Who Me, Nervous?

As sure as death and taxes,
it came around each year…
Girl Scout cookie sales.
Time to don my uniform
and hit the pavement.

Oakley Lane had seven houses
on each side of the street.
I started at the bottom and
worked my way up the hill.

My strategy was simple…
smile and hope for the best.

In the 1950’s, there was only
one variety of cookie to sell…
no Thin Mints or Shortbreads.

It was vanilla and chocolate
sandwich cookies, period.
If that didn’t tantalize their
taste-buds, I was doomed.

I trudged from house to house,
secretly hoping no one would
answer when I rang the doorbell.

Better yet, if a Girl Scout emblem
sticker was on display I figured I
could skip that house, as it signaled
they had already done their civic
duty by purchasing cookies.

After what seemed an eternity
of sweating bullets, I finally
arrived back home.

I had survived another outing.

The Fuller Brush man covering
our neighborhood didn’t need to
worry. His job was safe, as I was
definitely not cut out for sales.


Inspired by Daily Prompt – Nervous

Repurposed California Job Case


The California Job Case provided a way to store
movable type used in letterpress printing.

It contains 89 compartments where specific letters,
numerals, symbols, spaces and punctuation were

The case was arranged according to the frequency
of use of the letters and characters so as to make
typesetting more efficient.

As part of Typography class in the School of
Journalism, I actually learned how to set type
by hand using the California Job Case.

We have repurposed one of these cases to display
a variety of collectibles, which fit nicely in the
different compartments.scan0405

Weekly Photo Challenge: Repurpose




Call Me Old-Fashioned (WPC)


Nothing gets me in the holiday spirit
like pulling out my Christmas card list,
gathering up the stamps and address labels,
spreading my cards and envelopes on the table
and sitting down to send personal greetings
to friends and relatives.

When I was growing up in the 1950’s, we
always had a family Christmas card each
year. The cards traveled far and wide to
hundreds of people. There was a large
basket with holiday themed decorations
to hold the stacks of cards we received.

While I send far fewer cards today, I still
look forward to hearing back from people
and reading their notes scribbled inside.


WPC:  It’s Not This Time of Year Without….

I Owe You One, Bro

I was never much of
a science or math buff.
I made a point of meeting,
rather than exceeding,
credit hour requirements.

With algebra and plane
geometry under my belt,
I steered clear of calculus
and trigonometry.

In the science realm, physics,
chemistry and astronomy
incorporated way too much
math to suit me, so I selected
biology, instead.

The study of plants and
animals seemed pretty benign
at first glance.

But when it came time to wield
our trusty scalpels to
dissect insects, worms and
a frog, I was aghast.

They expected me to TOUCH
those nasty things?

Worse yet, we had to collect
our own insects to dissect.

Fortunately, my brother
was enamored with
all things biological at the time.
He eagerly volunteered
to assist in securing the
required specimens.

Off we headed to the playground
at Tillman Elementary School,
which was surrounded by fields
of tall grasses and weeds.

In no time flat, we had
jars full of insects
floating belly up in alcohol.
We headed home with
our stash.

By the time we reached
the front door, my brother’s
face was red and itchy.
In short order, his eyes
were swollen shut.

We learned later
the field was full of goosefoot
and he had suffered
an acute allergic reaction
to the pollen.

My brother paid the price
for my class project.

I felt ALMOST as bad for him
as the dead bugs.


Happy 70th Birthday!