Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Sergeant Major and me

It's not nice. 
I know I should let it go. 
All the same, my stomach clinched when my dentist recently mentioned attending his Class Reunion -- in Viet Nam.

... which prompted a bout of self-examination:  Am I becoming like the fellow we dubbed "Sergeant Major"?
Ted never tried to cloak his feelings about foreign automobiles -  anything, actually, made in Japan.

 Nearly a caricature, Ted came into my 1980's work-life when "the Franks" (sales managers) thought it a lark to hire a senior citizen to sell airtime.

Subtle as a sledgehammer. I recall Ted standing erect before the workspaces:  In a booming baritone, "A.E.'s, police your cubicles!"

If he was aware of the banter surrounding his place in what was admittedly a cut-throat business, Ted never let on.   Delighted to be a part of the team, he just smiled.

And talk?  Oh my goodness! 
You know that saying about someone chatting up a fence post?   At my secretarial desk, I was usually the one stuck listening to Ted's tall tales.

Unfortunate, but not a year later - shortly after the station was sold - 'old Ted' was encouraged to share his stories on another stage.

For a while there, someone or another would accept his invitation to dinner.  Then --- there's no getting around it --  it came my turn.

I remember feeling claustrophobic in Ted's tiny, dark apartment, surrounded by all sorts of military memorabilia ... all of which held NO interest.  The starched table linen and weighty silverware were impressive, but it was his genteel manner and obvious delight at having company that touched me.

Not long after, the Franks and several A.E.s found themselves at odds with new owners/management and took their leave to other stations ... other cities.  Pretty soon I did the same.  Caught up in a personal drama, I pretty much forgot about Sergeant Major.

A few years back I asked my BH if she ever saw Ted around town.
"Oh Myra, Ted died."

In part, the obituary read --
"..... was a decorated veteran of World War II, serving in the United States Marine Corps.  Dad was a member of the historic Edson's Raiders, First Marine Battalion, who fought numerous heroic battles throughout the South Pacific, including legendary Guadalcanal."       

It went on to say he enjoyed writing.  I can't help but think, Ted would have loved blogging. 

He just wanted someone to listen.

RIP Sergeant Major

Hugs from Phoenix,

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Sunday Stealing - Something Different

So, I'd a whole 'nother post planned today ...
but I found this week's questions too intriguing to pass by.
­čśĆThanks, Bev!

Something Different

What is a normal thing that took you an embarrassingly long time to learn?
The subtle art of applying cosmetics ... so as not to resemble a 'working girl.'

In what ways are you old-fashioned?
Bradley Walker says it best ...

What is the best sandwich you've ever eaten?  Where did you get it?  What made it so delicious?
I can't think of anything that beats a Fuddruckers burger.

What are you currently not bragging about that you should totally brag about?
In spite of some rocky times in his youth, my son's determination, and work ethic resulted in their buying Lois' dream home a couple years ago (on the occasion of their 23rd anniversary!).  Although he didn't take a day off in nearly 6 years while building his business, nowdays Troy's stepped back.  He cherishes his family, his faith and his country.  He's my hero!

What food have you never tasted and are most interested in trying?
Jack mentioned it just the other day!  Turnips.

What history facts were you surprised to learn because it was never covered in school.
My son (a history buff), recently shared something that floored me:

"The Federal government demand that (Robert E.) Lee himself pay his taxes in person.  He sent his wife, but the money was not accepted from a woman.  When he could not pay the taxes, the government began burying dead Union soldiers on his land.

The government is still burying people there today.
It is now called Arlington National Cemetery." 

What is something that you waited entirely too long to start or stop doing?  What made you say, "Why did I wait so long?
I quit my 40+ years smoking habit after DH was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2013.   Sorry I can't answer the second part because I still miss it.

What socially expected thing do you hate doing the most? 
Asking my boss, "How was your weekend?"
Not once in 15 years (next month) has she ever asked about mine.
What thing about polite society really grinds your gears?
Political correctness (yuk!)

