Thursday, September 30, 2010

Sneezy, Grumpy, and Dopey

We left home at 7:00am yesterday, met Jerry and Tammie along with Elizabeth and Carroll (Tammie’s parents) in Greeneville. They followed us as Carolyn drove to the airport in Knoxville which is about two hours from our house. We missed two turns even with the GPS; it did not tell us to turn off until we were whizzing by the exit. I don’t like the Tom-Tom GPS as well as I did my antique Garmin. We did get to see a lot of Knoxville via backstreets as the machine guided us back to the straight and narrow.  The airport has been newly remodeled and is very nice. It is small compared to big-city airports, having only 10 gates, but it is busy enough with mostly commuter and connecting flights to Atlanta and Charlotte. Due to some kind of foul-up, Keegan had to lay over six hours in Atlanta, but overall, his arrival was only an hour later than planned. It was an exciting moment to see his plane land and then see him come around a corner toward the lobby. When he finally saw us his face split into the grin we have been missing for all these months. He and his dad rode back to Greeneville with us, and we stopped at the restaurant where he worked up until the day he left for basic. His friends were as excited to see him as were his family. We took him to his mom’s house and he stayed there overnight and Carolyn and I finally got home about 4:30pm, both of us dead tired.
---
Be well, little Libby.
----
Have a Thursday, my friends.
----



Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A man thing

The Burger Bar in Bristol has a bit of a legend attached to it. It is said that famous country music artist Hank Williams ate his last meal from the restaurant just a few hours before he died while asleep in the back seat of his Cadillac. Supposedly, his driver stopped at the Burger Bar and bought take-out burgers for the star and himself. I guess the notoriety is a win-lose thing for the bar; on the one hand the legendary singer ate food from there, and on the other hand the legendary singer died after having eaten food from there.

I consider Hank as the male country singer until the likes of Waylon and Willie came along, and I still consider him the all-time best. However, I wish Hank had kept his dick in his pants the day his son Hank Junior was sired.
----
Why does my hearing go away when I yawn? I don't have much anyway.
----
I have a theory that concerns men, so if you ladies read this you will probably find it more boring than is my usual stuff. Men, you know how sometimes when we pee it comes out in a double stream and no matter how we try to balance or aim it, one of the streams always hits the edge of the urinal or commode; at times even pooling on the floor. Married men with wives to clean up after them don't worry about the floor as much as do most single men, but the fascinating part is the two streams. When we have a normal single stream hitting the water, it is pretty blasé don't you know. Dull and boring because we have experienced it many thousands of times and when we were drinking beer at our best pace, it felt like a thousand times each day. Now for my little surmise on the double stream. It is my theory that the single stream represents our boring life; sleep, work, eat; on and on. I believe the double stream means there is a coming fork in the road of our lives from which we must blindly choose our path into tomorrow. When the streams are even in flow, it means either way will yield about the same results, but when they are uneven, it means that we must carefully choose our course. The worst of the double streams is where one shoots almost full blast to the target vicinity, but the other sort of dribbles and drips, splashing on the edge of the pot and onto our clothes and shoes and we don't know it until someone else makes fun of us. That scenario means we should follow our normal course but to be prepared for some minor setbacks. Sometimes and especially after having sex, I spew forth a triple-streamer of which at least one of them will usually end up dripping and dribbling until wetting my pants legs or shoes. Sure, it is only a theory, and I damn sure ain't going to test it by hanging around public men's rooms and watching others from the corner of my eye as they take a leak and then with a straight and honest face try to persuade the the double-streamers to write down all that happens to them over the next few days. Justice and science may be blind, but I feel the most blinding outcome from this would be the swollen, black eyes I would carry into the short-term future.
----
I will be gone most of the day but hope to be home before 3:00pm.
----

Have a very good Wednesday!
----



Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Communication

Carolyn is working on a bid to clean a funeral home; I told her at her age, it may be good to get a foot in the door and become accustomed to the place. I suppose you can guess what she told me.
----
Looks like document spell checkers will soon be obsolete for everyday non-business communications. With the booming popularity of texting and seeing as it has its own version of the English language which for the most part I cannot read, what good is a spell checker? Parallel with texting is instant messaging which uses texting "words" along with misspelled regular words, bad punctuation, and a lot of gibberish. Well, excuse my old fogy ways but I learned to write an evolved form of the English language and not a revolutionized bunch of virtual ink spittle. I have nothing against texting and IM'ing ... as long as no one expects me to do it or try to read theirs. In other words, Phooey! Ok, I'm just jealous of you young whipper-snappers, but my thought train just does not ride on the instant communication gratification tracks.
----
Got the blood work done and made a couple of photos with the Droid camera; haven't checked them yet. Verizon released the latest version of the Android OS last week. I downloaded it yesterday and had a few problems to begin with but they seem to be gone. The camera now has an on-screen shutter release to go along with the mechanical one. Overall, it seems to be a reasonably faster OS than was the version 2.1.
----
Yesterday would have been my mother's 91st birthday ...
----
Have a swell, gee-whizz Tuesday!
----

Monday, September 27, 2010

Wet

New blog site!

Rain and cool was the state of our local weather yesterday and today looks like much the same as bone-chilling drizzle adds fleeting dimples to small, standing puddles on the front porch planks. Have my mornings and evenings of porch sitting come to an end for another year? Will I get another warm day so that I may visit the creek for my autumn bathing ritual? Is there a life more wasted than that of a television weather reporter or "meteorologist" as they like to be called?
----
I was a bit ill yesterday with a stomach problem but am better today. The eye allergies have lessened a bit but I am still—as my grandmother used to say—"sneezing my fool head off" and I have a runny nose. Hopefully I am not getting a cold ... or worse. At one period in my life, I went nearly 20 years without ever catching a cold; it was freaky how everyone around me was sick with the viruses a couple of times each year and I never even sneezed. For some reason my immunity ceased a few years back after a serious bout of pneumonia and I am no longer Super Man although I have retained my x-ray vision.
----
Tomorrow I will be off to the lab for two different blood tests for two different doctors. Wednesday Keegan comes home from the Air Force for a month's R&R before leaving for a year in Japan and South Korea. We will get up early and make the two hour drive to Knoxville airport to meet him and bring him back to Greeneville where his mother lives. I got all my dates mixed up and thought he was coming in this past weekend and that Jeremy, my eldest grandson, was coming in from Atlanta next weekend and we would all get together for a small reunion. It has been more than a year since Jeremy saw the hills and Keegan has spent many months doing training and schooling at Air Force bases in Texas. Jeremy's birthday is October 13 so we will be able to do a lot of celebrating this weekend coming when everyone is here.
----
Possum grapes are getting ripe; they need to be kissed by a light frost to make them sweet.
----
Have another wet Worshday!
----

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Co-Pilot

Our friend Jola has begun blogging on WordPress; welcome, my friend. Click this link to view her blog. It is written in her native Polish language but Firefox and Chrome browsers have Google Translator plugins which allow anyone to read most languages. All the words do not translate, but enough do to make it understandable in English.

