Friday, June 17, 2011

In Honor of Toasted Marshmallows

Thought for the day:  Howcum a man can wait patiently for hours on end for a fish to bite, and can wait patiently in the freezing cold for hours on end, waiting for a deer to come by, but can't tolerate so much as a ten minute wait for food in a restaurant ... where it's a sure thing?

You probably wouldn't be surprised to know the highest volume of long distance phone calls always occurs on Mother's Day. Not that there aren't plenty made on Father's Day, too. But most of them are collect. Why is it moms get the thoughtful gifts, while dads can usually count on getting aftershave or yet another tie he'll never wear? And when Father's Day rolls around, why do the kids think it's okay to buy dear old Dad something from the discount bin at the Dollar Store, and what's more, pay for it with change left over from the cash he gave them to buy something really nice for Mother's Day? As Bill Cosby put it, "Fatherhood is pretending the present you love most is 'soap-on-a-rope'."

Just because the phrase, "Pull my finger" is in the lexicon of  fathers worldwide doesn't mean they aren't as sentimental as mothers. They just don't show it as easily. Very often, they're like toasted marshmallows: crusty on the outside, and all sweet and mushy on the inside.

In honor of Father's Day, I'd like to share some excerpts with you from an article you may have seen before. "Geezers" has appeared countless places without attribution, but as best I could discern, it may have been written in 2001 by a West Virginia chaplain by the name of Koren Fae Rawlings:

Geezers are easy to spot. At parades, they're the ones standing a little taller and often saluting when the flag passes by. At sporting events and at ceremonies on national holidays, they're the ones who stand erect and hold their hands over their hearts when the national anthem is played.

If you bump into an old geezer on the sidewalk, he'll apologize. Pass a geezer on the street, and he'll nod, maybe say hello. Geezers trust strangers and are courtly toward women. They hold the door for the next person, and always, when walking, make sure the lady is on the inside.

Geezers have moral courage. They're the ones staring down those making offensive remarks or acting in an offensive manner. Geezers seldom brag unless it's about their grandchildren.

This country needs geezers. We need their decent values and their common sense. We need their breadth of experience, their depth of knowledge and high ideals.

Thank God for all Old Geezers.

And thank God for fathers.

Mark Twain said, "When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years." And Charles Wadsworth said, "By the time a man realizes that maybe his father was right, he usually has a son who thinks he's wrong."

So give your dad a break. Even if he's not the affectionate sort, and his last hug felt more like a wrestling hold, let him know how much you appreciate him. Because he may not tell you how to live, but he lives, and lets you watch him do it.

To all you fathers, a very happy Father's Day. And to all of you who still have fathers, go ahead ... make him happy.  Pull his finger.

And now, 'tis time for the (ta DA!)

Weirdest News Stories of the Week

Pull my hoof
Cows have taken a bit of heat for the amount of methane they produce, and some countries have even considered imposing a "methane tax" on the people who own them. In 2008, researchers in Argentina hooked cows to the bizarre-looking contraption on the left to collect their methane, quantify it, and ascertain how much it contributed to the country's greenhouse emissions. As it turned out, they contribute quite a bit. Final results indicated that as much as 30% of the country's greenhouse emissions consist of cow farts and burps.

*** Now, the Australian government is taking a hard sniff at camel belches. With an estimated 1.2 million feral camels roaming the outback, each belching approximately one hundred gaseous pounds of methane every year, that racks up to a global warming impact equivalent to 1.1 tons of carbon dioxide. Per camel. The recent legislative proposal would allow sharpshooters to earn carbon credits by killing camels, and then these credits would subsequently be sold to global polluters to offset their own emissions. Bureaucrats are expected to reach a decision on this proposal by the end of the year.

I'd walk a mile for a roll of Tums.