What is something about your city that I should know if I'm going to visit?  
Given the desert's low humidity, visitors are fooled into thinking Phoenix isn't that hot ..... and are likely to become dehydrated before they know it.
Correct me if I'm wrong, Betty, but I think we had several 115-degree days in a row with only 3% humidity.

What is the hidden 'must see' that you always tell friends and visitors to not miss?


What do you miss most about childhood?
Living in Los Alamos (NM)

What 'fact' did you learn in school that is not true or no longer true?
The Russians  (Khrushchev) were to be feared at all costs.
Call me naïve, but someday I hope to see an alliance of the two most powerful nations in the world.

What's your favorite piece of useless trivia?
It may take 100 years before a saguaro cactus can grow its first arm.

What's your best go-to homemade 'lazy' meal?
I never get tired of throwing together an omelet with whatever's available.

What's the title of this current chapter in your life?

What is a habit or practice that you learned form your childhood that you didn't realize was 'weird' until you were an adult?
Dad wasn't a big bread eater ..... but it was present at every meal because he needed a 'pusher.'   If there are random peas or corn kernels on my place I still help myself to a 'pusher.'

Have a wonderful new week, m'friends!

Hugs from Phoenix,

Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday Letters

Dear United States Postal Service

Are you trying to gaslight me?
Sure, I felt like a fool when I spotted the wrong address on my mail-order confirmation. 
(Daddy was right: Haste makes waste.)

When I called to request an intercept, you pleasantly provided a confirmation number.   Whew!

Except.  When 2 -- then 3 days passed with no delivery, I asked DH to intercede.   Unfortunately, you told DH you'd no knowledge of my confirmation number.  Instead, you gave him a claim # and promised a call back that morning.  By 2PM, he called you - only to be informed no-one there remembered having had any such conversation!
Oh, and by the way, my package was "most likely returned to sender."  

Dear 1-800-Contacts

Thank you for restoring my faith in what customer service is all about!

At my wits end ... beating myself up for possibly forfeiting hundreds of dollars in product, I reached out to see if you had my package.

"Why, yes!  If you'll give us another address, I'm happy to express it to you this afternoon."

Admitting the error was totally mine, I offered you a credit card to cover shipping.

"That won't be necessary.  In fact, I'll put 'signature required' on the package to ensure you get it."

Wow.  You guys have my business for life!

Dear Goodyear Police Officer

I seriously appreciate all you and your fellow officers do everyday on our behalf.
However, I'm sometimes at a loss to understand why you do the things you do.

We're certainly not wealthy, but neither do we live in a sketchy part of town,.  Nevertheless, there's been a disturbing increase in porch pirates and feral teens breaking into homeowners' automobiles.

One such fellow was apprehended, but the homeowner feared retaliation and refused to press charges.  
When another neighbor warned the teen to stay away "or else" ... you told him to knock it off or you'd arrest him for "threatening a minor."

Good grief!!!

Dear Mel (No Dog About It)

God bless you for what you shared about runaway dogs!
I remember thinking the "Stop Drop and Lie Down" was pretty interesting ... but that sort of thing would never happen to me.
(Helicopter doggie parent, party of one!)

Unfortunately a few weeks ago, DH hadn't such a tight grip on the girls' leashes when he opened the truck door at the vet's.   Unfamiliar with the new scene, Macie bolted, then Grace.

Not 50 feet from a busy boulevard, my heart stopped.  I don't remember screaming "Drop!" but that's where I found myself sprawled in the parking lot ... much to the alarm of several bystanders who thought I was in distress. 
Thankfully, both dogs' curiosity saved their own skin -- but it was a wake-up call for sure.

 Dear Blog Family

As ever, thanks so much for visiting!  Have a super day!

Hugs from Phoenix,

Saturday, August 12, 2017

On a lighter note .... it's Saturday 9!

Good morning!
I ask, what's not to love about a meme that says, "We don't have any rules ... we hate rules."!   Let's hear it for Saturday 9's Crazy Sam Winters and the Rolling Stones!

