A travelling salesman is approaching a farmhouse . He sees the farmer throwing his pigs up into the air under an apple tree . Sometimes the piggies are able to get an apple and more often they can’t . The farmer throws them up again . The salesman is amazed , stupified , flummoxed , perlexed , gob-smacked .
” Wouldn’t it save a lot of time to shake the apples down from the tree instead of throwing the pigs up ? ” he inquired .
The farmer slowly shook his head , slowly back and forth . ” You must be from the city ,” he said . ” Time don’t mean nothing to a pig ! ”
Why did I relate this joke ? There must be a reason . Hold on . Maybe there is a rhyme and reason . Perhaps .
I am watching old videos about world War Two . Now I am watching an episode of THE WORLD AT WAR . It’s well done . There is Hitler’s secretary telling her tale of his behaviors at particular times . There was Eisenhower’s driver , what’s her name , telling her tales . She’s the one he supposedly had an affair with . Did the commanding general of all the allies really walk out to his jeep immediately after the top commanders had made the decision and say to her : ” D-Day is on . Nothing can stop it now . ” I think not . The entire British Isle was on lock – down . It’s Loose Lips Sink Ships time . But , then again , maybe he did tell his English jeep driver and lover this . Love ! Ah ! Love may be blind , but maybe it’s not deaf or dumb .
Someone called George Marshall the morning that D-Day was launched . The general was in his garden . His wife had standing orders not to ever disturb him in his garden . Mrs. Marshall mentioned this to the caller . She reluctantly went to tell her husband that he had a phone call .
He came into the house , talked calmly for a minute or two , then went out again to his garden . His wife asked him later about the call .
” D-Day has started , ” he said .
” My god ,” she said , or whatever expression she used when shocked . ” But you talked only a moment and were so calm . ”
” It’s Eisenhower’s problem now , ” the Chief of Staff of the Army said .
But , why am I telling you about Marshall ? Eisenhower ?
Superfluous quote : Only Americans can hurt America —–Dwight D. Eisenhower
Yesterday I watched a video from the Arcadia library called THE HOME FRONT .
I can’t stop calculating , when I watch these WWII videos , and when I watch old movies for that matter , how old the people seem to be in the film and , so , how old they would be now . Where are they now ? Most of them are , most likely , dead . What were their lives like ?
I wonder , when I read an obituary of an old man , why his life seems to be summarized sometimes in a tale of heroism during WWII , or how he had earned a medal , or how he had rushed a machine gun nest to save his buddies and lived to tell the tale . Fifty years later . Or sixty . I wonder what he might have done with his life after the war . Did he return to work at the shoe factory or the filling station ? Did he go on to run a huge corporation ? Some obituaries don’t mention it , don’t say .
I suppose I am thinking today of my mother on Mother’s Day , and of my dad , a naval officer during the war . My dad joining the Navy and seeing the world . Seeing the world explode in world war . They were married in 1944 when his ship came into San Francisco . They are both gone now .
Do we know our parents ? How well do we know any other person , really ?
I know my parents loved me . That’s important .
How well did Mamie know Dwight ? By the way , did his friends call him Dwight ? I know that my dad called his brother Frank Frankenstein sometimes . I know it because during WWII my dad sent a light-hearted letter from his ship in the Pacific to his brother the Army pilot in England : Dear Frankenstein , …………
But , his brother Frank had been shot down in Europe and was missing in action when the letter reached his base in England. It bounced around a few more places until it finally made it back to Dad , stamped MISSING IN ACTION several times .
But Frank survived and my dad survived and the letter survived . It’s a little window to my dad’s world that may well have been unrevealed .
Talk sports . Tell me a joke . Get talkative after a couple of drinks and tell tales about people I don’t even know , have heard about , probably , but have never actually met .
Reply : You must be from the city .
But , you may want to know about renovation . I mentioned renovation . Okey .
My clothes are seeping fine dry wall dust , My shoes are white , having been transformed from black . I am demolishing the bathroom .
The plumber was the one who demanded : ” Have your ducks in a row ! ” Ducks .
My first duck was the guy I had lined up to do the demolition . I made it clear to him how necessary it would be to have the work done as soon as I got back from Connecticut . When I called him the day after I returned he told me , ” I’m in the middle of a job for Victor . Got to finish . How about Saturday ? ”
Saturday ? How about Saturday ? Yeah , Saturday will work fine . Not . I’ll just tell all the other ducks to get out of line , quack a little .
So that’s what I’ve been doing for the last week or so , instead of blogging . Sure , I know , I could tap out a post or two with my sore fingers . Plenty of time in the evenings . But the bathroom skeleton somehow has sapped my writing determination .
” But , if you have something to say then you would say it , ” chides the muse . You know how muses are , I guess .
Tell me a joke . Okey : What happened to the duck that was flying upside down ?
It quacked up .
Don’t blame me . You’re the one who read this to the end .