These People Called Writers

These people called writers are a breed apart.

Some writers post random pictures and create guffawing humorous stories as if they had been privy to the conversation just as the camera shutter snapped, capturing the subjects who will forever be frozen in time.  

Some writers have the ability to use their words as a medium to create hauntingly beautiful pictures, which literally take your breath away as you read the illustrations they have painted.

Some writers sit at their computers and feel as if they’re bleeding to death, all the while hoping for rescue, or seeking solace from a bottle or a pill or a bullet.

Then there are always those,
Who are able to write magnificent prose,
With words they very carefully chose,
For the ones who fought, or fled or froze.

Some writers pen stories of broken angel wings, and flowers blooming in the dark.

Some writers shed tears, pleading for mercy and begging for understanding. Their keyboards become caked with salt that hardens like they fear their hearts eventually will.

Some write about hopes and dreams that were never realized.

Some writers bring tears to your eyes, and break your heart while you helplessly join in their poignant journey to the end of their life, after having been diagnosed with a fatal illness.

Some writers tell about their scars that may have been self-inflicted, or may have been the result of an accident, or a horrific trauma.  They tell about the invisible scars left from unspeakable suffering that can’t be seen.  They tell of wounds that caused those scars; wounds so deep they will most likely never recover, but they put on a brave face and soldier on, trying to deny that the wound was fatal.

Some writers weave used memories and secrets into tapestries, meant to offer a hint about what shaped their lives and made them who they are, but no one wants to remember.  Those same writers are told that no one wants to hear their story, and denying someone of his or her story is the worst kind of suffocation.

These people called writers are a breed apart.

The Bittersweet Farewell – Chapter Four

Alice busied herself with the daily routines of life, albeit missing Jacob terribly. Every minute, she wished that he was with her, but she didn’t retreat to solitude.

Twice a week, she went to Tierney’s for a cup of hot chocolate and a Bonbon.  It was one of her favorite places to go and the visits always brought back such fond memories of both Jacob and Grace.

One day, she quite literally ran into a young woman named Georgia.  They laughed at the dark, chocolaty stains they both wore on their frocks, and after futile attempts to remove them, began to talk. Georgia reminded Alice of Grace, and she liked her straight away.  

Georgia was very prim and proper; the epitome of what a young lady of those times should be, but she wasn’t stiff or hubristic.  She had a delicious, almost naughty sense of humor and a high-pitched, head-turning squeal when she laughed.

Alice told her about Jacob and how they met.  Then she told her about the day she and her Papa had seen him with another woman.  Georgia let out such a guffaw, that she had to reach for her elaborately detailed smelling salts holder. Recovering, she said, “mercy.  This corset is going to cause the death of me yet!”

Not wanting to be obtrusive, but straightforward to a fault, Alice asked Georgia if she had a beau.  Georgia, blushing bright red said, “I have my eye on a certain gentleman, yes.”  Then she fanned herself and said, “I get the vapors just thinking about him.”

Alice leaned forward and whispered, “you must tell me all about him, but first, what’s his name?”

Georgia said, “his name is William Longstreet and he’s a lawyer.  My father has a firm here and he works for him. Maybe you have heard of it. The Morgan Phillips firm.” Alice made a polite apology and said, “perhaps Jacob knows him and has done business with him.”  Then she smiled and said, “or perhaps he knows and has done business with your beau.”

Georgia sighed and said, “I would think not. Alas, it has become an unrewarding occupation. There just isn’t enough business for all the lawyers here.  My father’s firm used to be so busy, he barely had enough time to come home for supper, but no more.  Wouldn’t you think that in the age of constitutional reform, there would be a need for lawyers?”

Georgias’ voice softened when she said, “my father doesn’t like William.  He doesn’t think he’s suitable for me.”  When Alice asked why, she said, “he wants me to marry rich.  He wants me to put on airs, and act like we’re royalty just so I can land a wealthy husband.” Alice put her hand on Georgias’ and said, “what about love?  Doesn’t your father want you to love and be loved?”

Georgia said, “I think my father would rather I be rich than happy, or in love.  See, he and my mother married because it was good for the family. My father’s parents were wealthy landowners and had a lot of money.  After they died, he couldn’t afford to pay the death taxes, so he lost all of the land and most of the money. Then, I guess you could say that fortune smiled on him when he met my mother. They married, and all of her wealth became his.”

She smiled and said, “I believe that they are fond of each other, but I have never seen my father look at my mother the way William looks at me.”

