Archive for Crazy stuff

Who’s Silly Now?

If you haven’t read the post preceding this one, That’s Just Silly, it’s kind of a lead in to this one, and you might enjoy reading it first.

…….

silverwareThing is, we have 12 of everything in our silverware drawer, but we only use the top two of each utensil because I hand wash, dry, and put away the dishes after every meal. So, I’d been thinking about this for a while and then yesterday I came up with a plan. I would leave the washed silverware in the drain thingy until we’d used it all. Brilliant! So, I’m smiling, all proud of my plan, when another thought hit me. How would I know which silverware I used first? It’s just going to go in randomly, and how’m I gonna know the same two aren’t being used over and over. I told Sherry about my plan and the problem with it, and she just laughed and laughed. What’s up with that?

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That’s Just Silly

Stopped by a neighborhood C-Store yesterday. Had a lottery ticket I wanted to cash, so I walked up to the newly installed bulletproof shield at the register and handed the ticket man runningthrough the little slot at the bottom. The young lady behind the plexiglass said, “Put it down!” I jerked it back and said, “What?” “Put. The. Ticket. Down!” I was a bit unnerved, and said, “Why?” She glared at me. “We’re not allowed to have contact with customers.” I grinned as I said, “That’s just silly. I’ve had my hands on every square inch of this ticket in the last five minutes.” She just pointed to the ticket, then the counter. Oh-kaaay, I thought, as I put the ticket through the slot and let it fall. I traded the ticket for another one, and when she stuck it through the window, I said, “Put it down!” Then I just laughed and laughed. Until, that is, she dropped the ticket and started around the counter. I assumed she was about to break the no-contact-with-customers rule, so I bolted for the door. I’m fast when I need to be.

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Grandpa Does it Again!

Bill, Sawyer, Haynes, Tracey, Me (2)

The grandson is home from UT for spring break, which got extended for the Corona scare, so yesterday we had a little get-together.

We were just standing around shootin’ the breeze, when I leaned into the boy and said, “Got any tattoos yet?” Every head in the room snapped my way, the boy looked down at me, grinned and chuckled, then mayhem ensued. Shots were fired!

Actually, they don’t own any guns and the shots were merely daggers fired at me from the eyes of all present. Except the granddaughter. She was behind me, but got me with a well-placed “accidental, I’m sure” elbow to the ribs as she walked past on her way to assist her grandmother, who was spitting and sputtering, having apparently shot a mouthful of iced tea out her nose.

Turns out the boy doesn’t have any tattoos yet, but I think the granddaughter might be hiding something.

Apparently, their mom and dad are “kind of” against the idea of ink on their babies and didn’t want me putting ideas in their heads. Who knew?

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Blood On The Moon ~ the story

This is a short story and poem I wrote when I first started writing. It’s one of my personal favorites. Read it if you have time. I think you’ll find it very interesting.

Marbles In My Pocket ~ The Official Blog of Charles L. Mashburn ~ Poems, Short Stories, and random thoughts from the author of "Be Still... and know that I am God"

001 Blood On the MoonBlood On the Moon was the first short story I wrote when I decided I wanted to try and write. This is the 2015 rewritten version (I hope it’s better than the original). It’s 2170 words long (5 single spaced pages), so print it and read it later if you want. I’ll even email it to you, if you can’t print it off the blog. Click the picture to enlarge and read the poem by the same title.

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Big Brother is Everywhere!

Sometimes the Internet really irritates me. Maybe some of you have had this happen; someone puts a post on Facebook, and you jump right in with an opinion or an example of how you agree with said post. Then… nothing. Right! Nothing! Ten—maybe fifteen—others throw out their opinions, apparently conversing with one another, but your comment seems to have been rendered invisible. What’s the deal?

A good example was a post yesterday. A friend—not a good friend, I admit—posted a concern about how it seems we just have to think about something and, BAM, we start getting ads on Facebook about whatever it was we were thinking about. It’s downright eerie, right? Well, I’ve experienced such phenomena, and so I jumped into the fray to commiserate and discuss the fact that, um, that uh, guy… you know the Facebook honcho… yeh yeh yeh… that guy, seems to be spying on us. All 300 billion or so of us.

minion cell phoneWhat’s been happening to me is truly bizarre. It’s my phone. Since Sherry’s been out of pocket, my diet has not been, well, it’s been pretty bad. Lots of Fritos and bean dip, and easy to cook stuff. You know, like… Fritos and bean dip. So, the strange thing is—the Facebook dude is no doubt behind it—and Verizon, too, I’m sure.

