Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Chip Off The Ol' Block

My wife & I took "The Girl" out to a local steakhouse Tuesday. She got a paper placemat with a couple of crayons to keep her occupied while our order was being processed. While she was using one, I stood the other one up one it's end. She saw that and had to give it a try. If at first you don't succeed, try, try, again. She accomplished it, which is pretty amazing seeing that she's only three. You'll notice them at the right of the picture, flanking the silverware.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Flashback Friday # 191

Mr. Bird

Hello. It's good to see you again. Back for another helping of minutia? Good. I've got plenty more.

Since I started on some teachers last week, I figured I'd stay in that vein. There were a few teachers in my Sophomore year that hold some vivid memories. I must admit, with this being the "dark time" in my life, I wasn't the greatest of students. In fact, I wasn't very good at all. I really feel sorry for some of the things I did then.

But I digress. This post isn't about me, or some of the rotten things I did. It's about a new math teacher that we had named "Mr. Bird". Many of us thought Mr. Bird was an odd bird indeed.

To begin with, he wasn't the most manliest looking man. In fact, he was a bit effeminate. Some thought that he had more in his closet than clothing. He had a wry way of looking at you and grinning that really creeped you out. When he would roll is chalk in his hand in front of him, at waist level, eyebrows would go up. Someone mentioned that he was a minister, so he could be as we suspected. Others disagreed.

The one time that is burned in my memory banks the most is during a time of silent reading. We had to read silently for 10 minutes during the period that I had his class. I had found a western by Brian Garfield, that had caught my attention (this was before I had read any Lois L'Amour). It was about a sheriff who's daughter is kidnapped by a gang of men who escaped from prison. He sent them there, so they are going to exact their revenge on his family.

I had gotten about a quarter of the way through it the previous night. I figured it would be a good book to take for the reading time.

As we were reading, Mr. Bird strolled through the rows, looking at the various genres being read. When he saw the title of the book I was reading, he stopped, smiled really big and said "That sound like a really good book" The book was titled "The Last Hard Men". Needless to say, I finished that book at home.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

An Update to an Earlier Post

On October 31, 2009, I did a post about scary stuff. Actually they were about sports uniforms that were frightening. Here's a new one for the list. The 1979 Tampa Bay Rays.

Wait a minute. The Rays weren't around in 1979. They came into the league in 1998. How can there be a uniform for a team that didn't exist? I'll explain. The Rays annually have a turn-back-the-clock-night. In the past, they've worn their original, expansion team uniforms. Other times, they wore the uniforms of nearby minor league teams. This is sort of a mix between the '79 Padres and the '78 Mariners. I hope they are giving out sunglasses with each paid admission. BTW- They're only wearing these for one game, June 30, 2012 against the Detroit Tigers.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Like a Gerbil on an Exercise Wheel

I told you that I'd explain why the "Flashback Friday" post was late this week. It had something to do with being at church every night this week.

On Sunday we had our normal Sunday School in the morning, the Sunday Worship service Sunday night.

Monday through Thursday we had VBS. I had been asked to play the part of gameshow host Wade Winnalot (my wife really liked the fact that I would have to shave every night for this character. Usually I only shave 2-3 times a week). Our theme was "Studio Go" and every night I asked questions about the bible story to three randomly chosen VBS kids and Coach Armstrong & Professor Wordsmart (these were silly, bumbling characters played by two of our other church folk). By the time I got home from VBS, I was whooped (seeing that I also had put in eight hours at the factory beforehand).

Friday, the State Finals for Jr. Bible Quizzing began. I took a vacation day off from work, since quizzing started at Noon, and I don't get off until 3 PM. It helps if the head scorekeeper is present during the quizzes. After going through the first bracket, we all partook in a big cookout. As the cookout was winding down, several games were played with all the quizzers who wished to participate. A candy rain was held shortly thereafter.

As all this was wrapping up, we were ushered inside for a Holy Ghost rally with Br. Wil Rowland. He is hilarious! Here is a Youtube clip of him and his friend "Sunshine".

After the alarm went off at 6:30 AM Saturday morning, my wife & I got ready for more quizzing. We went out for breakfast and were at the church by nine. Although things didn't shake out as we had hoped (the home teams, including the one with "The Boy", were knocked out early. When the dust settled, Toledo once again ruled supreme. However, there were major shake ups in the 2-4 slots. 2nd place went to a first year team, Hilliard. Two of the kids on that team are children of a former assistant Sunday School teacher of mine. 3rd place went to Zanesville, another fairly new team. 4th went to Columbus, which had won a tournament this year and is Nationally known.. Missing from the top teams was Dublin, which also had won one of the tournaments this year.

After all the quizzing was finished, all the officials went out for some food & fellowship. After consuming more than we should have at the local Mexican restaurant, I had to make a run out to the store where $1 will buy anything in the store. I had to get some "Fabulous Prizes" to be given away tomorrow, as our custom at the church, for Father's Day. I've won some of them in the past. I've won a tie, money, and a lock.

I am now thoroughly exhausteded. I'm heading to bed so I'll be ready to go to church again tomorrow.

Flashback Friday # 190

Extra Credit Assignment

Greetings, One & all. As you can see, I'm a day late. I'll explain why in my next post.

Have you ever had to do extra credit work for a teacher? Maybe write a report or do some research? I wish this story was as simple as that.

I thought that this happened at the end of my Sophomore year, but looking at a yearbook, I realized it happened at the end of my Freshman year. We'll need to take a few steps back on our timeline.

We had a choir/ensemble teacher at our school named Miss Rivers. She hadn't been out of college very long when she got the job at our school. She had done an amazing job with all the various choirs. However, no matter how god of a job she did, she wasn't to be rehired. We didn't know this at the end of my Freshman year.

