Tuesday, December 23, 2008

HW MELTON


When I was in Jr. High, one late afternoon, my brother brought home a friend for supper. His name was H. W. Melton. I remember him having darkish hair cut in a high and tight, a few freckles across the bridge of his nose, a shirt too small, pants too short, and very very skinny. Now, before you go thinking I’m some kind of snob, I was quite a nerd myself and not that rich…and I knew it. I didn’t look down on him at all, but something about his shy demeanor let me know he was from the other side of town. But what I remember the most about HW was how he ate.
My mother of 5 kids was a pretty busy lady and cooking supper wasn’t on her list of favorite things to do, and eating what she cooked wasn’t one of our favorite things to do.
It seems we had pot roast a lot…we always called it pot roast back then, and it was always cooked with carrots and potatoes. I got so tired of pot roast that I could hardly stand to eat it. The only thing worse than pot roast was when it became stew the next day.
Anyway, that crisp evening Bobby and HW came in after football practice and Bobby invited him to stay for supper. It was late fall and the air was pretty chilly. HW didn’t have a coat and his pants left a little bit of his leg showing at the bottom. When suppertime came, he crowded around our table with us and I watched in amazement as he ate two bowls of stew in about two minutes and then asked for more. I was astonished that a: he could eat something so hot so fast, and b: that he actually seemed to like that dreadful stew.
Today, I realize…he was hungry. He was poor and I’m pretty sure he walked home to the other end of town that night shivering all the way. It made me feel sad.
I’ve thought about HW so many times over the years. From time to time I tell my children what I call the “HW Melton Story.” The HW Melton Story is about the same every time I tell it and it serves as a lesson to just be grateful for what you have. My children roll their eyes every time I tell it because it’s usually connecting with them and their lack of gratitude.
I would like to believe that today HW is a successful and secure businessman with a house full of happy kids and a nice hot meal fixed by his pretty wife….sitting down each night to eat in front of a big roaring fire in front of his great big rock fireplace, with pants that go all the way to his socks.
HW…I hope you have that…wherever you are, I hope you do. And I wish that when you moved away and I never saw you again, that somehow you could know that I’ve used you as an example in life, many times. Don’t be snotty. Don’t turn your nose up at supper your mother worked hard to cook and your dad worked hard to pay for. Don’t be afraid to show hunger. And most of all, whistle when you walk home on a cold autumn night because mostly cold is only a state of mind.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

JIMMY YANG WANG



















Twinkle lights under 3 inches of snow. Blazing Pinon Fire. Bottle of Nobilo. Brian showing Betty all of her Christmas presents--modeling her hot pink tutu included. Jimmy Yang Wang busting out of a full Nelson from a no-name Atilla the Hun Wannabe with sequin camo and fluff boots on the new 52” plasma. Winter?... Priceless!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

BEHIND THE GREEN DOOR


Behind the green door…..didn’t know until I googled it…(dontcha just love google?) that Behind the Green Door is a porno flick…

Not so in my house…all adult activity is above bored….oops. Freudian Slip….

This summer I painted my front door a mix between green and blue over the existing color and ended up with somewhat of a turquoise crackled over red and wallah….my new favorite color.

Really, I read somewhere years ago that one was supposed to paint your front door your very most favorite color of all time no matter what that color is, and the reason is this….it’s the first thing you see when you walk up to your house from say…

A hard day at work
A fun day of golf
A scary day at the doctor
A long day away
Or leaving your last baby at a college far far away….

Well…you get the idea…and so that color, your favorite of all time, is meant to welcome you home, to greet you in style, to say a great big HELLO TO THE HOUSE, your house, your porch, your front door…and all that lies behind and within it. Which in my case….is turquoise… and may or may not be…boring!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

THE BIRD HAS THE WORD


I once had a dove that came to my pond and he was Chris Laddoux. His song was so apparent in his little dove voice…(there was no mistaking it)….Chris Laddooooux…Chris Laddooooux…When I was telling one of my friends about him she informed me that Chris Laddoux was in fact…dead…ok…so it was Chris Laddoux coming to my pond and as dove angel… what’s so bizarre about that?

He was only here that one summer, but I have witnesses!
Which brings me to this summer and my pair of peacocks.
My across the street neighbor kids named them Lola and Mr. Cutie Pie. Peacocks can live over 70 years and I’ve read, mate for life. In my yard..they might as well. There are no others besides them.

Lately Mr. Pie has taken to roaming outside the backyard. He flies (if you can call his cumbersome hop, skip, and jump, “ flight”) over the house, into the alley, into the front yard, and has even begun to wander down the street. Lola does not. She stays put…stable, strong, predictable….there and happy to be.

But when Mr. Pie. wanders, she calls for him-- it’s really not hard to imagine her words. They go something like this.

“Come home,” she coos. Mr. Pie answers from the alley…”I will.” “Now”says Lola. He says “I will”…she says “I want you to come home,” and in just a few minutes…here he is, back, and pecking the grass right beside her. She has gently grabbed him from beyond. Their calls to each other are enchanting.

Perhaps Cutie suffers from wanderlust…maybe he doesn’t know a thing I know as an outsider looking in.

 The “outside the boundary animals” do not serve his best interest
 She is the only peacock around for many many miles ~he better be dang grateful he has her
 In his backyard, the grass is very green and there are peanut treats and cheerios to boot
 Loving one peacock all your life is a very very worthy goal…if you can do it, you are a fine bird
I admire her. She is a regal and beautiful creature who has taught me more since she’s come into my life than many other things. Patience. Humility. Cajoling. Confident and strong enough to say…”I’m for you and you’re for me…so get on back to where you belong…NOW!”

Dontcha just love nature?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

YOU KNOW WHEN YOUR NEST IS EMPTY




  • ...when your dishwasher has 8 wine glasses

  • 2 knives to cut up fruit to put in your wine glasses so they'll be festive

  • one baby bottle brush used for cleaning mushrooms

  • and one pan for your One Pan Dandy Supper..with mushrooms~
One Pan Dandy
1 pan
1 pound of some kind of meat
1 package of fancy noodles
1 thing of some kind of sauce...soup? sour cream? wine?
1 lid
and don't forget the clean mushrooms!
Fry, simmer, stir, blend, and serve...with a nice glass of crisp white with 2 fresh strawberries and a little umbrella if it's Friday.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

FRIDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL


Friday night football is big stuff in the Texas Panhandle. It’s the biggest baddest funnest stuff there is. It drives the economy, the social circles, and the future of many.
I was a cheerleader as a senior when my team went to the state play offs…the only time ever. Coach Sherwood changed our colors from “stately purple” to “just try and stop me lavender”. What a brave thing he did. We played well into December and let’s just say that little lavender cheerleading outfits aren’t knit for frosty weather!
I do have fond memories, but my Friday nights have evolved and I’m glad about it. When my brothers graduated, I was so thankful that I didn’t HAVE to go to the games anymore. One thing I do miss though, are the smells of cigar and popcorn floating together in the crisp fall air.
Today, Friday night football is still the best, just different--I’m no less a fan. I turn on my TV to Channel 6 where the game is broadcast live from KXDJ. I sit by my backyard pond with my friends who share my fairweather lack of athleticsupportedness, sip a nice glass of Kim Crawford, and listen to the sounds coming from just down the street. The bands playing their fight song when their team scores, the crowd cheering, the bits and pieces of the announcer when the wind turns just right, and a nice fire in the chiminea if the weather justifies. Perfect…a little bit of this, a little bit of that…ah Friday night football--a toasty fire, sauvignon blanc..and TGIF!