What happens is, every time I eat Fritos and bean dip, my phones ring tone changes, and it’s not a pretty sound, if you get my drift. What really gets me though—makes me mad, if you want the truth—is when I answer the phone, there’s no one there. And, this awful smell comes out of nowhere!

minion in thongHappened at the grocery store checkout the other day. The checkout girl looked at me funny and giggled when my phone blasted its irreverent “ring tone”, and she really cracked up when I pulled out my phone and answered it. Then—the smell, ya know—her eyes got wide and she covered her mouth and nose with a hand, while waving the other one at me like she was shooing flies, and said, “You ain’t right!”, before promptly vacating her station. I just grabbed my stuff and skated on outta there.

It’s all annoying. I’m thinking about getting off Facebook and switching to Cricket.

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Me & Tater Salad

My first wife, Evelyn, brought it up in a Facebook comment yesterday, so I thought I might as well share it with y’all along with another related story.

It was Thanksgiving—I’m going to guess 1970—and we were living with my maternal grandparents, Ma and Pa, in Moab, Utah. Ma had invited her friend, Edith to Thanksgiving dinner, and Edith brought potato salad. Well, I didn’t care for potato salad, and thought nothing of not putting any on my plate. Edith, however, noticed it right away, and thinking she’d help me out, handed the bowl to me and said, “Charlie, you didn’t get any of my potato salad.”

I said, “Thanks, I don’t want any.”

“Oh,” she said, obviously hurt that I didn’t want any of her potato salad.

A few minutes later, she said, “Charlie. Are you sure you don’t want any of my potato salad?”

“Yes, ma’am,” I said. “I don’t care for potato salad. But, thank you.”

I think this is where it became a challenge for her. “I think you’d like my potato salad. It’s very good”

She got a raised eyebrow from me with that comment. And out of the corner of my eye, I saw Pa grin at me, then quickly look back at his plate.

edith bunkerI looked across the table at Edith. The hurt expression was gone, and a glare had taken its place. This was not going to end well.

She put one hand on the bowl of potato salad and said, “You should at least taste my potato salad. It’s really good, and I just know you’ll like it.”

I put on my best smile, and said, “Lady! I don’t want any GUFFING potato salad! (I did not say guffing.)

Pa busted out laughing. Ma gasped, put her hand over her heart, then shot Pa a glare that could curdle gravy. Poor Edith was in shock. Evelyn, attempting to save the day, said, “I’ll have some! It’s good!” Me, I went back to eating my turkey and dressing.

I was wrong. It ended just fine. Not another word was said about that stupid potato salad. By the way, in later years, I developed a taste for potato salad. I love the stuff!

~~~~

Several years later, I was single, and visiting Pa, who had retired and moved back to Fritch, Texas. It was the early eighties, Ma had passed in the late seventies, and Bunk (Pa’s nickname) was baching it too. Evelyn had gotten tired of following me all over the country (I was –still am, I guess—a gypsy of sorts.) And so, we went our separate ways. Well, I went, she stayed put.

Any way Bunk and I went down to what was, I believe, the only bar in Fritch, where we played some pool and drank a few beers. It was late, maybe about eleven o’clock, when this drunk guy came busting in, looking like he wanted to fight, and not caring with who.

The guy was a couple inches taller than me and outweighed me by probably sixty-seventy pounds. He stood in the doorway, glaring as he looked around the room and, since the only other person in the place was the old guy behind the bar (Pa was in the men’s room), his glare landed on me. I smiled politely as the big guy lumbered toward me but kept a firm grip on my pool cue. You know, in case he didn’t want to be friends.

First thing he said was, “You know who I am?” He had a funny way of saying things, so I thought he was joking. I grinned at him.

I heard the men’s room door open, and Pa laughed out loud then said, “Tater Salad!” The big guy looked past me, his face lit up, and he shouted, “Bunk!”

I said, “Tater Salad?”

The big guy ignored me and as he strolled toward Bunk, said, “Just the man I want to talk to.”

“Tater Salad?” The guy still ignored me.

“Well,” Bunk said, shaking the big guy’s hand, “Buy me and my grandson a drink, and we’ll talk all you want.”

The guy glanced at me, grinned, then yelled over his shoulder, “Boo-Boo, Give us three Crown and Coke!”

“Don’t call me Boo-Boo, Tater Salad, or you’ll be drinking through a straw for ‘bout a month.”

They all laughed—Bunk, Tater Salad, and Boo-Boo. I said, “Tater Salad?”

We climbed aboard stools at the bar and Pa said, “What’s up, Ron?”

I said, “Ron?”

“I’m fixin’ to go into stand-up comedy, Bunk. And I got some ideas for routines, but I figure you must have some I can use, too. Can’t nobody tell a story like Bunk Stringer.”

So, Bunk told him some of his best stories, and Ron “Tater Salad” White soaked ‘em up.

When Bunk had about run out of material, I looked around him at “Ron” and said, “Tater Salad?”

ron whiteHe grinned a drunk-on-his-butt grin and half snarled, half laughed, “You just ain’t gonna let that go, are ya? Ah-right, here’s how it goes.”

He told me the story about being drunk and getting arrested for driving on a sidewalk in Fritch. The cops knew who he was so when they asked him his name, he—being the smart aleck he was—said, “They call me Tater Salad.” And, a legend was born.

When he finished, Bunk laughed and elbowed me. “Charlie, tell him your tater salad story!” And so, I did. Ron got a big kick out of it and said he might use it in one of his routines when he hit the big time. He never did. Use it that is. He hit the big time, big time. Maybe you’ve heard of him.

