Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My Fellow Writers....

by Jeanne Adams

It's a weird week for me. I don't mean Post-Conference-the Banditas-have-gone-home-Lonliness, I mean general universal weirdness.

Walter Cronkite died.

Its the anniversary of a moon landing.

My Dad turns 90. (Yes, he IS a much older Dad...)

Weird, I tell you. I began looking at famous events and happenings in 1919, in preparation for the big nine-oh birthday celebrations and I am amazed at what's happened in a mere 90 years. I started by looking at what's happened in history in this week in July.

Did you know that today, in 1875, Mark Twain copyrighted The Adventure of Tom Sawyer? Neither did I. Then again, I also didn't know that in this week, in varying years, Penicillin was patented, Louis Pasteur patented a revolutionary process for making better beer, America the Beautiful was copyrighted, and the totally unknown and now long forgotten Emily Tasser patented a new device for raising sunken ships.


Taken all together, I guess it means that to celebrate, we should read Tom Sawyer while drinking a beer, get a pennicillin shot (or eat moldy bread!), sing a favorite American tune and contemplate raising the Titanic. Grins.

They didn't mention the Titanic in the retrospectives on Walter Cronkite, but in watching several of the programs on Cronkite's life, I was humbled by just how much CHANGE has happened. My father wrote his memoirs and reading them is a far better view into the path of global change than any dry history book.

In 1919, 99% of Americans did NOT have a car. A statistic now reversed.

It was the year the pop-up toaster was invented, but 70% of households still were unelectrified. There were only 48 States in the Union and New Mexico and Arizona were brand spanking new to Statehood.

The parachute was invented and successfully tested. Now...who thought this was a good idea in the first place and who was stupi...brave...enough to give it a go?

Prohibition passed, and World War I unofficially ended. Civil War General and President Ulysses S. Grant died.

In an important milestone for writers, the typewriter was invented.

The Senate and House passed the Women's Suffrage Bill, though the offical 19th Amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing the vote didn't pass until 1920.

A plane crossed the Atlantic for the first time.

1919 is the first observation of National Book Week.

US-born Lady Astor became the first female member of the British Parliment.

Weird stuff happened too. A wall of molassas, a veritable "tidal wave" of sugar syrup oozed through Boston, killing 21 people. A dirigible crashed in Chicago. The Philadelphia Phillies beat the then-Brooklyn Dodgers nine-to-nothing, but it took 'em 20 innings to do it. (Before electrified lights on the field! Yikes!) There was plague (influenza, polio), famine, a wave of race riots, and a whole lot of war still going on.

Miracles happened too: postage actually DROPS from three cents to two cents. The Cincinnati reds go from ten and a half games back, to the World Series, and win.

That guy with the parachute actually survived.

When you look at 1919, you can already see the stage being set for the world to begin moving with digital speed. Planes. Lots of trains, mostly steam, but a rare few "new" diesel. And the beginning of the worldwide love of the automobile. And books. Books on life, books on hope, war, disease. In Flanders Fields hit the NYT list. So did Joseph Conrad's Arrows of Gold. Zane Grey hit the charts with Desert of Wheat. In the next decade, it became an almost fifty-fifty split, women to men on the "Chart Toppers" of the New York Times list.

Other than book rankings, it took a while for voting and college and Rosie the Riveter to bring women along with this progress, but in the main, the 20's, 30's and 40's were a blur of change. World War II brought more change and my Dad and Walter Cronkite were both there. Radio tunes everyone in to Korea, TV brings both entertainment and Vietnam into our homes, two Kennedy's assasinated and one wonderful minister named Martin Luther King, after another reformer, was killed as well.

They saw it all.

But good stuff happened too. We landed on the moon too. Global cooling was predicted, then global warming, then mass kill-offs of ocean going creatures but none of that happened, thank goodness.

The massive room-sized computer was invented. (My Dad then ran that silly contest I blogged about before!) Remember punch cards? Now we have pocket sized computers and text friends who live in Tomorrow - think time zones here, people - in real time.

