Bow tie

Handwritten page of a diary dated May 15, 1977

… could barely get him to settle down long enough to take a picture of him, because he COULD NOT STOP SINGING. It drives me crazy. For some reason, every time he gets a bow tie on, he feels the need to sing. Which means our walk to church is the most embarrassing thing in this world.

Today he started singing “Some one’s knocking at the door, someone’s ringing the bell, do me a favor and let ‘em in.” And I want to cringe because Paul McCartney used to be good. But now, what the heck?

That was bad enough, but at least he didn’t scream it out like the new song grandma decided to teach him — which was “John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt.” That stupid song. She told him it’s meant to be sung loud, which is exactly how he sang it all the rest of the way to church and all the way home.

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Original image:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Slib_ml%C4%8Denlivosti_kouzeln%3%ADk_Ond%C5%99ej_Soukup.jpg
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Published in: on February 16, 2019 at 4:13 pm  Comments (2)  

Party was a dud

Handwritten page of a diary dated October 31, 1970

… some of the greatest costumes I’ve ever seen in my entire life. So why weren’t we having fun? The photographer told everybody to say cheese, and STILL nobody smiled. I swear I woulda smiled but I was too tense because everyone else was. I think it must be contagious and you don’t even have to know the reason why a few people are tense and all of a sudden you just CAN’T relax. I even took a few deep breaths because my aunt is always telling me to do that at times like this. I guess I felt a little better but boy oh boy I’d sure like to know who put the kibosh on this Halloween party. (I don’t know what a kibosh is but the scary guy next door likes to come outside and yell at us kids that he’s going to put the kibosh on our kickball game, so I’m pretty sure it’s some kind of evil spell.)

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Original image:
https://picryl.com/media/pine-crest-school-students-wearing-halloween-costumes-in-fort-lauderdale-florida-2cd31c
Published in: on January 29, 2019 at 3:43 pm  Comments (1)  

Rat Pack

Handwritten page of a diary dated June 4, 1963

… never cried in front of me until today. Jessie’s mom cries at least once a month, doesn’t matter who is in the room. But my mom — NEVER!!!!!

It was today when we were leaving the hotel. We walked by these old guys wearing suits, getting their pictures taken, and she said “Rat Pack.” I don’t know what that means. Some kind of code words?

When she first said she wanted to come to Vegas I thought she wanted to gamble, but her big reason was to eat at the Golden Steer. She dated this older man who always promised her a Porterhouse there, and when she dumped him she said she could buy her own damn Porterhouse at the Golden Steer.

She’s not crying really hard. She can still talk. In fact I could clearly understand her when she told me we would go out for steak tomorrow instead of today. She stood there for a while until the men getting their pictures taken walked away, then she gave me money to go find some sandwiches for us. She told me to bring them back to our room, where she would be trying to compose herself. Whatever you say Mom.

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Original image:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1960s_in_Western_fashion

‘You Know My Name (Look up the Number)

Handwritten page of a diary dated April 9, 1970

… first time I felt like I was lost in Philadelphia and I needed to call my mom to tell her I’d be late picking her up from work. So I stopped the car and went into a school I’d never heard of, but when I finally found a phone, I didn’t have a dime on me.

Luckily a sympathetic (and surprisingly young) janitor gave me a dime and then I forgot my mom’s number at work. I called 411 but then I couldn’t remember her boss’s name. I said “I need the number for Dennis …” The operator waited and said “Last name please.” All I could think of was Dennis O’Bell, but that’s not her boss’s last name, that’s the name of the guy in the Beatles song on the B side of “Let it Be.”  I mean ALL I could think of was that song — “You know my name, look up the number.” And the part where they say “Good evening and welcome to Slaggers, let’s hear it for Dennis O’Bell.” So I had to hang up. Again the janitor saved the day. I gave him his dime back and he gave me directions to get downtown.

All the way home, while my mom was complaining about me showing up late, I was thinking about how the janitor at that school sure was better looking than the janitors we have at our school.

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Original image:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Payphone
Published in: on January 18, 2019 at 2:58 am  Comments (2)  

Miss Gulch?

Handwritten page of a diary dated February 16, 1959

… today in school we were learning about a British lady named Tessie Reynolds. When she was alive, she set a record for fast bicycling. But then Mrs. Bavers read aloud from a book of something that was published in a magazine after old Tessie made history. All the girls frowned. I was so mad I later borrowed the book and copied it down. “Every wheelman who has managed to retain a belief in the innate modesty and sense of becomingness in the opposite sex, will hear with real pain, not unmixed with disgust, of what we will call a lamentable incident that took place on the Brighton road early last Sunday.” That is really not fair because girls should always be allowed to ride their bikes any day of the week! As fast as they want!

