Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Memories of The Bootlegger

Memories and the things that trigger them can be odd thing. I usually think I don't remember a great deal about my childhood and then I will see something that triggers a memory long buried. Such was the case when I recently saw a blue 1953 Chevrolet, the kind of car driven by the bootlegger that visited our house on Thursday nights when I was a young child. I have written about this before, but the recent sighting of a car like this brought these memories right to the front of my mind.

 I grew up in Oklahoma and when I was growing up Oklahoma was a "dry" state, meaning the sale and consumption of alcohol was prohibited by law. Nevertheless, my parents were nightly cocktail drinkers, which necessitated one of the more scary memories from my childhood, The Bootlegger.

He came from Missouri on some regular schedule always on a Thursday night. He was a big, fat man and I remember him huffing and puffing as he carried the cases of Jim Beam and Gilbey's Gin up our front steps.  I was scared to death of him.

He then went to the houses of  a few of our neighbors, delivering similar booty. After he left, my parents and their good friends from two houses down mixed and matched from their supply and were set until the next Thursday night visit from the bootlegger.

The backseat and the trunk of the Bootlegger's blue 1953 Chevrolet were filled with his wares. To this day his scary demeanor and his huffing and puffing as he carried the boxes to the door come back to me when I see a car like that.

I'm not sure why I was so afraid of the bootlegger or why I still have such vivid memories of him. It may be because even as a pretty young child I had a sense that there was something illicit about what he and my parents were doing. By the time I was a young teenager Oklahoma legalized the sale of alcohol and the bootlegger disappeared from my life, except when I see one of those cars.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. April showers bring May flowers, or so the saying goes. When did you last 'shower' attention on someone or have attention 'showered' on you? Did you love it, or did all that attention make you squirm?

We have neighbors that we visit with in the evening from time to time. He is a very good host, always asking if he can get you something, freshen your drink, find a more comfortable chair and on and on. I sometimes feel a little "squirmy" from all the attention, like I have somehow let him down because I don't really need anything.

2. Share a favorite 'spring break' memory. Not talking about just the 'college spring break' thing, but any favorite spring break memory you'd like to share. Keep it family friendly please!  

A very family friendly memory is of a ski trip spring break in about 1979. It was a very fun trip until the last day when I fell on the ice in a parking lot and broke my tail bone. I had to lay in the back of the van on the trip home from Angel Fire, NM to Midland, TX., and it was about 6 weeks before I could walk right. I still get twinges in my tail bone if I sit in a hard chair for too long.

3. It's National Pecan Month...are you a fan? If so, what's your favorite dish that calls for pecans?

I am a fan of pecans. I like any kind of dessert with pecans, but I especially like chocolate chip cookies chock full of pecans. 

4.  'Put all your eggs in one basket', 'egg on your face', 'rotten egg', 'walk on eggshells', or 'a good egg'...which egg-spression could most recently be applied to your own life?

This is my favorite egg-spression.  I have it on a magnet on my refrigerator,  a gift from a friend many years ago. 

5.  In my experience___________________________________.

In my experience the best way to deal with getting older is to do it with a very good sense of humor.

6. What's a  favorite song with the word rain in its title or lyrics?

The first song that comes to mind is Gene Kelly's Singin' In The Rain, but if it counts Somewhere Over the Rainbow would be a favorite.

7. What does the word hope mean to you?

This one is easy for me.....since my oldest  granddaughter is named Hope. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

 Like so many I am very glad this past winter is at least mostly behind us.

Friday, April 4, 2014

It Is Time For Me To Find a New Favorite Show

I have mentioned here before that around the first of this year I got a bit obsessed with the British comedy/drama TV show Doc Martin. I have to admit that I have watched most of the episodes at least twice and a couple even more than that. I have recently decided that things have gone a little too far when I started thinking that people in my life look like the characters on the show.

First was my hairdresser who looked to me just like Louisa, the doc's love interest on the show.
Louisa played by Caroline Catz

Yesterday there was a woman on the machine next to me at the gym who looked so much like the doc's Aunt Ruth that I expected her to have a British accent.
Ruth played by Eileen Atkins

Last week at the dog park there was a man who was a doppelganger for Al Large, the shows hapless plumber/restaurateur. He was even wearing a knit cap.
Al played by Ian McNeice

It started getting a little scary when I decided that I looked a bit like the doc's mother, Margaret. She is a very evil mother.
Margaret, played by Claire Bloom

So far I haven't run into anyone that looks like Doc Martin so maybe I'm not too far gone.
Doc Martin played by Martin Clunes

In any case, I think it is definitely time for me to find a new favorite show before I go completely Bodmin (a phrase from the show meaning being a bit crazy or a bit of an oddball).