At the end of the twentieth century, my Dad and Walter Cronkite faced a new era. BOTH of them get interested in computers, both men share a love of the new, the fascinating, the changing and improving of the world.

I could go on and on, but you get the idea.

It boggles my mind to think about it. My Dad rode to school on a horse. I drop my kids off in a mini-van. My Dad learned to read, write, and do math, my kids learn all that plus computing and world affairs brought to their living room every night by TV. My kids know about DNA sequencing, something barely dreamed of in 1919.

What an amazing life. What an amazing world.

In looking all this up, and thinking about what it was like for my grandmother and mother, I realized that if a woman in those days, a woman like Mary Roberts Reinhart for instance could pen - literally - a bestseller in 1919, coining the phrase "The Butler Did it!", then I'm not doing too badly in 2009. After all, she couldn't even VOTE and she hit the Times list!

It's a brave new world, guys and dolls. What on Earth (or space!) will it be like in 90 more years? Care to guess? Will it be Jetsons? Will we live on other planets? Will they finally find a cure for the common cold, or cancer?

BTW, tell me too, who's the oldest person you ever met? My father remarried ten years ago. His mother in law lived five years after they married and died at nearly 105.

Weird, I tell ya!

78 comments:

Nancy said...

Prohibition was writer fodder, too, y'know, Duchesse. What a cool post. Lots of great things included.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi Nancy! You're up late too! :> Are you SURE you want that cocky-locky-rooster hanging out at your house?

Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

As to prohibition, it was MAJOR writer fodder. So much of the 20th century was, from war to the Titanic to the moon landings. :>

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Off to dreamland, ladies and gents, now that i've got the post up and the GR settled. Grins.

"Talk" to you (later) in the morning!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Lovely post, Jeanne!

I personally LOVE the year 1919. Why? You ask? Well, that was the year my maternal grandfather, William Sherman Lewis, (we called him grandpa Sherm) returned from serving in WWI and he married my grandmother, (Cindajane Hensley Lewis). Yep...they had several kids, then had mom. And well, the rest is MY history!

And Grandpa Sherm was also the oldest person I ever met or knew. He died just three months before his 100th birthday.

jo robertson said...

Great post, Jeanne. How amazing to have your father still with you and able to have lived through all those changes.

It's certainly true that the micro-chip revolutionized the world as we know it. I saw a documentary once that declared more inventions have occurred since the micro-chip than in all the history of the world prior to that. Absolutely mind-boggling.

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, Nancy.

Hi Jeanne,
Happy Birthday to your Dad. Maybe space travel will be for everyone in the near future. I can't even imagine what new gadgets we might have and how small they'll be.

flchen1 said...

Wow, kind of mind boggling, Jeanne! The oldest people I've met--my great grandmother, who died when she was 101, and my husband's grandfather, who's a pretty famous painter in Taiwan (he's currently 100).

Helen said...

Congrats Nancy enjoy your day with him

Jeanne what an amazing post and a very happy bithday to your Dad. Sadly I lost my Dad when he was 67 very young and my Mum 4 years later when she was 72 but I had two Great grandmothers who lived till they were 94 and my grandmother died 3 days before her 93rd birthday so they are the oldest people I have ever known.

As for what the future holds I do hope they have found a cure for cancer and the common cold and I do think that there will be a lot more space travel but sadly I don't think I will be here to see it.

Have Fun
Helen

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

The oldest person I knew was my ex husband's grandfather, he lived to be 92. My Aunt was the next oldest at 87. She lived the longest of her family.

Deb Marlowe said...

Fascinating stuff, Jeanne! Happy Birthday to your Dad! It's amazing how much change he has witnessed--it does seem like things are happening so fast.

My Great-Grandma was my oldest relative--she lived until 99 years old and made the best chop suey!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Yeah Suz and WOOT on Grampa Sherm making it to nearly 100. In that day and age, it was a real accomplishment to live that long. Especially if you'd been to war, passed through the 'flu zone, and managed to come home again. Bravo Grampa Sherm!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi Jo! It IS mind-boggling. Everthing digital and chipped is pretty wild and you're right, the geometric pace of invention and improvement post-microchip is beyond belief. Still, its some of the odder things, like velcro, that still amuse and amaze my Dad.