At the beginning of my Sophomore year, When we got to school, Miss Rivers wasn't there. She had been replaced by Miss Hubbabubba (that was really a name that many of the students called her when speaking about her, but not directly to her). What had happened to Miss Rivers? We found out later via the grapevine (aka little sister).

Miss Rivers had a prize student, Jim Spider, a Senior. He had won many awards at the state level. That wasn't all he had won. He had won Miss River's heart. Miss Rivers was in love with him. We had heard that right after graduation, they got married. Apparently, voice wasn't the only lesson that she was teaching him. I guess we know what his extra credit assignment was. I never heard whether there were any legal ramifications from the incident.

More about Miss Hubbabubba in future posts since she was a major thorn in my side.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Family Fun at the Hospital

You may ask, "How can someone have fun at a hospital?" The answer is when the hospital is opening up a new building and is showing it off t o all the employees and their families. The Ogre works at a large, well-known children's hospital in Columbus, and we got to tag along with her to the party.

As we were coming in, the Saints Drumline was getting ready to perform, near the entrance. This is a group that is dedicated to keeping kids off the street & out of trouble. Some of the drummers weren't old enough for kindergarten yet. They were phenomenal. I took a short video of them with my phone, but I'm not yet able to figure out how to get it from my phone to my blog. Here's a Youtube video of them:

There were also jugglers walking through the crowd on stilts.

You could also pose to get a caricature picture of you drawn. Here is a picture of the Ogre & the boy:

The girl got her face painted while Mommy & Bubby were getting sketched. It's a butterfly, if you couldn't make it out.

There were also fun things for the kids to do, like zip-line, which the Boy enjoyed.

There were also bouncy houses, kids games, and you could go through the various emergency vehicles. The kids also got to meet Ronald McDonald, who was there on behalf of the Ronald McDonald house, which also got a new addition.

There was a tour of the new facility that was decorated with kids in mind. There is an area just off the main entrance called the magic forest that the kids had a blast in.

We also came across a large aquarium that had The Girl mesmerized.

When it was time to leave, several of us fell asleep on the way home. If you know me, I have to be VERY tired to sleep in a car. Thankfully, The woodsman (who was driving) wasn't one of them. I was told that there was quite the chorus of snores coming from the back of the vehicle.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Flashback Friday #189

No Honor Among Thieves

Greetings. Sorry I haven't posted this week. It's been a little crazy around here.I just wanted to let you know that the dreaded "Facebook" hasn't devoured me. Not even there. I also am less than enamoured about the changes that Google has made to Blogger. I really have to muddle my way around to post something. :-(

I was reading an article recently that brought back a memory that I don't think I've shared yet. The article dealt with a guy who was stealing brass burial markers from the graves of veterans and selling the brass as scrap. The story I'm about to tell is just as bad, so you may want to take a break and get a cold drink to keep your blood from boiling.

It was around a national holiday (Veterans Day or July 4th, I don't remember which) and I had a couple small American flags that I was going to adorn my bike with. I had gotten them in Elementary school during an assembly. When Rotten Little Crook saw me with them, he asked if he could have one.

"No" I replied. "I got these from school. Get some of your own. They sell them at the store in town." He mumbled something and ambled off. I didn't think anything else about it.

Later in the day, I saw him with not one or two flags, but with at least a dozen. His folks weren't home from work yet, so I know he hadn't gone into town. "Where did you get the flags?" I asked. His replied floored me. "Over at the cemetery." he said. "What!?!?" I gasped. "You've got to be kidding me. That's sick!" He said "Ain't nobody over there using them.." and he walked on past me down the road.

I never did find out whether his folks made him take them back. Since their motto was "Finders Keepers", I doubt if they did.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Flashback Friday #188


Hello. It's time, once again, to stroll down Memory Lane. Pay no attention to the weeds growing through the cracks in the sidewalk.

I had mentioned in Flashback Friday #184 that I was seeing/dating Kelly Stump. I use the term seeing/dating because we didn't go very many places together. We went on probably three dates max. She came over whenever she could slip away from her folks. She was adopted by an older couple that were extremely protective. Had they any inclination to the behaviors that she exhibited, the both would have needed medical attention. I went over to her house whenever her parents would allow.

Until one day I got a call from Kelly. She said her folks had gone away and she was lonely. She wanted to know if Dad could drop me off at her place. I asked, and he was willing.

I lived 3 miles North of Marengo. She lived two mile South of Marengo. I was at her place in under 10 minutes. She had a long driveway, and I had Dad drop me off at the street so he wouldn't have to drive all the way to the house and try to turn around in the small area by the house.

When I got in the house, she grabbed me by the arm and exclaimed that she was so glad to see me. She the pulled me onto the couch and kissed me like she hadn't seen me in years. She asked if I wanted a soda and I said I did. She brought me one, but didn't get herself one. "If I get thirsty, I just get a drink of yours. It's not like I'm afraid of your germs or anything.

After about 20 minutes passed, she heard a noise outside and looked out the window. "Expletive delete" she exclaimed. My parents are coming up the driveway. They weren't supposed to be back for at least an hour. "Quick", she exclaimed, "Out the back door and through the woods." Seeing that there was a shotgun in a rack near the backdoor, I bolted out and ran for all I was worth.

The woods ended at the road about 3/4 mile from Kelly's house. I was only about a 3/4 mile from my cousin's ex-wife's house (she was the sister of Doris). I walked there, hoping she would give me a ride home. When I knocked at the door, a scruffy guy answered. I asked for my cousin's ex. He didn't know who she was. Great. I'm now 6 1/2 miles from home with no way home but to walk. And that's what I did. I didn't go over to Kelly's house when her folks weren't there ever again.