When my name is called to whatever occurs after this life, there are a few things I would like to leave to Ellen and Reid.
One is my grandmother’s cast iron skillet. I use it nearly every day, and I remember, fondly, when Grandma would fry up (at the incessant urging of my brother and me) a batch of hamburgers and onions. Then there are the assorted furnishings, the bike, my meager (and sometimes ill conceived) investments, my stash of spare coins, hopelessly out-of-date clothes and my precious cookware. Really, there’s hardly anything for them to tussle over.
Then there is the pile of letters I have sent and they have received over the near decade. To put some context to the pages, I rue the days when I did not pepper my grandparents for information about where they came from and what they did and how they lived. Even more so, I rue that none of this invaluable family information was recorded and set aside for posterity. As it is now, all I remember is what I recall. My own parents have filled in some of the blanks. But for a physical recording of our shared past, very little exists.
Perhaps that trove of pages will suffice as something of a loose-leaf family journal. None stand out in and of themselves. But it is the collection that might pull together the disparate pieces of my long running narrative. I know for certain Reid does not hoard the letters although Ellen, according to her, has stowed the pages in a box somewhere in her belongings.
Some day my two will get all that I have. Some of the remnants will have them scratching their heads about why their old man would bother to save this or that. Just like my grandmother’s skillet, perhaps they will retain the family history on paper and leave the one page legacy for their own heirs to ponder, too.
This is Way Back Wednesday, and you know what that means.
Nov. 6, 2006
EB/Reid: Most people drown in water, however, my choice is to be inundated in paper. I have so much paper lying around on the floors, in the closets, on the tables that it just seems to be choking me. Why in the world would I bring down so much paper and stuff in heavy, paper-laden boxes is just beyond me. But I’m purging it, one &^%$# sheet at a time.
The final and – hopefully – last shipment of furniture is to arrive this afternoon. It’s the coffee table, sofa table and another small dresser. Geez, it seems to have just taken so long for all of this to come together. Went to Home Depot yesterday to buy some big ceramic pots, big urns, basically, for the alcoves in the family room. Got the DSL line hooked up last night – zipadeedoodah! – so mercifully I no longer have to tap into someone’s wireless network. Not even sure how that worked but it did. And, I’ve got a new home phone (704-xxx-xxxx) with free long distance and such. So watch for numerous calls from Daddy-dearest.
Trying to become quite the cook. I’m paying close attention to Rachael Raye’s 30 minute meal program, and it’s been fun. When the food channel is your main go-to TV program, that’s trouble. Lots of sautéing of chicken, beef and pork with ‘taters and onions. That’s eatin’. Intended to experiment with oven cooked chicken covered in a light sauce of sautéed onions and diced tomatoes and garlic, but without a can opener the diced tomatoes and mushroom caps don’t do you a hell of a lot of good. So, in a pinch, I opened a bottle of Ragu and topped the onion and garlic mixture with some mozzarella and parmesan. Quite good, especially when I whipped up bruschetta with fresh basil, garlic, tomatoes on freshly baked French bread. That’s good eatin’ II.
As for the weekend, didn’t do a whole lot. Played golf Saturday at a course just over the border in South Carolina – the course has a marker where it shows when holes cross back over into North Carolina – and it was very nice. There’s a lot of acceptable golf down here. I seem to be having some rotator cuff problems in my right shoulder, not sure quite how that’s cropped up, and I think it’s to the point where I’ll have to do something about it. It feel it every waking moment, although it’s not painful, it’s just there. Went to a blues club Saturday night to hear a Southern, red-neck band, and they were okay. I just have trouble with the ‘necks down here.
Tomorrow is election day, and we’ll see if the American people do the right thing or get what they deserve. Down here, if I hear one more political ad espousing ‘North Carolina values’ I’ll puke. They don’t cotton much to education or transportation or infrastructure or common sense down here, it’s all about ‘staying the course in Iraq’ and some such nonsense. Welcome to my world.
Got tickets from Betsy ____ in my office to go see Mitch Albom (“The Five People You Meet in Heaven” author) at the downtown library. That should be good. Need to do more of this sort of stuff. Haven’t gone to see the local NBA team as the tickets are bad and according to the local press, the players are lazy and think they’re better than they are. May see the minor league hockey team. Wouldn’t mind that.
So the transition continues apace in North Carolina. You guys are going to have to make some trips down this way, especially when the weather is nice. They had a story in the paper about how Charlotte’s snow plow crews went through training last week. Yeah, right, snow plows in North Carolina. What will they think of next?