—-

My Flickr friend Kim who hails from Nashville was visiting a friend of hers near Knoxville yesterday and decided to drive on to Johnson City and do some shooting here for a few hours. She got here about 1:00pm but the sky was overcast and there was occasional sprinkles. Carolyn brought us pizza, and we all three watched the remainder of the UT football game on TV while waiting to see if the weather might cooperate. When the overtime game was finally over, the sky had lightened a bit, so Kim volunteered to drive us around in her Honda Pilot SUV and I became the co-pilot of the Pilot. She wanted to shoot in Bluff City, but when we got arrived there was some kind of festival going on and downtown of the little village was blocked off. We took off for Blountville which was the next old town in the area but didn’t find much there. We finally ended up in Bristol and she really likes that town. Meanwhile, the late afternoon light became very good for about an hour. Bristol has plenty of the stuff she likes to shoot which is basically the same things Mark and I like to shoot. As Kim said, “Show me the crud”.  She made a couple of pics of the old sign which arches across State Street, then we hit the back streets on the Virginia side. Darkness began settling in and we turned back toward JC. She thought about spending the night in a motel and shooting in downtown Johnson City early today, but the weather forecast was so bad she decided to make the two hour trip back to her friend’s house in Maryville and rest up before returning to Nashville later today. It is probably best she did so as it has been raining and is chilly here in JC. She brought Carolyn a gift of a potted mum and I will try to get a pic of it if it stops raining.

We didn’t get a lot of photos but Kim is a good photographer and I hope she got one or two good enough to put on Flickr. I was limited because of the low light and had only the 50mm f/1.4 lens with me and I had to do a lot more walking than is usual to get a shot. Kim shoots mostly with film and I will have to wait a few days to see her results.

—-

I will go with Carolyn to work for awhile, then I will see what kind of photos I got yesterday. The one above is of a small burger restaurant in downtown Bristol where Carolyn, her dad, and her uncles would go when she was a little girl.

—-

Have a Scintillant Sunday!





Powered by ScribeFire.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Sore-eyed cat

Eye allergies are terrible today; glad the sky is cloudy as a lot of light hurts. Taking Claritin but it isn’t much relief; just have to wait it out. Back ASAP.



Powered by ScribeFire.

Friday, September 24, 2010

I hope you don't mind ...

Working Wordpress

I made it through the yesterday without too much trouble; I finally got some more widgets working on WP blog site. The main thing is WP site is much faster to load and publish than is Blogger. Is anyone having problems commenting? This site is aggravating because every comment has to be approved. Is it difficult for y’all to comment? I commented on yesterday’s post from the Droid without any problem; WordPress has a Droid app and a setting so that I can write and post blogs from the phone along with comments. This has been a tiresome and trying affair but if the comment thing doesn’t work out I will go back to Blogger but I will be blogging far less often. Maybe they will get the situation repaired over there; seems like the worst problem is the re-directs they send each page load through.

I took pics of Carolyn’s toes with the Droid camera, but they looked like crap. I will experiment some more but so far inside flash photos are less than lousy. It does very well outside as long as the lighting is fairly even. Of course it was made to make pics of granny and the kids for posting to Facebook, etc. I haven’t tried the video camera yet

—-

Have a Friday and a great weekend!

—-





Powered by ScribeFire.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Old and New

NEW BLOG SITE

I will attempt ot post a photoless copy of my blog here for awhile.
----

Well, here goes my first attempt at blogging on this version of Loose laces. I hope any of you who read the old one and  decided to come with me will find the transition to be smooth. I will say this; WordPress is a difficult blogger platform to customize because it is not as user friendly as was Blogspot. There is no option here to have comment notifications sent to an email address, therefore I must manually come here and look for them. That means I may be tardy in answering or even that I might miss some; if I do miss one, I will apologize beforehand and say for sure it wasn’t on purpose.
There is a chance this will not work to our advantage; and if it does not work for all of us, I will revert to Blogspot. I feel all of us are in this together; the whole may be greater than the sum of its parts, but I feel each of you is a part of my life and I want to keep it that way.
—-
The new Communist Chinese made coffee pot was the household sensation yesterday, at least until Carolyn came back from the salon sporting clean and well burnished feet with toenails painted candy-apple red with glitter and small Halloween ghosts painted on her big toe nails. A coat of clear lacquer was applied for protection. Sounds like she visited an auto-body repair shop instead of a beauty saloon; I say saloon instead of salon because women seem to get some kind of inebriated buzz or “high” from the things which go on in such places.
—-
Have a Thursday!




Powered by ScribeFire.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Bye-bye Blogger and Blogspot

I am in process of moving this blog to Wordpress.

Blogger has become a voracious feeder upon my comments and photos. I should not have to upload a photo to Blogger just to find it cannot be clicked on and go to a larger size than what is on original post. To make it larger, I must go Picasa Web Album, locate the pic, copy the embed code, go to Blogger Dashboard, locate the post, edit the post by deleting the photo and inserting the embed code, publish, and hope for the best.
Twice this week I have had error codes pop up when making comments and they are lost to cosmos. It is tough for a slow typist like myself to have to redo everything.
Just trying to get onto Blogger Dashboard can be a multi-click endeavor. Similar to Yahoo with Flickr, Google apparently is using its oldest and slowest resources for their blog platform.

Hopefully by tomorrow, I will be regularly posting on the NEW Loose Laces. It will take some time to get the hang of it, and I may not answer your comments in a timely fashion until I am acclimated there. With Blogger, I can have an email notification telling me when someone has left a comment; I don't yet know if that is possible with Wordpress.
Please bear with me until the deed is done one way or another; I hope Wordpress works well enough that I won't have to stop blogging.

Thanks, my friends.




Powered by ScribeFire.

Diamonds and Rust


Yesterday was one of the quietest days I've had in many years; very little going on at home, the web was fairly still with very few emails and only one of them was important. No one was commenting on my Megashot photos, very few on Flickr, and the blog was much quieter than normal. "Peace, be still."

