Category Archives: Boston

Bits and Pieces

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There have been a few odds and ends that have been rattling around

in my mind. Some are not worthy of an entire post, some I could in

the future, expand and expound about them. There are interesting

little tidbits that I heard recently on the news or read in a magazine.

 

One article of interest was found in “University of Dayton Magazine,”

which was about the UD Flyers’ football team in 1939,  going out to

California and visiting a famous alumni. I love any kind of ‘archive’

photographs, this one with the dashing movie star, Tyrone Power,

and the football team, all in their coats, ties and dress pants caught

my eye.

 

My favorite Tyrone Power’s movie is called, “Witness for the Prosecu-

tion.” It turns out this was one of the last movies he ever made. Sadly,

at age 44, the action movie star was battling with a sword, had a heart

attack and died on the way to the hospital. The movie he had been

acting in was called, “Solomon and Sheba.” I have never seen this one

nor his beginning two either.  “Merchant of Venice” was his first film

and his second movie, which earned him popularity and a place on the

billboards was, “Girls’ Dormitory.”

 

I believe we need to have a new version of this, a ‘re-make’ of this

light-hearted movie. I sense this would have innocent humor, with

sly innuendos. Nothing like the current R-rated comedies which rely

so much on stupid jokes and mean acts.

(Yes, this comment is a little ‘tongue in cheek.’)
Anyway, Tyrone Power originated from Cincinnati, Ohio. He was

the son of an actor and grandson of a comedian. He had, as they

frequently say, “acting in his blood.” He was born in 1914 and the

sword-fighting scene which ended his life, was in 1958.

 

A quote from the “UD Magazine,” uses the source of an Arizona State

University Assistant Professor of Film and Media Studies describing

Tyrone Power as:

“Mystical, darkly handsome, a glorious matinee idol and a rather

‘forgettable’ actor.”

 

Although this comment is rather harsh,  Tyrone Powers was chosen

in an actor’s popularity poll taken of University of Dayton students

and he was found to be number four. The university newspaper took

one of their students from ages 17-18 up to ages 22-23. This poll was

conducted after the UD football team had visited 20th Century Fox.

The tour had contacted and was led by Tyrone Power, an alumni.

 

Tyrone Power may have ‘grown’ more serious over the years,

following several ‘good looking’ and ‘attractive’ stars and starlets

choosing parts with more depth in the characters and plot lines.

 

Here is the list of the Top 3 Actors ahead of Tyrone Powers

(from the UD newspaper poll, taken in 1939):

1. Errol Flynn

2. Jimmy Stewart

3. Gary Cooper

 

While he led a short life, Tyrone Power ‘lived large,’ in my mind.

Here are a few examples of Power’s personal adventures:

1. Served in the military, as a United States Marines, as a pilot.

This was in 1942, during WWII and one particular exciting time

was during transporting materials to Iwo Jima. Next month, on

my February calendar, I make note of the famous day when the

U.S. flag was raised on Iwo Jima.

 

2. “Wild” in his love life, dating co-stars while the movies were

being filmed, just to move on to the next movie and starlet.

 

3. Like James Dean, he enjoyed riding a motorcycle.

 

4. In his 44 years on earth, he was married three times.

 

5. Rather ‘scandalous’ for his time, he relied upon the income of

his second wife. Financial support in the acting world, sometimes

did have the “leading woman” making more than her husband.

 

6. “Mark of Zorro,” was a favorite movie and the poster is still one

of my favorites of all time. His work as a ‘swash buckling’ leading

character and dangerous criminal were displayed in, “Jesse James”

and “The Black Swan.”

 

February 27th- Coming up next month, another famous actor and

director, a genius of his time, is going to be featured at the Gateway

Film Center. This is called an “Independent Cinema in the Heart

of Columbus.” I love the catchy title, “Magician: The Astounding

Life and Work of Orson Welles.”  I am going to see if my friend,

Anna,  or my guy friend, Bill, will go with me to check out one of

the films presented there.  I would like to see the documentary of

this famous Hollywood legendary star and director.

 

A small little ‘bit of wisdom,’ which could be used in so many

different ways is the expression,

“Pachoko Pachoko,”

which in the Lake Malawi area of Africa means,

“Little by little.”

This conjures much meaning in such a succinct form.

 

The CBS Morning has a great feature every week on their Sunday

program which is called, “The Week at a Glance.”  I noticed the

Hall of Fame Awards for Theater were going to be presented on

Monday, January 26, 2015.