With an apology, Alice told Georgia that she must get back home. She looked at her and said, “you are a strong, and from what I can tell, an intelligent woman.  Fight for what you believe, and never let anyone make you do something you don’t want to do.  Don’t give a fig about rules.  Make your own rules.”

As she was leaving, they agreed to meet every Tuesday, until of course, Jacob returned.

When Alice got home, a letter was waiting in the mailbox.  She rushed inside, sat down and opened it.

My dearest darling,

Things are moving more rapidly
than I had expected.  Everyone
seems to be excited about the work
we are doing, and have done.
I believe my part will be accomplished
in no more than two weeks.
Then, my treasured one, I will be anxiously finding
my way back home to you.

Your loyal and faithful husband,
Jacob

Alice felt as though she was walking on air.  Her beloved would be returning and once again, she would feel whole.

Two weeks and a day after Alice received the letter from Jacob, he arrived at the train station.  She could hardly contain her excitement as she embraced him.  She smiled and said, “you must tell me all about your adventure, but not before we have some time together.”

The next morning, Alice told Jacob about meeting Georgia.  “She reminds me so much of Grace,” she said, “but her father has plans for her.”  Jacob queried, “what do you mean?  What kind of plans?”

Alice said, “Georgia carries a torch for a young gentleman, whom her father thinks is unsuitable.  He wants her to marry a wealthy man.  It’s just so sad, because I believe that she will bend to her father’s wishes.”

A month later, Alice and Jacob went to Tierney’s and saw Georgia sitting at a table with a much older man.  In a low voice, Alice said, “that must be her father.  He’s a lawyer in town.  Do you recognize him?”  Jacob said he didn’t.  Alice said, “I’d like for you to meet her.”

They walked over to the table, the gentleman stood up and a surprised Georgia said, “hello Alice.  This handsome young man must be your Mr. Harper.” Jacob extended his hand, requested that she call him Jacob, and said how happy he was to make her acquaintance. He followed it with, “I’ve heard such lovely things about you.”

Georgia said, “please allow me to introduce you to my fiancé, Mr. Horace Spellman.  He’s the president of the B & O railroad.” Alice had to hide her disappointment as well as her anger as she allowed him to kiss her hand.

Horace looked at Jacob and said, “I understand you travel quite a bit on my train, young man.  We must see about getting you a discount.” Jacob thanked Mr. Spellman, but avoided possibly putting himself under obligation.

Georgia could see the displeasure on Alice’s face and said, “Alice.  I would like to extend an invitation to you and Jacob.  Mr. Spellman and I are to be married in three weeks, and I would like very much for you to attend.”

Alice quickly said, “I need to powder my nose.  Georgia, would you like to accompany me?”  Georgia, as if in servitude, asked Horace if he minded, which angered Alice.  As soon as they got out of earshot, Alice angrily asked, “what are you thinking?  I know you don’t love that man, not to mention that he’s old enough to be your father!”

Georgia said, “my father arranged the wedding.  In return for a lavish life-style, plenty of money, financial help for his practice, and the promise of a male heir, he gave Mr. Spellman my hand in marriage.”

Alice, unsure if she could sway Georgia said, “I I beg you.  Don’t throw your life away.  Wouldn’t you rather be with someone you love instead of being some old man’s drudge, catering to his wishes and being nothing more than a silent, pretty face and a brood mare?  And what if you don’t produce a male?”

Alice tried to calm herself and said, “we only have one life, Georgia, and we mustn’t waste one minute of it doing the wrong thing.”

To be continued______________________

Ole’ Tin-tin -Chapter Four

“We started our training,” grandpa said.  “Most of us had never even seen the kind of weapons we were given, much less fired one.  We were given gear that we didn’t really know what to do with, and there wasn’t much help from the other guys, because they were just as green as we were.  There were the usual physicals and jumping jacks, getting used to very little sleep, eating horrible food and getting yelled at like we were less than vermin, but we muddled through.  Before we knew it, the six weeks were over and we were loaded onto a C-123, headed to Vietnam.”

“When we landed, we jumped out of that plane and like so many others, were ready to do our part.  We were going to save the world by wiping out the bad guys.  We were going to make ripples.  God, we were so naïve.”

“One of the first things we saw were the other platoons, coming back from a search and destroy mission.”  Grandpa looked down for what seemed to be several minutes before he continued.  His voice almost broke when he said “back then, I couldn’t speak to the horrors of war.  I could only speak to the emptiness in the eyes of those who fought and by some miracle, survived physically, but would remain forever changed.”