He loves computers, so the microchip was like, "okay make it smaller faster" to him, just as much as it was to kids wanting faster smaller games. :>

Velcro, though. Pretty cool.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi Jane! It IS the size thing, isn't it? Think about the difference in size between digital recorders and older tape recorders. Or those room sized computers and an Alphasmart.

Weird.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Wow, Fedora! 100? Is he still painting? Just think, he was born in 1909. Wow.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Awww, c'mon Helen! You never know. They're talking about a Moon/Mars mission now, and its getting a puch in our Congress as a way to reinvigorate invention and the economy. So, you never know, you could live to see space travel! Grins.

So sorry about your folks passing so young, but WOW on your two grandmama's! When I think about all that generation went through, living to be 90 is a HUGE accomplishment, you know?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hi Dianna! That's some pretty good life-spans there. My father's mother-in-law, at the 105 mark, is the oldest I've ever met, obviously, but she was still really sharp in her mind. Isn't that cool?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Mornin' Deb! Wow, 99. And she made Chop Suey? Good stuff. Did she still make it when she was in her 90's? Did she show you how? :>

That's one of my biggest regrets - there are some of my late Mother's recipes I never learned to make.

Joan said...

Morning everyone!

Nancy, you can get the GR to help you get those submissions out :-)

Oldest person, oldest person..hmmmm

Well, as a nurse I've taken care of some pretty spry 100 year olds...Personally, it would be a sweet little lady at my church who I know is about 98.

In 1919 my Daddy was 2 years old! So that was pretty cool.

As to the next 90 years? I believe a LOT of diseases will have found cures. I can't imagine more technology but then....I never saw iPhones coming either :-)

Please God, don't let it evolve to planting those chips in our heads....Star Trek episode 651...not good.

Kirsten said...

Hi Jeanne! Great post, lots of stuff to think about and wonder at. The oldest person I knew was my dh's grandfather. He died a couple of years ago at 98. He was married more than 80 years when he died (I think I blogged about him a while ago). He and his wife (who is still living, BTW!) homesteaded in Colorado, traveling from Old Mexico (what we'd now call New Mexico!) in a COVERED WAGON. Boggles the mind, right? And he was a diabetic, almost died, but they tried an experimental new treatment on him -- injecting him with sheep insulin!

We do have a lot more changes in store for us. My dream is one of a major breakthrough in renewable energy technology. I think the whole planet has its collective fingers crossed for that one.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, you ARE a Trekkie if you can name the episode number, Joanie! (Speaking of things I never saw coming...JT as a Trekkie!)

Like you, I never imagined the iPhone. Didn't get the iPod either. Guess that's why I'm not rich and famous yet. Hahahah!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Wow on the covered wagon, Kirsten. I do remember you mentioning him. It boggles the mind. From covered wagon and the "wild" west to iPhones in one century. Amazing.

Like you, I'm hoping for some of those energy technologies to blossom. I'm all over the wind-power thing. Some of the new turbines are very artistic and cool looking.

Also, just heard about biodegradeable plastics made from whipgrass. They degrade in less than 10 years as opposed to 100s for petroleum based plastics. Woot!

Suzanne Welsh said...

ah Jeanne, you would've loved Grandpa Sherm. I learened to deal off the bottom of the deck from him. (He was a card dealer in New Orleans for a while before the war.) To cuss and say, those Damn Yankees (a special curse for anyone North of the Mason-Dixon line...which included my hometown...and of course any baseball game involving the actual team). To fish for trout in an ice cold river, the Nolichucky, in Tennessee.

But he truly saw many changes in the world in his lifetime. One of my favorite stories was the day he decided he'd learn to drive. It was in the '40's (so he must've been over fifty at the time, and he got behind the wheel of his son's Model T truck and decided to drive it down the mountain. Well, he drove it all right. Right into a tree. Climbed out and never drove again! Said men were meant to ride horses or walk. :)

Joan said...