What makes this interesting to me is that I watched, “Amadeus,”

on Saturday after Micah went home. The main antagonist of the

film about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was Antonio Salieri. In the

movie, this character is played by F. Murray Abraham. Definitely

nice to have this coincidence, seeing an actor I admire and it would

be a great awards show to be able to attend.

 

There is an anniversary of the German “Death Camps,”  Auschwitz

and others this week; January 27, ’15. A day of memorial and tribute

to those who either died or survived their horrendous experiences

there.

 

All those Star Wars fans, who have money to splurge on memorabilia,

there will be a major auction on Wednesday.  Hope you have a fun

and happy mid-week celebration. If you don’t have money saved for

buying souvenirs, you can always indulge in watching one of the “Star

Wars” movies.

 

Thursday, Amy Poehler is being given “Woman of the Year” award by

the Hasty Pudding Theatrical group. She is best known for her comedy

skits on “Saturday Night Live,” along with her “Parks and Rec” t.v.

show.

 

Harvard University’s group is simply called, “The Pudding.” In 1897,

John Wheelwright described the cross-dressing theatrical group as:

“A kindly association of men of all ages in a gay evening of simple

enjoyment.”

 

I am sure Amy will have a ‘ball’ and she will fit right in, too. I hope to

check this out ‘after the fact,’ on YouTube. I enjoyed when Neil Patrick

Harris’ was given his Roast for “Man of the Year” another year.

 

At University of Cincinnati, there will be a police enforcement

symposium, incorporating all aspects of agencies, beginning a

meaningful ‘conversation’ about their performance in the pursuit

of justice. This will be held on Friday, January 30, 2015.

 

The other activities, on Saturday and Sunday, were so quickly

spoken that I did not catch them. They said something about what

President Obama was going to do and something about the “Annie”

awards show is for. Keep your ears open for these two upcoming

subjects in the news. . .

 

Tonight, there will be a spell-binding special mini-series about the

Revolutionary War. It is titled, “Sons of Liberty” and ironically it

has mainly actors who are not American.  For example, George

Washington’s character is portrayed by Irish actor, Jason O’Mara.

John Hancock is played by British actor, Rafe Spall, in a sort of

flamboyant performance. (Interesting; hm-m!) The British actor,

Marton Csokas will play General Thomas Gage.

 

I am looking forward to checking out this television event on the

period of time historically where we were “enemies” with the Brits,

while seeing them portray the leaders of this revolution. Interested

also, in who they have playing Benjamin Franklin. The British actor

who portrays Samuel Adams is Ben Barnes. This presentation

will be on the American History Channel.

 

“Sons of Liberty” is n conflict with my S.A.G. awards ceremony,

though. The Screen Actor’s Guild show will be tonight, also. May

need to ask Jenny to ‘DVR’ the other show, or just pop in on it,

during commercial breaks. I just love award ceremonies, along

with the Red Carpet pre-shows.

 

In our brains, scientists, researchers and physicians have studied

many things. The newest findings of where ‘happiness’ can be

found through the measurement of the area of the brain called

the “striatum.” There even is a new numerical formula which is

able to ‘measure’ happiness by our brain’s reactions to rewards.

The formula, though, relies on our reactions to our expectations.

This was also featured on CBS Sunday Morning, January 25, 2015.

I am sure this combination of numbers and processes can be

found somewhere on the CBS coverage, it was shown written in

numerals and I could not write it quickly enough, nor would I

have been able to comprehend this.

Apparently, if you have high expectations, as so many positive

people walk around and hope for the best do, than the way

the numbers may reflect lower amounts of happiness. This

brought up a commentator’s valid question,

“If you go into your day with little or no expectations are you

more likely to experience a measurable amount of happiness?”

This portion of the program was titled, “Not Great Expectations,”

should you wish to examine the research and reactions to this

new equation.

 

I have featured another article or post about brain studies, which

used endorphins and other information to measure happiness.

 

I will still head off every day, ‘into the world,’ with lots of hope

and high expectations. I tend to believe you will receive more

and will acknowledge more simple acts and things which will

give you bursts of endorphins and fill your life with happy

moments. I could not go out, seeking nothing and expect to

find happiness. This just goes against the ‘grain’ of my brain!

 

What did you read today that gave you ‘pause’ or something

to think about?

 

Have you any new information or something you may not wish

to fill a whole post about, but wish to share here?

 

 

 

 

 

 

November: Sensing Grace and Showing Gratitude

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Every month seems to come a bit faster! Closing a door on one vibrant and exciting

month of October. Opening a door on the more serious month of November with

moments full of gratitude, sensing persons who exude grace and giving thanks for

all we have.