“They didn’t speak to us.  Hell, they didn’t even look at us.  They just walked by like they were in a daze.  We didn’t really know what to make of them.”

“We were told to go find our platoon leader, Staff Sargent Weston.  While wandering around like a pack of lost puppies, we heard the other guys saying things like, ‘they’re idiots, don’t know where to go when they’re walking around, don’t know what to take with them, don’t know how to wear their gear or carry their weapons properly, can’t respond to basic commands, waste their ammo, and flake out.  Hell, they even cry and start calling for their mamas, because they’re homesick.  They’re liabilities, boys, so watch your sixes.  They kind of saw us as a dangerous handicap, and figured we’d get snuffed out the first time we were sent ‘in country’.”

“George and I weren’t too bothered by what they said.  Neither of us had a clue what lay ahead…and when I think back, it was probably a blessing.”

“We finally found Weston.  He had been in country for a while and I remember that he had this blank look on his face.  When we walked up, he looked at George and said, ‘goddamn boy.  You look like a tree.  These boys are going to have to dig a trench for you to walk in.  Otherwise, you’re going to be a moving target.  Now, everybody get your shit together.  We’re heading out tomorrow at first light’.”

“When morning came, we were ready and our emotions ranged from being excited to anxious to worried to being scared shitless.  Sargent Weston was a man of few words and gave us the most basic instructions about what to do and what not to do.  ‘Never salute an officer, keep your powder dry, and if you get lost,’ he said, ‘whatever you do, don’t call out.  Just stay put, keep your head down and we’ll find you…eventually…and tree…keep that goddamned harmonica stowed in your pants’.  Apparently, along with the rest of the camp, Sargent Weston had heard George playing ole tin-tin.”

Grandpa looked down and said, “waiting on our helicopter, we saw soldiers unloading bodies from another one, laying them in a row, and covering them with tarps.  Then we watched as they threw huge buckets of water in the cargo hold to wash away all the blood.  Sargent Weston looked at the pilot and asked, ‘how many’?  The pilot said, ’38’.”

“I think, not yet able to grasp the concept of what war really was, I imagined he was asking about soldiers who had been wounded.  I remember when we took off, the wind from the helicopter blades blew off all those tarps, and we were looking at dead soldiers.  Things started to become a little more real for me after seeing that.  I was looking at ripples.”

I asked Grandpa if he would like to take a break.  I laughed when he said, “yep.  Let’s go get us another Dr. Pepper.  Nowadays, there’s not much an ice cold Dr. Pepper can’t cure, don’t you think?”

He took a sip and started talking in an almost monotone voice, like he was reading from a script.  I think maybe it was the only way he could cope with the sadness and regret he felt as he began to open old wounds that had never really healed.

 

To be continued___________________

Ole’ Tin-tin – Chapter Three

I couldn’t wait for him to continue, although I could tell that it was going to be painful.  I could see it in his eyes and I could hear it in his voice.  A sort of agonizing rendition of a life he had lived so many years ago.

But again, his voice seemed to have a lilt when he spoke of George.  He laughed and said, “George and I got on that Greyhound and as soon as we started rolling, he started singing.  I wasn’t sure if the rest of the guys were going to throw us off the bus or join in the fun, but after a few minutes of his caterwauling, they chimed right in.  Later, he had the whole bus rolling in the aisles when he gave one of the worst performances of the National Anthem you ever heard, but at least he remembered all of the words.”

I’ll tell you,” he said.  “George never met a stranger, and I never met anyone who didn’t instantly like him…with the exception of his sixth grade teacher, of course, and there was no excuse for the humiliation he got from that old bitty.”

“After a few hours on the road, George reached into his pocket and pulled out a harmonica.  I remember thinking ‘Oh, Good Lord.’  Anyway, he took to playing what I’m sure he thought was a symphony worthy performance.  To the rest of us, it sounded like a screeching banshee who was experiencing decapitation.”

“He was so proud of that harmonica.  When I asked him where in the world he had gotten it, he said, ‘at Lords’ Drugstore.  Remember…old Sandy Lords’ folks owned it?  Shoot…I even got a good-bye smooch on the cheek from Sandy before I left’.  Then he winked and said, ‘she said she’d wait for me’.  I laughed and said that even if I believed him, and I didn’t, he should have told her that he was going to be gone for a minute.”