LOL Jeanne....I'm not a die HARD Trekkie....made up the episode number...but you know what I'm talking about.

Another invention I hope for? A cure for wrinkles! Not that I...have...oh, pass the collagen cream....

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

OMGosh, you're right Suz, I would have LOVED him. :> Snorking over the Model T meets Tree incident too. Have to confess I prefer a horse, but they're too slow when people live so far apart. Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Yeah, I'm with you, Joanie. Pass the collogen cream. I'm blessed with good skin, but....

And the idea of Botox? Shudder. There's an invention I can do without. I'm sure it's fine, but botulism can kill you. Not sure I want it injected just so I won't make frowny lines. Hahaha.

I'm looking forward to AutoChefs - like in Nora Robert's "In Death" series. Or teletransporting. I sure would love to go hang out with Anna C or Christine for a day in Oz and not have to fly 24 hours to do it. Ha!

Suzanne Welsh said...

Joan, I'm hoping someone invents a tri-corder like Spock and Bones used. I want one that can be attached to phones, so when pt.'s call to ask if they should come in to have their babies, I can say, "Place your phone on your belly." And depending on the reading I can say, "Yes, come in you're 8 CM or No, your water hasn't broken, stay home!"

limecello said...

Wow, um in 90 years? As for technologically... I have no idea. In fact I've only done/thought about what might happen in 20-50 years, for social issues. Racism, equal rights, women in the workplace, etc. And... we actually had mixed thoughts. Some thought it'd be much better... some thought there'd be a backlash. I'm unclear. [Haha, so my post is totally useless and unhelpful for coming up with anything]

Donna MacMeans said...

Donna here - Living in what was the home of Prohibition and was probably the last community to surcome to the evils of alcohol. Westerville finally allowed a restaurant to serve alcohol about five years ago - mainly because no new restaurants would open in a community without the lucrative alcohol business.

Ninety years into the future? I think reading will be a lost art. (sniff). It's happening already with the abbreviated language of texting, and the availability of 400 channels of TV. Stories will be everywhere. Romantic stories will be everywhere - just not in written format. But I don't plan to be around then. I want to live my life full speed ahead and not set any records for long life.

Keira Soleore said...

Jeanne, what a fantastic tribute to your dad. Him marrying ten years ago? Wow! No surprises then that you decided to become a romance author. It's in your genes.

It was a pleasure meeting the Banditas this year as always. I'm already counting down the days to Nashville. :)

PS: I don't think it's fair when a Bandita snags the rooster. Jus' sayin'...

jo robertson said...

Yeah, velcro, amazing, Jeanne! Now we have an entire generation of kids who don't know how to tie their shoes! Just kidding, of course. I love velcro.

What kind of blows my mind is the interval windshield wiper thingy. It seems like the things we're most happy about are what makes our everyday life easier.

My happy moment? The microwave oven!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Oh, that would be great, wouldn't it Suz? Tricorders would save you and the L&D nurses (and the patients!) a LOT of hassle. BTW, I loved hearing all the stories about your work. Great stuff!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Lime! How's it feelin' to be done? :> Still enjoying the "don't have to go to class" feeling? Grins.

Had to LOL at your post. Why do you think I aske YA'LL the question? Snork. I have no idea...

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Donna, that is so WEIRD that Westerville was so reluctant to return from Prohibition! Wow.

As to living life to the fullest, go YOU! My motto is Play Full Out. Grins. (I'm sure you'd never guess that, right? Snork!)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Keira!

Isn't that wild about Dad remarrying? I want to be him when I grow up - living life FULL OUT. Haha! He and his new wife took their honeymoon in Prague, of all places. They've now been to Alaska, Italy, the Galapagos, etc. Prior to remarrying, he'd been back to England, but before that? His only outside-the-US travel was for WWII.

