Silver Threads  Oct 1996

Silver Threads (formerly Senior Group Newsletter) is the
monthly publication of an informal group of netizens
interested in how the net serves the three score plus internet
user and vice-versa.

The newsletter is mailed to subscribers via e-mail and posted at

The current issue WWW edition is at http://www.freenet.mb.ca/sthreads

There is no charge. Just contact  editor, Jim Olson, at




   Editorial Bits and Bytes

   Features and Gleanings from the Net  

   Notices and Reviews 
   The Cup of Memory
           EDITORIAL BITS AND BYTES          

This issue marks the start of our third year of publication, and
in keeping with our anniversary issue last year we will feature a
reprise of a feature from an earlier issue.

Our humor is supplied by Wayne Barney, one of the early on
members of the group.

We will also begin this third year with a return to monthly
publication as the supply of material from our readers provides a
firm basis for that. We have enough material to do that and still
coordinate some of our efforts with other internet non-profit
senior based newsletters, namely the weekly "Tale Spinners"
produced by our friendly rival to the north, Jean Sansum.

We will also begin a process of further differentiation of our
e-mail and web editions. Winnie (Blue Sky FreeNet from Winnipeg
has graciously given us the space to do this and we appreciate

The web site, http://www.freenet.mb.ca/sthreads, has added some
features and we will be developing material on it that uses the
technical possibilities of that medium more fully while still
using much of the textual material as the e-mail ascii edition as
a base.

Notably the "Caught in the Web" feature of the newsletter will
appear now only on the web site and the e-mail edition will
concentrate in its Notices and Reviews section on e-mail and
non-graphical internet items of interest.

Our hosts at Boulder Community Net will continue to post and
archive the e-mail version of both Silver Threads and our
companion publication Elderhostel Notebook.

We want to thank all of you who submitted  material for this
issue. We weren't able to fit it all in, but as we go back to
monthly publication of the e-mail edition will be able to use
much more of it.

We discovered recently that we share the title "Silver Threads"
with a Canadian based Dutch language senior group, but that
doesn't appear to be a problem as we don't plan to publish in
Dutch and their English language counter-part is named "Seniors
Unite? - see the notices section of this issue.

It will be interesting to see what changes another year will

-Jim Olson and Tom Kyle

Two old buddies met on Main Street and began chatting.  Len said

"Look here, Pete, are you wearing a hearing aid?  Is that new?"

"Yep, it's new alright.  It cost a bundle....over one thousand

Wow, that's expensive.  It must be one of those super hearing
aids.  What kind is it?"

"Half past three."



When I Have Fears (edited reprise)
  -Jim Olson

October is the month when people of all ages look to the fall
harvest for the rewards of color and the fruits of summer labor.
But it's also a month when we all take a look at  what haunts us:
the ghosts of our past, the broom stick witches that block our
view of the harvest moon, and the fears and anxieties that cloud
our vision of the future. The Senior Group has done that also as
I have asked a number of seniors to respond to the question of
what haunts them as they look to the future- what fears do they
have and how do they cope with them.

Joan McBride of SeniorNet Poetry forum has expressed some of the
more common fears in a  poem written  in the persona of an older
woman considering the loss of her private space- her room with
her extended family. The poem articulates some of the most
dramatic fears that older people often have:

      On Sharing My Room (abridged)

I'm not gonna do it!

But what if . . .
   I get decrepit
   And stumble and fall a lot
   And pee in my pants
   And forget to brush my hair
   And leave the teapot on a hot burner
   Or forget the eggs I've got boiling

And what if they say . . .
   Too much responsibility
   She'll burn the damn house down
   Her room smells funny
   She'll wander off and get hit by a car
   Embarrass the kids
   Insult our friends
   Won't make amends

And they put me in a place . . .
Where I've got to share a room!
I'll shut out everyone else too
And spend the rest of my time
Replaying old movies of my life
Reliving old loves, old passions
Remembering the friends I've made
Laughing at the jokes life's played

My eyes
Faded, somewhat jaded,
Will see only backward
My future has arrived at last.

