August 6, 2018
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Well, we have just about finished up Day Two of our granddaughter Josie’s visit. Later this afternoon we will take her back home to Mom and Dad. This is the second summer where she has come to visit us for a few days and it’s always an experience. Forgive me if you already have 12 grandkids and have heard stories like this before, but we have only one, so it’s all new to us.
This little person (now three-and-a-half) is a walking, talking nuclear reactor of energy. She makes the Energizer Bunny look like a slacker. She’s not hyperactive or anything along those lines, she’s just BUSY. And, joy of joys, she has little interest in TV or video games. She would much rather play with Nana and Poppy than sit transfixed in front of a screen. That may change later when she gets into school, but we’re lovin’ it right now.
She has a whole laundry list of roles she likes to play. Her sign that she’s ready to begin is her declaring “let’s PLAY!” She always delivers that word in all caps. There’s no doubt about it; this kid believes in having a good time. The playtime roles alternate: sometimes we’re the doctor and she’s the patient. On other occasions the roles are reversed. Her specialty is broken limbs, which she fixes by taking your temperature. (If only modern medicine were that easy.) All other injuries or illnesses are taken care of with a quick listen to your heart with her plastic stethoscope and a few notes on her chart. And she never asks for your insurance card.
Another big favorite is Playing Store. One time you may be the customer, fifteen minutes later you are the clerk. She’ll check you out with the appropriate ‘beep’ noises from the scanner, place all the blocks and other sundry small items you’ve purchased in a bag and send you off with a pleasant “have a good day.” Oh, and she doesen’t do refunds. It’s buyer beware. When she is the customer she sometimes forgets the role she’s doing and asks for Chicken McNuggets. With honey mustard sauce, of course. So we smoothly switch over to Restaurant Mode.
She’s been taking beginning dances classes lately, so now and then she will put on a dance exhibition for us using the slightly slippery laminate floor in the kitchen as her stage. This was her undoing yesterday; just as we were praising her dancing skills and showmanship she slipped and flopped nearly face down on the floor. No problem. Like any good dance trouper she was up in a moment, smiling and twirling again undeterred by the near face-plant.
My favorite moment of the last two days came after she watched me shave. Since her Dad has a beard she doesen’t see much shaving. She watched me for a while, scraping away with white foam all over my mug, and then asked Nana what shaving was all about and why was Poppy doing that. Nana explained it all. A few minutes later I came out into the kitchen, smooth-chinned and ready for my close-up. She looked at me carefully and said brightly “you look pretty.”
Well, I’m not pretty, but I’ll do for light duty purposes. I plan to shave again next time she’s here. I’m a glutton for compliments.
Let’s see how you did with our questions from last week…
Re: the truck company formerly in the 2600 block of N. Main question, Terry was first in with Graves truck line as his guess. Well, we’re really looking for a local dealer-type business here. Roger came through shortly thereafter with Doonan Truck. That’s it; that was their early location in the ‘50s. Roger remembered that they also carried Oliver tractors. Mark dropped by later and suggested Halliburton was the one we were looking for.
Well, after about five weeks of no answers on the bridge question, we had three correct ones just like that. Paul was first, correctly surmising that the span in question was the Chain O’ Rocks bridge between Illinois and St. Louis. Yes indeed! Good work. Tom and also the dynamic duo of Leon and Loretta got it also. I looked up the details on that bridge and found out that the 30 degree jog in the middle was due to concerns from tug and barge companies that a straight span would put the massive concrete supports very near some rocks in the river, thus creating a navigation hazard. My wife and her family crossed this bridge several times back in the day and Sally absolutely hated it. There was just something about that abrupt switcheroo she did not like. She’s never been a fan of bridges, although she handled the 200-foot-tall Mackinac Straits Bridge just fine a couple of times.
Okay, we have three questions remaining: what part of a dog has more muscles per square inch than any other. (Hint: it’s above the neck.)
Also still out there is the questions about the 1973 Oscar-winning movie about the decidedly unpleasant writer who falls in love with a waitress.
The music question is still available: what huge 1973 hit by a piano-playing singer had a “regretting that I blew it” theme to it?
And here are two newbies: what part of the legendary Griff’s Burger Bar can still be seen to this day?
Last but not least: where is the Willner Building?
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It’s been a pleasure serving up this word salad for you once again. See you next week.