Life as we know it
At the Home Division
Wicki-Yah: “Meanwhile, back at the home. . .
“Mother and the lone male in her senior care home are locked in a duel of the wills and won’ts.
“Mother: ‘I heard you sneeze. You need to go to the doctor, like I told you.’
“Housemate: ‘You think I am going to the doctor just because you tell me to? You are not to tell me what to do.’
“Mother, raising her voice: ‘I will tell you what to do. You need to listen.’
“Mother (to me): ‘I told him to go to the doctor, but he didn’t. And now he has a cold.’
“Housemate (to me): ‘Sheesh. That woman is so bossy. I won’t go to the doctor if I don’t want to. Definitely not because she says.’
“Me: ‘Mom, you need to just worry about yourself. Leave him alone.’
“Mom, obviously offended, calls an aide to take her to the bathroom.
“Housemate: ‘That woman is horrible to live with. She is bossy AND nosy.’
“Me: ‘Tell me about it. I lived with her for the first 18 years of my life.’
“Housemate: ‘Didn’t you want to run away from home? If I wasn’t using this walker, I might think about it right now.'”
Our theater of seasons
Thursday-afternoon email from The Doryman of Prescott, Wisconsin: “Subject: National Hysterical Society.
“Will the ‘Death Storm From Hell’ hit us? The last few days have been a blizzard of words. They warn of such impending doom that I’ll be somewhat disappointed if, when I wake up Friday, I’ll be able to see out the windows. (And I’m on the third floor.) That would be awful.
“As a retired person, I love looking out the window at a blizzard.”
The Snowbird pleasures
Or: A sight for sore eyes
Lucky Buck reports: “Flowering bougainvillea, near my apartment in Sarasota.”
Everyone’s a critic!
Baseball Rules Division
The Divine Mum’s Husband writes, of Major League Baseball’s decision to dispense with the throwing of the pitches heretofore needed to accomplish an intentional walk: “Subject: http://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/18737245/mlb-union-agree-get-rid-traditional-intentional-walkwill-use-signal-dugout.
“Not happy about this.
“Why accelerate a game-on-the-line juncture? Most intentional walks are late-inning, tied or one-run games, with runners on second and third, when the defense needs a double play or a force at any base. I say make that juncture last a loooooooooooong time. Get the fans on their feet, see if a pinch-hitter is coming into the on-deck circle, see if a new arm is coming in from the bullpen, see where the defense will play.
“And the pitches are not a given. The pitch could be wild. Intentionally throwing four pitches out of the zone could cause a pitcher to lose command. There is a lot to see about a pitcher while he is throwing intentional balls. Is he rattled? Or does he appear confident he can induce a ground ball to the next batter?
“Finally, are fans really that eager for games to end? I mean, they came to the game, so why would we assume they are all desperate for the good parts to be over so they can go somewhere else? [Bulletin Board says: We will consider that a rhetorical question. We’re not at all certain you want the answer! We certainly don’t.]
“P.S.: And there is this, from the 1972 World Series (!!!), no less, when Gene Tenace calls for a fake intentional ball to Johnny Bench to strike him out and end the inning”:
BULLETIN BOARD SAYS: And while we’re at it . . .
Dumb Customer Jokes
Mrs. Patches of St. Paul: “Whenever my brother (Friendly Bob of Fridley) drives past a college and sees the admissions office, he says he wants to stop and say: ‘Yes, I admit it. I did it!’
“Goofy — but I love him, anyway.”
Keeping your eyes open
Elvis reports: “Elvis has been hiding out at a retreat center. Today as he was cleaning up after himself after breakfast, he noticed that the dishwashing liquid was not the normal everyday Dawn.
“This bottle looked the same, was the same familiar blue color and seemed to work the same. But it was clearly labeled that it was ‘Professional’ Dawn. Plus, it’s not ordinary dishwashing liquid, no sirree! Its ‘manual pot and pan detergent’!
“Wow! Elvis was impressed, as he washed out his coffee cup.”
What’s in a name?
Or: Then & Now?
Red’s Offspring, north of St. Paul, reports: “Subject: Where have all the Georges gone?
“At the latest lunch for my high-school class, George J. and George R. greeted each other warmly. One of them commented that ‘George’ was not a name frequently found among the younger generations.
“In a quiet voice, Bob remarked: ‘They’re not making them anymore.'”
BULLETIN BOARD NOTES: See for yourself at today’s Website of the Day.
Life as we “knew” it
Suz@Como writes: “I am the owner of a small collection (6) of Geography/Social Studies textbooks from the early 20th century. My fascination with these books boils down to the teaching of bigotry and racism.
“I grew up in the ’50s and early ’60s with slightly older than normal parents, born in 1909 and 1920. I started my collection when I was a student at the U of M in 1971. When I read through these books, I have a much better understanding of where my parents’ understanding of the world and its people came from. Over the next several months, I plan to write about these books.
