Categories
CANADA Manitoulin Island Ontario The Landlady Vicarious Tourism

A Not-So-Phony $3 Bill…

The Haweater $3 Bill
The Haweater $3 Bill
Taken February 11, 2013 with Samsung Galaxy S3

When Ruby ran a restaurant on The Manitoulin, the Tourist Association put out “The Haweater 3-Dollar Bill”. It was valid currency in most businesses, as well as every bank and credit union on the island.

She doesn’t think it’s still in circulation now, but I think it was a really cool idea to keep visitors coming back. Ruby says it was mostly the tourists that actually used the bill for currency (and most she had to convince that yes, it really was a valid currency). She thinks most of the tourists likely took it home as a souvenir, rather than spend it. Business owners put any they took in promptly into their deposit bags, and the locals never bothered to use it much, if at all.

Categories
Artsy Fartsy The Landlady

Some Things are Made to Be Destroyed…

This Is Not a Mistake © Les Becker Taken April 7, 2011 with Nokia N97 Smartphone
This Is Not a Mistake
© Les Becker
Taken April 7, 2011 with Nokia N97 Smartphone

This is a “pulled” or “drop-stitch” scarf. It’s knit on 4 needles and then, when binding off, every second stich is just dropped off the needle. Yank on it really hard, and it “pulls” down into a nice fluffy scarf.

I made this at Ruby’s while were watching the Blue Jays play. Well… Ruby watches the Jays play – I knit things, and listen to her yell at the television.

It was Ruby who showed me how to make this scarf.

The other day Ruby got laughing over a friend of hers. Trudy lived across the street from Ruby for years, and they were great friends. Now, they generally just talk on the phone, as Trudy lives way on the other side of town.

Ruby: …and you know when Trudy gets on the phone, she talks for hours!

Categories
The Landlady

The $5 School Cake…

Chocolate
“Chocolate”
© Les Becker, 2010
Taken November 21, 2010 with Nokia N97 Smartphone

When Ruby was a young girl, her school in Northland had a fair once a year, in the spring. It offered the usual school fair “stuff” of the era; games of chance, 4H projects, etc., and students could show off (and sell) their needlework and baked goods.

One year, Ruby won a needlepoint contest – got a trophy and everything. Another year, she and her sister Joycie entered a singing contest. They won 10 cents each for climbing up on the back of a hay wagon and singing “The Little Shirt My Mother Made for Me.”

The real killer year for Ruby, though, was The Year of the $5 School Cake.

She and her sisters each baked up something to sell at the school bake table every year. This year, Ruby had baked a chocolate layer cake. It was a beautiful cake and she was really proud of it.

On the walk to the fair, Ruby fell behind a little, walking veeeerrrryyy carefully to make sure her cake survived the journey intact. She was just coming to the edge of the fairground, far behind her sisters, when a stumbling drunk guy comes reeling towards her, and stops her.

“Hey,” says the drunk. “Whad’ya got there?”

Ruby tells him she’s got a chocolate cake to put on the school bake table.

The drunk says, “Yeah? I’ll give you $5 for it.”

Ruby, not being stupid, promptly handed him the cake. $5 richer, she went wandering around the fair grounds until she found her father at the ice cream stand.

Her father loved ice cream. He looked forward to the school fair every year, just so he could get an ice cream cone. He also loved children, and every year, he bought every kid that came along an ice cream cone too.

When Ruby found him, he asked, “Did you sell your cake?

Ruby said, “Yup,” and told him about the drunk, and showed him the $5.

Now, Ruby’s dad had probably just blown (at 5 cents a cone over 20 or 30 kids) around a buck and a quarter. Ruby, on the other hand, had just gained $5 by scalping her own school cake. All her father could think of to do was laugh.

Ruby has no memory of what she might have spent that $5 on, and it drives her crazy that she can’t remember.

“That was an awful lot of money back then,” she says.

All I can picture when she tells this story, is the drunk – stumbling through the woods and across fields carrying a chocolate layer cake…

Not-So-Random Song-for-the-Day: “The Little Shirt My Mother Made for Me” – Marty Robbins

Categories
The Landlady

I Sits…

Ruby's Wall Taken November 14th, 2010 with Nokia N97 Smartphone
Ruby’s Wall
Taken November 14th, 2010 with Nokia N97 Smartphone

Random Song-for-the-Day: “Love the Way You Lie” – Eminem – featuring Rihanna

Categories
Radio Les The Landlady

The Burglar Song

Image: The Burglar Frog

The Burglar Frog
Taken July 29, 2009 with Canon PowerShot A550

Ruby has this motion sensor frog ornament in her breezeway. I don’t like the thing, because I forget that it’s there, and every time I go to visit her it croaks at me and scares the shit out of me.