He's wiiiiide open now! :>

As to the GR, I think Nancy's having a fun time with him today. He's making her laugh, I hope. Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo, you're so right! How would we live with out microwaves? Yikes! :>

On the velcro-shoe thing, my eldest had to have tie shoes much earlier than most. He got my skinny narrow feet and they don't make boys sneakers that narrow ususally. He hates it. All the "cool" shoes are too wide for him. Sigh. So, tie shoes. And of course, the little guy wants to be like his big brother and has demanded that he gets tie shoes next time. :>

You know, I'm looking forward to? Sneakers that last longer. I went for a walk this morning and "felt the road" which means time for new sneakers. It's irksome because these aren't THAT old, and they look good. Grrr.

Susan Sey said...

Good morning, Jeanne!

Happy birthday to your dad! What a great milestone birthday!

I'm totally tapped out creatively after the conference, so I have absolutely not one clue as to what the future will hold. But as regards the past, I actually had heard about that whole molasses flood in Boston.

It was in a Dennis Lehane novel called The Given Day which I adored & high recommend if anybody's interested in an incredibly well written novel of historial fiction.

Plus Babe Ruth's in it. And he's awesome.

Nancy said...

Hi, Jeanne. No, the dog does not want the rooster. She has chased him into the back yard and is lying by the door in case he tries to come back in.

The last time the two of them did this tango, a dragon hatched in our yard, so I'm not sure I want him out there. Haven't seen the dragon since she informed us her name was now Pansy, which was about 3 weeks ago.

Speaking of Prohibition and writers, there's currently all that big flap over the new, "corrected" edition of Hemingway's A Moveable Feast. Guys seem to love Hemingway. I don't know as many women who do. Not a big fan of his voice, myself.

He and Fitzgerald hung out in Paris during the 1920s, though F. Scott seems to have had more regard for Ernest than Ernest did for him.

Nancy said...

Suz, way cool about your grandfather!

The oldest person I ever met was my soon-to-be-roommate's grandfather. (Marty and I lived together for a year while we were in grad school at the same place.) Our college had a breakfast before graduation for graduates and their alumnni family members, and my roommate's grandfather was 90 or so at the time. He was class of 1910. My own grandfather had been class of 1906 but had died some years earlier.

And the dh's grandfather was 90 when we married. We had dinner with him in Brooklyn one evening, and he told us fascinating stories of life on the Lower East Side in the early 1900s.

Nancy said...

Jo, interesting bit about the microchip. I've seen charts showing the acceleration of invention but none specifically related to that.

Nancy said...

Jane, thanks. I would love to see space travel become commonplace, though I realize that probably won't occur in my lifetime.

One of my biggest disappointments on our last trip to Colorado was learning that the Air Force no longer gives tours of Cheyenne Mountain. But I hear they have a door that's actually labeled "Stargate Command."

If only.

Nancy said...

Fedora, how neat about your family! I've often wished I could've met my father's parents, but they both died long before I was born.

Nancy said...

Hi, Helen. You and me both on the space travel. *sigh*

Nancy said...

Hi, Joan--I'm also not in favor of head chips. Ugh.

Speaking of Star Trek, which reminds me of SF, which reminds me of fantasy, the boys waited for me to see Harry Potter, but we're all running in different directions
these next few days. At least the crowds will have died down by the time we get there. Maybe tomorrow.

One of the leading fantasists of the 1920s was James Branch Cabell, who's hardly read today. Not exactly a quick pace in his books.

As for the GR, I wouldn't trust that sneaky bird anywhere near my submissions!

Stop glaring, Joan. I'm workin' on it. However, I'm going back to the sale at Chico's in hopes of finding something else for you to covet and may peek in at Nordstrom's sale, depending on the state of the checkbook.

Nancy said...

Kirsten, how cool that you knew someone who remembered covered wagons! That's amazing.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey Susan! What a cool thing that you'd heard of the mo'lass flood! I think Babe Ruth's cool too, as most of you would have guessed by the repeated baseball references in the post. I think my Boyz are infecting me w/ the baseball bug. Ha!

So, what caused the flood? I couldn't find much more on the deal...then again, it was 1 a.m. and I didn't try that hard!

Nancy said...