Looking at my Halloween decorations and wishing that Jack o’ Lanterns, ghosts,

goblins, the Ty teddy bear in its adorable pumpkin costume, the black glass bottle

with the words, “Love Potion” on it and the owls could all stay up. I take them down,

slowly placing each item in a large orange tub, automatically trying to wrap some of

the glass, ceramic and wooden treasures with newspaper, I layer the embroidered

October cloths, fall handkerchiefs and needlepoint given to me by my aunt and my

cousin.

Next come the September lingering ‘culprits.”

The little scarecrow figurines, sunflower basket and gold candles are no longer

needed.

 

I like a simpler decorative theme in November. The month deserves a less crowded,

less busy appearance. The Pilgrims and their first Thanksgiving come to mind and

make my mood more respectful and subdued.  My decorations reflect this traditional

look. I have a few pumpkins that fit in and around the metal cornucopia with yellow

woven reeds along the edge of the opening. I leave the ‘fake’ bittersweet vine wound

around and inside of a basket on my coffee table.

 

Putting the burgundy candles into the pewter candle sticks from 1978, gifts from my

first wedding, I think of the Turley’s from Oak Ridge, Tennessee:  I feel gratitude.

There is also a pewter creamer, sugar bowl and a little tray to keep them on, which

remain in my little apartment kitchen.

 

I will never forget this lively family using washboards, zithers and guitars, their melodious

voices singing Blue Grass music. Afterwards, Jim telling Scottish tales and Helen telling

old Greek folktales. Their combined heritage made their three boys’ lives rich with the

knowledge of distant lands. Our family has some history, the half from my father’s side

not really detailed but his family tree with Scottish and English roots. Mom’s side is more

interesting, since her parents had stories to share with us of Germany and Sweden.

I would get excited when we drove up through Pigeon Forge, to get to their house built

from the local rocks. My Dad had met Jim in his work at Oak Ridge Nuclear Reactor (in

the state of Tennessee.)

Once they came North, went to see Plum Brook’s reactor in Sandusky. But mainly,

they were the overnight, genial and entertaining stop for our family along the way

to our grandparents’ trailer park in Clearwater, Florida.

Waves of memories, longing and nostalgia take over me.

 

Does this happen to you when you change seasons and decorations?

Is there an old memory that comes forward to be fondly remembered?

 

New chores and tools are needed with snow coming.

I will take my portable shovel out of the closet and put into the trunk of the car.

 

The songs that come to mind for this month are:

“November Rain,” sung by Guns N Roses

and

“Peace of Mind,” sung by Boston.

 

NOVEMBER, 2014

 

Birthstone:  Topaz

Flower:  Chrysanthemum

 

National Animal Appreciation Week goes from 11/1-11/7.

Local animal shelters or humane society have their needs suggestions posted.

 

1st- All Saints’ Day

(Catholics, Episcopalians and others celebrate this day)

 

2- Daylight Savings Time

(where applicable)

We set our clocks back one hour.

The old saying goes, “Fall behind.”

 

4- Islamic New Year.

Wishing all those who practice the Islam faith a Happy New Year!

 

Election Day in the U.S.

I encourage you to use your citizens’ right to vote!

 

6- Full Beaver Moon

Native Americans call this month’s moon the Beaver Moon,

but it is also called the Frosty Moon.

 

11- Veterans’ Day in the U.S.

Honor those who served and gave up their lives during wars.

Respecting those who are continuing to serve and put their lives on the line

for their country.

Remembrance Day in Canada.

 

14- Last 1/4 moon.

 

22- New Moon.

 

27-

Thanksgiving Holiday (U.S.)

28-

“Black Friday”

One of the biggest shopping days in U.S.

Some consider this part of their family’s traditions.

 

29- First 1/4 moon.

 

Looking at my cornucopia filled with fruits and leaves, with pumpkins spilling out of it,

colorful and familiar, I think it is as beautiful as a bouquet of flowers to me.

The words of Thomas Kinkade (2001):

“The color within us

can color the world around us.”

 

With Thanksgiving and gratitude:

“A thing of beauty

is a joy forever:

Its loveliness increases,

It will never pass

into nothingness.”

(John Keats)

 

Those who bestow Grace upon us, as a gift:

“A friend is as it were,

a second self.”

(Cicero)

 

Freedom to express our Faith:

“Were there no God,

we would be in this glorious world

with grateful hearts

and no one to thank.”

(Christina Rossetti)

 

“You have possibilities. . .

so celebrate that you are

who you are,

where you are,

and affirm the

inherent

goodness of

living

by saying,

‘Thank You.'”