“George looked at me and said, ‘you’re just jealous because you didn’t get a smooch and you don’t have this wonderful, marvelous, magical musical instrument in your pocket’.”

“That, I said, is just a piece of tin.  Tin!  The other guys heard me and started chanting ‘tin-tin…tin-tin…tin-tin, and from then on…that’s what it was called.”

I was curious about George and I asked Grandpa what he looked like.  He said, “what do you think he looked like?”  I said, “well, I think he was probably around five eight or nine, had sandy blonde hair, wore glasses; maybe had a few freckles sprinkled over his nose, was of average build and always had a wide grin on his face.”

Grandpa leaned over and looked at me with his intense eyes.  I thought he was going to say something like, “wow.  Pretty good guess,” but he didn’t.  Instead, he said “you might want to hold onto your day job, because I’m not sure you’d make it as a profiler.”

“George,” he said, “was six foot, six and a half inches tall.  He had jet black hair, pale blue eyes and was built like a wrestler, but you are right about one thing.  He always had a grin on his face.”

I’m not sure that I would describe the way my grandpa spoke about George as nostalgic or poignant.  It was more bittersweet, and to me, that was somehow more painful.

“Tell me more,” I begged.

Grandpa took a deep breath and continued.  “Well, we finally got to the base and I remember how we strutted off the bus, like we were all somebodies.  But it didn’t take very long for us to find out that we were nobodies.  We were just the newest green recruits…grunts…wide-eyed and bushy-tailed innocent soldier-wannabes.  FNGs.”

“We didn’t’ know it then…but we,” he said, “we were lambs being readied to be sent to the slaughter.”

I felt numb and couldn’t find any words.

Then grandpa looked at me and said, “do you realize that if you drop the ‘s’ from slaughter, it spells laughter?”

 

To be continued________________

 

Ole’ Tin-tin – Chapter Two

Over the last few years, I began to notice that my grandfathers’ body had gotten old and frail and trying to ignore it had become futile.  I found myself mourning the man he used to be.  This remarkable man who had been such a powerful influence on my life, had a mind that was still sharp, but he was imprisoned in a worn-out, disintegrating shell.

We no longer walked down to the lake to throw stones, and spent most of our time sitting on the front porch, still drinking Dr. Pepper from the bottle and just talking, like before, but it was different now.  I believe he knew that he was running out of time when he said, “I’m not long for this world.”

He got up, took his cane and walked into the house.  When he came back, he was holding the box that housed Ole Tin-tin.  As he handed it to me he said, “I want you to have this now.”

I took it and realized that it was what used to be a harmonica.

“Was this yours?” I asked.  He shook his head and said, “no.  It belonged to my best friend.”

As he began to tell me the story about Ole Tin-tin, I didn’t know that it would be the last story he would ever tell.

“Do you remember the picture of the young man on the shelf?  That young man was me,” he said.  “It was taken when I was your age.  I was in my uniform and I was so proud.  There was a war going on, you know…the Vietnam War, and I had been called to serve.”

I had heard of that war but I never knew that my grandfather had been in the service, and I surely never knew that he had been in that war.  He never talked about it.  Nobody did.

“Are those medals yours?” I asked.  He said “yes.”  When I asked him what they were for, I could see the pain in his eyes as he thoughtfully paused and said, “for causing ripples.”

“Vietnam,” he said, “was a war no one wanted, and we didn’t know then, but it was a war we wouldn’t win.  Still, there were those of us who were duty-bound to serve our country…the country we loved, and when you love something, you should be willing to lay down your life to protect it.  That’s what so many young men did, and so many of those young men lost their lives doing just that.”

I put my hand on his and said, “Grandpa, you know how much I love your stories, but if it is too painful to talk about, I understand.  And I want you to know how precious your stories have been to me.  I cherish them and I cherish you.  Your stories will be with me forever and some day, I hope I’ll be telling them to my own grandson…or granddaughter, and maybe I’ll have a few of my own to tell.”

I wasn’t really sure what serving in the war had to do with an old harmonica, but his spirit seemed to lighten when he said two words.

“George Revelle.”  He shook his head and said, “George and I met when we were in the fourth grade.  We were caught smoking behind the school, and both got our little fannies warmed when we got home.  After that, we were inseparable.  We were like two grounded ships when we weren’t together and when we were together, we were like two peas in a pod.”  He smiled and said, “he was at my house more than he was at his own, and we sure could get up to some mischief.  That’s why I’ve always thought my mother had to have been a saint.”

