March 1, 1947
Pub. in the kitchen:
Thought I’d get an early start this month before something else happens. Last month, just as the last envelope and stamp were licked, the Manor had a relapse and we spent days walking around amidst plumbing, plaster and whatnot and the whatnot was the worst because it included tools, junk, etc.
But, everything has a silver something or other. With this job we were forced to get to work on the upstairs and we cleared up the Puddle Mystery. Seems as how one and all and sundry around here have at one time or another been viewed with suspicion by the Boss, depending on who attended the “Office” last. He would find unexpected and unexplained puddles in the middle of the bathroom beside the tub, just as if a ghost had dripped a moment while groping for a towel. No earth reason for them to be there, or so he said.
After the mail was ready last month, he went to bed, the hour being considerably unholy, and while changing into his jammies in the bathroom suddenly felt his noble limb on the left dripping! “Are there dog ghosts?” The idea flashed thru his mind but was rejected. Examination proved a tiny hole in the hot water pipe to the basin - squirting straight out for several feet and then coming back to earth, as things will. Hence the puddles. And so to work.
To replace the pipe the basin had to be removed. The question: whether it would be better to spend several days and fix it properly and for all the time, or do a jerry job and face the prospect, too horrible to contemplate, of taking all apart again to set it into the wall, etc. Verdict: do it right. The whole basin was hanging by one nail and that nail driven into a lath, I guess.
So, down came the basin, the plaster and dig back to the beams. Fasten a big board to three beams, screw on the basin holder, set the basin and then put the plaster on so that it looked as if it grew there instead of “threw” there. Then he ran out of plaster! So we have a big hole all around the properly set basin with large orange polka dots in it - nail heads that rusted! It looks so cute because the walls are robin’s blue!
PERSONALS: We’re decreasing the population around here. Our “guest” left last week and now we have a spare room again. It’s been aired and the bed made up fresh, a bookcase added and is ready for any of those promised visits.
By the way, while we’re being personal, allow me to congratulate some of you on the excellent letters that have been finding their way into our mailbox lately. The epidemic of broken right arms seems to have subsided. Fine!
And to those of you who have commented about this literature: You get it free, chillun, don’t you? This ain’t supposed to be litricher, anyhow. This is just off the cuff rambling and porky as I may be able to be on some subjects. I’ve never claimed to be Mrs. Wm. Shakespeare. To those of you who had kind words to say, I bow from the waist - hard as that’s getting to be!
COMPLAINTS: Gosh some people are hard to please! Do you mean to say I have never mentioned Mr. Terrence O’Toole or Mr. Sugarfoot Jones or Dick and Harry or Petie Dink in these epistles to republicans?
Terry is a Black and Tan dog, a Welsh Terrier or Rat Dog, as you wish, about four years old and quite a solid member of the family. Sugar is a huge, not-completely-male cat, the byproduct of the worst looking old white alley tom you ever saw and Fluffy-Ruffles, a lovely daughter of his and a pure bred Maltese gal given to walking through alleys at night. He’s just like his mother: long pure white fur splashed with generous spots of Maltese gray, with a beautiful tail following after. He rules the roost. Dick and Harry are the remains of Tom and the same, but these two ganged up on Thomas and he went down the drain - they’re 5 & 10 goldfish who rattle the marbles in the bottom of the bowl like crazy when they’re hungry. And Petie Dink is a more-or-less tame “tree kitty” (squirrel to you) who comes up on the back porch and complains loudly when his tummy bothers him, too.
And the useless pantry, Crafton, Pa., is that cupboard affair off the kitchen in the plan last month. It’s slightly smaller in proportion than it should be but, honey, I’m not an architect, too!
And now a complaint of my own. I’m still waiting, not too patiently, for those instructions about how to grow African Violets from leaves so that they’ll bloom! I’ve got a green finger but mix me up a bit of instruction that will produce some purple in the green, will you, please? I’m tired of foliage. I want some flowers instead of barren bushes! Come on kid, mooch.