(Thomas Kinkade, 2001)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are We Okay?

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While watching the movie, “Silver Linings Playlist,” I

noticed that the character that Bradley Cooper plays,

enjoys analyzing where words come from. I also like to

look up words, find out variations of definitions and

usages of words. The idea of investigating the ‘roots of

languages’ is another way I feel I am ‘playing detective.’

When the slightly crazy character, that Bradley Cooper

plays, asks about the word, “okay.” He finds out from

Jennifer Lawrence’s wacky character that “o.k” comes from

the period in history when President Martin Van Buren

was president.

Van Buren’s presidency lasted from 1837-1841. He was a

member of the “Old Kinderhook Club.” President Van Buren

and people who originated from Kinderhook, New York, may

have considered and weighed people’s ‘value’ as they met.

Thus, if newcomers were ‘good enough’ to join their “O. K.

Club,” they were “O.K.”

It was also easier to say, “Vote for OK,” while referring

to Martin Van Buren.

I thought this was rather interesting, finding out from

a movie, how a word came about. But, when I went to look

this particular word up, I found a whole different story!

It is a much more complicated and rather bizarre,

convoluted ‘story’ that several sources used. So, here

goes another way to find the roots and history of the

simple expressions, “Okay” or “o.k.”

In the late 1830’s, Boston newspapers’ articles were full

of abbreviations. Some made ‘sense’ and others needed a big

leap of understanding or a stretch of your imagination!

Apparently there was a ‘fashion,’ or ‘fad,’ that included

this use of ‘shortcuts.’ The craze went so far as to

produce abbreviations of misspelled words. The way that

the words became misspelled, seems to be rooted in another

language entirely. These ‘old fashioned’ expressions from

everyday usage evolved into different combinations of

letters with a kind of acronym style.

Let’s see how this goes…

Such ‘popular’ at the time expressions were:

“No go” = N.B.

“All right” = A.R.

“Know go” = K.G.

“Oll wright” = O.W.

and finally, the one you all wished to know why we got this

abbreviation:

“Oll correct” = O.K.

Several of these abbreviations with seemingly nonsensical

misspellings became popular while speaking, not just in

the paper! Can you imagine saying the following?

“That lesson was a K.G.” (Know go.)

“Our plans for going to the movies are a N.G.” (No go.)

The most widespread of this fun speaking trend, was the

use of “okay” or “O.K.”

The Boston Morning Post newspaper got the credit for the

‘first’ use of the word, “O.K.” in 1839.

The use of ‘shortcuts’ reminded me of how I learned to

text faster on my cell phone. By using abbreviations, and

some of the common ways people encapsulate words, I felt

like I was learning a foreign language!

Let’s have some fun with wordplays using the word, “O.K”

as a verb. In this use of the word, the definition is

considered to mean, “approve” or “authorize.”

1. The architect ‘O.K.’d’ the draft for the job.

2. The supervisor ‘okayed’ the idea of a potluck.

In the present verb tense,

3. “Will you okay the document?”

There are two directions, for the same word, that

you can go with okay.

Here is a negative way to interpret the word, “okay.”

Which uses the definition of “mediocrity,” as an

adjective.

When you have eaten something that you like only

a little or really don’t want seconds…

1. The soup was okay.

If you feel the server was only “adequate” you

may say,

2. “She did an okay job.”

Now, here is a positive ‘spin’ on the word! in our

American culture, we use the word ‘okay’ to mean,

‘Way to get things done!’

You are using an enthusiastic tone in your voice, you

may even raise it up a notch, by exclaiming after a

great play in sports:

1. “Okay!”

When I am asked if I would like to go to a concert,

the ticket is being paid by my friend or date:

2. “O.K.!!!”

As an adverb, okay is also used well and has different

ways to interpret it.

While shopping in a crowded store and someone bumps

into you,

1. “I am okay,” you may respond.

When your friend arrives late to lunch and is profusely

apologetic,

2. “It is o.k., don’t worry about it.”

In an accident, while the paramedics are trying to get

your reaction,

3. “Are you okay?”

By nodding your head, you are validating that you are

okay. By shaking your head, you are showing without

words, that you aren’t doing very well.

Back in 1967, Thomas A. Harris, MD. wrote a self-help book

that was called, “I’m OK, You’re Ok.” This was around for

awhile, sharing communication skills, along with the way

you can observe verbal and non-verbal communication. At

the time it was published, Harris found the idea behind

T.A., Transactional Analysis to be fascinating. The book

has gone through several republishing and remained on

the New York Times Bestseller List for two years, 1972-

1974. I could not resist including this in this essay,

since it incorporates one of the most popular uses of

the word, “OK.”

