Old naval air navigator, broadcaster, newsman, code monkey, field engineer and elections iT, the last career as it's labelled in history. What really 'pops' are recent adults that survived hurricane Sally, the flu and graduated do keep it interesting to an old man living the dream with nearly wornout ankles from decades of chasing fuzzy balls as my old man called them. He thought it sacrilege to quit baseball since I didn't have polio nor my brother the all-star. We laughed together a couple of years later after a juniors tournament in Vicksburg #perspectives
Lots and lots of tennis back when minor sports in college gave full rides for most of the team. Working full time at night behind a microphone queuing records taking call-in requests news and weather was not work but did require balance after production room duties with ad sales. Never played the big time fuzzy circuit but the satellites were a blast in Europe. Johnnie mac playing on court two was a treat in the sixteen nationals at river hills club in ritzy north jackson Mississippi in the 70s. Winning a scratch tournament a couple of years earlier gave a greater prize, a personal lesson from Ken Rosewall & UCLA phenom Billy Martin, really special, every year when the WCT tour came to the coliseum. The movie the help filmed in Jackson was quite accurate about the class structure in that part of the capital city. On the south side, being a Southwest Guide paperboy really let us meet dozens of animals and neighbors. We thought it was odd the well-to-do in north Jackson didn't let their dogs run free and learn everyone's personality and smell, then again one grandma was of like mind. Swanky homes in a trio of neighborhoods were even larger, actual mansions at the edge of the route. Friendly dogs roamed most of our streets meeting, greeting and smelling old & new friends along with other dogs. Back in those days you knew everyone's family 10 or 12 houses down either side of your own home plus across the street and their family cats, dogs and one lady with ferrets, kids joked she made mink jackets out of them but she was a really nice widow that let all comers play fubble roughhouse football on her perfectly manicured lawn while sipping tea at her front window. Inside and outside dogs have different temperaments usually confused when neighbors opened the door for their newspaper. Dog encounters every day, along with foreign pets sometimes lost or family visiting neighbors. The dog catcher was a villain to all the kids knowing the dog was likely not far from home and especially villainous when we'd offer to take it home. The route was eventful since we put the papers in a bag then on everyone's doorknob if they didn't answer the bell on a dozen streets in the suburbs. Rich & poor in different neighborhoods plus a new 2 story apartment complex built where there use to be the most beautiful mimosa forest with a 12 foot canopy extending over a hundred yards in every direction. Out in the country on the farm was a different world of no appliances except a pedal driven sewing machine to patch up utility britches, overalls or make dresses curtains blankets or anything else imaginable. Visiting relatives there, or at the very well-to-do grands, every weekend and hearing great grandparents from the 1800s made a lot of memories about living country kind of contentment in tin roof shacks. Huge gardens, ponds, a deep creek, swamps and the big black river plus a host of animals from chickens, pigs, milk cows, heard cows, horses and ornery mules that pulled logging or red sand from a pit we'd frequent for dirt clod fights, the sand was more forgiving. Hitched up mules to wagons every few weeks for a bumpy ride to the country store for baking powder, cornmeal, flour and sugar later on since it was cheap and sweet and a lot less work than sugarcane. Flour and cornmeal were luxuries grandma reminded us, your uncles are out there plowing and planting cotton so you can have some of these biscuits and store bought molasses. My brother and I used to joke that biscuit fights would be as bad as using rocks. The Blackburn molasses was softener but tossup to Kraft corn syrup visually till overwhelming sweetness converted boys back to molasses. Made the old folks chuckle. Mom said that's why her biscuits are so good cause my momma's are so bad. Mules pulled many a plow trailed by plenty of sweaty sunned leather red farm hands with no gloves. Got the tractor since all but the youngest uncle were drafted or enlisted, mama sent cityslicker bro and I to the boonies to fill the void, learned a lot. As uncles returned dogs greeted them back with glee but not before disbelief in uniform and odd smells. Big sister wouldn't let the first uncle back from Vietnam in the house before stripping butt naked and being sprayed down out back with a garden hose. Funny doesn't capture the hilarity to us kids at the time. We did roll down all the windows on the ride back home from the airport, laughing till we had hiccups and still giggling peeyoo. He just laughed till he got them too adding, I jumped on that airplane as soon as they said we got more room, we all smelled like this right out of the fields. Driving mom's siblings back to the farm over the years was met with hugs and tears. Dogs too, but they took guard duty seriously for strangers and trespassers while friendly to folks they knew.. Common back then for any stranger was to stay in the car then roll down their window to let you know their business #homesecurity
Many times they had to shout over the ruckus. Grandpa took pleasure in not calling off the dogs and would just wave if he didn't feel they were worthy of his time and let the dogs do the judging. He'd say most of em are carpetbaggers or snake oil salesmen. Back in the city dogs provided neighborhood watch around the clock between scruffs about peeing on another's turf, usually a new dog in suburbia. But dogs had friends and even those that were edgy knew their pecking order just like chickens, no real fights just domination till concession. There were some dangerous dog fights amongst contenders during mating season. It was considered common courtesy to keep your b**** fenced in if she was in heat, btw b**** was a commonly used word heard in the nonderogatory fashion on farms referring to a female dog otherwise a fighting word according to mom. Even I wasn't dumb enough to try to break up a country dog fight when a wanderer came around. Back in the neighborhood moms would phone each other because they knew local dogs and theirs if one was on the loose, dog fights. Breaking those up was probably stupid, but they were predictable when my girl got loose. Here at home, Crazy mazy fits her temperaments, glad she and daughter Lilly are here, yes German shepherds do shed a lot.
Feral kitties abandoned at my door were an adventure. And it had been a month since the vet said they were about a week old. Well fed and feral, maybe mom came back but a coyote has been seen nearby lately #nature
Pleased to have made the right decision of a lifetime when it was going to be mom's final days or a paycheck before the big show in 2020.
Spirit is challenged when the mind is confused, until they're in sync to focus or just take it all in #phaneron
iubentium from the redneck riviera.