Jeanne, I totally forgot to mention your dad's birthday. I hope it's fabulous and followed by many happy returns of the day.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Mornin' Nancy! You and I were the night owls last night! Hahah!

So, Pansy, the dragon popped up in the yard? Yikes. See the mischief that GR gets up to?

Glad to know there's someone else in the Lair who's not a Hemingway fan. Grins. I'm not fond of Fitzgerald either, tho' he's buried not far from where I live. As neighbors go, he's quiet now, but...

Oh, man. Wouldn't it be COOL to tour Cheyenne Mountain?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Thanks, Nancy!

Nancy said...

Jeanne wrote: I'm not fond of Fitzgerald either, tho' he's buried not far from where I live. As neighbors go, he's quiet now, but...

LOL! Guess his days of riotous partying are over now. I used to teach Gatsby but am considering This Side of Paradise since all my Gatsby assignments, including my quiz question that cannot be answered from Cliff's or Sparks' notes, are undoubtedly on file in fraternity and sorority houses.

You also wrote: Oh, man. Wouldn't it be COOL to tour Cheyenne Mountain?

That was my thought. Alas that the Air Force does not agree. :-/

Hang on. Altercation at the back door.

Nancy said...

The GR hopped over the dog and is now on top of the refrigerator.

Great. Just great.

At least they're quiet now.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Susan said:It was in a Dennis Lehane novel called The Given Day which I adored & high recommend if anybody's interested in an incredibly well written novel of historial fiction...

I've looked at that book several times in the bookstore. NOW I'll just HAVE to go buy it. Look out toppling TBR pile!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Okay so now you can tell me about the molassas river, Suz! Hahah!

I'm gonna have to go hunt that down. :>

Nancy, is the chook behaving on top of the fridgie or not?

I'm off to pick up Anna C at the hotel and convey her to the airport. *pout* Always sad to see the Banditas leave, but esp this time since I'm still "home"!

Becke Davis said...

Loved the post, Jeanne. The oldest person I ever met was my great-great aunt. My grandfather's aunt, that is. She was in her 100s when I met her and the Oak Park, Illinois newspaper did a feature article on her when she turned 110. I think she died the following year.

Her family moved from England to Illinois in 1870; her father was a watchmaker. Initially they lived south of Chicago, but later moved to Elgin.

I have copies of letters she wrote to her cousin,my great-grandfather (I hope I have that right), reminiscing about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. She was four or five when it happened, and she remembered the sky being bright red in the distance. All the families packed up things to send to Chicago by rail and horse and buggy -- clothes, blankets and food. She remembered that her mother baked several loaves of bread to send, and had the little ones bake tiny loaves so they could help, too.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Morning Everyone!

GREAT POST, Duchesse! Who knew so many interesting things happened in 1919? Anyway, SUPER HAPPY Bday to your Daddy! Here's hoping he makes it to 100!

The oldest person I knew was my step-great grandmother, Gramma Carrie. She was 99 when she passed and like Suz's Grandpa Sherm, just 3 months shy of hitting 100. She was born in 1900 and sounds like she and Sherm would have made quite a pair because (no surprise here) she was A PISTOL!

She fully admitted to hitting husband #2 (or was it 3?) in the head with a frying pan when he made he mad. Her biggest frustration was that she had to quit dying her hair after she turned 90 because she couldn't see good enough to cover all the gray! Going to a hairdresser never occurred to her, I guess.

The last time I saw her, she gave me this advice, "Honey, just do pretty much whatever you want. That's what I did." Can you tell I took her advice?

AC

Joan said...

It's happening already with the abbreviated language of texting,

And ingraining itself in our brain waves.

I just came from the grocery and on the scanner it said LOL butter (land o lakes)

I read it as lol laugh out loud...

Joan said...

However, I'm going back to the sale at Chico's in hopes of finding something else for you to covet and may peek in at Nordstrom's sale, depending on the state of the checkbook.

OMG...h*ll has frozen over.

Nancy is going to the MALL!!!! Without provocation like a conference!!!!!