In current relationships, our newest way of finding out

if we are ‘on the same page’ or getting along is to

ask these meaningful words,

“Are we o.k.?”

Who would have thought 2 letters abbreviated could be

interpreted in so many diverse ways?

I may now wonder whether or not this essay on the usage

of the word ‘okay’ was o.k.

Your response could indicate a rather blasé reaction or

it could be a very excited one!

More Newsy Info

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Melvin was back from his trip to Boston, Massachusetts and I was

so happy to see him, I almost hugged him! He is my bright light at

the end of the tunnel, the day that seems to look impossibly long

gets shortened with his little handy, dandy words. He was gone

the whole week before and including Labor Day.

This began at morning start up meeting. He whispered to me, as

I had asked him, “What’s the going rate for lobsters?”

“Guess what? They were $5 a pound and I bought one almost every

day, if not, then I ate a whole lobster out!” Oh, I was filled with envy!

I had told him, the fishermen had charged $5 for any sized lobster out

on Bear Skin Neck. One of my favorite memories had been when my

great aunt and great uncle took turns handing me money to retrieve

two in 1971, my sixteenth summer in Rockport, Mass.

Then, he told me not only did Melvin see some of his Army buddies

who had served in Hawaii, he also had some of his family there for

a reunion. I had not heard this before the trip. He told me that it

was held at a beautiful park and that it was catered in. He had spent

$400 on ten people’s dinners, including his own. He mentioned this,

saying that some of his kids and grandkids didn’t have much money

and he had offered if they made it out East he would cover the reunion.

Also, that Melvin being immodest said, “I was polite, stood in a long line,

letting others go before me, and by the time I got to the buffet, there was

NO MEAT!”

By golly, if my family had allowed me to pay for their meals, I would

have gone around with a hangdog look, pouty face in place and got

some meat! But this is what I mean about Melvin, he was so cheerful

and almost giddy with glee, “I just went on back to my hotel and

ordered up some lobster!”

Obviously, Melvin is not hurting for money. But he grows the nicest

veggies for me, along with the ones that my son, James, gives me,

I have had a wonderful and bountiful summer. He takes good care

of his live-in girlfriend, who declined the offer for the vacation. She

encouraged him to go and see his family and Army buddies, too.

I filled Melvin in on our quest to know the “other Robyn” better and

my recent, curious findings. First of all, she grew up in Detroit, Michigan.

I grew up in Sandusky, Ohio. Another “proof” she is not my long lost

“twin.” If you are lost on this, my continuing saga is just part of being

the brunt of one of Melvin’s jokes, equating me with a woman who is

over seven years’ older than I am, has short, blonde hair that sticks up

like feathers, kind of punked but not on purpose. I think she may just

not remember to comb it. She also “paints” her face with heavy makeup.

She is very sweet, and greets me with this unique way of thinking I

remind of her friend, Alice. I had to find out more, she told me that

she had moved here to Delaware in the 80’s and her Dad had worked

for PPG as a manager. She has a son and daughter, she has been

divorced since the 80’s and never remarried.

Robyn’s Dad died of complications with Parkinson’s Disease in 2000.

I had told her last week, my Dad in January, 2001. On the other hand,

my Mom is alive and kicking but this is where I am going to tell you

there are “gaps” in Robyn’s memory, she says she “Has no clue when

her mother died.” I asked, “Was it after your Dad?”

Robyn replied, “Oh, yeah, sometime after he died.”

She also, to this day, hedges the following questions,

“If I remind you of Alice, do you see her?”

“How long ago did you know Alice?”

and

“Where did you meet Alice?”

She is the Robyn who has daily sign up sheets everywhere in the

building that she puts her initials on, that used to mean about 2

years ago, that you had cleaned that area. We don’t do these but

somehow clean ones are put up weekly for her to keep busy and

sign. I have not figured this out, Melvin and I speculate that she

may have a work plan in place like the schools have IEP’s until she

retires. We hope she can do something else, but as we leave soon

after she arrives, we don’t see actual work being accomplished.

Another weird element of my Labor Day weekend that definitely

confused and set me back was that my ex-boyfriend’s blocked

cell phone number got unblocked. Not looking, while driving up

the road to Mom’s, there was no special ring for him so I picked

up the phone and answered it. I was fully engaged in driving and

I figure if people can balance sandwiches, I can do a straight shot

on I-71 to Cleveland!

I found out it was Mark and tried to get off, saying I was driving.