“We told each other our secrets, shared our heartbreak when a girl didn’t give us a second glance, knew each others’ hopes and dreams, and planned to become millionaires by the time we were in our twenties.”

Then he looked down and said, “you know, time steals things.  It steals childhoods.  It steals hopes and dreams, but it’s not really about what time steals.  It’s about what it leaves behind.  Memories.  That’s what it leaves behind.”

He was quiet for a few minutes, and then laughed as he said, “George was something else.  His sixth grade teacher was what we called, back then, an old maid, and she was a mean-spirited woman.  He used to turn in his homework, with his name at the top…just like we all had to do, but he put Geo. Revelle.  One day, he said she held up his paper in front of the whole class and chastised him.  “You will sign your full name on your work.  This is pure laziness, and there is no room for laziness in my classroom’!”

“And,” he went on.  “He loved to sing.  Now, mind you, he couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket with a lid on it, but that didn’t keep him from belting out whatever song he last heard on the radio.  He sure did make me laugh.  I could be in the worst mood, but George would somehow, some way, do something to make me laugh and forget whatever was on my mind.”

“My orders came, and the day I told George that I was going to be headed to boot-camp, I couldn’t believe it when he said his orders had come as well and we were headed to the same base.”

 

To be continued______________

 

 

 

Ole’ Tin-tin – Chapter One

For as long as I can remember, it sat on the top shelf of my grandfathers’ bookcase, housed in a clear acrylic box with an engraved brass plate at the bottom that said “Ole Tin-tin.”  Next to it were several medals hanging from the picture of a young man.  I didn’t know who the man was and I had no idea what the medals were for…they were always just there.

I asked my grandfather about the box once.  I remember the sadness in his eyes when he looked at it and said, “that’s ole’ Tin-tin.  One day when you’re older, I’ll tell you the story about it; and when I’m gone, I’ll pass it along to you.”

I didn’t ask where it came from or what that name meant, and it was certainly nothing I would long for in the years to come.  I was too young to understand, and I really didn’t care.  To me, it was just some old rusty piece of metal.

I spent every summer with my grandfather and those warm, lazy days and nights would leave me with some of the best memories of my life.  I loved to listen to the stories he told about his childhood and he always had a twinkle in his eyes when he told me about the mischief he “got up to.”
He’d smile, shake his head and say, “my poor mother, bless her soul.  She had the patience of Job.  I don’t know how she survived raising me.”
Then he turned and said, “when I was a little boy, I was quite a handful, you know.”

As I grew older, I would come to appreciate the final five words he always said when it was time for me to go home.  “Be good to your mother.”

Sometimes my grandfather and I would go down to the lake and throw little stones.  He’d tell me to watch the ripples every time I threw one.  “See?” he said.  “Every time you throw a stone, whether it be little or big, it makes ripples in the water.  That’s a reaction.  It’s just like life.  Those ripples might not seem noteworthy to you, and may even be viewed as beautiful, but it disrupts the calm of the water.  Everything you do in your life will have a reaction.  It may be insignificant or it may be life-changing, so just be sure that you always try to do the right thing, and cause as few disruptive ripples as possible.”

I loved our times late in the afternoon.  It would be just the two of us, sitting on the front porch and drinking Dr. Pepper from the bottle.  I listened intently to his famous stories and what he called his “pearls of wisdom.”  He told me about how, as a little boy, he loved to run down the hill barefoot.  “There was a method to my madness, you see,” he said.  “If I could make it all the way down without stepping on a cow patty, I won.”

“Won what?” I asked.  He looked at me and said, “why bragging rights, of course.  Running all the way down that hill and making it to the bottom with nothing but a few grass stains on your feet was quite the conquest.”

“How many times did you win?” I asked.  He laughed and said, “only once, but it’s something that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.  You see…sometimes, it’s the simplest, most innocent things from childhood that stay with you forever.”  His gaze drifted away as he quietly said, “and the loss of childhood innocence is always such a tragedy.”

He was a wise man, and a good man.  He never raised his voice, nor did he ever make me feel that I was anything less than the most special kid in the world.  When he sometimes used big words I didn’t understand, he always took the time to explain what they meant and would then smile and say, “see?  You just got a new wrinkle in your brain.”

The year I turned eighteen was the last summer I spent with my grandfather.