        -Joan McB

Fear of the loss of independence and mental awareness reflected
in the poem were echoed by a number of the responses.  Most
seniors, however, live out  their lives in their own homes and
maintain a high degree of mental acuteness and independence.
Indeed, as some have pointed out it is often the next generation
down that becomes the dependent generation financially. But we
have all met the persona of the poem somewhere in our experience
and we share a  stereotypical fear of being whisked off to an
extended care facility to vegetate for the remainder of our
lives. For that minority of seniors who need special help there
are many other options to address some of the fears in the poem
including in home services, assisted living facilities and many
more options short of the stereotypical nursing home. Most local
senior centers and county departments of aging can be very
helpful in sorting out these options and advising seniors and
their care givers.

Carol Tyndale offers the point of view of a daughter who has a
mother who now resides in a nursing home:

My mother, who celebrated her 90th birthday in March 1995
(insisting that it was really her 88th birthday and this year is
really 1993), is afflicted with multi-infarct dementia.  That is,
a series of small, and several not-so-small, strokes have
destroyed areas in her brain, leaving her with a very unreliable
memory, no sense of balance, and impaired reasoning powers. This
is very difficult for my sister, myself, and our children to deal
with, and for years I have been haunted by fears that I will
someday suffer the same affliction.

I am beginning, however, to realize that Mother has been very
lucky.  She lives now in a beautiful nursing home whose staff
members spend extra time with her because she is such cheerful,
witty, company.  Her vision and hearing are still good, as is her
physical health.  Most important, she is happy -- happier,
probably, than those of us who remember that it's time to do our
tax returns, time to take the dog for his rabies shot, time to
put the snow tires on.  After a long career as an M.D., followed
by another long career as a volunteer and board member for many
nonprofit agencies, she is finally having a well-earned vacation
from duties and responsibilities.  It's all right that it's also
a vacation from reality -- that doesn't bother her, and it
shouldn't bother us.  And maybe it's something to look forward
to, rather than dread.

Rosaleen Dickson from Ottawa expressed some of her fears that
reflect not only her concerns but also the tremendously busy and
productive life she leads:

FEAR? WHO ME? CERTAINLY NOT !! (With a few exceptions)

As a very young child, trying to keep up with brilliant siblings,
and with new schoolmates in a seemingly unending parade of new
schools, my abiding FEAR was that someone would discover that I
was just me, and not the person I was pretending to be.

Moving into a world of my own, marriage, children, the whole
escape, was still no escape from FEAR, because there was a war
on. Remember? I had given my life and total devotion, in a simple
ceremony that to me had meaning, to a man who was up in the sky
being shot at for no fault of his own. The situation was a solid,
horrible, distasteful, ugly FEAR. And then, when he came back,
the struggle with his own torments endowed me with a new FEAR:
would he survive the consequence of his ordeal?

Well, he did survive,  vanquished his demons, regained his
spirit, loved life and loved me as we prepared for the "happily
ever after" part of our story, until suddenly the war damage
caught up with him, his health failed, and the greatest FEAR I
had ever experienced set in. He was going to die. He would not
see his great-grandchildren. I'd never hear his spontaneous
laughter again. The bed would be half empty for the rest of time.
There would be no reason for me to live after that. Such an
unreasonable FEAR was unbearable and long after he died it stayed
with me as though he were still there with death threatening. 
Having struggled to find a life, after  the death that seemed to
be mine as well as his, I now seem impervious to fear. What else
is there to fear?

There is sickness or injury, which would leave me dependent on
other people. Having met the challenge of independence, I would
find that unbearable, and it would put an unthinkable a burden on
whoever took me on.

Then there's death itself, which doesn't mean I'm afraid of
dying, but there are so many things that need just a bit more of
my attention. When my husband died, He left all his affairs in
order so the only problem I had to face was the big one - how to
live without him. But for me, I can't tidy up all my connections
and file them alphabetically for him to take on because there is
no more "him."