THEATRE: There’s a correction due. Seems Community Players is the brainchild of some of the “idle rich” around here, not George Eastman. That doesn’t bother me. He gets more than his share of credit yet. Bonds were issued to finance the group originally and were purchased by those with the long green and not to much to do or something. Anyhow, they have redeemed the bonds, are in the black, and ours was the 5th play of their 23rd season.
Something else some of you copykittens might like to know. These choose one very successful offering each year and run for 6 weeks for Rotary, gratis. Rotary distributes the tickets among its members and the take goes toward the local Rotary Summer Camp for Crippled Children, I believe. Anyhow the Players troop with glory but without any compensation. Nice, eh?
Our play, “I Like It Here” was quite successful, with S.R.O. some nights and an extra Saturday night performance. And I discovered a character with a smaller part than mine - two words! Personally I didn’t believe he was in it at all but closing night I actually saw him, so I had to believe.
We may take it up to Sampson Naval Base, now a hospital for T.B., I’m told. They think it would make nice light entertainment for the boys. But if they laugh like some of the people in town did, I’m not sure it will be at all good for them. But it will be fun to give it up there providing the weather has improved sufficiently so that we don’t have to worry about being snowbound for days.
The play now in the works is “Dear Ruth” and the one before this was “I Remember Mama”, so you can see we don’t fool around “public domain” pieces. “From Broadway to Community Players” - that’s the motto.
Something else, too. These people like to meet the cast. Paint and all. So, instead of ducking the dear public like we used to do, they go down to the Green Room between the acts and have coffee and cakes with cash customers.
SCHOOL: Howard Francis led the pack in Grade 1’s first examinations. And he has a top tooth missing now, so his smile when he tells you about it is quite out of season and Halloweenish.
MEDICINE: Ye gods! My poor old backache and “fits” are nothing compared to some of the reports pouring in here from hospitals throughout the land. I’m sorry many of you seem to have landed where I expected to be but, since we couldn’t all be together, I’d just as soon have it this way, dears!
Much to the disgust of the family doctor of our “extra little man” (he’s a ward of Catholic Charities, dear people, and we took him on for company for Howdie since this is an entirely female neighborhood in the lower age brackets) I insisted that he was a case of “life fatigue” and that pure tiredness was responsible for his cussedness. I’m giving him 1 1/2 teaspoons of vitamins that call for 1/2 teaspoon a day and it’s working wonders! He is starting to eat as much as Charles, getting some pep, plays better, remembers better and is beginning to show some By the time he’s been with us six months his bones will be covered up, his brain will work on a quick trigger, his memory will function properly and he’ll have some muscles. At first he wanted to do all of his playing on the floor, you know, and eating was simply out. Today he actually offered to help Howdie shovel the path around the house and kept right at it for over an hour. That’s the longest sustained effort he’s ever shown. Howdie nearly fainted in a snow pile because he’s used to having Rudy come right in after school and play with the girls while Howdie does his self-appointed chores.
Well, dear people, it’s getting late. Charles is over to Charles House, his old stamping ground, cutting lumber for the cabinets he plans to build in the bathroom so I’ll have some place for linens, towels and the various bottles and jars of junk that it takes to polish the shoes, doctor the cuts, wash the heads and generally keep this place running. Oh, dear, if the day ever comes when we have a place for everything we possess, somebody will probably give us something else!
Our very best to all of you and while we don’t expect miracles, there are still a good many of you unaccounted for this month (you know who you are!) so you can just catch up on your subscriptions next month. So, goodnight.
P.S. Please excuse this typing. Upon reading this over I wondered what could have happened to me. But now I know. These duckbumps are not covering me under my sweater and slacks for nothing, or my fingers cracking off one at a time for fun. As I told you above, Charles went out and the furnace apparently went with him. It’s freezing in here and I never noticed it until he got back and discovered that it was colder inside than out! Happy Days!