So, he said he would call later. I could not get him to understand,

No don’t call later.

Next time he called, my Mom who still thinks he was so nice and

he fished so she had sent tons of fishing newpaper clippings the

whole time I had dated, then not dated him for over a year. I said,

“It is Mark.” She said, “Oh answer it, find out how he is and say ‘hi’

from me.”

In the course of the weekend, seven phone calls ensued. Not as

many texts as I used to get from Lenny, but still more than I needed

to hear from Mark. The last ones were he was up on Lake Erie, fishing

with his brother, (who I loved and his sister in law, I loved too.) He had

decided to show him my parents’ cottage and fish off the stone pier

only 3 houses over. They had been in Huron and traveled towards

Vermilion. They were only about 35 minutes away from where I was,

I got a strange longing feeling. Yes, dumb me!

I did not see him but the very last phone call extended me an invite

to the family cookout at his brother and sister in law’s house. He had

also asked if I would like to take Micah (who he had carried on his

shoulders awhile ago, around the Cleveland Zoo) to the Wilds sometime

soon.

My older brother, only 18 months younger but since I have two, I call

him “older” said not to go to the picnic. My younger one, my dreamer,

professor, runner, and one who hopes for good things to happen to

his dear sister, said, “Go! Maybe he gave up on that woman he went

back to. He had some time to think about it, and maybe he is ‘done’

with her and back to who he belongs with!”

I went to the picnic, I enjoyed seeing the grandkids, sister Theresa,

brother and his wife. I had a nice time up until the old jangling ring

that he has for hisused to be, while I dated him, ex-girlfriend/now present

girlfriend rang. I got up and left, hugging the people I wanted to be part

of and had believed a possible future family. They all tell me that woman

has a hold on him that they don’t understand. They always say they “don’t

want her to come”, along with “she thinks she is better than we are!”

I cried all the way home, left a message for my dreamer brother and my

realistic brother, both who had their activities booked. I had my daughter

to cut her hair, two grandsons who hugged me and I will recouperate from

my mistake (again) and hope to close that door more firmly on the past.

The cell phone company prefers you to use their verizon.com to “block”

a phone number but this particular young man on the end of the phone

line who answered my “Help me” words I spoke to each person or message

that I got, was wonderful and a God send. He said he had had to block an

ex, that it had been painful and that he would very kindly do it while I

blubbered to him asking him to do that. I would be on the road and did not

want to hear his apologies.

The words, “You have no right to ask me how I feel…” in the song by Phil

Collins, “Separate Lives” came on the radio after I got off from Verizon. I

thought they were very appropriate to the moment.

I went over my checklist countdown for future times I need to face this

kind of obstacle or sad situation:

1.  Put moral compass in place.

2.  Do a sanity check and call for help (not younger brother or Mom!)

3.  Make a list of pros and cons. Notice cons list is much longer.

Come to the conclusion to: Move forward and not backward!

All’s Well That Ends Well!

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There are two “loose ends” that I am going to add some follow

up details. I am not sure why, but I always wanted to know more

at the end of each book I read, throughout my life. I felt there

may be more of the story to be told and would sometimes invent

the rest. These additions to some of my coworkers’ stories are true

and have positive endings, or nearly endings…

When I was working with Melvin in the Mezzanine today, we were

all excited that we were almost finished and hopefully, not going

to be the ones to “pick up” the last orders of the day. I heard him

exclaim, “Darn!” and I peeked through the racks to see what was

going on. Oh, his RF and Bluetooth scanner were showing a

flashing “red” light, which means the battery is “low.” Also, if he

had his head phones on, this monotone voice would be intoning,

“Battery is low….battery is low….” It is annoying, to say the least

when you feel you are making progress to have this happen. You

have to go to the nearest telephone and dial the bins order “clerk”

Michelle and she will “reset” your RF and then, you must plug a

new battery in. Since we are buddies and it would ensure I would

not pick up HIS order, I put my RF down and followed him to the

phone.

And who do you think we saw, writing her initials on the “work

orders” or what we call the “chores list?” Remember, we don’t have

to sign these anymore but someone in the next shift walks around

for quite awhile to where these are hung and initials them.

You guessed her name, (my other half of my twindom!) Ha ha!

Melvin being a little persnickety, decided to take it upon himself,

I could see there was a devilish glint in his eyes as he noticed her!

He said, “You know, Robyn, we don’t have to fill those in on our

shift!”

I quickly interrupted this and distracted her, “Hi Robyn! How are

you today?”

She responded, “Have I ever told you that you remind me of my

friend Alice?”