Every single time.

I once asked her why she had the horrid thing, and she laughed and said, “To warn me if a burglar tries to get in.”

Since then, I’ve always referred to it as “The Burglar Frog”. It would scare a burglar away, too; I’m certain of it.

I was over there in the wee hours of the night (possibly yesterday?), and we were sitting there having our coffee and working the crossword puzzle when the Burglar Frog “went off”. I waited for a knock on the door, but none came.

“Is someone here…?” I asked Ruby.

“Why?” she wanted to know.

“Your frog just croaked,” I replied.

“Huh. I never even heard it,” Ruby said, getting up and going toward the door. “I must have a burglar.”

I didn’t particularly like hearing that and got up to try and beat her to the door. I was over there later than usual, since my sleeping patterns have all been blown to hell. It was after midnight, and although Ruby is a night owl, the idea of her answering her door to a burglar kind of made the heebie-jeebies start in me.

She still managed to get to the door first, though, because she made me pause when she called back to me, “Remind me to sing you The Burglar Song….”

We discovered no burglar… the frog was playing tricks on us. I still wanted to hear The Burglar Song, though, whatever that was, and when Ruby sang it to me, I immediately wanted to know if she would let me record it and post it here.

She agreed.

I was a little surprised at how readily she agreed. I think she’s starting to enjoy the notoriety of being my Blog Star, such as it is. Just in case she changed her mind, though, I booted it home to get the recorder (encountering no burglars), and booted it back in less than three minutes. I love living this close to her… 🙂

I powered up the recorder and she started to sing. Half-way through the song, she realized she’d left out a verse.

Take 2: She got half-way through again, and had herself a coughing jag.

Take 3: She got half-way through, and suddenly couldn’t remember one of the verses.

Take 4: Success!

I came home, not in the least bit sleepy and decided to write this post…

And my F-ing computer told me there was no room for the audio file. I said my Dad’s Magic Word about then, I think.

I spent the rest of the night backing up old photos and video and clearing space on the hard-drive.

Later, having slept for most of the day, I was back at Ruby’s for more coffee and a fresh crossword.

“Did I sing to the internet?” she wanted to know.

I had to tell her that, no, I hadn’t got the post written, nor the photo ‘shopped, nor the audio edited.

“Oh,” she said, sounding disappointed. “Do you still have your thingamajig in your pocket?”

I pulled out my recorder, wondering what she was going to sing for me this time…

“I was hoping I could hear myself,” she said, and I obligingly pushed the ‘play’ button…

Whereupon, Ruby discovered that she’d left out an entire verse during Take 4. Again.

She said that just wouldn’t do, and after dictating to me the first line of every verse on her notepad, so she’d have something to jog her memory, she proceeded to sing the song again perfectly, without ever looking at her cheat sheet.

Give it a listen – it’s funny as hell. I’ve provided the lyrics below the player link, if you have any trouble with Ruby’s Canuckian accent (this means you, CardioGirl).

The Burglar Song – Ruby Daniel
Click it! Click it!


The Burglar Song

I’ll tell you a story of a burglar bold
Who went to rob a house.
He opened a window, and then crept in
As quiet as a mouse.

He looked around for a place to hide
‘Til the folks were all asleep.
And then, said he, with vehmeny,
“I’ll take a quiet sleep.”

So under the bed the burglar crept,
He crept up close to the wall.
He didn’t know it was an old maid’s room,
Or he’d never have had the gall.

He thought of the money that he would steal,
While under the bed he lay.
At 9 o’clock, he saw a sight
That made his hair turn gray.

At 9 o’clock the old maid came home.
“I am so tired,” she said.
She thought that all was well that night,
So she didn’t look under the bed.

She took out her teeth, her big glass eye,
And the hair all off of her head.
The burglar, he had forty fits,
While he watched from under the bed.

From under the bed, the burglar crept.
He was a total wreck.
The old maid wasn’t asleep at all,
And she grabbed him by the neck.