~~~~~~~

Please check out my remodeled website and my latest books:

Just A Boy ~ A childhood memoir

Just a Man ~ A book of encouragement

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Speaking of Gary Williams

What? … Oh, I know we weren’t speaking of him, but I saw a post his sister, Karen, put on Facebook, and it made me want to share this with y’all again. He’s a fine fellow, and he just loves to poke fun at me about some of the adventures (incidents) I write about. I don’t mind; the old fart is getting along in years, and his memory isn’t that sharp anymore, so I let him prattle on. I know he doesn’t mean any harm, and when it comes to being quick witted, he’s pretty much a non-threat. But enough about that; let me tell you how me and ol’ Gare squared off for the tennis championship one fine spring day.

………………

minion tennis I was a junior, and Gary was a senior (again). He’d been on the tennis team all six years he was in high school, and because of the longevity of his career, he was the best player on the team. Of course, everything is relative, and you have to understand that nobody played tennis at our little high school in those days—except girls… and Gary. He was the only guy on our tennis team, and thus, as I said, the best we had.

We did, however, have to play tennis in PE class. It wasn’t something most of us enjoyed—except Gary—but it was only for a few weeks each year, and we tolerated it. Gary hated it, because most of us—even some of the freshmen—could beat him. He was, by the way, undefeated in conference play. The school refused to haul him to away games, and none of the other schools in our conference would bring one guy to our campus just to play Gary. But! He never lost!

It was pretty comical when tennis season would roll around in PE class. We all had to wear the basic PE uniform; blue shorts and a white T-shirt, but not Gary. No way! He showed up in his starched white shorts and dazzlingly bright white polo shirt, with this red scarf around his neck. He kind of reminded us of Snoopy when he does the Red Baron thing, except—thank goodness—Gary wore pants.

Gary somehow fell mysteriously ill during PE tennis season his senior year. Rumor was he had mono, but we all knew he couldn’t possibly have that. It was common knowledge you got it from kissing girls, and there was no way Gary could have gotten it. Just sayin.

Due to an unfortunate miscalculation on his part, Gary showed up for the last day of PE tennis. He tried to fake a fainting spell and get excused but Coach Ramsey just grinned and said he’d have to play. It was the last day, as I said—the day we had our tournament—and as you might guess, I wound up playing against Gary for the championship. It wasn’t like we had a big double elimination tournament or anything like that; we simply blasted the ball around the court until most everybody got tired and took a seat on the benches beside the court. Gary and I happened to be the last two on the court.

I walked up to the net—Gary stood back at the serving line, eyeing me warily as I approached—and when I arrived at the net, I said, “One game for the championship?”

Gary looked over at all the other guys and Coach; they were all grinning at him, and he turned red as a baboon’s butt in the summertime, then yelled at me in his high-pitched voice, “You’re on!” It was more of a whine than a yell, but I’m trying to give him some credit for at least accepting the challenge.

I won’t bore you with the details, but I beat him pretty soundly. Not that I was any good at the game—I wouldn’t admit it if I was, because it wasn’t cool to be good at tennis in those days—but, truth be known, Gary was simply too big and slow for the game. He likes to tease me about how slow I was back then, but I heard one of the baseball coaches laughing one time and saying how Gary was slower than a moose in a mud bog. It was sadly true.

So there you go; the story of how I beat the school tennis champ at his own game.

 

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