Sunday, October 29, 2023

The Purple Cape

 I've written about the fabulous purple cape previously. In case you don't remember, let me refresh your memories.

The purple cape came to our family in the mid-1950s. Beloved Uncle Gene gave it to us after his stint in a circus. I know nothing more about this but he came away with four silly costumes and the desire to build a Ferris wheel in a vacant lot in Middlesex, NJ. There were lots of empty spaces back then, not so  now.

Anyway, the costumes were pure circus. Some kind of flapper dress with black tassels, a green two flapped piece of material that I imagine was part of a harem girl's costume and something else I can't remember, but along with these gaudy bits, was the Purple Cape.

Let me describe it to you. It was deep purple, royal purple, about four feet in length, made of flannel. I only now realize it was flannel and not satin because I was just a kid and it was absolutely gorgeous to me.

Around the neckline was the only decoration. A band of pure gold, emerald and ruby lay around the neck. Absolutely gem quality. Beautiful. Magnificent.

Everybody wanted to wear the purple cape, even if we were just playing cowboys. Every kid on our street wanted that honor. After all, it was deep purple and encrusted with precious gems around the neck.

But at Halloween, it was most in demand. Cowboys, bums, girly girls, you name it, that purple cape went with every costume.

Chilly Halloween nights, it served as warmth and status.

Years went by. The cape was always there. Then, it disappeared. I don't know whether my younger brother every enjoyed wearing it, but by the time I was taking him out trick or treating, it was no longer used.

Oh, the delights of that regal bit of material!

I think I'm a princess just remembering it.

Many years later, as an adult, I was in our old garage, looking for fishing rods or something when I spied a crumpled bit of purple stashed in a corner. No! It couldn't be!

Alas, I recognized the bejeweled collar. Gold, emerald and ruby, still shining, while the cape had faded a dull grey.

The purple cape. 

I pulled it out of the corner, passed my hand lovingly against the stiff flannel and sighed.

Gone was the glory.

I should have cut the jewels away and kept them, but I didn't. I buried it in the garbage can and cried.

However, I do hold the glory of the Purple Cape in my heart and every year about this time, I remember it fondly, lovingly, and long for the days when it was magnificent to come back, if just for a second, to cheer my heart.

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Something is wrong

 I don't feel good. I can't seem to wake up enough. There is no energy. 

I'm rather worried.

Sunday, September 3, 2023

Spider in the can

 Beside the throne on the wainscoting is a little bitty spider. Tiny, about maybe 2 centimeters, maybe eighth of an inch. Little black body with red legs. So thin, they can barely be seen,

I did not freak.

I remained calm and said directly to it, "You'd better leave here. I'll let you off this time, but if you are still there when I get back, you're dead."

Nothing against spiders, not really, but they are rather disconcerting about 7 inches away from one's face in this very private moment.

Hours later, upon returning to the powder room, the bloody spider did not listen to me, did not take my warning threat. It is still there, some 7 inches from my face.

I had warned it. I had done my best, in my calmest quiet tone, to let it know its future if it remained where it was. Wiggling it's little red arms at me...sneering...batting its little multiple eyes at me as I heaved a heavy sigh, grabbed a couple sheets of TP and swiftly eradicated the disgusting spider from the wall.

The TP wad got tossed into the bowl. I didn't look down, somewhat ashamed of myself for  killing nature. Flushed away. Threat carried out: I am a woman of my word.

A bit later, I returned to the scene and needed to do what I had to do.

It hit me then that I had not truly seen the itty bitty spider's demise. What if it hadn't died? What if it had survived and somehow with its spidery red legs, it had crawled out of the bowl and was right now about to leap onto my humanity?

Oh, Lord, I can't go potty in there!!!

Friday, August 4, 2023

Short names

 Why aren't people named Dusty any more?

Or Rusty or Gabby or Fitz or Snuffy or Biff or Lolly or Needlenose or Gizmo or Stinky?

You get my point.

Full names, sometimes including middle names, anything to draw out the amount of breath one needs to call someone. You know, not like Spanky or Johnny or Paulie or Joe. Good Ole Joe.  No, the names have to sound like they're going to grow up to be college presidents. Charles Everett Gladstone. Livingston Merritt Longford.

I thought it would be refreshing to write a short story where my characters had somewhat silly, unpopular, regular old nicknames. A name is a name, right? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

Maybe it would work. Maybe it would sound like I was writing an Our Gang Comedy. Now, those were nicknames! Stymie and Alfalfa. Butch.  Froggy. Yeah.

I don't know what I'd call any female characters. Females don't have nicknames. Hell, even Joan of Arc was just Joan. Darla was just Darla. Helen Keller was...Helen.

I have to think about this more.

If anyone has any suggestions, please reply. This will be on FB.

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Magic Camera

 While trying remember a name last night, my brain went back to something that happened a long time ago.

Took me till this morning to remember the last name of the people who lived in a house down the street, but out of the blue, early this morning, it just popped into my head. I won't write it here as some of these folks might be alive and it is rude to mention full names without permission. But...

The older daughter who lived there was a few years older than I was. Somehow, I got invited to her birthday party. I think all the girls who lived on the street did. It was a party dress and patent leather shoes party. Cool. I had a party dress!

Anyway, the party was forgettable except for one thing. The girl's father joined us with something special, I can never forget it.

He took the object out of the leather case, I think it was...hey, I was about 5 and this makes it nearly 70 years ago. It was brown. He unfolded the object and proceeded to take our pictures with it. Now, this happened frequently at birthday parties, so it wasn't so special, but this time...oh, this time!