She didn’t holler, or shout, or yell.
She was as cool as a clam.
She only said, “The Saints be praised!
At last, I’ve got a man!”

From under the pillow, she drew out a gun,
And to the burglar she said,
“Young man, if you don’t marry me,
I’ll blow off the top of your head.”

She held him firmly by the neck.
He hadn’t a chance to scoot.
He looked at the gun and the big glass eye,
And said, “Madam, hurry and shoot.”

Categories
The Landlady

“Poor Little Deer…”

Mr. Hobbit and the Deer - 1942
Mr. Hobbit and the Deer – 1942
Isn’t that a “deer” little picture? That’s actually what Ruby said to me when she passed it over her coffee cup, laughing, but I’m stealing it for myself…

I got to see a lot of Ruby’s old photos last night; most actually had The Lady Herself in them. Mushy’s instincts are quite correct: she surely was a “looker” in her day.

It’s unfortunate that she won’t let me post any… Ah well… on with the story.

That man – whose name I’m not allowed to publish, and I won’t make one up because his real name was just so spectacular that I couldn’t possibly come up with a better one (I swear there’s a hobbit somewhere with the same last name, and no, it’s not “Baggins”, but wouldn’t that have been groovy-cool?!) – owned a cabin right beside Northland Lake. The photo was taken somewhere ’round about 1942-43, if Ruby’s guess is correct.

The deer was a “gift” from a couple of men who “found” it in the bush, wandering around without a mother.

“Hmmmphf!” says Ruby. “No doubt they shot her and then found the baby.”

Ruby says Mr. Hobbit – there, I’ve named him anyway, haven’t I? – was a real nice fella. She and her brothers and sisters and all their crazy teenaged friends used to go visit him. They would swim in the lake in summer, and skate on it in the winter.

He never let them on the lake after the sun went down, though, afraid something might happen to one of them, and no one would find them in the dark. So, after sunset, they would all crowd into his little cabin, and he would wind up the old victrola so they could dance.

Or he’d pull out his fiddle and they would dance to that.

Nice guy, Ruby says. It was Mr. Hobbit that gave them the deer to take home. “Followed us home right smart,” as Ruby tells it. “It was a tame little thing.”

Ruby’s Mom, now (She of the No. Forearms.), wasn’t so fond of having a deer around. I would have thought she’d worry about the gardens, but no, it was the railroad tracks that scared her. Ruby’s dad was the Line Foreman in Northland, remember, and their house was right beside the tracks. Ruby’s Mom was sure he’d be killed (the deer, not Ruby’s dad – although she probably worried about that, too).

That deer entertained them for most of the summer. It lived outside, but was not in the least bit adverse to coming in for dinner. Ruby always knew when her dad was up in the morning, because once it saw movement in the house, that little deer would be at the door hammering on it with his head. Her dad always gave him breakfast, too.

The bigger the deer got, though, the more Ruby’s Mom worried about him playing on the tracks… she finally convinced the kids to take him back to Mr. Hobbit’s cabin. They didn’t want to, but they did. None of them wanted to find that deer lying bloody on the railroad tracks some morning.

Ironically, after he had been back with Mr. Hobbit for a week or two, a couple of “rough” boys started trying to catch him. Trying to get away, Ruby’s little deer broke a leg on the rocks by the shore.

Mr. Hobbit had to shoot him.

I swear Ruby had tears in her eyes when she told me this story. She very nearly wouldn’t let me take the picture with me, for fear I’d forget to bring it back to her.

Which I had better go and do, right now.

Random Song-for-the-Day: “Lucky” – Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat

Categories
The Landlady

NewsFlash: Love Found on the Internet

Image: I Heart U
“I Heart U”
Taken July 13, 2008 with Canon PowerShot A550

No, not me, silly! Myself, I am quite content with singlehood, as of yet; it’s Ruby that told me this story, and isn’t it high time for another one from our favourite Little Old LandLady?

Yes. Yes, it is…

We were watching a ball game… the Jays were playing; Ruby’s favourite team, and for once they were actually winning while I was watching, which is unusual, because I generally jinx them into doing stupid things that cause them to lose the game…

During a lull, Ruby started to talk – took me a bit to realize she was speaking to me and not the umpire – my first clue should have been that she didn’t start the sentence with, “Idiot!!” (Ruby rarely calls me that).

