Frank Fax Facts
Volume XVI, No. 23
Sunday, August 29, 2010
My week began early Monday with my semi-annual meeting with Dr. Parrott, my cardiologist. He gave me excellent marks on all counts and said I should be around for a long time. I countered with the thought that as long as I can be independent and able to drive, that would be wonderful. But like most people my age, I dread the thought of being unable to take care of myself, and (worst of all) ending up in a “facility”.
I took my car in to Coastal Ford, Wednesday, for a brake overhaul. I have to use both feet to drive, since having my stroke, and it\\that does car brakes in. It’s just one of the joys of growing senile. I asked how long the last job had lasted, and was pleased that I had gone 14 months between the expensive procedures.
“If a dog jumps in your lap, it is because he is fond of you, but if a cat does the same thing, it is because your lap is warmer."
---Alfred North Whitehead
The Green Zone (sony)
Matt Damon is a maverick army man in Iraq, trying to prove that there were no weapons of mass destruction. He has been sent on three missions to seek and destroy these mythical weapons, but finds that Intelligence has sent him on hopeless wild goose chases. Greg Kannear) is the man from Central Intelligence who is fighting and thwarting his efforts. (Both Oscar nominated stars are fantastic in their respective roles) I stay away from movies about this war, since I have been against it from day one, but this is a gripping and exciting battle from start to finish. Damon is fast becoming one of the best male stars in Hollywood, in my opinion. (***)
The Young Victoria (British)
I cannot vouch for the authenticity of this gorgeous film (I am not a student of British history) but it certainly seemed right to me. The story begins with the death of the King, who was her uncle. She is next in line for the throne and accepts this fact with calmness and authority. When she first meets Albert, she does not like him; but she grows to adore him. The film ends with her giving him the happy news that he is about to be a father for the first time. The production is reminiscent of the grand old Masterpiece Theater. It is that good. (***)
(Song of Russia) or
A Chicken Fry for Doc
When I tried to remember how the evening had gone, it all seemed a blur.
“Song of Russia” had been a total waste of time, although I did enjoy seeing Susan Peters again. I agreed with George about Robert Taylor’s wooden performance as a symphony orchestra conductor, even though, at that time. The only orchestra performances I had ever seen were in the movies.
There had been no stragglers at the theater, which meant that we were able to leave immediately when the one showing was over. That was shortly after nine o’clock. Mary Jane Wright had walked all the way from her house way our in the woods somewhere, and had sat through the last part of the film. She made no comment other than to say that music “shore was loud!”
Jug Morgan had driven up in his father’s old pickup about 8:00 and sat parked inside it in front of the theater. He said that his sister, Marguerite had everything ready for the cooking to take place whatever time we arrived. He also added that she had made a pot of baked beans. I figured that meant that she had opened a couple of cans of pork and beans and put them in a pot to be hung over the cooking coals, or worse still, eaten stone cold. He was a notoriously awful cook, according to her own family.
Doc and Essie Mae had driven up in time to see the movie, and Essie Mae had brought two more friars, all cleaned and cut up ready to be fried. Of course we were all thrilled to see Doc, after over three years. He actually looked as if he had put on a little weight. He had always been paper-thin when he and Sammy did such fascinating things as going frog gigging together. We didn’t ask whose car it was, but it certainly helped in getting us all transported in the opposite direction to the Morgan’s house.
I was eager to see Marguerite again. I had seen her several times in the past year, on my brief visits to see Anna. Everything seemed to have changed in the small town I had lived in for ten years, but Marguerite Garlette never changed. She still greeted any of our family with, “Hello, adorable!” and Anna was always “Nanny Gorgeous!” She seemed truly to love us all, and it made me feel good just to be around her.
The Morgan’s home was quite a distance from the town, but I always found their yard especially interesting: thee was a well which had the usual concrete base studded with oyster shells. This made for a totally different looking well. Then there was the vine. I never found out what kind of vine it was, but it was yards long, dried and painted to look exactly like a huge snake! But the thing that made this yard so appealing to me, was its white bridge over a gully on the side of their house: It looked just like those arched bridges I had seen in pictures of Japanese gardens.
But all I can recall of the actual party was that all of the food was wonderful and that, as usual, I had eaten too much. Anna and Helen had done the actually frying of all of that chicken. The biggest success of the meal was some spectacularly delicious fried apple tarts that Anna had cooked. I ate three of them myself and had to remind myself that there were others there who might like to taste them. The baked beans were excellent and there were three different potato salads.
There was a lot of “Auld Lang Syne” wishing those loved ones who could not be with us were able to come home soon. But we did not linger on the unhappy thought that they were absent; instead, rejoicing that so many of our good friends had been there together that night/
I got too sleepy to stay up, so Jug took me out to their truck where I slept until the party broke up
I awoke in a strange bed: and I do mean “strange”! Anna was up and putting on a small metal pot for coffee. “Mornin’',” I said, sleepily.
“Well, did you get any sleep at all?” she asked. I looked around and realized that I was on a pallet on the kitchen floor in her apartment. This, in itself, was amazing: I had never tried to sleep on a pallet: someone else always volunteered before.
“Yeah- I died!” The party of the night before had finally broken up about one in the morning! It was the latest I had stayed up since the night Daddy and Josephine had returned home from their summer in Sicily,
“Well! You’re finally awake” Helen said, as she walked in from the bathroom,
“I’ll have some breakfast ready in just a few minutes,” Anna promised.
“Girl, we don’t have time. That bus leaves in less than an hour!”
‘Besides, after all we ate last night, I might not get hungry for a week!” she said.
“Well, I will!” I grumbled.
:Don’t worry, Si\. I’ll put the leftover chicken and potato salad in a box for you to take home with you.”
“Go on and wash up while the bathroom is free,” Helen advised me.
I got up and pulled my wrinkled clothes on, then walked out into the big strange-looking hallway. Anna was one of three roomers that shared this single bath room, so you can imagine how busy it stayed, But we were all used to having to wait eternities to use a bathroom with nine of us having a single facility all the time we had lived in Richton. Those years we had lived in the house Daddy had bought and sold, were made a little easier by the property’s having an outside toilet. Never had any of us ever considered what a luxury even that primitive little shed would prove to be! Mama never wanted any outside help when in charge of our living quarters, but when she had a tumor on her right wrist, she grudgingly allowed Daddy to hire a woman to help with her chores. She was a huge friendly person named Della, and since she used the outside toilet, we began calling her Big Della and the “facility” Little Della.
When I was finished with my hurried up use of the bathroom, I found Helen waiting to dash to Lott’s Drug Store from whence the Gulf Transport bus left.
“Hurry up! I surely do not want to miss that bus!”
“What difference would that make?” I did not think neither Mama nor Daddy would be upset if we came on a later bus.
“Listen, he’s not as strict on you as he has always been on me, and I promised faithfully that I’d be back in time for him to have his afternoon off.”
I realized that she was right and didn’t argue any further/
Anna insisted on going to see us off. You’d have thought we were going to the North Pole and would not see her for months the way she behaved. She actually had tears in her eyes when she kissed me goodbye
Our bus was right on time, which meant we should be able to catch the 11:30 bus from Laurel to Ellisville. But we’d have to “shake a leg” as Anna always put it, in order to make the connection,