Papers spewed out of the camera. After a few minutes, we could actually see the photos!

Mr. G had the very first Polaroid Land Camera I'd ever seen!!!!

So very, very cool. 

We saw ourselves in black and white minutes after we'd posed for the photos! 

Ahh, science. When I think of the first time I saw the first time I saw a small microwave oven in was history! I lived through history just as I did seeing Alan Shepard go into space and John Glenn circle the Earth three times!

My grandmother went from living in a mud covered house in Ukraine to having an automobile to a color television to using a microwave to heat her coffee. 

You might not appreciate these achievements, but, stop and think about what you have witnessed in your lifetime.  Cool, huh?

Monday, February 20, 2023

The Value of Cake

 A long time ago, in a galaxy far away (Georgia)  a weird wonderful thing happened. Hang in there, this is a strange story.

While doing my time with the WACS, all 150 of us were sent on TDY to Fort Benning, GA, for some military reason. I had been there once before to see my brother Jack when he was in OCS. (That's Temporary Duty, TDY and OCS, Officer Candidate School.)

No matter. We females were more or less mid-summer entertainment for the male officers to be. Which was okay...I had no intention of joining up at that time.

We toured a helicopter. We saw a loud fake raid on a Vietcong held village, all bullets and smoke and screaming. Very realistic and scary. I thought of my brother being in the middle of that and cringed.

Anyway, they (the military) threw a dance for us, so we could mingle with these guys who faced officership and eventual shipping off to Vietnam. Which, as most of us felt at the time (1970) was a death warrant. Yes. Everybody was afraid to get drafted and sent to where so many people were being killed. It was "don't flunk out of college and get sent to Nam to die". Really. The attitude was funereal.

So, here I am in the middle of nowhere Georgia on an army base, trying to enjoy being with so many young good-looking single guys who might die in six months.

I danced. I really danced with anybody who asked me.

So, while dancing, I think I laughed at something my partner said, and replied, "Oh, that's cake."

A common response in my neck of the woods, meaning--that's cool or good or easy. Yeah, that's cake. Like, a piece of cake, which as we all agree, is quite good.

This other guy follows me from the dance floor and politely asks me where I'm from. I tell him New Jersey. He laughs.

"I'm from Jersey, too."

"Where did you go to school?"


"Hey, my brother graduated from there three years ago. He was here in Benning couple of years ago."

Guy shakes his head. "Small world."

I ask him where he lived. He says "Manasquan."

Startled, I say that Odette, my big sister in the sorority was from there and name her. He doesn't know her, but he's smiling. Kept saying "Jersey girl."

I then remember my little sister in the sorority, Jenny, is also from Manasquan.

The guy lets out a whoop! "She lives next door to me!"

Wow. We spent the next few hours together, just enjoying one another's company. He was a sweet guy. I knew so much about him by the end of the dance. Sigh. But the dance was over and we females had to beat it to the bus or get in major bullshit trouble.

I don't remember his name. I think at the time I just wanted to be his friend and fellow Jerseyan and had that link to Rutgers and my brother. I didn't want to know his name, I guess, because I didn't want to know he never made it back to Jersey. was a good thing. It was a sweet, innocent, happy acquaintance because of one simple word. I cannot ever forget the way I felt, the understanding, the instant connection, even if I cannot remember his name. I do hope, however, that he remembers that evening fondly.

All for the value of cake.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Ay, carumba!

 Jackie Kennedy's stepfather told her when things were not going according to her plan, to stick out her chest and yell ay carumba to get it off her mind.

I am not sure if that should be Hay or Ay, because I never actually read it but I know how to say it. Three years of Spanish didn't exactly cover that. It could be a curse, or simply something like OH SHIT. Dunno. But I've had this feeling regarding my blog.

The desktop quit cooperating for me. I dug through all sorts of notes to find how to get back into Wordpress, finally found it so I could blog all of the things I wanted to blog about over the holiday. I did indeed find the password and username, but when after two weeks, I finally turned the desktop back on, I got in here perfectly.

I was afraid I had not paid for something and lost my good name.

Evidently, that was okay, because here I am. Unfortunately, I don't remember anything I was intending to blog about. The topics were pure genius gems, I can remember that. But, alas, they are gone with the brainfarts.

This has been quite a year. Not too good of one, either. My beloved got and was treated for cancer. We don't really know if it is cured because it isn't found out except for blood tests, and that only says if his body is juicing properly so the white cells or something are working.

We had a shit vacation again this year. I will not go into that. We did have fun taking the girls to various sales, one in DC and one in Baltimore. So, we got around by ourselves while the girls sold Karyn's artwork. Unfortunately, K didn't have too many sales to go to because of the plague and other things.

Elyse and Mike did rather well, though they had car trouble which cost too much. They can't seem to save money without having to spend it on other food and transportation.

Karyn is looking forward to having her student loan paid in full. I cannot divulge details, but thanks to the generosity of family, she's doing better in that regard. She also got the gumption to clean out her room so she can work better with more space. All in all, her down days are fewer and that's great.

Me? I am living in isolation, dependent on learning about my friends through texts and FB. I do not get around much at all, but that way, I am safe from germs and other bad things.

Elyse and Mike did get Covid.

On the brightest note,  the little grand nieces are thriving and one got a baby brother and the other one has a baby sister on the way. They are cute little buggers, to be sure. I wish them all the best the world has to offer. They do make me smile, just thinking about them.

Now that I can get back into my blog, I will probably remember some of the things I thought of writing about.

Let's hope the world heals and all our sicknesses disappear and those I love continue to thrive. God bless us, every one!