So I  FEAR the death of myself, because of the nuisance it will
be for my progeny, and for the fact that I'll miss the next
chapter in their incredibly fascinating lives. (Maybe this fear
of death is not a fear but just a sorrow that sits on my soul the
way a real fear normally would.)

And finally Jim Hursey leaves us with some of his common sense
advice on aging and chases away some of  those Halloween spooks:

I know, speaking for myself, as I enter the second half of my
sixties, as I reach that magical age of 65 which has been
decreed, at least until it changes, in the US, with the
millennium, as the official beginning of old age, and as I
prepare to retire from an uninterrupted forty years of work, I
know that I am more comfortable with myself now than I ever was
as a youth or young man. I wonder if this is just me or do most
Elders feel this way?

The Roman writer Seneca, as an old man, saw no reason to envy
youth. "Rather," he said (paraphrasing) "youth must envy age, for
we have already attained that to which they can only aspire."

I understand Seneca, for, strangely, when I look the young
anymore, my main thought is one of relief at having it over with.


Some Mae Westisms

"Come up and see me sometime when I've nothing but the wireless

"To err is human--but it feels divine."

"Between two evils, I always pick the one I haven't tried
before." .

"I used to be Snow White...but I drifted."

"He's the kind of man a woman would have to marry to get rid of."


From: "Kathrynne Holden, MS, RD" 	
Dear Reader,			
This month we'll look at sodium's partner, another mineral called
potassium. When it comes to high blood pressure, I think sodium
gets too much blame. Although we often eat a lot more sodium than
we need, it's not the only reason for high blood pressure. We
often get too little potassium.

We only need about 500 mg of sodium daily. Potassium, on the
other hand, is needed in large amounts--at least 2000 mg and
possibly up to 3500 mg per day. In other words, we need at least
four times as much potassium as sodium.

We very often get just the opposite--much more sodium than
potassium. I believe that's often part of the reason for high
blood pressure. Potassium is found inside the cells of both
plants and animals. When vegetables,  fruits or meats are chopped
or sliced, some of the potassium spills out. Whole foods,
especially vegetables and fruits, are the richest in potassium,
although milk, meat, poultry, and fish are good sources, too.
However, when food is processed, salt is usually added, and
potassium is often lost. Let's take a look at how the amounts of
sodium and potassium can change as a food is processed. A
half-cup of corn has  200 mg of potassium and 14 mg of
sodium--about 14 times more potassium. A half-cup of canned
cream-style corn, however, leaps to 365 mg of sodium, while the
potassium drops to 170 mg. Now there's only about half as much
potassium as sodium--just the opposite of what our body needs!

I believe that sodium isn't the "bad guy" in high blood pressure.
There's no doubt that we eat way more sodium than we need; but
most of us also eat way too little potassium--especially those of
us who don't eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables
daily. And when we get too much sodium, the body loses some
potassium because of it. So we have two problems: first, we get
more sodium than potassium; then, we lose some of the potassium
we have because of the extra sodium.

in order for a muscle to move, the cells of that muscle must
quickly trade some potassium for sodium; then the cells
immediately swap them back again. The heart is a huge muscle, and
it, too, must constantly trade potassium and sodium in order to
keep beating. Potassium also helps the nerves pass signals back
and forth from the brain. Without potassium, we couldn't move a

WHERE IS POTASSIUM FOUND? That's the easy part--practically all
foods contain some potassium. It's found in fruits and
vegetables, whole grains, dried beans, milk, meat, fish, and
poultry. It's found in so many foods that it's really pretty hard
to avoid getting enough. However, we so often eat a salty diet
full of processed foods, that many of us don't get enough! A much
more serious concern than not getting enough potassium in the
diet is loss of potassium from the body. How? In several common

consulting a doctor. Potassium is carefully balanced by the body.
Too much potassium can cause a heart attack, just as easily as
when too much is lost. In fact, people with kidney failure must
often cut down on foods high in potassium, as it can be deadly.
The best and safest way to get potassium is by eating plenty of
fresh fruits and vegetables. Some scientists believe that if
people who use medications for high blood pressure were to eat
more fruits and vegetables, about one-third would be able to stop
using their medications.