***  The city of Nederland, Colorado, is offering to sell the celebratory rights for ... a dead man. When 89-year-old Bredo Mortoel died, his family decided to preserve his body, in hopes of one day being able to bring him back to life. So his body,  packed in dry ice, resides in an outdoor shed, and for the past ten years, this small mountain town has been celebrating this deceased man on ice with an annual festival, replete with a parade of hearses, frozen salmon tossing, and coffin races. Believe it or not, it's been a very popular festival, but you know how the economy is. The Chamber of Commerce says the festival has simply become too expensive, so they're trying to sell the rights to it, and hope an event company will step up to keep this unusual festival going.

*** Ever wonder what those Scotsmen wear under their kilts? The answer became clear for recent groom Angus McClure, who sat his kilt-clad bottom on his new bride's knee. Unfortunately, his bare and poorly-wiped bottom left a brown "skid mark" on her pristine gown. Let's just say she wasn't at all impressed. In fact, she decked him, and a knock-down, drag-out, free-for-all followed. Police say they've seen nasty wedding party brawls before, but none quite this nasty. Seven people were hauled off to jail. The bride and groom? Once they sobered up, the report is they reconciled, and fortunately, have no memory of the melee. Let's hope no one took pictures.

Have a wonderful Father's Day. Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.


  1. Love that Geezer essay. :) And, of course, the camel pic. ;)

    Your weird news stories are, as always, highly entertaining. Thanks for the laugh.

  2. Sad to say the geezers you speak about have pretty much died off as they were WWII "gentlemen". Now we have the geezers of our generation, who just seem to be cranky a lot of the time.

    Love this post. It was sweet, funny and entertaining. You write so well Susan.

  3. Hi-ya, Linda. Yeah, that geezer essay gets me every time. I figured you'd like the camel, even if it isn't hump day.

    Starting Over- You're right; a lot of the original geezers were WWI and WWII vets. But our Korean vets and Vietnam vets are going strong, and still carry the same ideals. Glad you enjoyed the post. Thank you, dear lady.

  4. I love that quote by Mark Twain! Don't you think Twain would have been fascinating company at a party?

  5. Short of being in prison or overseas - who would have to make a collect long distance call anymore. LOL!

    I don't have my Dad anymore - but I am fortunate to share my wonderful Father in law with Pooldad - and although he isn't a replacement, I could not ask for a gift then him and his son. :D Lotsa celebrating this Sunday for the men we admire and adore.

  6. * a BETTER gift then him. oops!

  7. Hi, Dianne. Yes, anyone as witty as Twain would make for fascinating company anywhere. Can you just imagine what he'd have to say about today's politicians?

    Delores- (Hey! I even spelled your name right this time!) Yeah, I reckon he was.

    Skippy- You're probably right about the long distance calls these days. I'm glad you still have your father-in-law. Hope you and your guys enjoy a wonderful Father's Day.

  8. Geezers in the south were brought up to be gentlemenly and friendly, geezers in the north, not so much. Might have to do with longer winters.

  9. I think the word 'Geezer' must have many different connotations. From your description, we would call that a 'Gentleman', whereas a 'Geezer' is more of a 'wide boy' (if that means anything).

  10. Hi, Susan...reading your post about Geezers made me think of a lot of men in my family...all gone, but Geezers to the dad, brothers and husband...all Geezers and so much respected by all who knew them...Thank you for reminding me of all of them. Ruby

  11. Delores- Depends on the family. In our family, (MD, where the winters are plenty long) you were jolly well gonna be polite. I STILL say "ma'am" and "sir."

    Cro- Loosely speaking, here "geezer" generally means "old man", but as described within the essay, the connotation extends to the best qualities that make a man of any age an honorable gentleman. Not sure about "wide boy." Here, that'd probably mean fat.

    Ruby- If you aren't familiar with the entire geezer essay, you'd probably appreciate it. It talks about some of the things geezers remember, and the obstacles they've overcome to become the men they are. I'm happy to have made you remember some of those special men. Take care.

  12. I know a lot of geezers, I love this post today, and I miss my dad!