Anyway, I sat on the porch with no Droid and no camera until the sun became too hot; just me, a few birds, and several noisy squirrels. I dozed a bit, watched some neighbors walk their little doggies, and thought old man thoughts. I checked the net a couple of times when I had to go in for nature calls and to make a glass of tea. Carolyn's new coffee percolator came via UPS, and she played with it while she was here.
----
Things are slow, so I suppose I will talk about politics and the economy. Both suck.
----
Carolyn is off to the salon for regular hair services and for the first time ever, a professional pedicure; her birthday present from me. I'm so good to her.
----
For today, I intended to write some of my memories of my school years, but they are skimpiest recollections I have. I remember lazy summer days when there was no school, although not much about the nine months of classroom each year; I may recall and have sufficient notes for a short chapter in a book. I will say this, grades nine through twelve were very traumatic and I wish I could wash them from my mind; my over-sexed hormones were using their after-burners, but my inborn shyness kept me far out of the student mainstream with no close friends and certainly no girlfriends. It is a piece of me which I have much trouble writing about and even more trouble dealing with in the lonely hours of sleepless nights; it is on the periphery of my mind every conscious minute. Maybe putting it all into words will rid me of the demons, but until I do so, I deal with it like tinnitus and try to live around it. For now, I will adjourn to the porch and re-enter my boyish summertime world, thinking old man thoughts.
----
----
Diamonds and Rust lyrics:

I'll be damned, here comes your ghost again
But that's not unusual
It's just that the moon is full
And you decided to call

And here I sit, hand on the telephone
Hearing the voice I'd known
A couple of light years ago
Headed straight for a fall

But we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust
Yes we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust

Now I see you standing with brown leaves all around and snow in your hair
Now we're smiling out the window of the crummy hotel over washington square
Our breath comes in white clouds, mingles and hangs in the air
Speaking strictly for me we both could've died then and there

Now you're telling me you're not nostalgic
Then give me another word for it
You were so good with words
And at keeping things vague

Cause I need some of that vagueness now
It's all come back too clearly, yes, I love you dearly
And if you're offering me diamonds and rust, I've already paid

But we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust
Yes we both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust

Diamonds, diamonds and rust
--------------------------------
--------------------------------
May your whinger be be sharp on this wilding Wednesday!
----


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Shamrock


Last evening I completed reading my first book via the Kindle reader on the Droid; overall, not a bad experience. Barnes and Noble also has a Droid reader for their Nook platform but their titles are much the same as Amazon.
----
Carolyn said "Thank you" to each of you for her birthday greetings. If she keeps being nice, I may have to buy her a present for the occasion.
----
The photo is of the oldest remaining business--I think--in or near downtown Johnson City. The Shamrock has been on this corner ever since I can remember continuous memories, but I cannot recall if it occupied this building when I was very small. I spent several days just up the street with my dad when I was little, but the only vivid memory of the time was the fresh baked bread scents from the now defunct Kern's Bakery which was located behind the also defunct service station seen here just across the street. Another memory from those days is of walking downtown with my mom and bumping into parking meters as I looked up at the tall, three and four story buildings; very impressive sight for a bumpkin. Actually, Johnson City was a busy little town up until the mid-1980s when the Gospel of Reagan cast an ominous shadow over the political scene and withered its soul. The Shamrock is locally famous for their delicious lemonade.
----
Got one of Carolyn's small medical bills paid off today but the electric and water/sewer bills are increasing to more than make up the difference. America, the home of the wealthy and the wealth-free.
----
Have a Tuesday!
----

Monday, September 20, 2010

Deflated


Autumn allergies are running amok as the pollen increases in this fine weather and sore eyes becomes worse just after a rain when mold and other fungus spores hit the air; it is a double whammy.
----
Blogger is getting quirkier than ever; it took three tries to leave a comment on Mark's blog and all of it did not post. Maybe they are trying to put the squeeze on everyone to start using Google Chrome browser. If it gets much worse, I will transfer my blogs to Wordpress which is a bit more difficult to learn to post to but is a better platform overall.
----
Carolyn had to work a couple of hours Saturday and again most of the day Sunday; for me, it isn't worth it.
----
Some economists see the economy falling into an era of deflation where there is no growth in jobs, investments, and incomes. Most prices will slowly fall and layoffs due to decreasing demand for goods will continue. In the real world where we live, that will be bad on its own account but the worse part is that things like medicines, doctors, and utilities will continue to rise in price at even greater than normal rates. Why? Increasing age of population will make the demand for drugs and services rise and most utilities are are usually owned or controlled by local governments and they  buy from big business which generally have regional monopolies and monopolies always abuse. Deflation is worse than inflation as it takes much more time to recover from its consequences.
----
There was something else I wanted to say today, but it has slipped my mind ... hmmm ... oh, yes; now I remember. Happy 64th Birthday, Carolyn!
----
Have a good worsh day!
----

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sadly Happy

Today would have been my friend's 64th birthday had he lived, but he was taken from us when still in his youth at age 33 years. We miss you still, Fred. I miss your Texas cowboy hat and your western boots, but most of all I miss your sense of humor and your genuine friendship. Today is also the birthday of Fred's daughter, Vanessa. He didn't live to see her grow into a beautiful woman, but he was proud of her and would have been even more proud of his grandchildren. To top it all, September 19 was Fred's and Alice's wedding anniversary. Always acknowledging that he was a bit lazy, he felt it was best to get as much as possible of the important stuff done in one day. Happy Birthday my friends Fred and Nessa, and Happy Anniversary Fred and Alice. Alice is another of my friends who reads this blog each day, but we hardly hear from her.
----
As promised, we drove to the market on 107 and down the river road between the Nolichucky and huge fields of freshly picked tomato plants. There are still many tomatoes left on the vines, mostly green, but first hard frost will kill the plants and the tomatoes will freeze and rot on the ground. I am talking thousands of lbs. of usable fruit. It is a huge waste in my estimation, but is how the U.S. agri-business woks these days.
----
We drove into JC and decided to torture our arteries with fast-food burgers, wonderful salt-encrusted and fat-saturated french fries, frozen apple pie things that were nuked to piping hot, and deliciously sweet but very weak tea.
----
The daytime temps here are once again reaching toward the 90°F mark, and thought the sun is producing long shadows as autumn nears; it will still cook unprotected human hide in just a few minutes. Four days until equinox and then I can begin my countdown to the solstice of winter 2010-2011.
----
Have a good Sunday!
----

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Mind-bent




From Loose Laces
My physical being survived my delve into the Twilight Zone yesterday but I am not sure that whatever makes me "me" came through unscathed. If not, I will still be me but existing in another dimension where shiny DeSotos and Oldsmobiles roam the streets and girls wear poodle skirts to sock hops.
----
Going to be out, literally, for awhile and drive to the market and along the river. Carolyn spotted some stuff downtown for me to look at, too. Also, I need to try the camera on the Droid.
----
Have a Super Saturday!
----