With that in mind, and thinking of all the terrific fall
vegetables available, I thought a recipe for minestrone would be
a good choice. It takes some time to chop all the vegetables, but
you can pack the soup into single-serving zipper bags and freeze
it for meals later on. To make this recipe super fast, you can
use canned tomatoes and green beans. I'd use the water they're
canned in, because it's full of potassium. I'd look for the kind
with no added salt, also, to keep the sodium low.

You'll notice there's no salt included in the recipe. That's
because the canned chickpeas contain salt. If it's too bland,
though, you can add a teaspoon of salt to the recipe--it will
double the sodium in each serving to about 400 mg, but that's not
bad. Oh--and each serving has seven grams of fiber, too, thanks
to all those vegetables and chickpeas. If you add a glass of
lowfat milk, a whole-wheat roll, and a small bunch of grapes,
you'll have an excellent and well-balanced fall meal--equally
good for lunch or dinner. Men and larger or more active women may
need two servings of minestrone, because it's so low in fat and
calories. In fact, this meal is so low in fat, you could add a
sliver of cheesecake for dessert once in awhile!

1 lb chuck, boneless, trimmed of fat
3 quarts water
2 cups chopped tomato or 1 can tomatoes, No Salt Added
1 medium onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, diced
1 TB dried parsley
1/2 tsp ground oregano
1/4 tsp pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup uncooked barley
1 can chickpeas
1 cup diced zucchini
1 cup cut green beans
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup chopped cabbage
1 medium unpeeled potato, diced

In 6-qt kettle, cook meat in water 1-1/2 hours or till tender;
remove meat and shred. Add tomatoes, onion, celery, parsley,
oregano, pepper, garlic, and barley. Simmer, stirring
occasionally, 20 to 30 minutes. Add meat, chick peas, zucchini,
green beans, carrots, cabbage, potato, and barley. Simmer 30
minutes more or till vegetables are tender. Makes about ten 1-1/2
cup servings. Freezes well.

Nutrition information per portion: 3 servings vegetables, 1
serving protein; 200 mg sodium, 640 mg potassium.

-Gossip is something that goes in one ear and in another.

-A gossip's greatest fear is having no friends to speak of.

-A gossip is someone..... . -with a good sense of rumor, and who
can't resist wordy causes.

From: Teresa Bloomingdale 


Hi, Everybody!  Jim Olson asked me to introduce myself, so here

I am 66 years old, married 41 years to the same wonderful beau,
and am enjoying retirement after 23 yearss as an
author/writer/lecturer.  My ispiration to take up writing was
based on the fact that we had ten children in twelve years (no
twins) and my life became so hilariously funny I wanted to share
it with others.  I was first published at the age of 42, in a
local weekly, and a year later syndicated my column through Our
Sunday Visitor, the international Catholic weekly.  I was
fortunate enough to have my articles appear in Readers Digest,
McCalls, Good Housekeeping and Ladies Home Journal.

In  1978 I was contacted by an editor at Doubleday who asked me
to write a book.  "I Should Have Seen It Coming When The Rabbit
Died" was, miraculously, such a hit Doubleday contracted me for
four more humor books.  ("Up A Family Tree", "Murphy Must Have
Been a Mother", "Life is What Happens When You Are Making Other
Plans" and "Sense and Momsense.") The books led to the national
lecture circuit and I had a lot of fun telling audiences all
about the crazy things kids (theirs as well as mine) do while
growing up (and beyond.)

It was great fun, but I burned out on humor writing and with the
rejection of my only novel, retired both from writing and
lecturing. Since then I have been doing a little volunteer work,
enjoying our 12 grandchildren, and just recently,learning how to
work a computor. (I'm still learning; everytime I get something
figured out they update it.)