I decided to go with this, killing time while Melvin was on the phone

and who wanted to pick up the last order anyway?

I asked her, “When did you meet Alice?”

She responded, “Well, let me think about that.”

I waited, I was not sure if the gears were cranking.

She finally said, “What was it I was trying to remember?”

I asked her, “Where did you grow up, Robyn?”

She said, “Oh, that is easy! I grew up in Detroit, Michigan.”

I asked her, feeling that her long term memory was in tact,

(“Sun downers” can effect the short term memory more…)

“How did you end up here in Delaware, Ohio? I came from

Cleveland in the year 1986.”

Robyn was surprised and said, “Well I think I came here in

the 80’s, too!”

I asked her what brought her here, adding it was the midpoint

between my ex-husband in Cincinnati and my family in Cleveland.

She told me, “Well, my Dad got a job as a manager at PPG.”

I told her that was a great company!

I may have confused her by my next comment,

“I had three little children and was a single mother.”

She responded, “I was a single mother in the 80’s, too.”

That made me pause. Because she is ten years older than I, having

said that her Dad had brought her here in the 80’s. She probably

woulld not have been living at that time with her parents.

I asked her when her birthday is and she said she would be 66

in November. I glanced at Melvin since his battery and RF were

reset. I wanted him NOT to hear that detail! (My birthday is in Nov.

and I did not want him to continue the “twins” teasing…)

He stopped, “Why Robin, when is your birthday?”

I said, “I don’t remember!”

The next story, I will be so happy to impart the glad tidings to you all!

Amy and her family had a gathering over the weekend. The beneficiary

of a grand windfall to her son in law had her considering buying the

property that her horses are stabled and taken care of. I had advised

her to take advantage of her family’s good fortune and to put a bid

on that farm. The quandary had been whether or not it would be okay

to do so, despite the fact the barn “manager” was also hoping to buy

the farm?

Amy, her daughter, mother, husband and son in law, along with her

grandchildren had a barbecued dinner and wonderful feast. Afterwards,

the adults all sat around a picnic table with a bottle of wine, enjoying

reveling in their future changes. Amy said that she still had misgivings

about the farm purchase, due to the manager and also, since it was

truly her son in law’s money. She felt that it may be too much to have

him buy that, despite the children’s enjoying the horses and their all

thinking the house was in sound condition. It would be a great place

for holidays and gatherings. Amy and her husband would get out of

the “rut’ of renting and own a house and property.

At that second reminder of the moral dilemma involved, Amy’s mother

said, “Then it is best not to buy that home. It is not good to build on top

of another’s ‘misfortune.'”

Amy said, “Exactly! Not good karma!”

They voted and decided to find another property. In her excitement today,

Amy could barely contain her joy! They had found a 35 acre farm that had

a horse stable, silo and barn all in great condition. All in three days since

their “family meeting!”

The additional good news was that her son in law and daughter had

decided that with the fair asking price, they could afford to build two

homes, one for her parents and one for them to live in.  Amy added

that his father lived in California and his mother had passed away about

two years ago, so he felt they were his family now.

Last little updat on coworkers, Anna is going crazy! She loves the diverse

and numerous connections she is making through her internet dating,

but is now contemplating traveling in September to Boston, Mass. and

this very weekend, tomorrow, all the way to Pennsylvania! What in the

world is she thinking?!

I told her that I put a 60 mile radius on dating and it was changed after

only one week of hearing from people all over the place to 30 miles,

last year! Anna had her husband pass away while they were younger

and had two daughters. She had met a nice man, Butch, in Canada,

(story was awhile back…) and when she had crossed the border after

her last visit “messed up.” Butch and she had spent wonderful times

including two cruises. They had become “family” to each other and

and knew so much of each other’s family it was only a matter of time

and distance hat would keep them from marrying.

Anna is like me, she is open, outspoken and honest to a “T.” This part

cost her their future. Literally, she would forever wish she had firmly

shut her mouth. Thought and answered the tough exit questions,

with a little less honesty!

When asked if she had anything to declare, Anna said, “No.”

But the next ones, while the guard was examining her passport were,

“How long were you here and what was the reason for your extended

stay?”

“Why, my boyfriend owns a logging company and I was here to help

him look over the books.”

She almost had to go to Canadian jail!

Sadly, her special guy and she were told she had to wait a long time

until she would be allowed to come back into the country. (She is

sketchy about the time, but they would correspond, call and email

for this time) until one week, his mother called. When Anna heard

Butch’s mother’s voice, she felt tears rushing to fill and overflow

from her eyes. Butch had had a heart attack and died. They would

send Anna his dishes, some other mementos and she would wait

years to even think about men.