Friday, September 17, 2010

Friday the 13th was delayed until the 17th


Been a trying day; I mistakenly accused one of my Flickr friends of being dead, but was I ever mistaken! Well, at least she knows she has friends and I feel a bit foolish.
----
Other than that faux pas, I did manage to find my way to get my shot but I forgot to take papers to have blood work done and I forgot to go to the bank. It is ok to do such when you are old, I suppose; people sort of expect it from my degenerate generation.
----
Last night after I went to bed and was reading a novel via the Droid, a thunderstorm knocked out the power and left Carolyn with no TV to watch. I just grinned and lay in the dark, still reading my book. When power was restored a bit later, she was fast asleep and I kept turning the pages. The Droid isn't large enough for optimal reading, but until the dedicated readers come down in price to less than $100, it will be fine.
----
The photo is not mine but was made with the Canon S3 I used to own by the man who now owns it. That sentence makes no sense what-some-ever! Anyway, I did the cropping to leave the skull in the pic.
----
Well, I guess I'll go see what else I can screw up.
----
Have a great weekend.
----

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Work is the curse of the drinking class

Rossville, Georgia
This morning, Carolyn dropped and broke the carafe of the already ailing coffee pot. I was doing a bunch of taxes and after she settled down, we did the time sheets for payroll. Her employees are down to an average of around 35 hours each every two weeks. Carolyn puts in more than double that and averages only about two dollars per hour more than either one of her employees make. She hasn't had an increase from her largest account in almost six years and there probably will not be one when the new year begins; not a good way to do business but a few bucks a month is better than nothing ... maybe. I hate this time of year when all the tax bills start coming in along with the myriad reports to be filled out. Well, back at it ...
----

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

An unforgettable man


Late one summer morning in the early 1950s, a strange occurrence set upon we folk of the small Headtown community a mile from Jonesboro. Up the gravel road came a school bus, but not the ordinary yellow kid carrier. This one was painted silver-gray, and had seen its best days in the Washington County school system. On the sides of the bus where the black block lettering once resided was a nice cursive that read "Paul Good's Rolling Store" in red letters. Paul was a farmer from Fairview community between Jonesboro and Fall branch and he also owned a small country store alongside Highway 81. Paul was probably much like many other people of the area and was descended from Scots-Irish ancestors. He perpetually wore pin-stripe bib overalls while working, and was a man of ruddy complexion who didn't talk a lot when there was nothing to say. He was not real tall, was a wee bit stocky, had lost parts of some fingers in a farming accident years before he came into my life, and he was a very likable person. I was standing on my grandmas porch that day doing whatever it is that seven-or-eight-year-old boys do in summertime. The sight of the bus alarmed me for I figured it was time to go back to school and I was in no way mentally prepared for such an ordeal. When the bus came to a stop in a cloud of road dust in front of our house, I ran inside and told grandma that there was a store parked outside; my two or three years of schooling had taught me to read a little bit. I raced back outside just in time to see the bus door swing open and Mr. Good step out. Right behind me came my extremely shy grandmother and she and Mr. Good greeted each other like old friends; in the country that could be anything from a nod of the head on up to a hearty "howdy". This in itself was amazing to me; grandma usually shied away from strangers like a bird from a snake. What I didn't know was that a week before while I was out exploring the woods and fields, Mr. Good had stopped by and met my uncle who persuaded my grandma to talk with the man. He explained what he was doing, and of course my grandma was very interested; she probably hadn't been inside a real store since my granddad shut his down about ten years earlier. She wasn't peculiar; she was grandma. Well, there he was starting a new route at our house and he would continue being there each Friday morning thereafter for many years. The only time he wasn't there on Friday was when the weather prevented it, when he was too sick, or if he had mechanical problems with the bus. In the latter case, he would make it up on Saturday if possible. The bus wasn't one of the behemoths you see on the roads these days; it would have hauled something like 33 passengers including the driver. Paul had removed all the seats less the driver's, and had installed wooden cubby-hole shelves in their place down nearly the entire length of each side. Every shelf had a small strip of wood across its bottom-front to keep items from sliding out as he bounced along the pothole-plagued roads. In the cubby holes was placed just about everything you could find in a regular rural store except for ice cream and milk; etc., there was no convenient way to power coolers or freezers on vehicles in that era and the coolers themselves were prohibitively large. However, he had an ice machine at his regular store, and he had a small ice box bolted inside the bus that would hold a block of ice, a few dozen eggs, and small blocks of fresh-churned butter. Paul was savvy enough to learn his customer's buying habits and each day he would have special items his people on a particular route usually wanted. The back part of the store held the produce such as sacks or baskets of potatoes, cabbage heads, tomatoes, and whatever was in season. He also left room to haul the large sacks of livestock feed a lot of customers wanted, plus large bags of flour and corn meal. In spring he was sure to carry a variety of garden and flower seed. Behind the rear wheels on the drivers side of the chassis he had a cage installed for carrying chickens. He hardly ever began the day with any fowl aboard unless someone specifically wanted one, but on many days he would trade groceries for pullets. I remember several times grandma would have to trade one or two of her chickens for eggs and butter; she didn't like to do it but it was a necessity when money was scarce. On down the road, someone might trade Paul some eggs for another good laying hen. Paul was a wise and caring businessman, and was well respected by people county-wide. He never failed to go to the wake or funeral home when one of his customers or one of their close family members died, and many times he was asked to help carry the casket. By the late 1950's his notoriety was so great that he and his rolling store were pictured on the cover of a national magazine and there was a nice write-up about him. I wish I could remember which magazine it was, but I don't; my mom kept a copy of it but it was destroyed in our house fire in 1965. One Friday when he was running late, he asked me if I would ride along on the remainder of his route and help him sack and carry items to houses along the way. Of course I agreed after asking my grandma if it was ok, and that afternoon was like a bit of heaven for me. I learned a little about the grocery business, and I learned a lot about the people business. For my service, he stopped at my cousin's newly opened store and bought me a cold Pepsi-Cola. About 30 years later and after I was married and living in Carter County, Paul looked me up. It was about this time of year in the late 1980s and he had potatoes for sale. Remember I wrote that he was savvy in carrying out his business? Paul had a knack of putting small potatoes most of the way to the top in a bushel basket and then placing large potatoes on top. When he came knocking, I knew what to expect, but I cared enough for him that I bought his potatoes anyway. Carolyn fussed when she found the marbles toward the bottom, but a few weeks later he was back and again I bought his potatoes and this went on for several years until one day I heard that he had suddenly become sick and had died. To say the least, the funeral home was packed and people were lined up double-file all the way across the parking lot patiently awaiting their turn to pay respects to an old friend and his family. Paul Good was the most unforgettable character I ever met.
----
----
Have an unforgettable Wednesday!
----

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The original "sack" dresses

Eliza Jane Shaw Oliver Creasy
Phillips family reunion 1948
The top photo is my maternal great-grandmother wearing a dress made by her from feed or flower sacks, 1920's. My grandmother kept this dress hanging in her closet all through my childhood, but I do not know what its eventual fate was. It was red and white checkered.