“Remind me to tell you a story when we go back to the kitchen…”

Me: “Oooh! What kind of story?”

“It’s a cute story. Funny, but cute, I think.”

Me: “Yeah? Is it about you?”

“No. Shhhh, now!”

So, I had to shhh for about 15 minutes. I got up to get another cup of coffee. Ruby doesn’t drink coffee in her living room. She says she forgets about it, and it gets cold. Usually by the time she gets her coffee on baseball nights, there’s only enough for a 1/2 cup left, but she doesn’t seem to mind…

By the time I’d jinxed the Jays badly enough for Ruby to give up on them, I was wired on caffeine and worked up about the upcoming story…

Me: “So, give it up.”

Ruby laughed. “Well, like I say, it’s funny, but it’s cute. *I* think it’s cute, anyway…”

And then, of course, she took a long pause while she sloooooowly wandered around her kitchen, sloooooowly getting cream for her coffee, and sloooooowly adding the sweetener (after first discovering that her little sweetener container needed to be refilled and sloooooowly refilling it), and then sloooooowly stirring it all up…. I was ready to strangle her before she finally started to talk.

“Have you met my niece, Carol, yet?”

Me: “No, I don’t think so.”

“Well, Carol has a friend that lives in the middle of the bush somewhere down in Southern Ontario, I don’t know where for sure, but she doesn’t live there all year ’round, anymore. She comes and stays at Carol’s place in the winter. Her name is Dahlia.

And last winter, Dahlia got using the internet, and got herself into one of those chat rooms…”

Now, as we all know, Ruby does not like or trust the internet, and I was really surprised that she actually knew what a chat room was at all. So I waited for her to start shaking her head and talking about how Carol’s friend got herself into something she shouldn’t have, and wondered how this story was going to turn out funny or cute.

“And, of course, she met this guy…” Ruby chuckled again, and stirred her coffee some more, making me wait it out.

Me: “Uh-oh.”

Ruby laughed out loud. “I was thinking the same thing, when I heard about it! I guess she started chatting with this fella, and after awhile, he was the only fella she was chatting with… His name was George. Well, you can guess where this is going, can’t you?”

Me: “Yes, I can. She fell in love and ran off with him, didn’t she? Did he take her for her cabin in the woods and she ended up destitute?”

“Now, don’t go gettin’ ahead of me; you’ll ruin the story!”

So I shut up again.

“So, Dahlia and this fella started talking about meeting up, and I guess that’s when Dahlia got a little nervous about what she was doing, and she talked to Carol about it.

Carol read all the letters, or what-you-callems that they’d sent back and forth so far, and she told Dahlia that the fella seemed like he was on the up and up, but then again, who knows for sure? So, Dahlia decided to stick to chatting with him for a bit longer until she knew a little more.

After awhile, though, she decided to take a chance and meet with the guy. Carol said that Dahlia could tell him her address…”

Me: “WHAT?! You’re not SERIOUS!! OH. MY. GOD.”

Ruby laughed, and laughed, and laughed.

“That’s about what *I* said! Now, let me finish the story!

So, they set up a date and time that this George-fella was gonna come to town and visit Dahlia, and Dahlia got more and more nervous as the day got closer. If I’d been Carol, *I* woulda been the one that was nervous-”

Me: “Yeah, me too!”

“-but Carol didn’t let on that she was when she told me this, anyway.

So, anyway, the day comes, and Dahlia was so worked up that she darn near hit the ceiling when the doorbell rang. So it was Carol that answered the door.

And she took one look at the fella standing there, and said, ‘GEORGIE!! What are you doing in town?!’

It was my nephew, George, Carol’s cousin, standing there! At first, Carol didn’t put two and two together, figuring Georgie had just come to visit ‘cuz he happened to be in town… but, no, it turned out that OUR Georgie was DAHLIA’S George all along!

Me: “So did they hate each other?”

“NO, they didn’t hate each other! They got along just fine, and as far as I know, they’re still seeing one another. Turned into quite the match, I believe.”

Me: “Oh. So, then, he didn’t take her for her cabin in the woods and she ended up destitute?

“NO! Now you be nice, or I won’t let you blog this one!”

Random Song-for-the-Day: “Obla Di Obla Da” – The Beatles

Categories
The Landlady Video...

