There were times when Stanley Jules learned the hard way that trying to fix electronic devices could be painful.
"I got shocked a couple times," the DeMatha senior defensive end said with a laugh. "I got electrocuted a couple times."
That didn't deter him. Although Jules never had formal training, he claims to be able to fix anything from televisions to radios to computers.
"It started when I was around 6," Jules said. "I would see all those guys on television fixing things, see the car shows. When I would look outside, I saw people putting buildings together. We have mechanics in the family. It interested me in doing things with my hands. After awhile, I started getting older and I started watching the Discovery Channel and seeing what they would do."
He has fixed the family's television and picked up radios and tape players off junk piles to repair. By trial and error, he has learned to fix his computer, a Packard Bell he said "is an old computer, so it needs a lot of maintenance." And Jules purchased the 10-year-old subwoofer to the stereo in his bedroom for $5 at a Habitat for Humanity sale, then fine-tuned its sound quality.
"I like picking up scraps," Jules said. "New things don't give me so much pleasure. I have no professional training, but because I was so curious and able to survive my accidents, I was able to figure out what I had to do. One of the things that gives me so much joy is making something out of nothing."
Jules's unusual talent is welcomed by his parents, who readily turn to their son.
"Anything we need to get fixed in the house, he does," said his father, Ossemaitre Jules. "Whether it is an electrical problem or the stove or whatever, if it's broken, give it to Stanley. He'll figure it out."