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My Favorite Painting Is In The Warehouse

If you’ve never seen The Sound of Music, well, the reviews are in and they say it’s pretty good. The 1965 musical drama staring Julie Andrews features a song called “My Favorite Things” in which she, in fact, talks about a few of her favorite things. I’d like to take a moment to talk about some of my favorite things.

My favorite things might not be raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, but most of my favorite things are pretty typical for a 25-year-old from God’s Country, Minnesota. I love me some Garth Brooks, some basketball and a good ol’ cheeseburger. I don’t know if the young ones still use this phrase, but I’m basic.

Except when it comes to my favorite painting. As someone fairly basic, you’d probably expect me to pick a Picasso or Monet, but my all-time favorite painting is a one of a kind. To say it’s rare would probably be an understatement, because I don’t expect many people to know the painting.

So where can you see this one of a kind painting? It is locked securely away in our… umm… it is in our warehouse. Yeah, it’s in our warehouse.

As a math-challenged child, numbers were not exactly my friend. Remembering them was hard and you could add them and subtract them and it was all too much. What isn’t hard for children to grasp on to is pictures and visuals… a painting.

My grandpa was not a painter. I saw his attempt at some coloring pages with my little cousins and I can assure you he was not exactly an artist. He did, though, possess my favorite painting.

When I was a child, on the back of Grandpa’s truck there was a beautiful painting. It had a road leading into the sunset of a western sky and it had the words “Tough to kick… but this is it!” written on it. It was beautiful, but the painting’s beauty isn’t what made it my favorite painting. It’s my favorite painting because that meant Grandpa was home.

I remember whenever I’d be in our yard for whatever reason, I’d be searching for that painting. That beacon of beauty that meant that my grandpa was home. That painting meant it was time to find grandpa for coffee which always really meant a burger at the Straw Hat. That painting meant that one of my favorite people was back home.

That painting was on my grandpa’s final truck, hence the saying on it. Well, kind of. It was supposed to be his final truck until he drove that one so much he had to get a new one…. and then he drove that one so much that he had to get yet another one after that. He had three final trucks. If you knew Duane Kottke, that shouldn’t surprise you one lick.

That painting might be faded now, but the memories are still in vivid color to me. Memories of him are what I hold on to… When I’m feeling sad, I simply remember my favorite things and then I don’t feel so bad.

The painting on the back of Duane’s “final truck”.

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Kottke Trucking, Inc.