Men have their passions, bless them, but how could a love of tractors lead to a Jennifer Aniston show?
Some men love Chevies. They’ll see every Chevy on the road, quietly noting year, model and the suitability of the person driving it. A Ford man just has to stop and gawk if a Mustang cruises by, while a John Deere enthusiast thrills to the familiar sound of that put-put engine anywhere.
My husband loves red tractors. Particularly International Harvesters – IH, for short.
Drive with him down a busy highway, dodging semi-trailers and pot holes, and Keith will suddenly point to a rusted red heap of metal in a fencerow a hundred yards away and say, “Look at that. A Farmall M.”
Or watch a movie with him, something as far removed from farming as “A Christmas Story.” Did you know there’s a Farmall in that holiday classic? Mm-hm. When Ralphie and his family are watching the town’s Christmas parade, a Farmall H pulls the Santa Claus float. Watch for it. Or come over to our house and Keith will point it out to you. Every time.
And, oh joy, IH made lots of other things, too. IH trucks and IH air conditioners, IH milking equipment and IH belt buckles. Keith has a few of those, and an IH tire gauge, too. He even subscribes to an IH magazine, “Red Power.” Oh, yeah. Feel the iron muscle.
Now, a motors and metal guy like that wouldn’t necessarily be interested in a sit-com like “Friends,” though it helps that one of the co-stars is the gorgeous Jennifer Aniston. I guess that’s what enticed him to watch it, back in its heyday, long enough to notice what was just sitting there in her kitchen for all the world to see, though I bet most of the world missed it: an IH refrigerator.
Yes! Right there on national TV, right there on the set of one of the most popular shows ever. My Keith just about fell out of his recliner one night when he said, “Look at that! An IH fridge!”
“Friends” is a comedy about relationships and being there for each other and all that yucky, sentimental stuff that girls go for, and a lot of the action takes place right there in Jen’s kitchen. Keith just loves it.
— Cindy O. Herman
Cindy O. Herman lives and writes near her husband’s family farm in Central Pennsylvania, where she has been brainwashed into liking only RED tractors. This humorous essay, written for her weekly column in The Daily Item (Sunbury, Pa.), received first place in the 2012 Keystone Press Awards.