Friday, June 18, 2010

Flashback Friday # 5 ~ Von, my first friend

I am preparing for jail again. Could be up to a six week sentence. Probably Tuesday I will let you know when. In other words I'm pretty busy right now.

Things are looking pretty good, I found out today they have wireless in the entire prison. And the food is always good. Click here for viewing the Sample Menus.

Health Update:
I am feeling better now a week after having four teeth pulled. I'm not sure how many will go back in. There are four on my temporary partial. There was already one missing so that makes five gone. Four new ones??

The missing number 13:
This is # 13 for Linda but only # 5 for me. You see I will never catch up.

That number 13 reminds me of the tests I gave in college. I used a computer test maker. Some of the questions came from the text writers, others were my own. I always had the computer make me two scrambled versions with the same questions, an "A" and a "B" version.

Then each test was numbered so that I could do inventory to make sure none came up missing. When the number 13 was to come I would change it to 43 just in case some student who got that one was superstitious.

Word I learned today: Oniomania.
Definition: "Oniomania is the psychiatric term for compulsive shopping, or shopping addiction. People with oniomania shop on impulse as a way ..." (link for more) The article didn't say whether or not they are called oniomanias but I think they are. I.e. they are people who 'shop til they drop.'

Now Flashback Friday:
Linda's orders are: "Possible topics this week: Who was your first friend? Did you have lots of friends when you were growing up or just one or two close friends? Share memories from your childhood friends ... Do you still keep up with your childhood friends today? She had a little more too and you can read them on her site. On her site you can also find other nice stories about others' relatives. Just click here on the button to the right.

Dog at our Levanto, Italy hotel:

As noted in the blog post title above, Von was my first friend. Von was always with me. Von was there before I could even remember. Von went everywhere that I would go.

Von was a dog, a German Shepherd. I don't remember when Dad got him. He may have had him before he and Mom married, which was a year and nine months before I was born. He is always in the family pictures and never did I see one of him as a pup.

Since both Mom and Dad have died (1999--age 88--and 2007--age 97) as have all my aunts and uncles I don't see how we can ever know. Too bad there isn't such a thing as 'Dog Census.' Or 'Pet Census.'

I remember two things about Von very clearly. A few other things were common talk about the dog. He was almost as popular as is my dog now, Adi (link to Adi's meme).

The first thing I remember was the time he bit my cousin, Jean. The threshers were at our farm that day and all the kids who were too young to help in the threshing or build the straw stack would play. Most of those kids were cousins. I can't remember one who wasn't.

Anyway, we were playing a tag game that day. This game was played a little differently than the traditional tag game. Maybe we made up our own rules. I would have been too young to help in that.

So I was the culprit or escaped sheep or whatever. The object was for the rest of the group to catch me. The one person who did the catching won. I don't know who the loser was. All I can remember about that is that they all were hollering and chasing me.

Since I was to run away as fast as I could, Von joined in. He actually ran interference for me. When he thought Jean would catch me he got upset and bit her. No one caught me, the game was over. I think he bit her pretty hard, on the arm I think. So she went into the house for help. That got Von in trouble but I don't know how much. I don't think they struck him.

I don't think he ever bit another person. But he sure could scare away the traveling salesmen.

The other time I remember well was when Von died. We were playing in the corral on a hot day. Von was old, very old. And he was slow. When I came out of the corral, probably for eating a snack lunch, Von didn't follow me. He stayed out in the corral. And he died there in the hot sun out in the corral.

My fear to this day is that he could not jump over the half gate that we came in over. Then I will think that I should have watched and waited for Von to come in. That way if it was that he couldn't get over the gate I could have helped him.

Probably that wasn't the problem. Von didn't die by the gate. He died out in the middle of the corral where we were last playing. Poor dog. He may have had a heat stroke. What was the problem I won't know. I just know that I left him out there by himself.

Until school, all my friends were cousins or some of the Morrow (Cliff was a tiny kid when I left home) or Hale kids. They were friends of Mom and Dad.

My first friend outside of cousins was girl in the first grade with me. Mom held me back to wait for her so I would have someone else in my grade. I will call her "L".

That wasn't too good a deal because "L" left for parochial school in the third grade. I never did have anyone else in grade with me until high school. I liked "L" a lot, almost like maybe 'puppy love.' She died young and I think I never saw her before her death.

I did once write a poem about her. It is now on my other blog, To All the Girls I've Loved Before. Here goes, it's short--the second verse is about "L" and me:

Fading Memories of Two Special Girls

some memories fade
barely recall Sat night baths
with my little sis


some thoughts can recall
show me yours I'll show you mine
saith first grade girl friend

Copyright © 2009 Jimmiehov.
All Rights Reserved

Lois, my sister, came next after Von. I have written much about her on this blog. My world expanded in high school where I had three in that class for the first two years.

When I finished the country high school and went to high school in town my world expanded almost exponentially day by day. I don't keep up with any classmates either except when visiting Tekamah, Nebraska. There were too many, 48, in my graduating class for keeping up with. A few may read my blog? And a few of us have died but not many.

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Bicycle for two — Ruby (Red) Tuesday

I have to confess, this bicycle might not be for two. We found it parked beside our hotel in Levanto, Italy (Link: Mrs. Jim in picture at Levanto). But it reminded me of the bike that my sister and I shared. It was a girl's bike, a pre-WWII Elgin, sold by Sears Roebuck.

Dad ordered it from the catalog. I was really excited when he said I could come with him to go down and get it at the railroad depot. I still remember that and helping to put it together. Ours was blue, not red. But it was a real pretty one. My sister, Lois, still has it in her garage or basement. She is the designated keeper.

I was allowed to ride it to school where I was to be in the first grade. The seat would not adjust down low enough for me to get on so Dad made a lowering seat holder. It was made of a steel rod bent down about six inches and then extended in front like a hook to place the seat onto it.

Since Lois was five years younger than it was, we had to take turns after she was in the second grade. Lois started the first grade when she was four. That was way to young to ride a bike on the roads for a whole mile, up hill and down hill, so she had to walk that first year. Unless I took her on the carrier which I often did.

Added notes:
1. As those commenting noted, people in general were very poor back in those days. I don't know how we managed a new bike, there must have been a very good corn crop that year. I never had a tricycle nor did I have an electric train. Lois and I shared many items. Mom made most of our clothes from feed sacks.
2. If some of you are older and have forgotten how to ride a bicycle, Dr. Jim has addressed the problem of having to relearn this vital skill. Please click here.

Click on the Ruby Tuesday button for Mary's Ruby Tuesday post list
of other interesting RED finds today.
Mary is in charge there, you can see more or post your own from there

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