Teresa Bloomingdale


Carolyn Andersen   franders@aft.sn.no

I was born, raised, and educated in Massachusetts, but through a
happy chain of circumstances too complicated to go into, am
living with my Norwegian husband in his home town. Norway is
wonderful country, but I really welcome this chance to chat with
people back home.

I've had three careers: lawyer, teacher, and for some years in
between,full time "mamma" (Norwegian spelling). We have four
grown-up children and two (so far) wonderful grandchildren.
Interests include painting, avoiding gardening (anyway the deer
sometimes come and eat up the lettuce and the tulips), good
thrillers, science fiction, and history.

Winter's just about ready to close in here, and I'm looking
forward to meeting some of you on the net. It will really
brighten up the dark days.


About myself:

Born in Brooklyn, New York during the depression.  Lived in Italy
for about 3 years as a child.  Returned to US to attend parochial
school and later public highschool.  Attended 2yr
business/college.  Worked as a secretary to a pension attorney on
Wall Street for three years.  Accepted position as secretary in
CBS Radio.  Married 1955.  Resigned from CBS Television to begin
a family.  I moved to New Jersey and raised 3 sons.  Attended
teacher training institution 6 years at night while children were
very young.  Was graduated cum laude from State College.  Worked
for 20 years in various grades from PreKindergarten,
Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 4th and 5th grades.

Obtained masters equivalency from various State Colleges in New
Jersey. After retirement in 1990, I became involved in a series
of volunteer assignments, notably the PEAL program, making hand
puppets for child patients at the local Medical Center, Friendly
Visitor program (visiting shutins at nursing homes), Kessler
Institute for Rehabilitation utilizing computer skills, MEAL ON
WHEELS, ushering at the county cultural center.

I am also the secretary for our senior club and secretary at the
medical center branch. In spare time, I enjoy cooking, baking,
some gardening, golf, training my dogs,  exploring with the
computer, corresponding with relatives and friends on both e-mail
and snail mail, and baby sitting for 6 various grandkids.



arthur myers author@ma.ultranet.com

I'm a writer, and although I've published many books,
unfortunately there ain't no money in books, at least the ones
I've written. I've tried to get a gig teaching at an Elderhostel,
but the person I talked to at their headquarters said the
colleges always give their own faculties those jobs. I've taught
writing at various colleges, but not for awhile, so I guess
that's out.

I also figured I could give a course in parapsychology. I've
written six books on ghosts - in addition to a number of
children's and young adult books I've written. I can hardly put
my finger on a U.S. map without hitting the proximity of a hotel,
motel or restaurant I've written up for its ghosts.

I write under my own name - Arthur Myers - and a lot of libraries
have some of my books - adult or children's. Be glad to hear from



by Fran B. Moldow  FranM-NJREA@worldnet.att.net

The Retired Senior Volunteer Program is an organization which is
dedicated to using the talents of  the over-60 population in
volunteer assignments.  This organization is supported in part by
a grant from ACTION, Washington D.C. and the United Way in some
local areas.

One of the particular sub-programs under the auspices of RSVP in
the PEAL program.  The letters stand for these words:  Phoning
the Elderly to Alleviate Loneliness.  Essentially, the program,
through its many volunteer callers (often seniors themselves),
offers the reassurance of a daily phone call to persons over 60
or to any handicapped person regardless of age.

In order to become a PEAL client, one must be interested in
receiving a telephone call from a volunteer on a regular basis
and either be over 60 or handicapped.  Some residence
requirements may be in order. A volunteer caller must undertake
the responsibility to call regularly any of the clients to which
he/she is assigned; fulfill certain age requirements (be 18 or
older), and most importantly be a good listener.

PEAL Coordinators visit potential clients and callers and try to
match up the client/caller as much as possible.  The benefits of
the program are the reduction of fear of isolation and accidents
which can be a major concern for many people or their families.
PEAL volunteer callers are instructed on what to do if
emergencies arise and how to seek further help for the client.