Any suggestions for a new favorite show?

Monday, March 31, 2014

I Admire People Who.....

I attended a memorial service today for a woman who had worked for the Chamber of Commerce in our little town for 30 years.  She was a quiet, friendly woman who never forgot the name of someone she had met. She was a woman who did nice things for other people every day without ever expecting anything in return. The hundreds of people who attended the memorial service were a testimony to the fact that she was a woman who lived her life in an admirable way. 

It is easy to admire people who do big things in a big way but remembering this woman along with the many who came together to honor her reminded me that doing things every day in an admirable way is just as important.

I admire people who.....

Know that there is always something new to learn.

Realize there are times when it is okay to let someone do more for
 you than you can ever possibly repay.

Have time and money and are willing to share both.

Are really positive about their political convictions
and really know why they are.

Don't take all the blame or all the credit for
the outcomes in their children's lives.

Don't always have to be given credit for the positive things for which they are responsible.

On a lighter note I would add people who.....

  Are out jogging when I think even my basement is too cold for me to go down and use the treadmill.

Are over 15 and can ride a Tilt-A-Whirl without getting sick.

Get up an hour early in the morning to go to the gym.

Are over 15 and can do the splits.

Say they want to lose some weight and then actually lose some weight.

Who do you admire?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

This Post Should Be......

Since I haven't posted for a while this post should be a nice long catch-up post about the fun things I have been doing but it isn't ....because I haven't been doing anything, at least not anything fun to write about. I stepped out of retirement for a bit and I have been working for the past 2 1/2 weeks which left me so worn out at the end of each day that I didn't have the energy to do anything but recoup and get ready to go back the next day.

Image from Google Images

Working for a while wasn't too bad except for the stress over things about which I had no control, having to be up and out early every morning and being tied to an office all day. All in all, it served to remind me why retirement is a really good thing.


My daughters and their families apparently know how to have fun better than I do. They have gone to Arizona to find some spring for their Spring Break. (It snowed here yesterday).  In addition to fun at the pool they will attend some Rockies spring training games.

It was still warm enough for the kids to swim at 8:00 last night.


Dodger seemed to think it was fun to sit for nearly an hour watching a squirrel in a tree.

Brave boy that he is, when it finally came down he just watched it as it scampered away.


So, I am back to being retired and looking for fun. Well, except that I have agreed to work 1/2 day a week for the next few months. Hopefully I can handle that  a little better.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

There's An App For That?

This may not be news to people who go to the movies more often than I do but it was new to me. I am taking my 13 year old grandson to a movie this afternoon and my daughter alerted me to the Runpee app, an app that alerts you to the best time for a dash to the bathroom during a movie. 

Image from Google Images

 I haven't used it yet or even thoroughly researched it, but from what I can tell it allows you to set your phone to give you a couple of warning vibrations and then a final vibration that lets you know it is time to go without worrying about missing any critical scenes or parts of the plot line. It then allows you to read notes about what your are missing while you are gone, hopefully while you are running down the hall rather than when you are actually using the facilities.  It also lets you know how much time you have to, uh, take care of business and get back to the theater.

Even if you aren't one who drinks those giant movie drinks this app sounds like it might be pretty handy for the pees-a-lot crowd of which I am a member. For .$99 I may have my grandson download it on our way to the movie. You gotta love technology!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Who's Your Neighbor

Are you a  good neighbor? Apparently I could be a much better neighbor. We live on a sort of semi-circle street that has about 25 houses on it. We have lived here for about 12 years. It is a pretty quiet street without much traffic except for the people that live on the street. Last weekend two of the woman from our neighborhood arranged a tea at this cute little restaurant and tea room in our little town for all the ladies that live on our street.

Out of the 14 or 15 neighbors that attended the tea there were three woman that I had never seen before. All three of them have lived on our street at least as long as I have. One of those three lives in a house that I can see the side of from my front door.....and I had never seen her before. Yes, I felt like a really bad neighbor.

I do know my immediate neighbors, a couple of houses each way next door and across the street, but I have obviously not done a good job of being neighborly beyond that. Most of the women knew me as the crazy lady they see walking the cute dog in all kinds of weather. I really enjoyed meeting and visiting with the neighbors that I did not know and would like to get to know them better. We talked about doing a block party this summer and I hope that will happen. I will definitely volunteer to help with that. I am determined to be a better neighbor (without becoming known as the crazy lady who walks the cute dog who waves them down for a chat when they drive by).

What do you do to be a good neighbor?