Sunday, June 28, 2020


Escaping the ever-present effects on our lives from “the virus” – that viral one in the atmosphere and the other one in the White House, my mind has taken respite in all sorts of humor-eliciting matter – cartoons, satirical writing and viewing performers whose perspective on daily life often reveals a bizarre point of view reminding me of just how crazy life can be. 

Also, crossing my mind are recollections of laugh worthy events or circumstances I’ve experienced.  I am reminded of stories generations share that are unique to each family contributing to the special bonds to one another we feel. 

My mother shared a few tales from her early nineteen hundred’s young life that titillated our family.   We were still primarily an agrarian society just beginning to give way to becoming industrialized.   Small farmers prospered as did her father.   Homes were gradually becoming modernized with electricity, telephones, outhouses giving way to indoor plumbing, likewise well water pumps were placed inside the kitchen.   

My maternal grandfather was considered progressive, so his neighbor farmers sometimes razzed him by asking when he was going to get one of those new-fangled automobiles.  He would respond that he was waiting to get an airplane. 

Mother would relate neighborhood tales that aroused her community at the time, such as one Halloween some enterprising young farm boys thought it would be hilarious to upset one farmer’s outhouse, so they did.  What they hadn’t counted on, was that someone was in it at the time.

Then, there was the young niece who took great delight in explaining to all who would listen who the relatives were that were pictured on the wall.   All would wait to hear her say, “And that is Grandpa Hall’s Hyde!” 

One of mother’s favored tales was about her father when their rural farm community finally had a telephone system – one with party lines shared with a few neighbors.    Each person’s phone line had a different ring, such as one short and two long rings, or one long, a short and another long ring, for example.  The caller cranked their phone accordingly to reach the party they wanted.  If one party was on the phone, none of the others could make a call.

One day, some sort of problem came up for my Grandfather who felt he needed to make a call post haste.  He kept picking up the phone to find the same neighbor lady, known for using the line a lot, was on the line talking to another woman.  Considerable time passed and each time my Grandfather picked up the phone she was still on the line. 

Phone users on the line could tell if someone picked up the phone as there would be a click when they picked up their phone and another click when they hung up so this would discourage eves-droppers.  Also, it would indicate to the phone line user that someone else wanted to use the line, so as a matter of courtesy the user typically would make an effort to end their call quickly.

On the occasion of my Grandfather’s call effort, considerable time elapsed and she remained on the line.  Quite contrary to his character, my grandfather became quite exasperated.  Finally he picked up the phone once more, heard the woman say, “ I washed down as far as possible and then ....” to which my grandfather interrupted by saying, “Well, why don’t you go wash possible and get off this line so I can make a call!”

I still chuckle to myself, picturing that scene, though I never knew my grandfather since he had died years before I was born. 

Are there stories unique to your family that are shared with great relish with one another?

Sunday, June 21, 2020


This will be a unique year to celebrate Father's Day as we cope with Covid-19, striving to protect loved ones, friends, others and ourselves from this virus.    I'm not getting around to visiting other's blogs but hope to get back to doing so soon.   Please know I continue to be interested in what you each write and will catch up eventually.

Father's Day honors just how special fathers of all races, creeds and colors can be.   They can provide their support, unique counsel -- not only when all is well, but during challenging times.  Most of all they can be treasured for giving their unconditional love.   

We honor fathers present in our lives and/or those who live on only in our memories.  Fortunate are those who are able to enjoy family get-togethers though that may not be possible this year.  I hope each of you enjoy this celebration in whatever manner is meaningful to you. 

Sunday, June 14, 2020


Blogging was mostly not on my agenda this past week.  Now that I’m feeling closer to being back among the living, thought I’d put a few words here. 

Life has presented another of its unexpected intrusions into my usual activities which accounts for why I haven’t written here since the end of May.   Seems ordinary infections (likely not Covid-19, though I haven’t been tested) decided to gang up to complicate my life.  I could easily write pretty negative commentary on how my medical needs were addressed, causing me to experience more pain than I should have though I have a high tolerance level.

Suffice it to say for the first time ever I finally had to resort to using telemedicine which, so far, has proven to be a correct choice.   So with medication quelling infection I can get back to any follow-up with my regular GP’s and specialist’s medical care without needlessly having to call 911 to go to the hospital emergency room. 

In addition to regularly checking my temperature, I had recently purchased a pulse oximeter to track my oxygen saturation levels since people with Covid-19 can experience levels out of the norm in some instances, according to this Yale Medicine article discussing whether or not everyone should purchase an oximeter.’s important to know that a level between 95 and 97% is considered normal by the American Lung Association; anything below that would be a reason to call a doctor, and anything under 90% would be a reason to go to the emergency room.”

I continue to have real concern with the instances of individuals gathering without following safety precautions, the ramifications for the future spread of Covid-19.  I will remain “safe at home”,  limiting my outings to only being in my car for pick-ups, select drive-thru restaurants. 

Some poor troll or their bot with nothing better to do keeps trying to obtain free promotion leaving cutsie comments on many of my blog posts, current and earlier.  After multiple efforts to publish on the same post you’d think they could figure out it wasn’t working – is easy for me to send to spam. 

Unfortunately, I reacquainted myself with the floor in my bedroom the end of the week, so have some re-strengthening or acquiring possibly more support for a rebellious leg in my immediate future.  Getting up off the floor when you live alone can present a challenge.  I have invented in my mind a “tush lifter” but won’t pursue manufacture.

So much more happened this past week with which most reading here are likely quite familiar – a social justice long overdue in this nation evolved into Black Lives Matter groups protest marches across this nation.   A triggering video showing the death of a black man as an example of alleged police brutality enraged all.   Protests have emerged around the world.   I could elaborate extensively on how the White House occupant, and other so-called administrators party to his antics, have or have not addressed these issues, but will say only he continues to disgust me.  

Before I started feeling less healthy I drove for a pickup I had scheduled.  A half mile from my home on famous old Route 66/Foothill Blvd. officers had just stopped traffic as a never-ending line of masked marchers streamed across the street headed downtown.  I was soon directed to turn, so had to circle around for a different route that initially took me up the street the marchers were coming down.   Uninvited tears came to my eyes seeing all ages, all genders, all races carrying their signs in a line of people that just went on forever.    I occasionally tooted my car’s horn, gave marchers a thumbs up which was all I could do.  I am past actually marching ability though my active involvement in issues has always taken a quite different form. 

Local news reported our police found a number of metal baseball bats, one filled with material to make it heavier, planted in bushes on a corner one block from my home.  The parade did not go that route as they headed to our police station.  Clearly some individuals had what could have been unpleasant actions thwarted.  Reportedly while march arrangements were made in advance with the police, those directing the action did not reveal their name(s).   

I wonder now -- will change actually continue to be made when the marches end?   Will the issue of racial discrimination and all that entails finally be confronted in open discussion by all?  Will serious sincere efforts be made to recognize we are all human, to treat all people equally, that skin color has nothing to do with equality?   What do you think about those prospects, oximeters or anything else I wrote about?