Just So’s Y’all Know…

Edible - But You'll Die, After...
Edible – But You’ll Die, After…
Taken August 9, 2008 with Canon PowerShot A550
Fort Creek, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada

Somebody found Where the Walls are Soft by Googling “knickety knackety lyrics”, which piqued my curiosity, as I’d thought Ruby had made up that song… so I Googled it myself, and found the following, described as “most annoying song now and forever”.

It was also the song sung by the school-children in the Alfred Hitchcock movie, The Birds; something else I didn’t know, which really bugs me, because I love that movie. I should have recognized the song when Ruby sang it.

Alfred Hitchcock used the original lyrics of the song…

Anyway, here are those lyrics, just in case the next Googler really, really needs them:

I married my wife
In the month of June
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

I brought her home
By the light of the moon
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

She combs her hair
But once a year
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

With every stroke
She shed a tear
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Rustical quality
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

She swept up her floor
But once a year
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

She said that brooms
Were much too dear
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

She churns her butter
In her dad’s old boot
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

And for a dash
She’d use her foot
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

The butter it came out
All grizzle-y gray
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

The cheese it took legs
And ran away
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

She let the critter
Get away
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

I asked my wife
To wash the floor
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

She gave me my hat
And she showed me the door
Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Now, now, now

Ristle-tee, rostle-tee
Hey, donnie-dostle-tee
Knickety-knackety
Rustical quality
Willow-tree, wallow-tee
Now, now, now

I called Ruby, accusingly, and she sang most of it to me, but without the “ristle-tee, rostle-tee”, after telling me that she never said she’d made it up. She’d just changed the words of a song her uncle used to sing.

Anyway… that’s it. Slow day.

Random Song-for-the-Day: “Captain Vegetable” – The Eddie & Andy Muppets of Sesame Street

Categories
Radio Les The Landlady

Knickety-Knackety Now-Now-Now…

Almost Edible
Almost Edible
Taken July 1, 2008 with Canon PowerShot A550

Ruby wanted me to post a picture of snowshoes for this post. I would have, too, but I couldn’t find any snowshoes to take a picture of, and the ones stealable online were all too small to suit me. Besides, Ruby’s cherry tomatoes are gorgeous, aren’t they?

Ruby and I got talking about snowshoes in the spring (I know, I know – I’m SO behind in these posts!), when I mentioned that another winter had gone by, and I hadn’t bought snowshoes for the kid and myself.

I used to snowshoe in school, and on Cockburn Island with my Dad, but Ky would never even entertain the thought of going with me, until this year, when she took it up in school herself. And fell in love with it, just like I did. We never managed to get ourselves any equipment before the snow melted, though. Sigh…* Next year, maybe…

Anyhoo… The mere mention of snowshoes got a story going…

We used to snowshoe all the time in Northland, you know. We used those old catgut snowshoes – ever see them?

Me: Yes, I have. I used catgut snowshoes, too. My Dad had them on Cockburn, and I think that’s what we had in school.

Well, they don’t make ’em like that anymore. Now, they’re those lightweight aluminum things. Don’t take nothin’ to get those things going. The ones *I* used were heavier than *I* was!

Me: Yup. And if you don’t bang the snow out them every so often, you’ll get bogged down with the weight…

That’s right! You have be careful how you bang ’em, too, or you’ll end up on your face.

(I laughed hard at this – I remember ending up on my face more than a few times.)

I think we spent the whole winter on snowshoes, now I think of it. We wore them for syruping, too. Imagine hauling pails of sap with snowshoes on…! We did it, though. We worked hard, now I look back on it, but I don’t think it occurred to us that we were working. We were having too much fun!

Me: Did you ever just snowshoe for the sake of snowshoeing?

Of course! We snowshoed all winter. Everybody did – even the teacher. He boarded at our house, you know. Slept with my brother.

Me: Your school teacher boarded with you?! God, you must have hated that!

You’re telling me I hated it! I didn’t like that guy much. He thought he was funny, always joking around… Any time a man walked into our kitchen, he’d yell at me: “Ruby! There’s somethin’ in the kitchen with pants on!” He used to make me so mad!

(Let’s all take a break here, while I try to stop laughing…)

I teased him back, though, I guess. I got in big trouble with him over that once.

Me: What’d you do?

Well, he got sweet on this girl in our class one year. He wasn’t much older than us, after all, and he took a shine to this pretty thing that had her nose in the air all the time…

Me: Uppity, was she?