Through the years, many  friendships have developed and bonding
has occurred  between the  client and caller.  The benefits of
the PEAL program are many, but  the bottom line is that  clients
are relieved to know there is someone who cares, and the callers
are rewarded in knowing they have  enhanced the life of someone
who may not have any family or who is house-bound due to illness
or handicap.


Human error, compounded by the rush of getting the newspaper out,
has given the world the following actual headlines:

MAN HELD OVER GIANT L.A. BRUSH FIRE --Toronto Globe and Mail



Angeles Times


--Alabama Journal

--Arkansas Democrat


Senior Unite Group Forms

Maarten Jans, Delft - The Netherlands.

Dear Senior 50 plussers:

Seniors Unite U is an international group consisting of people of
around 50 years and up who feel the need, or urge, to contact
fellow seniors all over the world and by doing so establishing
international friendships.

So far, our group has a build up of about 30 plus members from
all over the western hemisphere. We "talk" to each other about
just every subject worth talking about. As long as we keep in
mind that there are some rules like nettiquette and common
decency, everything is allowed. We do not shun religion,
politics, medical questions or whatever in our group and would
like to accomplish that this group will be really international
in the near future, aiming at at least one member from every
country on earth.

So if you think you are interested in or could work up an
interest for this E-mailing medium, please contact me by E-mail.

Why is that dog running in circles?

It's a watchdog, and it's winding itself up.

What did the five-hundred-pound mouse say when it walked into the

Here, kitty, kitty, kitty!

What did the baby porcupine say when it backed into the cactus?

Is that you, Mother?

\What is a ringleader? The first one in a bathtub.

What goes clomp, clomp, clomp, swish? An elephant with wet


Dick Seig, DICK SIEG 
sends us some helpful tips on getting internet information by e-mail:

ROADMAP96 is a 27-lesson, Internet training workshop designed to teach
new "Net travelers" how to travel around the rapidly expanding(and
often-times confusing) "Information Superhighway" without getting lost.
For information send:

TO: BobRankin@MHV.net


If you're looking for a mailing list, this search engine finds the
words and terms that you specify.  For info send:

TO: liszter@bluemarble.net
SUBJ: help
BODY: help

A woman went to court and told the judge she wanted a divorce. 
"Do you have any grounds?" the judge asked.  "Just 2 acres," she
said.  "That's not ground, lady.  I mean, do you have a grudge?" 
"No, we park the car in front of the house."  Frustrated, the
judge continued, "Does your husband beat you up?"  She replied,
"No, I get up before he does."  "Then why do you want a divorce?"
the judge asked.  "Because,"  she confessed, "We just don't seem
to be able to communicate."

Scott Yanoff maintains a list of Internet sites by subject.  This list
should have something for everyone.

TO: inetlist@aug3.augsburg.edu
SUBJ: yanoff
BODY: yanoff

More of Dick's Tips in later issues


From:    "Robert S. Stall,
         M.D.--Internist/Geriatrician--List Founder"
Subject: New Listserv list--LTC-LIST (Long Term Care Discussion Group)

Because of popular demand, I have set up a new Listserv list
dedicated to Long Term Care issues.  You can subscribe to
LTC-LIST by sending the following message text to
listserv@ubvm.cc.buffalo.edu  :

subscribe LTC-LIST yourname


 Subject: When I leave this Vale of Tears.
ah043@FreeNet.Carleton.CA (Petrus W. Delepper)

As a young boy I was often exhorted by the term, 'This Vale of
Tears'. Yes, I did some suffering as a young boy. Although
sometimes too I had my moments of glory, even though I didn't
think at that time I had my fifteen seconds of fame. To many
people including myself it must have been my moment of infamity.
I could have wet my pants at that glorious moment. This action
would have guaranteed me having a place in Dutch lore. I lost my
chance and have rued it ever since. Oh yes, I did regularly wet
my pants and often I was admonished that this was an activity
that ought not to be done by little boys, even if they were
emotional wrecks.