The bottom photo was made very shortly before my grandfather Joseph died and when most of his kids gathered to celebrate his 85th birthday in 1948. My grandmother is Ada, and she is also wearing a dress she made from feed or flour sacks. "Dot" is my mother, "Roy" is my uncle who I mention often in my family tales, and Iva is my still living aunt whom I turn to for verification on some of my memories; her recollection is as good or better than mine and she is a treasure trove of good stories from the 1930s. Snotty nosed little boys were not allowed in the photo which suited me just fine.
----

A grocery holiday


When I was a very small boy, most of our food was home grown. My grandmother cared for a large garden which would feed at least six people for most of the year and we raised a hog for meat. The unfortunate porker usually met his fate around Thanksgiving so that we would have fresh ham for the holiday. The remainder was salt cured and then placed in cotton sacks and hung in the smokehouse or was canned and used as needed.
As with most families, there were always things to be bought from a nearby country store or a grocery store in town. A week or so ago I wrote about one such country store and now I will tell you a little about the in town store shopping. One hog is never enough to provide for a family for a full year. One reason is that my grandmother insisted on taking most of the fat for cracklings or to make lye soap. Cracklings are made by scraping the fat from the inside of a hog's hide and baking it. Ever eat a pork rind? Same idea except crackings were small yellowish looking pieces and very greasy. They were mostly added to cornbread of which we ate a lot. We had no such things as "shortening" back then to cook with; everything that needed grease for cooking was done with hog lard. Seeing as how grandma used most of the fat to keep us clean by making soap, we had need of buying cooking lard elsewhere. From the early 1930's until about 1942, the family was fortunate because my granddad owned a grocery store next door to their house. Failing health and war rationing forced him to close the store. The local store for us then became Arney's which I mentioned earlier, but sometimes we were in need of things from town and a trip to the grocery store was called for. Such a trip meant one of my uncles walking or hitching a ride to Jonesboro and a visit to Baskett's Grocery Store which was located where the story telling headquarters building now sits. My uncle would hand Mr. Baskett a list and he would deliver the order at his convenience, usually the same day and my uncle would ride back home in the green Ford pickup truck. It was a big day for everyone when the truck backed up to the front porch steps; other than the groceries, it was much like a holiday. I would usually get a candy treat, my mom would get a tube of lipstick or some other accessory, my uncles would get cigarettes, my grandmother would get a large sack of feed for her chickens and a another huge sack full for the hog if it was getting close to killing time and she would get spools of thread if needed, and granddad would get a plug of chewing tobacco and a newspaper. My grandmother was especially pleased with her livestock feed, for she would use the empty sacks to make herself dresses and underclothing by using her very old Singer foot-treadle powered sewing machine. The sacks were usually made of cotton and looked like they had come from a fabric seller. Nearly all of my mom's and aunt's clothing was made by hand from feed and flour sacks when they were growing up. These occasions only came around no more than once each month and after my granddad died in the summer of 1948, they became less frequent. There were no more hogs raised for slaughter and her flock of chickens dwindled to none over the next few years. But times were still good for a young boy in the country, and were about to become better for both grandma and me as a new and more convenient way of buying groceries was introduced into our bucolic lifestyle; namely Paul Good's Rolling Store. More on that later.
----
Have a pleasantly exciting Tuesday!
----

Monday, September 13, 2010

Connected

Rossville with Lookout Mt. in background
Saturday Carolyn brought home a new cell phone for me to use; my five-year-old one was comfortable but the antenna was cracked and excessive humidity in the air made it all but useless. I spent most of yesterday learning to use some of the 'features" of the new one. It is much heavier and larger than my old flip-style unit, it did not come with a car charger as did the old LG, and it has no belt clip so that I can attach it to my pants pocket and that is a problem as I am notorious for stuff flying out of my shirt pocket when I lean over. Since my little Olympus camera hit the concrete from my carelessness, I have been more aware of the problem. I need to check online for some kind of case that has a clip. My old phone did not have a camera, but the new on is supposed to have a decent one that also does video. It also can be used as a Kindle book reader and the first thing I did was download 12 books from Amazon. Most I have read before but a couple of them are favorites, and at $.99 for the dozen, I didn't go wrong.
----
Have a great worsh day!
----




Powered by ScribeFire.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Coffee, coiffin, and killer

Carolyn amidst Easy Riders
Not much going on today; I have some taxes to do and Carolyn has to go to work for a little while. Our coffee maker is broken and she will be shopping for a new one, probably a percolator this time instead of the drip style. We've never had a drip-type machine to last more than three years and most of them don't get the coffee hot enough anyway.
----
A Kentucky idiot killed his wife, step-daughter, three neighbors, and then killed himself all because his wife didn't cook his eggs to suit him. Seems like a valid reason to me.
----
Another tragedy has struck due to the failure of big business to maintain its part of our nation's infrastructure. A large natural gas pipeline in California exploded and killed at least four people and injured nearly 60 more. Just another nail in the collective American coffin. Pacific Gas & Electric is well known for their disregard of human life in the pursuit of profits. Have you seen the movie Erin Brockovich?
----
Anyone besides me getting the annoying "Service Unavailable - Error 503" on Blogger? Been happening fairly regularly for about two weeks.
----