Unfamiliar with "Start Me Up"?  Hear it here!

* * *

That's a goat wearing a high heel.  What's on your feet as you answer these questions?

Oh, poor thing!  Me, I'm all about bare feet.

More fashion:  In the video for this song, Mick is wearing white pants with an elastic waistband.  Are you wearing a belt as you answer these questions?

No. Why?

In this song, Mick pleads, "Don't make a grown man cry."  When is the last time you shed a tear?

I don't often weep over major heartbreak  ... almost like my grief's too deep for tears.   
On the other hand, I easily lose it over a random contestant's story of overcoming, or a soldier's homecoming.  Don't even get me started on big screen finales!    

Keith Richards (swoon!) has said this is a song he could play "forever and ever."  What in your life doesn't get old, no matter how often you do it?

Almost every weekday for the last 5-6 years I enjoy a lunch of 'loose meat' (80/20 ground chuck).   Lately, I've even been  late-night snitching spoons-full cold, right from the fridge.

While the Rolling Stones enjoy performing songs like this one, from Tattoo You, Mick Jagger has dismissed the songs from their 1967 album Their Satanic Majesties Request as 'rubbish.'  Do you have a favorite Rolling Stones song?

It's a toss-up between "Paint It Black" and "Satisfaction."  
(Personal aside) -- A while back I grew SO annoyed when a Voice contestant sang "Satisfaction" more like one would a ballad.  Aargh!  "Where's the frustration!... the angst!"  
DH always gets amused at my upset if someone takes a Big Song and puts his/her own spin on it.  (I know.  I need to get a life.)

This recording of "Start Me Up" features a cowbell.  Do you remember which Saturday Night Live host made "More cowbell!" a catch phrase?

No.  I don't recall ever having watched SNL.  'Not particularly fond of their sort of humor.

Bassist Bill Wyman once said he thought he should have been an archivist because he loved to make lists.  Do you have a to-do list?

I'm a chronic list-maker!   In fact, Paula has piqued my interest in something called a Bullet Journal.  Are any of you doing Bullet Journals?

Mick finds it hard to stand still when he sings, not only on stage but also in the studio.  The engineer for this song reports that Mick would have to run across the room to get back to the microphone for his vocal.  Are you more fidgety, or still?

More like sedentary! :)

Random question:  Do you believe men are inherently more sensible than women?

No.  But I understand where society once shaped those expectations, those presumptions.

* * *

Have a grand Saturday, friends!

Hugs from Phoenix,

Friday, August 4, 2017

Foto Friday #90

Congratulations to Debbie on Week #90!

Good grief,  I'm in Zillow overload.  Again.
I know.  Random strangers' d├ęcor has nothing to do with a home's 'bones' ... but I can't help myself!

'Doesn't seem that long ago, I used to pore over the Sears catalog, imagining my 'someday' fantasy home.
Early American was the big attraction.  Maple everything ... remember?

These days, I'm more about comfort than style.
Stainless steel appliances and above-counter wash basins may be all the rage ..... but it 'taint me, babe.

In all honesty, I'd love to be able to replicate my DIL's gift for (unintentional) decorating. 
To twist a lyric, she was shabby when shabby wasn't cool.

That iron dog was a bookend belonging to Troy's great- grandmother!

Power room accessories

This former hospital supply cart sits in a guest room.  Just outside the bath, soap and white (cringe!) washcloths wait at the ready.

Son's not crazy about some of discards treasures his wife rescues and restores.  Nevertheless, he's smart enough to keep his mouth shut ... lol!

I only included this to show a sampling of her affinity for olden suitcases.  (... but now I'm getting hungry for chili and eggs!)

Magazine holder

My personal favorite is this old image Lois discovered at Goodwill.

'Think I could find its twin anywhere on-line?  Noooo!  Nevertheless, it 'speaks' to me.

Have you a favorite piece or a signature style?
I'd enjoy hearing!

Thanks for visiting, and
hugs from (steamy) Phoenix,