Observations: Burger Flipper for the World

Causing drivers to make sudden unsafe exits from freeways, eliciting excited screeches from children, making the family dog whine and yelp in anticipation, yanking old men with canes and walkers into snowstorms to meet their cohorts for coffee and other tempting things: Ah! It’s McDonald’s Golden Arches at work. The power this nearly universal trademark has on hungry people makes it seem as if the “M” of the arches should stand for “Magnet.” Possibly the most recognizable trademark in the world, it has been pulling humanity in for enough decades…

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To Pea Or Not To Pea; To Bean Or Not To Bean

Are dogs able to spit? Can they puff up their jowls and force air out like as human’s “p-tui” in response to something disliked? Our coonhound Brutus made me imagine strange possibilities one morning when I picked up his food bowl several months ago. Brutus has always had a hearty appetite, no doubt enhanced by my habit of adding something tasty to my dogs’ kibble meals: a scoop of canned dog food, some chicken skins, some gravy. The previous evening, I had part of a chicken pot pie left over…

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Gremlins

Very few people avoid being plagued with gremlins, whether the creatures’ presence is obvious or not.  Gremlins avoid super-organized, compulsively neat folks and wisely keep their distance but still wait for the pouncing moment. Gremlins’ only good quality is their loyalty; they never leave their assigned people. Their qualities range from the mildly contentious to the averagely malevolent, to the downright destructive, hateful S.O.B./Bitch types. Gremlins are always of the same sex as the host person as they emerge right there on the birthing table of about 80 percent of…

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Revisiting “The ’22 Winter of Our Discontent”

(with apologies to John Steinbeck) A recent comic strip, “B.C.” by Mastronianni & Hart, used extreme anachronisms to produce humor during the 2022 January “snow event” in the northeastern United States.  The strip’s only character was Grog, who is always portrayed as a ball of hair sitting on top of two skinny legs and having a large nose and rudimentary arms. Grog was looking at Wiley’s dictionary searching for the word “dusting.”  The definition was “What people in Buffalo call snowfall that everyone else would call a blizzard.” If this…

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One Photo, One Painting, Multiple Coincidences

For many years I had a photo of a pretty blonde young woman in an ornate frame in my attic: my paternal aunt. I also had an oil painting that had hung in my aunt’s home; my father and I retrieved it when he was executor of her estate. I moved the painting to various places around my house, but only recently did the photo and the painting become the center of a remarkable set of events that started when I was a child and have just recently surfaced through…

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The Short and Winding Route to School

When a person’s drive to work and back home involves only a few miles, it may not create many lasting memories. However, for a variety of reasons, my 30 years of trips to two high schools during my teaching days included several unusual events. My first two years as a teacher were at Mentor High School on Rt. 615. During 1965 – ’66, I lived with my widowed father just within the eastern border of Mentor, so the drive to the school was only about ten miles. The route included…

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Childhood Bliss

Summer days filled with walks through fields of roses with their wonderful fragrance and myriads of color were only part of my childhood memories. My parents had lived in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, when I was born but seemed to be on a quest to move farther east starting when I was a baby. They left Cleveland to move first to the south of Willoughby; but when I was almost five, they bought seven acres in east Mentor and built a house in what was then a rural area. Proof of…

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Underground Humor and Pranks, Part 2

Even though the RHS staff during the years I taught there seemed populated with many people who had finely-tuned appreciation for pranks and humor, students were hardly exempt from such “creativity.” In addition, almost all school personnel, functioning in an environment demanding much communication, are likely to fall prey to occasional bloopers or laughable moments themselves. One such person who has always been mindful of her own naivety is Elaine Uonelli, long-time speech and hearing therapist for the school district. Her schedule was arranged to allow visits to all the…

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The Essence of a Gentleman: Alumnus Donald Pomfrey Remembered

A phrase used most often about Donald Pomfrey was “a true gentleman.”  A member of the Class of ’54, he excelled in so many areas that honoring his memory adequately is a challenge. His service and dedication to the school and the alumni association were a major part of his legacy, but his unwavering strength of character is also worthy of praise and respect. Don died August 16, ‘21, at age 85. Three traits that Don was widely known for were loyalty, dedication and integrity. When the Pomfrey family moved…

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Through the Eyes of Children: Beautiful Ohio: Marietta Marano Lipps

Guest Author: Marietta Marano Lipps Introduction and Afterword by Gretchen Reed Gretchen: Imagine four children ages, 12 – 4, who had spent their entire lives as residents of Las Vegas, now living in Northeast Ohio. On April 21 they awakened to a “fairyland” snow of about 5 inches. The evening had been wind- free, and the snow had built up on tree branches and caused many fallen limbs and drooping shrubs in the area. Throughout March these children had enjoyed an unusually warm, sunny month at the home of their…

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