*thunk*

Nancy said...

Jeanne, the chook has migrated to the living room, where he's playing Pokemon Stadium on the N64, with the noise keeping the dog out. Took advantage of the distraction while the dog was eying PJ's chocolates on the counter and announcing, "PJ is a dog person and would want the dog to have them."

PJ might, but she gave them to me, and I don't. I'm making them last. So there.

Nancy said...

Joan wrote: Nancy is going to the MALL!!!! Without provocation like a conference!!!!!

Don't get too excited, JT. My trip to DC did a number on the checkbook, guaranteeing brevity for any mall stops.

And I do have provocation. I start teaching again next month, and those little t-shirts on sale dress both up and down nicely.

If you come to DragonCon, you can see my Serenity shirt. But you can't have it.

And Trish has a shirt that made one of the BSG actors laugh, but she probably won't give you that one, either.

Both can probably be obtained in the Dealers' Room. And there'll be hunky Spartans marching around, kinda like gladiators. Think about it.

Nancy said...

Suz wrote: The last time I saw her, she gave me this advice, "Honey, just do pretty much whatever you want. That's what I did." Can you tell I took her advice?

And you generally get the rest of us to do pretty much whatever you want, too, so I'd say it's workin' for ya. *g*

What a cool story, Suz!

Nancy said...

Spartans wear less than gladiators, JT. I'm just sayin' . . .

Nancy said...

Oops, that post addressed to Suz should've gone to AC, who's equally adept at bandita bossing. Wonder if that old lady inspired the crop?

Nancy said...

Becke, what fabulous letters to have! The dh's grandfather wrote some to him about growing up in early 1900s Manhattan, but they were lost in a move. A few years back, we discovered he'd also written them to the dh's brother. We hope to get copies at some point.

Joan said...

Stop enticing me with Spartans...that's not playing fair...

But MY check book (and the hospital that doesn't believe in giving its employees off at a whim) are negating any thoughts of DragonCon attendance....

Nancy said...

Well, okay, Joan. If the hospital won't let you out to see several dozen buff Spartans parade down Peachtree Street, torsos and shields gleaming in the morning sun, I guess Trish and I will just have to manage without you.

Typing this, I just had a weird thought. I bet the actual Spartans would think 99% of the things in Jeanne's post were witchcraft.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Wow, Becke, what a GREAT story!!! How cool.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Hey AC! Wow, 99+ for Gramma Carrie. And how cool is she, still coloring her hair that long. Funny about it not occuring to her to go to a hairdresser. Then again, my Mama only went much later in life.

LOVED the frying pan...very funny. (Tho' prob. not for Hubby #3)

BTW, AC, if I didn't tell you on Rita night, you looked spectacular. That pale blue-grey was wonderful on you.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Nancy said: Typing this, I just had a weird thought. I bet the actual Spartans would think 99% of the things in Jeanne's post were witchcraft.

Well, that's true. Going to the moon? Flying? Parachutes? (Riiiiight, what's a cubit? SNORK!)

However the ones marching in said parade will probably have cell phones in hidden pockets in their armor, so...

Louisa Cornell said...

Late to the party. Cool post, Duchess! I am always fascinated by the things that have come to pass in the 50 years I've been around. To be around almost 100 years must be mind boggling. Congrats and Happy Birthday to your Dad!

Good job on snagging the GR, Nancy! He's in for a fun evening I am sure.

I know I have probably met some older people in my life, but the one who stood out the most was my Great Aunt Icie. We used to joke that she was so old she was God's babysitter. She was one tough old bird and didn't end up in assisted living until she was 93. She made drapes and furniture covers by hand for a living and did so until she was about 80 or so.

Women in my family live into their 80's and 90's, but the men don't live that long. We lost my Dad at the age of 64. His father died at the age of 50. The good news is that neither of by brothers is a smoker and show no signs of heart trouble so they should be around to annoy me for years and years to come!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

To the Duchess of Hotdayum, from the Duchesse de Snorkville, Greeting....

