It Doesn’t Take Money to be Rich – A Little Mud Will do Just Fine

Springtime Fun

Springtime Fun

In Boys will be Boys, I wrote about an important life lesson for males – when, and when not to fight.  The big fight in the park did not have to end the way that it did.  The one antagonizing could have simply backed off a bit and everything would have gone just fine that day.  There wouldn’t have been blood or embarrassment for anyone and we would all have just enjoyed our football game. Continue reading

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The Clock is Ticking – My Brother Mike is Dead

That's Mike in the very front, Circa 1971

That’s Mike in the very front, Circa 1971

My brother Mike, the youngest boy in the Wyatt part of our diversified clan, died recently.  Tall like my Grandad, he stood about 6’4 or 5″ and weighed over 400 pounds at the end.  He is the first to pass amongst me and my siblings.  When you’re young or even old and healthy, dying seems improbable, something that happens to other people, not you.  But eventually death grabs each of us by the throat and chokes the life out of us.  When it chokes someone you grew up with or perhaps someone you love, it punches you in the stomach, wakes you up, makes you realize that your time is coming.  It’s right around the corner.

This story is nothing close to a compendium of Mike’s life story.  I am not qualified to write that.  I was really not that close to Mike.  Some of the memories I plan to write about include Mike, but will appear separately.  Perspectives are our truths and this story is my perspective; my truth about what I recall about my baby brother Mike.  Continue reading

MI1, The Big Sleepover

To us, this is what it felt like

To us, this is what it felt like

In the last ‘Kim story’, I finally worked up the courage to tell Kim that I loved her.  If you are new and would like to get up to speed, there is a Category named “Kim Saga”.  Merely find the “Categories” somewhere on this page your are reading and then select this category.   One of the things I immediately loved and was attracted to in Kim was her sense of adventure, her lust for life.  You know the old adage about walking a mile in another person’s shoes?  Well, at pretty much the same age, both of us had experienced life threatening events.  I was hit by a school bus (read me) and she had open heart surgery.  Yes, open heart surgery; way back in the early 60’s as a little girl, with a pioneer surgeon, it was a complete success.  No doubt our own personal experiences played a major role in shaping our psyche and influencing our behaviors.  Both of us are what I would describe as very determined and long term goal oriented.  We are grateful for what we have and we recognize the beauty of life itself.  We have a few sharp differences, but what we have in common is much stronger than our differences. Continue reading

Camaro and Firebirds – Dedicated to the Cars that Got us Here Alive

Vroom, vroom

Vroom, vroom

 

Our cars drive us back and forth from where we are and where we’re going.

Almost everyone I’ve ever met in my life has said that they remember the details of every single place they lived in and every single car they ever owned.  Well, ok – all the men remember all the cars.  My wife can recall the details of every single golf course we’ve played on, but has blocked out most of the memories of our vehicles.  We spend most of our time on this earth in our homes.  The mere act of sleeping can account for a 1/3rd of our lives, (or 50% for our teenage kids).

Most of us fondly recall our cars as well; there are stories and memories associated with every single one we ever owned or leased.  Several of my blog stories have been, or will be, written around one of our cars.  I wanted, however, to write a single documentary story that would list every vehicle Kim and I have owned in our adult lives.  That doesn’t sound too exciting, does it?  I’ll try to spice it up where I can but if for nothing else, this story is at minimum, for me (as are all of my stories).  For if I didn’t enjoy reading what I’ve written, then writing these would be a horrible waste of time.  Time is what we have to make love and memories.  Love and memories take us further than our cars. Continue reading

Coin Collecting – Once a Collector, Always a Collector

The infamous Whitman Folders

The infamous Whitman Folders

In My First Car Was Really a Tank (read me), I spoke about trading in a coin collection at Frederick’s Coin Shop so that I could have money to buy a part for an old car.  When I was a very young boy, my dad had a small coin collection and he got me started by buying me a new Whitman Lincoln penny coin folder.  Whitman folders were ‘the’ folder for collecting coins (and I assume they still are).  Continue reading