That is why it is both fun and scary to see how excited Anna is

about dating. First there were the 3 Ron’s. Now, there is a Scottish

man transplanted in California who bought her a cell phone just

to call him. And there are two more out of state men, mentioned

before. My lunch table and I are happy but worried. We see that

these men may be possibly dangerous, they could be also, once

she is there, “expecting too much on a first date.” (I am skittish

since my one month date with Lenny. It turned out to be more

pressure and less interest in his sexual positions, added to his

younger age, signs it was best I “get out of the situation.”)

I am not sure Anna will be able to do the same, let’s keep her

harmonious dating future in our prayers or cross our fingers!

There will be more on Robyn (she’s NOT my twin!). Amy and

her horse farm plans, and Anna with her multiple dating partners.

Best wishes sent your way for a Happy Friday and weekend, too!

Healthy Foods and Couscous

Standard

My youngest daughter would prefer for us to go back to living in the

woods and eating only fresh from the vine, stem or tree. I was happy

to have her cooking a meal with Mediterranean Couscous and also,

fresh green beans. Yesterday she came by after she taught Pilates

and we sat down to eat a meal with a glass of wine, too

Today, while in the upper level of Advance Auto distribution center

picking products I ran into Melvin. I was following or chasing  him

around one of with both of our carts filled to the brim with auto

parts. I “hate” the ladder and how we go up and down to get from

the very top 6th shelf truly heavy products. I prefer “my” areas of

the front flow racks with what they call “pick to lights.”

I mentioned my leftovers for lunch to Melvin since I said, “Hey,

I ate healthy again last night!” He mentioned he had brought

me some more zucchini. I told him, “Thank you so very much,

Melvin! I love frying thin slices up with butter and onions when

my daughter isn’t around to make me use Smart Balance.”

Then he asked how my daughter made our couscous. I told him

that it involves a package that has “Near East” and “Mediterranean”

in the title. While we stood for a moment of silence contemplating

that oxymoron, because isn’t it true those are two different places?

Anyway, Melvin told me a totally surprising and wonderful fact about

himself!

We always talk about Boston, Massachusetts where his best Army

friends live, and I mention Rockport back to him. We can go on and

on about the subject of fresh lobster, clams and shrimp. But, other

than knowing about his seriously ill girlfriend last year who is definitely

“on the mend” this year and another fact; that he served for many

years in the Army and was a cook on an aircraft carrier, I did not

know this mindblowing fact!

Melvin told me that his mother used to make cous cous for his

breakfast taking a corn like mush and smashing it with a wooden

mallet (or mortar and pestle type situation), only the bowl was

made of clay. Then, she would add a combination of milk or cream

along with sugar. He said he had never tried cous cous like I was

describing. Since he eats at my lunch period, I said, “I will bring you

a bite to see how you like it.”

Of course, while we were in the “mezzanine” chatting and slowing

our carts down, up comes our boss’ boss and he gives us a serious

frown! We end the discussion or “table it,” so to speak, until lunch.

Melvin and his guy friends all sit facing the programmed sports

channel big screen television, while my table of five has one guy

and four women. We “lost” my surrogate son, “Chad,” and still have

not seen nor heard “hide nor hair” of him.  Our group faces a different

direction, watching “The New Price is Right” with Drew Carey!

When I was up at the microwave, I took a paper plate and put a scoop

of the cous cous and put a few chunks of fresh tomato and poured a

little tomato sauce over it. I put a little salt and pepper on my bigger

portion and a little sprinkle on Melvin’s “taste” plate. I heated both

plates up and went over to the guys’ table. Melvin took his paper plate

and I asked him, while he was blowing on it,

“When you were telling me about your mother, I was wondering,

would you mind my asking where you grew up?”

And this is an aside, this lovely and outgoing black friend of mine uses

very excellent Boston-accented English. Never would I have dreamed

he was born somewhere else and raised far away, too.

Melvin said, “I was born and raised on Cape Verdan Island, off of

Portugal. Both my parents were born there, too. I decided to join

the Army after I graduated from high school and that brought me

to boot camp in  the South of the U.S. From there, it took me to

Hawaii and on to Japan. When we have talked, you have always

seemed interested in my trips to Rickenbacker base to get some

food and household goods.”

I want you to know that I need to hear more about this but am

going over to join my friends for lunch. Thanks so much for the

zucchini in the fridge and hope your girlfriend is feeling better.

Tell her ‘Robin says hi and keeps her in my prayers.'”