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The Inventive Mr. Kirlin by Eddie Flotte
The Inventive Mr. Kirlin by Eddie Flotte

The Inventive Mr. Kirlin

In the first days at Grassy Sound, my curiosity was on high. It mystified me what sort of jury-rig engineering was required to keep these rickety old bungalows standing. The more time I spent working with Kirlin the more my questions were answered. Kirlin's cowboy friends were all talented builders with an eternity of combined experience but everyone turned to him when they stumbled into uncharted territory. He'd take a look, think it over and make it happen. When it came to shooting from the hip, he was unrivaled. Putting fresh pilings in under the bungalow was a thrill for me. Their providence remains a mystery but there they were. He' d float them into place at high tide under a needy bungalow and there they'd wait. Come work day, he'd whip up booms, cranes and hoist, from whatever he had handy to lift and swing each piling into place, aim it at a location eight feet deep and beneath a particular weak beam and then slide it into the mud below. With levers, jacks, come-alongs, winches, body weight and arm strength, he'd wrestle the beast into submission. His inventiveness and imagination are his gifts. He dabbles, like everyone here, in spells and voodoo. With an incorrigible grin, he politely calls it 'visualization.' He can't possibly be as young as he looks because he knows everything and has read everything. Is he immortal? I wonder. It's hard to say for sure, but by the looks of his library, his interest in the subject is more than passing.
— Eddie Flotte


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