My Threads of Life – Maybe we are all Connected

11/22/63

11/22/63

In this story (link) I wrote a funny tale of how for a brief moment I thought I might be blood related to my wife.  It’s a funny joke sometimes shared amongst us ‘Hamiltuckians’ that we’re all related to each other and it’s appropriate that at the time of this release, I am spending time with Kim’s family, celebrating her mom’s birthday.  Perhaps Kim and I are not blood related, but there definitely are a lot of strings connecting our paths.

Continue reading

Music to Our Ears – Joe Could Sleep ANYWHERE!

Joe surrounded by his little girls

Joe surrounded by his little girls

My stepfather Joe could sleep anytime and anywhere.  I used to think that was a special skill.  Now that I’m older, I realize that it’s an acquired skill given to father’s as they are beaten down by years of sleepless nights and endless days.

Eaton’s Hamilton Inn – Friend to the Brady Bunch

Sardine Mobile

Sardine Mobile

John Eaton of Hamilton, Ohio and the Hamilton Inn.  I couldn’t find him in Wikipedia.  I also couldn’t find him or his inn in any of the Internet historical sites.  They might be there, but my exhaustive ten minute search turned up a big fat goose egg.  For several decades though, he was a successful businessman in Hamilton, Ohio and for many years a friend to my mom, and therefore friend to our Brady Bunch family.

Continue reading

The Coolest Snow Day Ever – Hamilton, the City of Ice

A Kid's Dream Come True

A Kid’s Dream Come True

We transferred to California in 2004.  We left a house in Ohio which we sold for $200k and felt pretty good about the sale.  What a shock it was when we arrived here for our house hunting trip!  Holy cow, nothing had prepared us for the price war going on in the Sacramento area.  Keep in mind, this was right smack in the middle of the giant bubble that was building in the housing market.  The bubble was one part of it.  The other part was not apparent yet.  Every house, almost every house we looked at was priced a good two and a half times the equivalent house in Ohio.  What the heck – how many doctors and lawyers could there possibly be here!?

Rainy Days & Mondays in Junior High Chorus

When it's time to change, you've got to rearrange

When it’s time to change, you’ve got to rearrange

Back in my junior high school years, there were only two kinds of boys – those who sang in the junior high chorus and those who considered themselves too cool to sing in the junior high chorus.  I wasn’t yet at the ‘I’m too cool’ stage of teenagedom and I’ve always loved singing, so on to the junior high chorus it is!  Besides, taking chorus meant that we didn’t have another class where we had to take a written test.  Continue reading

Do Deer Bite? Only if you try to Take Away Their English Muffins

Pete's son Tony, Pete, Steve, Me, Mike

Pete’s son Tony, Pete, Steve, Me, Mike

Frugality is founded on all riches having limits – Burke

I’ve written a few times recently about my having to visit our house in Phoenix.  Soon it will become our home away from snow.  Until then, when it’s my turn to visit, I like to eat out of the freezer.  I absolutely cannot stand to throw away food so I take it upon myself to eat the frozen leftovers from previous visits.  I don’t think ‘normal people’, (people who aren’t the finance person in the household), appreciate what a burden it is to always be mentally calculating the future value of waste or unnecessary spending (transportation spending can be the worst).  I’d rather have money to do things, take nice vacations.

Continue reading

The Death of a Rat helps a Cat – Other Pets in my Life

I wonder what the poor cats are doing?

I wonder what the poor cats are doing?

As I sit here beginning the writing of this  tale I am in our Phoenix house.  It was my turn to visit and oversee a project.  This time it was the replacement of kitchen counters.  2016 should prove to be a big year of change for us as we plan to sell our CA house on our own, transport a POD to Ohio and pull a trailer to Phoenix.  We hope by the end of the year we are set up for a snowbird lifestyle in our retirement.

Continue reading

Double Decker Busses, Billy Jack and Flubs – Summers in Hamilton

There's not going to be a damn thing you can do about it

There’s not going to be a damn thing you can do about it

Even in Ohio, summers can get very warm.  The Cincinnati area gets its fair share of humidity so when you grow up without air conditioning in the early 70’s, you’re scratching around for quarters so you can get into the movie theater.  Moms like this plan too since it gets the annoying kids out of her hair – maybe she didn’t want A/C.  One day in 1971, we went to see Billy Jack, (I think the group was Me, Tommy, Rich, Diane and someone else).  The Cinema West would let you stay indoors there for as many times as you wanted to hear Coven sing out One Tin Soldier so when after the first viewing we saw the lighted Second National Bank sign read 105 degrees, we all knew we were gonna’ get to see Billy take his right foot and whop Posner on that side of his face, (again and again).

I was 13 that year, Diane and I were summer lovers (link).  It was a great summer.  We all had summer passes to the local community swimming hole, Wilson Pool, located directly next door to the Soapbox Derby track.  Most hot days we’d all pick up and walk down to spend the day at the pool.  The pool was generally well staffed and taken care of in those days.  It was a great place for us pre-high school kids to hang out at. Continue reading

Skating the Circles of Life

Ah, the familiar skating sign in Hamilton

Ah, the familiar skating sign in Hamilton

I’ve written a few stories that mentioned our local west side Hamiltucky skating rink.  The stories mentioning early interactions with my wife and with my then best friend Terry represent important memories for me.  If I’m comparing to today’s teens, for a lot of us high schoolers, the skating rink was our ‘mall’.  It was THE place for social interaction, whether it be friendship, love or a number of any other dramas.  Friday and Saturday nights had to be spent at the rink if you wanted to get away from the boring adults and wanted to be a part of that weekend’s kid drama.