Uppity?! She wouldn’t even talk to the rest of us girls, that’s how uppity she was! Anyway, the teacher was sweet on her, and one day when us kids were all out snowshoeing on the ice, this girl was with us, and we started teasing her about the teacher. She got mad at us, and sat down on the ice and wouldn’t speak to us at all.

So we thought, “Oh, to heck with her,” and off we went without her. Well, when we come back around again, she was gone. We could see two sets of snowshoe tracks making off into the bush, and we knew the teacher had come by and they’d gone off alone together. We made fun of them back and forth to ourselves all the way home. I could hardly keep a straight face at the dinner table that night, with him sitting across from me, let me tell you!

Anyway, that night, my sisters and I were upstairs getting ready for bed, and I got singing…

“She sat on the ice, and she wouldn’t talk
Knickety-knackety, now-now-now.
When the teacher came along, they went for a walk,
Knickety-knackety, now-now-now.”

(At this point, I must interject with the news that Ruby actually began to recite a ditty she’d made up over 70 years ago, and probably hadn’t thought twice about since…. I was flabbergasted. I daresay Ruby was too.)

Well! Didn’t that teacher hear me from down in the kitchen! He came barrelling up those steps – scared the bejeezus out of me! Told me right off, and I got mad at him! I said, “Oh, but it’s alright for you to say, ‘There’s somethin’ in the kitchen with pants on,’ every time somebody comes in!”

And he turned right around and never said another word.

I finally had the sense to dig out the digital recorder. I turned it on, fully expecting her to balk, but…

Ruby sang! When I asked her if I could blog it, she actually agreed. “But,” she said, “You should put up a picture of catgut snowshoes. I’ll bet most people that read your blog have never seen snowshoes!”

Ruby’s tomatoes will have to do, though. I’m more excited to share her voice with you. Check it out.

“Knickety-Knackety” – Ruby Daniel, 2008
Click it! Click it!

Random Song-for-the-Day: “I Kissed a Girl” – Kerry Perry

Categories
The Landlady

Where’s the “Beech”?!

Ruby - Bathing Suit - 1956
Parade Girl – 1956

It didn’t show up in the photo, so Ruby’s sister, who took the original picture back in 1956, wrote what the sign said with a ball-point pen, on the copy she made for Ruby. Yes, that’s Ruby with the mask, goggle eyes and bathing suit. Ummm. Yeah. That’s a bathing suit.

Ruby had no qualms whatsoever about handing it over for bloggery mischief – in fact, she hunted it out on purpose for me in March of this year.

Sorry, folks. This post is a few months late.

* * *

Did I ever tell you about the time I marched in the Community Day Parade on the Island?

Me: No! When was this?!

(laughs and claps her hands together) Wait’ll you see this!

She disappears into her spare room and comes out with the above photo, at which I, of course, laugh.

Me: ‘Splain to me this, Ruby.

Ruby (eyes just a twinkling): Do you think that Mushy-fella will like this?

Me: I think he’d rather no mask.

Ah, well. He’ll have to suffer the mask, then.

Me: So, what’s with the sign? Were you protesting?

Kind of. But we were more making fun, I guess.

Me: Who were you making fun of?

The Town Council, that’s who! A couple years before this, somebody on the council got the bright idea, that if they made a sand beach along the waterfront on one side of the Island, that the tourists would come in droves. There was fighting and voting and more fighting and more voting than you ever would believe over that beach mess, let me tell you!

Me: Looks as if the town wanted it, by the sign…

Nope. Just the opposite. Most people in town didn’t think it would work at all. They figured Lake Huron would just wash the beach away in a couple of years, and wouldn’t that be just a waste of sand and money?

Me: I guess it would.

Your darn right it would! But Council won out, and they must have spent thousands trucking in sand in big trucks and dumping it. They made a right nice beach, too.

Me: And….?

And the very next Spring, Lake Huron melted and hauled the whole works away to God Knows Where! (laughs for a long time) Town Council was pretty red-faced about that, lemme tell you!

Me: And so you marched yourself down Main Street in the Community Day Parade with that get-up and a sign, just to make fun of the Council? I wouldn’t have thought you to be so mean, Ruby!

(I said this ADMIRINGLY, though, you must understand….)

Ruby claps her hands together in laughter again….

Yup! And….

I won First Prize!!

Random Song for the Day: “Nobody Told Me” – Puddle of Mudd