“‘The Earth and It’s People: Lower Book,’ by Wallace W. Atwood and Helen Goss Thomas (Ginn & Company, 1943) is the most recently published of these books. One can hardly turn a page without reading a ‘fact’ which is really someone’s opinion. I caution myself that we cannot make judgments about a historic time based on today’s knowledge and values; however, we surely can conclude these facts were misguided and incomplete.
“One of the first sections of the textbook is about life in the Congo. There is a picture of an elephant in the Congo forest: ‘This African elephant is ugly and dangerous, but the natives are such skillful hunters that they are able to kill a good many of them.’ Both ugly and dangerous are subjective and, in my opinion, did not belong in this book.
“Also, the book teaches, Congo natives are Negros: ‘Their skin looks almost black and their hair is black and curly. We speak of Negros as people of the black race because of the color of their skin. We shall see many more Negros than white people in Belgian Congo, for Africa is the home of the black race.’
“Not much further into the book, we visit an Arab family: ‘Arabs belong to the white race. Their skin is light although their hands and faces are tanned brown by the sun. Their hair is straight.’
“This book goes on to tell us that Europeans and citizens of the U.S are similar. We look alike, dress and behave similarly, and then the book expounds expansively about the differences. Go figure.
“The first things we learn about the Tropical Lands in the warm belt is that they are the home to the yellow-brown race. This includes Central America, South America and the Pacific Islands. People in the Amazon forest have reddish-brown skin: ‘North America and South America are the homelands of the Indians.’ Are the reddish-brown peoples a subset of the yellow-brown peoples? The book never really says.
“There is no mention of Japan, China or India. Of course, there are other omissions, but those three are startling to me. This was published in 1943, so Japan was the enemy. Do we not want to know anything about our enemies?”
And: Know thy “beauty” aids
Raindancer of North Oaks: “You know you’re easily amused when . . .
“The counter where things end up before I take them to the recycling bin was cluttered this morning.
“‘Dear, are you throwing this away?’ I asked, holding up a bottle of Anti-Aging Butter.
“‘Yes,’ my wife replied.
“‘Because it’s old.'”
The Permanent Family Record
Or: Things that can be saved, should be saved, shouldn’t be saved (responsorial)
The Hoot Owl of St. Paul: “The photo at the top of the BB post for February 21, 2017, sent me back in time.
“Kathy S. of St. Paul’s photo, which included a ‘ratty canvas golf bag,’ brought back college memories of many decades past.
“In the public college I attended back in that Mid-Atlantic state, all students were required to take FOUR P.E. courses (and the grades were averaged into our overall G.P.A.!).
“The only sport I had ever excelled at is swimming. But because I already had Red Cross Life Saving and Swimming Instructor certification, I was NOT ALLOWED to take a P.E. course in swimming. Thus, I bumbled my way through eight half-semester courses: archery (had to practice a lot, to be able to hit the target by aiming at the top of a tall tree to the left of the target area); basketball (a deviated septum is the constant reminder of that ordeal); a health course; outdoor camping (hurrah . . . a winner!). Tennis was a disaster until an observant instructor on the court one day noticed that I was looking good but hitting the balls AFTER they went by me. Asked if I’d ever had my depth perception tested, I replied that YES, I’d been told in driver ed in high school that cars would look closer to me than they actually were. Never occurred to me to expand that idea beyond driving. Once I began to hit the tennis ball before it passed my shoulder, I was able to return the serves etc. Whew!
“The two-part course which did me in was Golf/Bowling. Par for golf on the college’s nine-hole course was 32, and 300 is also the top score in duckpin bowling. (The school had a six-lane duckpin-bowling alley, and the smaller pins had to be reset by hand each time a bowler bowled. I was BEST at that task!) No one in my family golfed, so I went to the local course and was allowed to borrow a basic five clubs (putter, 3-iron, 5-iron, 9-iron and a driver) in a ‘ratty old canvas bag!’ Fortunately, there were written exams in both courses about the sports, which I aced. BUT…the humility of my lack of skills will forever be with me. I got 32 in bowling and 142 strokes in golf!
“P.S.: Did I mention that one day, as I was duly practicing, it began to rain and I had no umbrella. I stood under a big tree. Lightning struck nearby, and afterwards I learned that one should NEVER stand under a tree in a thunderstorm.
“P.P.S.: Thus, the origin of my PTSD whenever I see or think of golf or see a photo of a ‘ratty old golf bag.'”
BULLETIN BOARD RECOMMENDS ONE OF THE GREAT SCENES IN GOLF-MOVIE HISTORY (ADMITTEDLY SLIM PICKIN’S — and please do note: THE SCENE ENDS WITH A BIT OF LANGUAGE UNSUITABLE FOR TENDER EARS, OR FOR LOUDLY BROADCASTING ACROSS OFFICE SPACES):
Band Name of the Day: Death Storm From Hell
Website of the Day, recommended by Cee Cee of Mahtomedi: “Subject: Baby Name Voyager.
“Trends in baby names: http://www.babynamewizard.com/voyager#prefix=&sw=both&exact=false