The day was the 10th of December 1940 and Uncle Addy, aka Adolf
Hitler, was visiting the Imperial City of Maastricht. Opposite of
the offices of the Obercommandantur  was an Eye clinic were I had
been the day before operated on to correct stygmata in both eyes.
Both my eyes were still bandaged and someone in the entourage of
Der Fhurer thought it would be a good idea of friendship for the
Dutch People that Herr Hitler would place a poor Dutch boy on his
lap. Being at the right place at the right time I was selected to
be Uncle Addie's little nephew. Many years later I saw the same
condition of a little English Boy being terrorized by Sadam
Hussein. At least I thought I could see the terror in the boys
eyes. However, I was not terrified but rather enjoyed the
attention. And the bar of chocolate afterwards tasted terrific. I
might have missed the chocolate if I had peed.

Petrus W., no, in this vale of tears there still are many


-Many babies are descended from a long line...which began on a

-A baby is a person who must have bottle or bust.

-A baby stroller is last year's fun on wheels.

-A straight line is the shortest distance between a baby and
  anything breakable.


Sophisticared Lady 
(suppled by patmci@net-gate.com)

Only rarely do I hear the haunting melody of Sophisticated Lady,
but when I do I am instantly transported back to a tranquil
moonlit beach on a warm summer night where three couples listen
to a portable, hand-cranked victrola as they lounge around a
camp-fire, blankets spread on the sand, and grill some hot dogs
on long forks over the flames. The sound of the near-by waves
lapping onto the sand is a soothing back-drop to the
lackadaisical conversation as we point out to each other the
glittery path on the water put forth by the moon.

Mabel and her friend, Mark, take the lead with Edith and her
friend, Rudy, closely following. Alice is a tag-a-long with
Rudy's older brother, John, who obligingly is squiring the
youngest of the sisters, Alice.\ I am Alice, and I am thrilled to
be included in this spontaneous night-time adventure. John is
nice and big-brotherly. I see how grown-up he is with his full,
dark mustache. I smell the smoke from the wood-fire and hear the
sizzling as the hot dogs drip into the fire. This smell is mixed
with that of Unguentine which is healing my sun-burned nose.

The air is soft, with now and then a whisper of a breeze. The sky
is a royal blue velvet blanket, brilliant with stars. I feel lost
in other worldliness, although we aren't ten miles down the beach
from our cottage.

After the hot dogs are devoured the fellows open bottles of
ginger ale. Now it's time for the roasting of marshmallows on the
same long forks used for the hot dogs. Mabel and Edith take turns
playing records on the victrola, but Sophisticated Lady   is the
favorite. I am awash in languorous pleasure as the evening
progresses, and I seem to fit in with the others in what is to me
a novel, night-time, two-by-two date situation Suddenly, we are
aware that someone is tramping heavily toward us and a figure
breaks into the pale light of the campfire. IT'S DAD! "Do you
young people know what time it is?", he says brusquely. "It's
almost midnight, and time for you girls to be in. Now, come

I am stunned; it can't be midnight, can it?

"Dad you didn't have to come after us; it's not late," Mabel

After no response, Edith says, "I guess we'd better leave."

Sighing, we get to our feet. The fellows bluster about dousing
the fire and gathering the gear. Silently we file back to the

In a short space of time our two-car caravan arrives at the
cottage. Dad greets us and gives us a helping hand as we troop in
with what is left of the picnic things. We are trying to be
quiet---the rest of our family is asleep upstairs. There are
smothered laughs and finally muffled good-byes to the fellows as
they leave. Even Dad grins at us as he quietly moves up the
stairs to return to bed.