Meet the Parents – Part 2 of 2

This is the exciting conclusion to last week’s introductory story. (read me)

(Everyone sing with me) Let's all go to the movies

(Everyone sing with me) Let’s all go to the movies

Dinner; all the family was there; Mom (Gerri), Dad (Mel), brothers Scott and Kevin and sister Traci.  I’m not quite sure how Kim prepped her siblings, but they were all kinda’ treating me sort of like Bright Eyes from the Planet of the Apes.  I felt a bit like I was in a cage and was supposed to do something, perhaps entertain.  It was fun being the center of attention, I guess.  Continue reading

Prytania Boys will be Boys – Learning When and when NOT to Fight

I'm certain we were better looking than this motley crew

I’m certain we were better looking than this motley crew

This week’s “Remember the Time” writing theme is about rivalries – a time when I was involved in a sibling or some other type of rivalries.  So I got to thinking about this topic and decided that for the most part, girls have rivalries and boys take more assertive action.  We like order and we like knowing what our place is in the pecking order (read me).  Whether it be a display of superiority on the basketball court or football field or in war, we seem to have a natural tendency towards “settling the matter”.  I’m not saying it’s the best policy – in fact the world would be a much safer place if we all just learned to be a little more introspective like my buddy Emily  (read her) or more ‘live and let live’ like my buddy Kelly, (read her) but we boys are just wired differently than girls.  In the following story I attempt to share a slice of my own experiences with rivalries and fighting while growing up.  Continue reading

How do you Mend a Broken Heart? – You Find The One you were Meant For

Better to leave your heart broken than to hurt yourself trying to fix it

Better to leave your heart broken than to hurt yourself trying to fix it

My wife and I were “destined” to be with each other.  I absolutely know this to be truth.  How do I know?  Well, you will have to stay tuned into my blog to learn as I am slowly making my way into those stories.  Before I posted any Kim tales, I wanted to write all the other childhood girlfriend stories to document my learning experience on the path to finding the love of my life, my wife of 35 year; indeed another childhood sweetheart as well since Kim and I began our journey together during high school.  The story here is of my final love before finally given the opportunity to try to win my future wife’s heart.

At least for a partial time during the school year, I pretty much had a girlfriend in every grade while growing up. Unless we were playing together, I never really knew much of what to do with them though except maybe to carry their books and walk them home. My first real ‘dating’ experience came at the age of 15. Her name was Betty. I met her at the First Baptist Church at one of the junior roller socials we used to have in the gymnasium. A ‘roller social’ was a time where we cleared the gymnasium floor, (which was also the church on Sunday), and we roller skated. It was open to us teenagers and it was a nice way to give us a safe haven to hang out at. Betty had come with a friend and I was immediately attracted to her big brown eyes and pretty face.

Continue reading

Everything Came in a Giant Pot – Dinnertime at Prytania

This is the mob - shortly after getting married. I'm the smug one, top middle.

This is the mob – shortly after getting married. I’m the smug one, top middle.

This is a story about what dinners were like every night for 11 people – 9 kids and 2 adults. At one point 7 of us were teenagers. I mention this early because teenagers eat a LOT of food! Maybe we ought to start with the grocery store before we go to dinner? Mom would go to the grocery store, (Marsh Super Market), and typically at least one of us would volunteer to help out with the shopping. At the mention of a potential trip to the grocery store, the smart kids would immediately duck out, hopefully beyond shouting distance. A ‘volunteer’ was always necessary because groceries would never fit into just one shopping cart.

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My First Steady (or Four Minutes in 12 Year-Old Slow Dance Heaven)

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All of us have lots and lots of regrets in life, lots.  Some are very significant and major life altering events.  Others are tiny moments we wished we had acted differently and we still think about many years after the occurrence.  All of our actions and inaction, however, serve to help form who we are today. Continue reading