There was always the problem of making the final decision. She depended on him to help her more than he really liked. Everyday started with endless questions.
Did they want to go out to eat? What was she going to wear? How much perfume should a lady wear? Did the blouse need to be buttoned at the top? Did the dress make her look fat? Where at she put that red purse…the one with the black clasp?
He on the other hand knew exactly how he felt. No, it wasn’t the dress that made her look fat so she could stand to miss a meal or two. No they were not going out to eat so it didn’t matter if the blouse were unbuttoned or not. As for what she was going to wear, he had no opinion on that but would she please decide on her own. He hated the perfume that smelled like fly spray and the red purse both.
She was undecided and he came straight to the point. It cut her to the bone!
Barbara is a writer that has written on Sunday Scribblings in the past. She now spends most of her time keeping her other blot, Retire in Style Blog, up and running.
The photo album lies open on the table and faces look up at me. I cannot help but wonder what they looked like when they were young. All I can see are the images of very old, used up people. They were in their thirties.
Teeth removed early in life left the mouth sunken somehow. Any sign of the buck toothed boy or gap toothed girl disappeared. All the faces were the same. I looked for myself in their portraits…my grandmother or my aunties stood looking me in the eye. But I was no where to be found.
Where did i belong in that album…or did I belong there at all.
it may be that there are so many stories in my mind they have blocked the exits and will not come out. I struggle because they come to me in the night when my guard is down and then flee into the recesses of my mind when I open my eyes in the morning.
The characters are in place. My husband and I named the first as we sat over breakfast at a restaurant next to Home Depot. We decided to combine family names along with a name that sounded very Swedish to me. It seemed to work. Her name was Etta Elen Almquist.
Then Buzzard and Edith moved in across from Etta Elen’s mother and father. The group grew when Miss Apple, Edith’s sister appeared one day. Other characters included Frog, an early friend of Etta’s.
But they are hiding behind walls in my mind and it is going to take some prodding to flush them out. It will be done but not today. I am too busy to do any chasing today.
I am a mother-in-law/grandmother…and I am finding that it has become a huge part of who I am. I fought it for a long time. Not because I didn’t love my grandchildren beyond reason or because they were not important. I fought it because I did not want to become one of those intrusive mother-in-laws that had information…lots and lots of information.
Now I have realized that I cannot escape the role. My children have learned to endure my warnings and cautions. I have worn the edges off my anxiety. It is all good.
One thing did cross my mind the other night though. I began wondering if my husband and I over stayed our welcome at our last family gathering. It is hard to know just the right moment to depart. If we leave too soon we are saying without words that we are not interested. If we leave too late the children are thinking “Honey shall we can go to bed so these people can go home?” That is not good either.
I suppose that keeping it in mind and being considerate is more important than anything. I hope you are well. Come back soon.
Here in Oregon the wine industry is getting to be famous. Those of us that live here would like to keep our little secret but it just doesn’t work that way. If you have something good, the rest of the world wants to get in on the action.
My husband and I visited the Garden Vineyard here in Washington Country a couple of weeks ago. Hidden at the end of a country road, the vineyard was a total surprise. It was very busy yet the owner told us they did not advertise. Word of mouth has made the weekend tastings very popular. During the summer they feature live music on Friday nights and in the fall the outdoor theater shows Halloween movies.
All I could think as we signed up for a membership was How do we keep this beautiful place a semi-secret? Take a look at the views and I think you will understand why.
I will never forget the day that Russell Kirsch called and left a message on my cell phone. I had written a blog about him and he wanted to say thank you. So he managed to find me by simply calling everyone in the Portland metropolitan area with my last name. I think he had good luck because my last name is not very common. My granddaughter gave him my cell phone number and the rest is history.
To say that it frightened me to even talk to a man like Mr. Kirsch is the understatement of the century. But I called the number he left and we had a delightful and memorable conversation. He was a charming and engaging man.
Now you say, who is Russell Kirsch? Well he is in fact the man that created the first computer that could see and took the first ever picture with a digital device.
He was working at the time with the federal government on a project to create the digital computer and later worked at a not-for-profit organization called National Institute of Standards and Technology as head of the Artificial Intelligence . He began his work at the government level in 1951 and he career there spanned 30 years. Part of his job there included thermonuclear weapons calculations.
But all that is not why I was so impressed. He, like so many computer geeks after him, spent a certain amount of his time at the government computers working on things other than calculation. He, in fact, spent that time figuring out how to take a picture with his computer. This venture led to such devices as CT scanners, satellite imaging, bar-code scanners, desktop publishing, blood-cell analyzers as well as the digital camera.
The original picture he created about 50 years ago appeared in Life magazine as one of the images that helped change the world. The image was of his infant son, a man that is now employed by Intel.
So to say that I admire Russell Kirsch is not all of the story.. I have written before about him. He is in fact one of my heroes. I give you Russell Kirsch, the inventor of the square pixel, the man that wondered if a computer could see, the man that thought that a picture of a baby might be more important that “thermonuclear weapons calculations”!