Lousia, it was FAB-O to see you at National. You were the belle of the ball, m'dear! Bummed you didn't WIN Daphne, but glad you got the notice. :>

I loved the story of your Great Aunt Icie. What was her real name? I had an ancestor they called this, her name was Pricilla, but the story goes one of the younger sibs called her Isilla and it devolved to Icie. :>

I LOL about her being God's Babysitter. Snork.

Louisa Cornell said...

Actually Duchesse, darling, I did win the Daphne! My third book The Deceit of Desire won the Daphne in the historical category and won the Royal Ascot in the Hot and Wild Category. However, my second book, The Raven's Heart did NOT win the Golden Heart. I was pleased as punch that it was a finalist though.

Actually all I ever knew my great aunt as was Icie. I have NO idea if she had another name. There were some odd names in that side of the family (my mother's side). But then again they were all Cherokee and Creek Indians!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Well, D'oh! CONGRATS!!!! WOOT WOOT!! You ROCK! :>

There, that should make up for my idiocy. Grins.

I'm thrilled for all your successes, darling Duchess!

Pat Cochran said...

I couldn't even begin to guess what
the world will be like then! I do
know that I won't be here, unless
reincarnation brings me back! LOL!

My grandchildren will probably say
that Honey and I are the oldest people they know. Except that they
have a great-grandmother who is
older than we are. The oldest
person I've known was my maternal
grandfather. He fibbed about his
age when he was courting our future grandmother, so we never
knew his real age. When he passed
away, the doctors guesstimated
his age at 108.

Pat Cochran

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Wow, Pat, 108??? That's amazing.

And being a creative type, I'll bet you DO think about it. Grins. Reincarnation? What about rejuvenation? Anne McCaffrey has this thing in her books were when you hit 50 you get "rejuv" and look about 20 and live for another 110 years or so.

I like it....

Cassondra said...

OMGOSH, Jeanne, I'm so glad I made it to the blog today (it's been a crazy two weeks). My dad was also born in 1919...another evil twin thing for you and me I guess. So he was going through all that stuff along with your dad. My dad was born Jan 2, 1919, and died in '98, just two years short of seeing the end of the 20th century.

WHAT A GREAT BLOG POST! Maybe especially for me because my dad was the same age. I remember him talking about hearing an airplane--they lived in a back-country tiny shack-of-a house--flying overhead--an old biplane at that--just every now and then, and everybody would run out of the house and watch it fly over, because it was so rare to see an airplane. He said the first time he saw one he was just astonished. (No airports of any kind around the place where he grew up.)

Broke my heart that Walter died. :0( He's one of my inspirations because of the trust he inspired, and he's one of the reasons I became a journalist. His standard of honesty and telling both sides--whether he agreed with them or not--is one of the yardsticks by which I measure good journalism. Alas, I find it lacking more often than not, nowadays.

Paul Harvey died not long ago too...not the same type of journalist, for certain, but still..we've lost a lot of icons this year.

Glad your dad is still going strong, and SO glad he's gotten to see you published!

Cassondra said...

Louisa said:

My third book The Deceit of Desire won the Daphne in the historical category and won the Royal Ascot in the Hot and Wild Category.

WHOA!!!! WOOOHOOOOO Louisa! That's awesome! I'm coming late to all the conference news, and SO glad to hear the Duchesse of HotDayum has everybody all hot and bothered yet AGAIN!

WOOOOOT!!!! The Daphne is so damn hard to win. Good going girlfriend! High-fivin from Kentucky!

Louisa Cornell said...

Thanks, Cassondra! And like you, Walter Cronkite's passing is really heartbreaking for me. It is as if a huge chunk of my childhood is gone. I just remember listening to him and knowing he was telling the unvarnished truth. Not so with many of the reporters these days.

La Duchesse of Snorkdom, ignorant? Sacrilege! Duchesses such as we are NEVER ignorant!

Pat Cochran said...

Oh my, Jeanne,

I like the rejuv idea! I wonder
if it would still work for one who is a tad bit more than 50? LOL!
I must read more about this idea!

Pat Cochran