Have a good Sunday!
----

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Onward

Rossville, Georgia USA
There are some new things happening on Megashot; some very good and exciting things, I think. The customization phase for individual member profiles is nearly complete. In the past two weeks, code has been put in place to allow us to have slideshow banners if we want them. Very soon, our profile page should be much more customizable in that we can choose what page elements we want to display. If the Youtube player is not for you, a few mouse clicks will hide it from view and the same will hold true for other sections that were activated by default when you created your account. This change will be most noticeable to new members as they will see a simpler interface when they first view their profile; it appears that some prospective joiners have been scared away by the seeming complexity of the site. In future, they will be able to activate sections as they become more comfortable with the layout. Want a peek at a partially revamped profile page? Look here. Two things in particular I want you to notice: the slideshow banner and the fact that there is no direct link to your photostream. Your contacts will view and comment on your photos via the ones showing on your Profile page, your Galleries, or your Portfolio. We will also each have a "Guestbook" which visitors can sign without using an avatar. If you have a domain name, you can set it to where it will direct you or your visitors to your profile page such as "www.kanderson.com" and not "www.kanderson.megashot.net. It will seem to a first time visitor that you are one cool dude or dudette by having your own elaborate web site for your photos.
----
"It" is raining in East Tennessee; the kind of slow but steady drizzle that causes vegetable gardens to flourish and provide us with delicious but not very nutritious iceberg lettuce that we use to help complete our ham-on-rye sandwiches when we go tail-gating at some ball game that is really meaningless except it gives us another excuse to get together with friends, drink beer, act silly by painting our faces with our home-team colors, eat ham-on-rye sandwiches with iceberg lettuce from our gardens and to write very long nonsensical sentences in our blogs.
----
Have a great Satidy.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Eve of Destruction

Chattanooga
The sad events of September 11, 2001 were plenty horrible, and since then they have been highly politicized by the Bush/Cheney campaigns and administrations and is now being religious-ized by the leaders of every fruitcake fringe who see their persons as speaking for some god figure and are seeking a bit of attention for themselves. In these situations I usually ask myself what would Jesus Christ do if he was here. Of course I cannot answer that question, but these knee-jerk, self-serving religious demagogues seem to know all the facts. All I can do is reflect upon the teachings and actions of Jesus and it is my opinion that he would have approved the burning of the Quran but not as a mere symbolic gesture. I think Jesus would want every Quran dismissed as being blasphemous; after all, the Muslim Holy Book does not recognize Jesus as the one true Son of God even though the Muslim Allah and the Christian Jehovah are supposed to be one and the same. The fact remains that Jesus is not here but the lunatics who claim to be acting in his name are yapping at the heels of the media until they get noticed. But then, that is pretty much what Jesus did and for his actions he got the privilege of being tortured to death by his own people. Maybe we should do the same for Pastor Terry Jones and his Christian ilk, and also for the people who conceived the idea of building a Mosque so close to hallowed ground when they had to know that it would be highly contentious. For me, burning any book is bad news and on that ground alone I would disapprove of destroying the Quran. However, we do live in a semi-free country and the rights we have left should be protected and that includes the right to burn books, sow the seed of hatred, and reap what we sow. Same with the New York City Mosque; let it be built and then allow the builders to harvest their crop.
----
Have a great weekend!
----

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

River boats and nuclear push ups

Enjoying a day in the battlefield
The high ground at Chickamauga battlefield
Pushing and praying
After coming down from Lookout Mountain and after resting a bit, we drove into Chickamauga Battlefield park on Saturday afternoon. There is not much to see there unless you are a Civil War history buff, and I do like history. Along the many roads which crisscross the park are hundreds of monuments and plaques dedicated to the different Army units that fought there from both the North and South. The Yankee description markers are trimmed in blue and the Rebel markers are trimmed in red which makes it easy to see how close the battle lines were to each other; at times only two or three meters apart. The entire city of Chattanooga was a battlefield and there are monuments scattered over the town. Metal detectors are not allowed in the park, but a sharp-eyed person can find minie balls and small brass items such as uniform buttons, shoe eyelets, and such. When we were there in 2007, I made hundreds of photos of the monuments so this time I wasn't inclined to re-shoot them. The only dramatic change in the park from then to now is the number of folks using it, especially peeps on bicycles. There were a lot of them enjoying perfect weather and decently nice scenery considering it was mostly flat and no mountains in sight. Last time we were there, we pretty much had the place to ourselves for two days and it was also on Labor Day weekend. We finished the day by going to the grocery store for sandwich supplies and a few snacks; our room had a small fridge and microwave. On Sunday morning we slept in and then hit the north Georgia back roads looking for photo ops but it was much like home; too much so. We again came back through the battlefield and headed toward Chattanooga where I found a few points of photographic interest for my style. Downtown is one of the best I've seen but I haven't been in many in the past 30 years. It is split into two parts with the Tennessee river dividing it. There is a pedestrian bridge and two auto bridges joining the sections. One thing Carolyn and I spotted at the same time was the famous Delta Queen riverboat tied up on the north shore. At least we thought it was there to take on passengers for a multi-day river cruise either to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania or maybe to New Orleans, Louisiana. Actually, it is moored permanently in Chattanooga and is serving as a luxury hotel; you could have knocked me over with a feather when I found that out ... just a few moments ago as I wrote this. Anyway, we tried to get in position to make some photos of the Lady without me having to walk very far, but it could not be done. Carolyn drove me along both sides of the river but there was never a clear shot opportunity. Next time I will get the Queen to pose for me if I have to swim! We drove around some more side streets for an hour or so and then headed back toward our motel. Once more I talked Carolyn into driving me to the battlefield and I did get a few shots of some of the deer. Monday morning came, we were reluctant to leave, and the motel manager offered us another night at almost half price but Carolyn had to work a bit that evening so we headed home the same way we came. If the sky had gotten hazy on the way down Saturday, we were planning on foregoing Chattanooga and instead going over to the Watts Bar area where I worked in the late 1970s. Man, am I glad we did not do so, because on the way home, we decided to drive over there and see what the place looked like after 30-plus years. I should have expected to find much of what we did find; almost nothing. For some reason, when a nuclear power plant moves in next door people become jittery and get the urge to move to safer areas, especially when officials come along handing out evacuation plans to each household and business and mark the roads with escape route signs. It is not far from I-75 over to Watts Bar via the Sweetwater exit, and we drove across the dam and parked at the TVA scenic overlook from where little could be seen because they have allowed trees and weeds to block the view. When we got out of the Escape to stretch our legs, a balding guy with a fringe of grey hair was hopping up and down on the other side of the small parking lot. Next thing I know he is on all fours doing push ups. He was wearing only jeans and sneakers; no shirt. I paid him no more mind until I started to leave the overlook when a hand touched my shoulder and I knew it wasn't Carolyn because she was in front of me. I turned and it was old Jumping Jack himself! He grinned and said something to the effect "Brother, why are you limping so bad"? I told him I had RA and he wanted to know if it was in my back and I was wanting to get the hell away from him. He was not a big man, but his arms and shoulders were all muscle; so much so that his nearly hairless head looked tiny on his broad shoulders, much like a caricature you sometimes see on the net. I explained that my worst problem was in my knee and he said "Brother, do you mind if I pray for you"? Right then, I would have held hands with him and jumped through a burning hoop just to get him to leave. I told him it would be fine if he prayed for me. He put his hand on my shoulder and I swear his pinky finger muscles were bigger than my biceps. He said his words, I thanked him and eased off toward the car where Carolyn was sitting laughing her ass off. Before I got into the Escape, I got a couple of pics of the gentleman back down on all fours doing more push ups. After escaping the dam, we drove along the road where the cabins were located at Captain John's Resort; it is where I lived during the week days while working across the river on the nuclear plant construction. The restaurant and all but a couple of the old cabins are missing and the once beautiful and tree-shaded place is overgrown with weeds. In fact, just about everything man-made in the area within a mile of the powerhouse is no more. Watts Bar for years was well known as a fishing resort with many cabins for let along the river and lake but it is now nearly all abandoned. The only thing that I recognized from back when is the bar we went to after work to wash the dust out of our systems. Back then it was named Smitty's and had cold beer and great hamburgers. It is still perched on the hill a mile away from the river, but has a woman's name attached to it. It then was back to I-75 for us and on to Knoxville, I-40, and then I-81 and I-26 to home. Discounting the first hour of our time in the Chattanooga area, it was a wonderful, but much too short, trip. Sorry about this being so lengthy, but I wanted to get it said because there is a Florida preacher I really want to rip into. I will post a few more pics from the trip over the next several days. Wow! It took me two hours to write this!
----
Have a Thursday!
----

