Sunday - 6 days after the last post - March 3rd. March comes in like a Lion and leaves like a Lamb - so they say - and it is true today. The cold front is almost here and the wind is howling - make that - "uh-howling" - water is spraying over my seawall (big waves).
We spent part of yesterday trying to wrap my one plum tree with appropriate blankets. Who knows why it decided to bloom last week. But, it did. We have 3 of those weather blankets (10 x 20) wrapping it. I have tried tying it down - where there gaps in the cloth, I wasted my time by stapling those together this morning. Still it bellows in the wind.
Thus - a trip to Dollar General where I bought 2 packages of 50ft. rope. I only used one to criss-cross over the top and try to hold the blankets down in the wind. Just considering the $4 worth of rope, these are going to be expensive plums if they survive the next 3 days.
Totally unrelated - why does the tab key work when I am using this program? To make a paragraph, I have to "space" over 5 spaces. No tab. When I hit tab, the cursor goes away - I know not where - it just goes away - I guess maybe to Tab Heaven.
I did not go to church today. I am so tired of the weather and getting out in it - I just hate the thought of dressing up, driving into town, and sitting in the choir today. (of course - AND YOU DON'T need to mention it - I did drive into Dollar General). Our church has a very nice Flute Choir. Lots of the ladies played flute in their youth. The church even bought a bass flute to round out the sound. The group is directed by Rodney - nice group. A couple of ladies from across town come over and play the performances - one of which I believe use to be a band director somewhere. The flute choir is playing today for the service, so the actual singing band was doing no special music - just hymns - which, at times, can be pretty special .... but not a featured bit on the program.
Dressing up for church is another subject entirely. I realize that many people are wearing jeans and cut-offs and flip-flops to church now-a-days. That is not me. I believe that church deserves a bit of respect. Others can do what they want. I don't fault them for that. It is just not me. And, yes, I agree that no deity judges you on your costume - probably. It is just a touch of respect from me when I am losing much of my respect for the entire institution lately.
Speaking of church - and memories - we were speaking of them, yes? We moved to Levelland when I was in the 6th grade - South elementary. Brother Jimmy was in the 7th grade at Jr. High. Nobody did middle schools back then.
My father liked to read the Sunday Daily Oklahoman. I enjoyed the comics. On Sunday, we 3 boys would go to Sunday School and church ... Marshall had not gone away to college yet, a Senior at L.H.S. After a few Sundays of this, Jim & I tired of hearing the preacher preach. All he did was tell us how bad we were and where we'd all end up eventually. That's not true. I never listened to his words back then. He could have been praising Putin; I'd never know. What 6th grade boy pays attention to a sermon?
Our Methodist church had a balcony. That is where the teenagers all sat. I remember the hymnals up there were old. Kids would go through the hymnal - select a page - write "Go to page #?" - then, they'd go to page #? and write "go to page #??" - this process would continue until the final "go to" page would have something written on - not dirty - just something - like maybe a Kilroy picture - or something equally obnoxious. Every one of the hymnals in the balcony had these written maps to stupidity. As I said, the teenagers and elementary kids sat up there with no supervision at all.
After a period of time and when it was warmer, Marshall would go to church. Jim & I would walk the 5 or 6 blocks to Upshaw drug store and buy the Daily Oklahoman. I suppose we got some kind of a treat - other than missing the sermon. Then, we'd walk back to the church and sit in the car and wait. On one occasion, the car was locked. So Jim & I sneaked into the back of the church and up the stairs to the balcony where we parked ourselves on the stairway waiting for it (the sermon) to end. Marshall was embarrassed beyond words. Only once did we climb the back stairs to wait. Being the older brother to two "infants" was a trial for Marshall.
My cousin Earl just had a birthday. His parents, my Uncle Jack and Aunt Doris, had 5 boys and one girl. When they got the girl, they stopped having children. Vickie was a twin with Victor. Jack & Doris' oldest boy was Danny (now known as Jack Jr.). He was Jim's age. Earl was their 2nd oldest; he was my age. and on down the list. (Earl was known as Lee back then). In case you haven't figured it yet, Danny's full name was Jack Daniel...Jr.
Well, Earl just had a birthday. One of the things that has been bothering me is whether Earl is older than me. We both graduated high school in 1958. Using the premise that you have to be 6 to start first grade, that meant that Earl is either 9 months older than me - or 3 months younger.
Follow this now. When I was 4, we were living in Dodge City, Kansas - a few blocks from boot hill. My mom taught kindergarten. There were half day classes for kindergarten kids. Dodge City had an age cut-off date of November 1st for kids to start kindergarten. My birthday was Nov. 4th (still is the 4th actually). My mom took Clorox and changed my birthday to Nov. 1st so I could start school early and she wouldn't have to hire a babysitter for me. I still have this birth certificate with the changed date. You can see the 4 under the yellowed splotch and black inked 1.
I went to kindergarten in one school in the morning. Then, in the afternoon, I went to my mom's classroom for afternoon kindergarten. Yes, I attended class for the full day and loved it. Nobody said anything - we saved babysitter money - I got to do a lot of extra coloring - and I suppose I had a great time. How did I get from the one school to the other school? I don't know. don't care. never did care. probably won't care in the future.
So, I started school as a 4 year old. I remember 2 things from then. One is that I climbed stairs to get to my mom's classroom. The other is that I got to pick out a rug for nap time. I had a colorful one made of some type of hard yarn - Once in a while I still see this same rug for sale in stores. Rows of colorful yarn tied together to made a 2 x 3? ft area rug. Sleeps one little kid.
Back to Earl. His age bothered me. Was I older? Was Earl older? How did we both graduate h.s. in 1958. Sent him an email finally and asked. I was born 11-4-1940 in Tecumseh, Okla. He was born 2-24-1941. This means I have been 78 for 3 months longer than Earl I don't show it though.
Remember this was back in 1945...school ....focus, remember what we are talking about here ....
Times were different back then. We were just coming off the depression and W.W. II had been raging. My mom changed my birth certificate and everyone pretended not to notice the Clorox stain on my birth certificate. Earl's family attended a small country school south of Yale, Oklahoma. According to Earl, that school was having problems with enrollment numbers. So, they let him start first grade as a 5 year old. I'm sure Aunt Doris was happy to send him off for the day. Earl was "ALL BOY." You wouldn't see that type of manipulation today - I don't believe.
We both started a year early. We both graduated h.s. a year early. I studied music and taught school for years. Earl eventually went to work in the oil fields, on oil rigs in the Gulf, worked on pipe lines, and became a very successful person in that world. All these years, it has been my opinion that I suffered somewhat in school because I was younger than the others. It may be true. In some things it took me a while to mature properly. It could be this is an excuse and I am still trying to mature in most areas. Maybe I should find me another colorful rug and see if I can restart in kindergarten next fall. Surely we would still get to take an afternoon nap.
I've put it off long enough. I need to go send some money to www.Donkeyrescue.org to honor my wife's Uncle Bill. (see previous bluggy) Donkeys need love too.
In future editions, plan to see my unkind words about motorhome repair at Camping World - loud noises in restaurants - loud noises in general - progress on the road up the hill - plum tree rescue results - Ash Wednesday - Methodism according to fruitcake(s)...
A "STONE" is a family word for a personal story or thought, not quite an essay or short story. We moved to central Texas to be near a daughter. We are down to only one wirehair dachshund - Sadie. (Goodbye in 2021 to Oscar the ball boy and Bruno the larger twin) & my wife -- penned by a retired Texas H.S. band director - just nonsense thoughts unrelated to each other or anything other than what's happening and comments.
Sunday, March 3, 2019
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