But then when I was copying the words I saw Tessie’s picture up close and she reminded me of Dorothy’s mean neighbor in the Wizard of Oz. I think her name was Miss Gulch and I should know because I’ve watched that movie on TV three years in a row. If she wasn’t younger – and if she wasn’t from England – and if she had a basket on that bike – then she would be a dead ringer! Now, no matter what I do, all I can hear is that scary little ditty they play when Miss Gulch is riding her bike.

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Original image:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tessie_Reynolds#/media/File:Tessie_Reynolds_02.jpg

 

 

 

Published in: on January 14, 2019 at 5:03 pm  Comments (1)  

Buckle up for safety

Handwritten page of a diary dated July 20, 1970

… just had to walk in the room when Captain Kangaroo was talking about how you should always hook up your stupid seatbelt. All we need is for Captain Kangaroo to egg mom on to give us more lectures. Every time we get in the new car (complete with seat belts) she says snap your seat belt on. And then my sister and I look at each other and we already know what she’s going to say next — if James Dean had been wearing a seat belt that day, he would still be alive. We don’t even know who James Dean was.

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Original image:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bob_Keeshan_Captain_Kangaroo_1970.JPG
Published in: on January 12, 2019 at 2:04 am  Comments (1)  

As if!

Handwritten page of a diary dated October 5, 2015

… trying to throw shade because of my eye makeup for my yearbook pic.

I said – Mom I practically invented this new way to use eyeliner.

She said – As if! It’s too strange now and it was too strange when my grandma got her picture taken that way in 1960.

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Original image:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C0cypQKXUAAHgBW.jpg

 

Published in: on January 6, 2019 at 2:31 pm  Comments (2)  

‘Old Man’

Handwritten page of a diary dated May 19, 1974

… in the backyard playing his banjo and my brother keeps saying “I wish he’d just stop playing.” He goes to his room and I follow him.

I say “You used to like it when Grandpa played the banjo. What happened?”

He says “It’s such a dopey instrument.”

I say “Oh really?”

And he says “Yeah, really.”

So I walk over to his record shelf and I pull out the “Harvest” album, and I put in on his stereo and play the song “Old Man” and he says, “Yeah, so what?”

And I know this will kill him because he loves Neil Young more than he loves me, that’s for sure — so when it gets to the part in the middle with banjo in it, I can tell he never noticed that before but he’s trying not to change the expression on his face. He just starts shoving me out of the room and I hear the needle come off the record.

Later I play the song for Grandpa and ask him if he could learn it. He says yeah he could learn that song but he’s never played the banjo that slow and he doesn’t want to start now.

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Original image:
https:www.flicker.com/photos/floridamemory/7739381032
Published in: on September 30, 2017 at 1:42 am  Leave a Comment  

“Handy unbreakable tube”

Handwritten page of a diary dated March 25, 1965

… would go crazy if I had this insulated bag to take to the beach this summer AND IT MATCHES THE COLORS OF MY BATHING SUIT!!!! I think it’s destiny for me to own this.

But my mom never buys Prell because it’s not the cheapest kind (and on top of that, she says she wants to meet the man who invented green shampoo that will turn all our hair green). And she won’t even let me cut the proof of purchase off the Crest toothpaste tube because there’s still a little left in there. I explained how I would fix the tube with masking tape but she still said no.

Fine. I know Aunt Babbette uses Prell. And if I give her this 5 cent coupon, she might buy more.

I’ll get this picnic bag if it’s the last thing I do all year.

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Original image:
www.flickr.com/photos/29069717@N02/21416254694
Published in: on September 12, 2017 at 1:33 am  Leave a Comment  

Fab cat-eye glasses

Handwritten page of a diary dated August 4, 1958

… thought Babs would take me for a goof if she found out that I (the guy she just last week agreed to go steady with) was going on a vacation with my grandma this summer. But she said my grandma was pretty “neat”!!!! I thought through why Babs might be saying that and came up blank.

Meanwhile back at the ranch I decided to just come out and ask Babs and well, turns out she MET my grandma when she stopped over at the pad once when I wasn’t there. And Babs said my  grandma’s new green glasses  were fab (which I have to admit I myself hadn’t even noticed the glasses) (but of course I pretended like I knew exactly what glasses Babs was referring to).

Lets hope Babs never finds out that Grandma is a genuine kook after all. I mean yesterday Grandma started hearing funny noises on the phone line. I asked her why she didn’t ring up the phone company and she said “I will, but first I decided to take out the diddlwitchie.” I told her to show me but when she handed me a round metal thing, I didn’t know where to put it back in the phone. When she finally did ring up the phone company she talked a lot. But then I almost laughed because after she finally took a long pause and let the other person speak, she put her mouth right up close to the receiver “OK, I’ll play your little game.”

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Original image:
By Nabokov at English Wikipedia, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=9833818
Published in: on July 22, 2017 at 3:17 am  Comments (1)