Family and fort

Rossville, Georgia USA

I thank each of you for your support concerning my little episode atop Lookout Mt. You are each a blessing to me.
----
We are having frequent and—at times—heavy rain showers today. Much needed.
----
The worst problem with our journey to Chattanooga is that it did not last long enough, but like with everyone else, money is always a problem. I have an aunt who lives in Rossville, Georgia and we had to drive through that town to get to our motel in Ft. Oglethorpe. I could possibly be wrong; she may not be still alive. She is my dad's sister and although I was never real close to her or her family, I at one time considered us as all family. My dad died and they kept coming to JC to see my mom and other kin, including myself. After my mom died I swapped email addresses with my first cousin and told them they were welcome to stay with us when they came to town and they said the same to me. Soon afterward they let it be known that they considered me as the Black Sheep of the family and did not want anything to do with me; my emails went unanswered, phone conversations were terse at best, and birthday and holiday greetings received no responses. The truth is that three of her four brothers were black sheep and that includes my dad; maybe she figured enough was enough. When Carolyn and I were in Chattanooga in 2007, we drove by my aunt's house and she and the family were outside barbecuing for Labor Day. I did not stop and they did not pay any attention to us going by. On Sunday past we again drove by their house, but no one was outside, therefore I know not if my aunt still lives.
----
U.S. Army barracks, Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia.
The photo of the decrepit white building was made at old Fort Oglethorpe which was located just a bit southeast of Chattanooga and I think it is the very barracks where my dad was housed while taking U.S. Army basic training in 1943 during WWII. In 1952 when I was about eight years old, we visited my aunt and my dad took us out to the by then closed base; it was created just for the war effort. He drove down a gravel street and told us that this was his home during basic training; well, at least most of the time. Like I said, he was a black sheep and spent many days in the detention stockade. In fact, after the war ended and he had recovered from his wounds, he was forced to spend an additional 128 days in the stockade in South Carolina because he was such a bad boy while in Europe. Anyway, the old fort buildings which are still standing are being converted into apartments, condos, and stores of various types. This is one of the last ones to be reborn, and the far end which does not show in this photo already has a beauty salon. The entire outside front has been remodeled and now has brick or vinyl siding. The old fort parade ground is now a municipal ball field and park for the town of Ft. Oglethorpe which grew up around the base when it was in its heyday.
----
Have a Wednesday!
----

Monday, September 06, 2010

Chattanooga Part One

Civil War cannon overlooking Chattanooga
Moccasin Bend of the Tennessee river and Chattanooga

Got out of bed Saturday morning with no intention of going anywhere, but I took a look at the mountains and the air was much clearer and a bit cooler than normal. I hollered at Carolyn to grab some stuff so we could load the Escape and head out toward Chattanooga. We first bought gasoline, sodas, and ice, went to an ATM, and were on the road by 9:45 with me driving and Carolyn navigating; the GPS was standing by in case I got lost on the Interstate. The traffic around Knoxville was extremely heavy with cars lined up at the Dollywood-Gatlinburg-Great Smokey Mountains exit and almost as bad in Knoxville proper as fans were pouring in for the U.T. football game. I kept an eye on the distant mountains as we cleared the city, making sure the air was staying decently clear. If it had become misty, I would have driven to the Watts Bar area instead and I will tell you later on why I am glad I did not decide to go over that way on Saturday. At just a few minutes past 2:00pm, I was parking the car atop Lookout Mountain; soon thereafter the real adventure began. We bought our tickets to Point Park and walked the short distance to the main overlook. From that spot and on a perfectly clear day, one is supposed to be able to see seven states, but who's counting. The reason the park exists is because of the Civil War battle that was fought on the mountainside, so I parked my butt on a handrail near a muzzle-loading cannon and began clicking away at the city far below, the Tennessee river, and surrounding areas. After awhile, I descended a short set of steps for a better view and I noticed I was getting a bit weak. I began walking toward the main monument, but after about 20 paces I was out of breath and becoming quite dizzy. Carolyn was sitting on a bench in the shade, so I climbed another set of steps to join her but I didn't make it that far. I became extremely dizzy and had to stop and lean against a handrail. She saw that I was in distress and came over and basically held me up for a few minutes until some of the cobwebs cleared. She was able to help me back to the bench and I stretched out there and allowed myself to regain some more stability. As I was getting some of my senses restored, a man and woman came by and asked Carolyn if she needed help and she said yes that I needed water and probably a cart to haul my weak carcass back to the car. They went to the entrance and came back with a bottle of water and a wheel chair, but by then I was pretty well back to normal. I drank some of the water and figured if they were that kind I would let them take me out in the wheel chair. The man was not a big man and I weigh 270 lbs and the route was all up a slight incline but he managed to get me to the car and for some reason Carolyn insisted on driving; not only that, but she was about to drive directly back to Johnson City! We profusely thanked the nice people for their assistance and before we got to the northbound highway, I was able to convince Carolyn that I was ok and that if she started toward home, I would sing every version that I know of Rocky Top all the way there. In a few minutes we were checking into our motel room. I still wasn't at my best, but I wasn't telling her; she needed to be away from home and work. Tomorrow I will write a bit more about our trip ... you have been warned.
----
Have a Tuesday!
----

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Lookout Mountain, Tennessee

Tourist at Point Park Entrance

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Happy Trails ....

