Friday, January 29, 2016

Florence, S.C.

From an email that I wrote this morning.

"I worked at Singleton’s Men’s Shop after school and summers for years. The J&J lunch counter, Roney’s, and the Sky View were my go-to spots for teenage and college years food consumption—when I wasn’t back at my mama’s getting clothes washed and country cooking. Reindeer Lane, the Christmas Parade down Evan’s Street, The Fair and hotdogs at the Civitan or Optimist food booths out there, the Southern 500 parade in Darlington, meeting “Goober” at the Florence airport and getting Bobby Richardson’s—the Yankee’s 2nd baseman from Sumter—autograph one Sunday when he spoke at College Park Church. And hearing my  mom and aunt Kat say they weren’t going to wash their necks for a week after Marshall Dillon—James Arness hugged their necks when he was the 500 Parade Marshall one year. Getting dragged to “town” (Gladstone’s/Furchgots) with my mom and aunts because there was nobody to watch over me on Saturday when I wanted to play. I thought I was going to die at five years old—having to “behave myself” while they tried on dresses ALL DAY. But then I’d get a dollar to spend a Woolworth’s or Kress and all would be ok again. Phil Nofal’s for cowboy boots once a year—when school started. Santa Claus was at Sears every year.  This is my Florence."

Saturday, January 23, 2016


Happy New Year everyone. I've never been keen on making New Year's resolutions and nothing has changed in that regard. But I am going to try and post something here on my blog at least once per week in 2016. Why? Because I miss my blog. I miss writing stories that begin with a pair of socks and somehow traverses my childhood, cars, b.b. guns and cocktails before concluding. My dashboard has been so cluttered with life stuff and my focus has been so compromised over the last year-and-half that there's not been the energy for randomanalia and impertinabula over here.
And of course, there's tumblr--the MSG of blogging. I can't prove it but I do think that tumblr poaches some of my juju that would otherwise be directed here. Plus it's just easy and mindless, like MSG. F.Scott Fitzgerald used to poach his novel caliber drafts and ideas and sell them to magazines as short stories when he was pressed for cash. Some argue that he might a had another novel in him had he not stolen from his own cash register of material. With that said, the main was still one hell of a conjugator.
But I do have things that I want to write about. Things like LFG and my missing Piggly Wiggly t-shirts. We had several versions of the iconic pig and they're currently AWOL. Damn.
And I am going to write about my buddy and surrogate father, "PoPo Baker" who landed on Omaha beach on D-Day plus one. 
And I've got at least two stories about Chelsea and my boy Jimmy Whistler whose infamous White House (the hansom is stopped in front of it) was the talk of Tite street and then some.
And then there's a story about small paintings. Like this one by a young whippersnapper originally from Northern California who made his way to London and Paris and the tutelage of Whistler. He died at age 37 from blood poisoning after being accidentally stuck by a hat pin at a dance. I kid you not. Damn I love sleuthing and uncovering the proverbial back story.
And our boy over at The Old Law is about to be the daddy of a little girl.
And I declared on tumblr that I had no additional advice for him after Tommy Tevlin et al showered him with great wisdom. But then I remembered Meg Meeker's book. It's a must read.
West Evans street in my hometown. I never wrote a proper story about the haberdashery that spawned my sartorial addiction. I was busting to write it not long after my mother died. The fact that Toad and I stood in the entryway of this hallowed spot one night was a key motivator. And by the way, where the hell IS Toad?

Ok. So sit tight and let's see if my once a week commitment is sustainable.




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