting to witness me lighting up my dad's old snowblower for the first time since its repair. I'm new to choke/ignition sequences, priming, and two-stroke fuel mixes. I get it, but I also don't get it. I thought that the electric start was going save me from the yank start. "It doesn't sound right," he said. "Yesss." I pulled the cord and began to whip the machine about by its pull start. Exhausted left arm, I went to right. Nothing.
I used to watch my father test his rotator cuff on a Mercury outboard to get my sister and I out on the summer lake for lazy afternoons of fishing blue gill and perch by the dozens. My memory of him with this hand-me-down blower was the same, starting it was a cinch. My show-off attempt at dad raveled watching my son shuffle back to the house. His age, I also missed the sputtering, failed starts, inside, warm and dry, likely late enough to be in bed. I didn't get to see the minotaur, only the man and the snowblower.