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170410 April 10, 2017


Our First Telephone - Circa 1962
Mike Crowl 
LHS '65

    Your adventures of the telephone brought back a few of my own stories of my teenage years. We got our first phone at our home in 1962 .

    I previously had used the phones at my friends' homes. I also remember the party lines. My friend I hung out with while growing up was on a party line. We used to always listen in on the other party's conversations and sometimes we got caught. Kids being kids. Life was so simple to be able to be entertained and at the time was so much fun. Why it was fun was because we thought we were getting away with something we shouldn't be doing.

       Going back to our first phone while growing up was quite a experience. That phone had to be shared with my two sisters and my brother. We were all teenagers and you cannot imagine the number of fights we had over the use of that phone!  Our parents threatened several times to have it disconnected. Finally Dad put the law down and told all of us after supper we were allowed fifteen minutes each. The good news was eventually my older sister got married and my older brother left to attend College. All the rules pretty much got lifted after that.

         I can remember the phone being a great liaison to help set up times to meet the gang at a later time. By later,I mean after my parents went to bed! We lived on a hill and I parked my car pointing downhill. We lived in a split level home and my bedroom was the only bedroom downstairs. Imagine how convenient that was for a teenager! My parents always went to bed early, so guess what happened? Yep your right; I would slip out of my bedroom window and jump in my car. I would put the car in neutral and roll down the hill then crank it up!  All that was left then was to let the party begin! I can't tell you how many times I got away with that. I sometimes wonder did my parents really never know I was sneaking out. It is and was still unbelievable that I never got caught! That home phone opened the door to a lot of teenage misbehavior at the Crowl house!

         Yes the phone did also get used for the normal teenage phone pranks. I won't get into all those stories because I might incriminate myself even at this late date in life. I'll let some of the rest of you tell your stories concerning phone pranks!!

 Lee Lunch Bunch

Thursday, April 27, 2017
11:00 a.m.- until
Logan’s Restaurant –Fireplace room
Balmoral Drive
Huntsville, AL

Please let me know if you plan to come so I can give them a fairly accurate number by the day before. Hope to see you there! 
Patsy Hughes Oldroyd ’65
Judy Fedrowisch Kincaid ‘66

        Memphis, TN - Two weeks ago I joined a recreation center for people over 55. Okay I'm a lot older than 55! Okay, it is a Senior Citizens group. Satisfied?

    One of the reasons I joined is they have a Creative Writing Group that meets each week and participates in...(What Else?) creative writing. Last week's assignment was for each member to throw out a word, and for us to take those seven words and write a story containing them.

    What doesn't matter is what those words were, it was the fun of creating a story from them. This week I offer up to you half of the story I shared with the group. I will continue it next week. I hope you enjoy it.

    I am still looking for some more important telephone calls stories, and I know some of you have one that would entertain the rest of the group. Please send it in. 

Tommy Towery
LHS '64

    We come into this world with nothing, and leave through the same mystic portal in a similar manner. Between those two momentous events in our existence lurks a problem shared by many and often only emerges as a recognized burden as we enter the twilight of our days. 


    What kind of stuff, you ask. I am talking about the stuff defined in the dictionary as property, as personal belongings or equipment; things.

    In our earliest existence, as babes in arms, we owned nothing. We were given simple things by others such as love, kisses, hugs, diaper changes, and the animalistic needs of food and water. These things, thankfully, occupied no space and only existed for a brief moment in time. Okay, maybe the food did eventually grow on a person and maybe such growth is perceived as a problem and often takes great efforts to get rid of the extra weight. But when we take that final breath and hang up our spurs partner, the extra ten pounds we never seemed to be able to shed is not something others will have to deal with. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust as the saying goes. It is what it is.

    Only when we commence growing older, do we begin to accumulate quantities of material possessions. Unlike the rolling stone that gathers no moss, we humans do. Well, maybe not moss, but many other things. We are actually made early victims of "want" as we begin heading down this materialistic road. I have decided our taste of honey starts with birthdays. At first we own nothing, but beginning with our first birthday we become the recipients of "presents" from others which fill our toy chests like the discarded wrapping paper fills the trash bin. 

    As we grow older and start to venture out of the confines of our abodes, our stash grows. It starts simple, perhaps a rock from a playground, a magic wand that looks like a stick to adults, a tapered bird feather, a weed we think is a flower, or some brightly colored leaves, picked up on the way home and placed in the window sill to be admired. We scrounge through other people's discards to find treasures appreciated only by ourselves - a tattered shoe box, a rubber band, a pretty bottle, or a length of scarlet ribbon.

    When we get even older, and start to earn a living and taking home a pay check, our stockpiling of possessions accelerates. Unlike the before mentioned rolling stone gathering no moss, our possessions expand more like the snowball that grows larger and larger with each cycle of our lives. Heaven help those who find something which launches them on the path of becoming a collector! Those lost souls are lured to begin gathering things like stamps, coins, dolls, postcards, stuffed animals, or a plethora of other physical objects. Yard sales and Goodwill stores are the Devil's playgrounds for them. Before we know it, we have amassed a houseful of furniture, clothing, shoes, books, tools, dishes, quilts, records and movies and other memorabilia of all shapes and sizes. We add extra shelves, buy plastic tubs, and build storage sheds in the back yard to accommodate our growing stockpile of things we feel we cannot live without. We are driven to find places to accommodate them. When the shelves and display cabinets fill, we are content to store those objects safely away for a later day and for a purpose we really cannot explain, even to ourselves. Our storage area begins to resemble the final scene of "Raiders of the Lost Ark."

    This is a testament to my own life. In my military career I visited many exotic places and retuned home with the sparkling treasures of the orient, much like the swashbuckling pirates and Viking raiders of old before me. Over time, my booty grew with each visit to foreign soil and encounter with each new exotic civilization. During the apex of my accumulating years I acquired hobbies and pastimes which demanded massive amounts of not only primary items, but also all the accessories available to go with them. Now, it is prudent for me to make it known; I have never considered myself a hoarder in the classic television portrayal sense and my domicile never got as bad as those depicted on those shows. However, I state under oath, my existence increasing became filled with stuff.

    I have evolved to the realization that I accept the idea the things which I have gathered and always treasured are of value only to me while at the same time they will eventually pose a burden to those I leave behind.  If Gabriel blows his horn for me tomorrow, what good are all my personal items to them? They are not all treasured heirlooms, as in prominent dynasties, destined to be passed down or fought over by jealous heirs and the generations to follow.

    The concept of giving things away and discarding possessions is a deep rooted but seldom practiced theme of the Christian faith. Ecclesiastes 3:6 tells us there is  "a time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away." My time to cast away is upon me. 

    Some Christians honor the season of Lent by giving up things they value for the 40 days before Easter. Now I am a Christian, but I fear the idea of giving up coffee, chocolate, cookies, or ice cream for 40 days in a row might demand more faith than a mere sinner like me can handle. Those choices rank right up there with the ridiculous concept of New Year's resolutions destined to be broken before the rooster crows three times. Instead, this year I vowed to give up something much more tangible - my stuff.

(Continued Next Week)