The Sophisticated Ladies glance at each other; smiles appear all
around as we find ourselves home safe and sound and ready to call
it a night. A night of moonlight and magic gracefully accepted as
just one more of summer's lush bounties. We have no idea that
this night is etched in our memories, and that we will return to
it in nostalgia again and again and again. Alice Brunner

During a family dinner, my sister Kathy, the dentist, was
lecturing us about our flossing habits.  Our brother Jim said,
"Well, flossing is a pain in the rear." "Then you're definitely
not doing it right," Kathy replied.



 "Gerald F. Carroll" 

When Ifirst started working Iused to have to travel quite a bit
and I would be out of town for several months at a time. On this
occasion i was located in a town called Gillam, Manitoba. This is
about 100 miles south of the northern port of Churchill,
Manitoba. This was located on the Canadian National Railways line
and was the only means of getting to this area as the nearest
road was over 500 miles away.

There was only one vehicle in this town as I remember. It was an
old Model T truck. When it started up you could hear it on every
radio in town. There were perhaps one hundred people in this town
at the time. The main purpose of this location was a turnaround
point for railway crews. There was a roundhouse, coal dock and a
large station that had sleeping quarters for the changing crews.
The station as well served as a railway telegraph office.
Sometimes they would live there for months at a time before
getting relief to go back to civilization as it were.

Coming from a place (Winnipeg, Manitoba) a place of about 500,000
people was a real eye opener. The hotel was a converted barn.
There was a sort of restaurant, you were doubtful about the food
though. The Railway had a restaurant as well but it was mainly
for employees and train passengers. It was often said during
these years that if Manitoba had a rear end, this is where you
would find it. The people were very nice however. There was a
hall which four nights a week became a movie theatre. This area
was a mixture of native Indians, Eskimos and whoever got
transferred to this location. When you started with the railway
you were almost guaranteed to end up in this location until you
had enough whiskers to get a job somewhere else. There was no
doctor, just a nurse that came once in a while from a nearby
radar base. The RCMP were in a town called Wabowden some 200
miles to the south and the only way they could come was by train
or in the event of an emergency by track motor car.

My reason for being there was the addition of a new telegraph
office in a tin shack adjacent to the station. There was one
person from the telegraphs who lived in the railway supplied
housing who was manager of the telegraph office and sometimes
would automatically become mayor. The highlite of this job was
making sure the theatre had sufficient movies to show four times
a week. You always went to the movies, there was very little else
to do in the evenings. You somehow never got tired of seeing the
Roy Rogers, or Gene Autry serials that were presented with the
main feature. These were memorable times. The natives would sit
on one side of the aisle and everyone else would sit on the
other. The reason for this was to form a cheering section. When
the Indians triumphed there were cheers from their side. when the
supposed hero of the show did something then the cheers came from
the other side. When the major bad guy got his dues then everyone
would cheer.

The train schedule resulted in the passenger train getting in to
town about 3:00 in the morning. Everyone would go down and meet
the train at this time. After a couple of weeks of staying there
I got so that was one of my main events, one of the highlites of
the week. There were many tourists in the summer for all of us
towns people to gawk at. The only hotel in the town used to have
a horse. His main job was in the winter when the snow was too
deep, (there were no such things as snow mobiles) to haul the
beer from the train station to the hotel. This animal had status.
Should you be walking a trail and there was swamp on either side
and the horse was coming the other way, you had to step off the
path and let the horse go by, after all he hauled the beer in the
winter. Sometimes he would sleep in the night on  this same path.

Well fate would have it one person I knew was coming in to town
that morning. The train was late so we were not there to meet
him. When he arrived he had directions on how to get to the
hotel. The night was still dark and visibility was not that
great. Anyway he was hustling along the path with his bags in
either hand when he trips over the horse and ends up in the mud
and water on the side of the path. Well he finally gets oriented
and proceeds to the hotel. He gets inside and the owner staring
at him asks what happened. He replies. "Here I am in a one horse
town, and I have to trip over the only horse". 


      Better Late

Fall love
Like blackberries
Lies just beyond the thorns;
Ripe and sweet, however late the