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Itching


How come it is that we can have a minor pain that we mostly ignore but if we get the slightest itch, it demands all of out attention?

A minor pain is defined in Wayne's Dictionary of Life as an affliction acquired by people other than Wayne. Wayne seems to think all his pains are worthy of being produced as a dramatic stage play. For all of you under 50 years of age who believe you have too many minor aches, they will begin occurring more often the older you become. At times you will be happy to have a minor itch just to take your mind off the other minor afflictions.
----
Sometime Saturday morning, Carolyn and I will throw a cooler filled with ice and sodas into the Ford Escape and proceed to escape the house for a couple of days. We hope. We've decided to flip a coin at the last minute to decide if we go west or south. She is inclined to go west toward the Cumberland Mts. but I want to go southwest toward Watts Bar and then on to Chattanooga. I've always loved Chattanooga, southwest Tennessee, and even across the line into northwest Georgia and northeast Alabama. I worked at the Tennessee Valley Authority's Watts Bar nuclear power plant unit two construction in 1977-1978 and would like to see how much the area has changed since I was there. I want to look up my apprentice who worked with me at the time, but I've lost track of him over the years. Carolyn wants to visit Fall Creek Falls State Park but that entails more walking than I am able to undertake. The park is located between Knoxville and Nashville. I hope Carolyn allows me to toss and catch the decision coin; if I have to let it hit the ground—and with my luck—it is about 75:25 odds that we will go west, but if I get to catch the coin and if she calls it in mid-air, I can guarantee a trip toward Chattanooga. I have no qualms about cheating on my wife in this matter.
----
Writing about the old store yesterday got me to thinking about procuring groceries and such in the old days. If I have time tomorrow, I will write about Paul Good's Rolling Store and my first memories of grocery shopping.
----
No pic today but I intend to remedy that problem this Labor Day weekend. I hope to be near two dams on the Tennessee River, two coal fired power plants, a nuclear power plant, three major Civil War battlefields, Lookout Mountain, Moccasin Bend on the Tennessee River, Watts Bar Lake, the Tennessee Aquarium, the Chattanooga Choo-choo museum, and many other sites designed to impress country boys. When I was on Lookout Mt. three years ago during Labor Day weekend, Mark was also in north Georgia mountains; I Yoo-hooed! in his direction but he must not have heard me. If there is mist over the valley this year like there was that year, I will not go on Lookout Mountain because the viewing was pathetic then and I do not want to be again disappointed.
----
Good Thursday to you!
----

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

When I was a little boy


Jack Kerouac

When I was a little boy, the building pictured below housed a country store owned by a man I will call Bill. Bill also worked in Johnson City in daytime and his dad who lived next door looked after the store customers and incoming deliveries, etc. I recall walking to the store with my Uncles Roy and Fred when I was a very small brat. The steps up to the porch were on the right end and were as flimsy as the porch itself but actually made of good wood. As you entered the building, on the left and behind the door was a red, chest-type Coke machine, the kind with the slide-out racks. You lifted the lid of the cooler and made your selection from several different brands by looking at the caps of the bottles hanging in the racks, usually with each slot having a different brand of soda; my choice was generally Grapette, Orange Crush, or Nehi Root Beer. Beside the soda box was a small chest-type ice box with Fudgesicles, Brown Mules, Popsicles, and small cups of ice cream that had wooden spoons nearby. Along the left wall was the counter with various candies and tobacco products. The remainder of the store was taken up by shelves of staple canned goods and packaged products. It was all a little boy's paradise if he had a few cents to squander and twenty-five cents would purchase a decadent feast. Of course, I probably never owned a quarter until I was in my early teens and working for local farmers. Well, there was one time I did have a bit more than a quarter ...


When I was old enough to be allowed to go to the store alone for errands, maybe eight years old, I once found $8 folded up and almost completely hidden beneath the steps that went to the store porch. Being well raised and conscientious, I took the money inside and told Bill's dad about it and showed the four bills to him. I suppose this was the first time in my life I had come across naked adult greed. The old man's eyes fairly lit up when he saw the bills and he immediately yanked it out of my hand and said he would see that it got to the rightful owner. He didn't bother to count it but quickly stuffed the money in his shirt pocket. When I returned home, I related my tale to my uncle Roy and he smiled and told me not to worry about it. A little later I saw him go walking down the road in the direction of the store but thought little about it. Actually, he did not go to the store but went to his buddy's house because he knew his friend had lost $8 from his overall pants (blue jeans) pocket a few evenings before and he figured it happened while he was at the store. I later found out that the guy was suspicious about the store keeper anyway. Roy and the guy walked to our house and asked me to go back to the store with them and I gladly did so. Roy and I stopped along the road and "rested" near the store while his buddy went in and asked if the old man had seen the money and of course he denied knowing anything about it. Roy's friend turned and came back outside and retrieved us to go back in and confront the dishonest store keeper. When the merchant saw me, the greed and smirk left his face in a hurry. Roy said something to the effect "Wayne*, did you find $8 out side?" and I replied that I did and that Bill's dad had taken it from me. Roy then asked me what Bill's dad had done with it and I told him that he stuck it in his left shirt pocket. The old man then got the money out of the pocket and handed it to Roy's buddy claiming that he was just fooling and was going to give it to him anyway. Roy's buddy was known as a brawler and the old man did not want to test him; the merchant was undone by an honest little boy. Roy's buddy handed me a crinkled $1 bill and suggested I not spend it in that store so we walked out and on to Jonesboro** where I was treated to ice cream, candy, and a Nehi soda, and best of all, I was allowed to keep the whole dollar and I got to ride back home in a taxi cab. I remember feeling like a hero for several days following the incident. Yes, $1 for a kid poor kid was a fortune at the time, and $8 was two days pay for a farm worker.

This is a true story as best as I can recall from memory and a few notes I wrote about the incident some 10 years after it occurred. It is now closing in on 60 years since it happened, and my "facts" may not be facts at all but I think it is very accurate for the most part. In my mind's eye, I can see me finding the money and the old man taking it from me. I remember telling Roy and I remember the confrontation in the store. I also remember the goodies and dollar bill tucked in my pocket and the ride home in the shiny cab. The "fill-in" comes from my notes. One thing I am not sure of is the Coke chest behind the door; it could have been an RC Cola chest but if so, the style is basically the same as the Coca-Cola one.
----
I wonder who won the August Megashot contest?
----
Have a well Wednesday!
----
*"Wayne" is my middle name and I was known by that moniker until around 1970; my family still calls me "Wayne" and some other names.
**Now spelled "Jonesborough" for purely commercial reasons.
----

Blog Archive