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190617 June 17, 2019

Gloria Joan Baber McCutcheon
LHS '64
July 2, 1946 -  May 25, 2019

    Gloria Joan Baber, 72, of Huntsville, Alabama passed away May 25, 2019. She was born July 2, 1946 in Huntsville, Alabama to Joseph and Mavoline (Sanders) McCutcheon.

    She is survived by her daughters Buffie Clickner and Pepper Baber and grandchildren Carter Clickner and Bella Clickner.

        Memphis, TN - I've been watching a lot of baseball this year, primarily the Atlanta Braves' games. There have been a lot of home runs hit this season and I could not help but think back to 1961 when we were all watching with amazement while Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris were fighting for the home run record.

Maris (left) and Mantle
    According to Wikipedia, "They gained prominence during the 1961 season, when Maris and Mantle, batting third and cleanup (fourth) in the Yankee lineup respectively, both challenged Babe Ruth's 34-year-old single-season record of 60 home runs. The home run lead would change hands between the two teammates numerous times throughout the summer and fueled intense scrutiny of the players by the press. Maris eventually broke the record when he hit his 61st home run on the final day of the season, while Mantle hit 54 before he was forced to pull out of the lineup in September because of an abscessed hip. Maris' record stood for 37 years until it was broken by Mark McGwire in 1998. The duo, however, still hold the single-season record for combined home runs by a pair of teammates with 115."

Deal Me Another Card
Tommy Towery
 LHS '64

    In looking through my stash of horded cards from my past life in Huntsville, I came upon one which many of you may also have had to get. To work in any establishment which required one to handle food, a permit from the Alabama State Department of Public Health was required. The card certified the holder "has been examined and permitted to work as a milk or food handler." I really do not recall what exactly were the criteria needed to obtain such a card or if there was a cost related to getting one. I am sure it took a trip to the Madison County Health Department and some type of form and physical observation, but other than those things I do not know what else was needed.

    I have always had a guilt trip for not getting a steady job when I was in school – heavens know my family needed me to work but I never did. I guess I was following in my brother Don’s footsteps, for I do not remember him having a job either. I did try a couple of times to work, but it never seemed to pan out for me.

    Twice I attempted to get a job which required a health permit, the first of which was at a Dairy Queen (or similar establishment) on Jackson Avenue. I went there one day with Lucky Sandlin, my Scoutmaster, and while talking to the owner he indicated he might be interested in having someone work for him. The idea of being a “Soda Jerk” sounded exciting so I was offered the chance to work one night and see how it worked out. It was just a trial run for one night and there was no pay involved in it; however, I was allowed to eat what I wanted while I was there. It ended up costing me a fortune in my future because it was the first time I could afford to have a hot fudge Sunday, and taught me the reasoning behind the saying, “a taste of honey is worse than none at all.” I never knew what I had been missing, and once I had tasted one, I could no longer ignore the pleasures of that wonderful desert. After one night it was determined I was not needed, due to the lack of business that night. A short while later the place went out of business anyway.

    The second time I needed the permit to work with food was when I worked at the 72 Drive-In Theater. I got the job through a friend and I joined him and another classmate with whom I was acquainted but never considered a friend. The three of us were the muscle supporting the “let’s all go to the lobby” invitation to visit the concession stand between showings. It did not matter that the drive-in had a concession stand and not a lobby, the invitation stood.

    We got there about 5pm and started popping corn and getting the concession stand set up for the evening traffic. We cooked hamburgers and hot dogs along with the popcorn. I always thought it was strange we were allowed eat as many hamburgers or hot dogs as we wanted, as long as we brought our own buns. The management kept inventory of how many hamburgers and hot dogs were sold by the number of buns used each evening. Each night when we closed up we were required to break down any hamburgers and hot dogs left and put the buns back into a package. The boss knew how many buns we started with and how many we had at the end of the night and therefore how many had been sold. This was way before computers could make such a process unnecessary. 

    After about three nights I was literally popping corn in my dreams and I would wake up tired from having to work even in my sleep. By the time the last movie was showing and the concession stand was shut down we had cleaned all the cooking area and put away the entire inventory it was quite late. It was after midnight on school nights before I got home and I was dead tired when I got up for school the next days. After one week I knew the job would not work out.
Those are my stories about my “Health Permit” adventures. I would love to hear your own stories if you will take the time to share them.


From Our Mailbox 


Subject:    Jim McBride

Lehman Williams

LHS '64

    To Jim and Jeanne - you made it through the hardest part and survived; the surgeons are amazing these days. I had Open Heart Surgery on Mar 13th and the recovery is going well with cardiac rehab three days a week and changes in my eating habits - no salt etc. Do what your Cardiologist says and you will have a better chance to recover - good luck



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