 

To be continued________________

 

 

 

“Tie”-dal Waves

I thought this looked like waves.  Ironic, since I despise the ocean or any other body of water.  At a distance though, someone said it looks like a shamrock.

There are 256 different ties in this quilt.

 

Kaleidoscope “t-Eyes”

I think the center of this quilt looks like an eye, (if you don’t have on your spectacles or are perhaps a bit inebriated).  Imagine, under those same circumstances, seeing the “eye” through a kaleidoscope.

There are 288 different ties in this quilt.

 

Happy Birthday…To Sir

When I was just a little girl,
I had a Panda bear.
I kept him in a plastic bag,
To keep him clean in there.

I got him for my birthday,
When I was four or five.
I said a prayer and asked the Lord,
To make him come alive.

My granny gave him to me,
He always stayed with her.
She asked me what his name was,
I said, “I call him Sir.”

She’d sometimes let me take him out,
But only if I’d swear,
To not fall down and dirty him,
My little Panda bear.

I hardly got to play with him,
She feared he would get smudged.
I tried to understand the why,
And never hold a grudge.

I grew up and moved away,
And I left Sir behind,
But I knew he would never be,
Far out of sight or mind.

The years went by, and my life changed.
My world had been derailed.
I never thought that what I’d built,
Would ultimately fail.

I went back to that old house,
To walk down memory lane.
Echoes of the past reminded me,
Of my loneliness and pain.

I thought of Sir and wondered if,
Like me, he’d lost his way.
Or if he’d been discarded,
And cast into the Frey.

I found him in the attic,
Amongst my mama’s stash.
He was in a plastic bag,
With other bits of trash.

The memories came flooding back,
We were quite the pair.
A bruised and broken little girl,
And her ragged Panda bear.

My only friend when I was young,
Who listened to me cry.
Who never slapped me in the face,
And never told a lie.

His shiny coat was grey and black,
His eyes were not so clear,
But he was coming home with me,
My little Panda bear.

They say when you’re alone and old,
You talk to things not there.
I just nod and say okay,
And wink at Panda bear.

Laurel With Wolves – By Ogden Fahey

Ogden Fahey is a painter of ladies and other things.  Recently, he painted a picture of a woman with green eyes, named “Sweet Loretta.”  I teasingly commented that I loved her green eyes but my name wasn’t Loretta.

That comment led to his offer to paint me.  I sent him two pictures.

He responded, “those are amazing.  I had no idea you looked anything like that!”
Of course, being a curious woman, I asked what he thought I looked like.

The following is the hilarious response I received.

“I didn’t give it too much thought what you’d look like, cos I knew I had no idea, but I had 2 versions in mind.  1) A pretty, butch looking, manly type with dark eyes and a heavy brow, or 2) A bush-wacker type [who] lives in the woods, chases people off who come by, wears an old red dress, has bushy red hair to match!  Both pretty eccentric types, I don’t know much other than the characters in your stories, and that you come from the South, so I’d imagine you spit a lot of tobacco and blast people with an old shotgun if they try any ‘funny stuff’.”

I was laughing my eyes out.  Now, I do know that a lot of people think Southerners are “gun totin’, Republican votin’, cigarette smokin’ yahoos and there’s no gettin’ around that.
Sure, we flatten our “i’s” and drop our “g’s”.  We’re slow talkers and say things like “lawdy mercy, and bless your heart.”

But…not all of us.  Some of us would rather be put to death than end a sentence with a preposition, and using double negatives is just as bad.

I’ve lost a bit of my Southern drawl, due to having been dragged all over the states, but I’m still an i flattener and a g dropper.  I do own a gun but I don’t tote it around with me.  I don’t even know where it is.  As far as politics…that’s a definite conversation stopper.

I never discuss politics.  It’s too volatile.  Hell, it’s volatile when you don’t.

A few years ago, a friend of more than 30 years, ended our friendship…not because I disagreed with her political views, but because I told her again, that I was not going to discuss politics.  That led to the accusation; “you’re an ignorant, uneducated piece of trash, just like all the rest of those South Carolina assholes.”

(Whatevva did she mean?)

To clarify, her husband works in S. C. and she blames the folks in that state for just about everything that goes wrong in their lives.  Bless her heart.

I’m not from South Carolina, but I do agree that there are a few assholes there.  (Smiling wryly.)

Back to the pictures…I think the inclusion of the wolves is great.

Thanks Ogden!