I went to a free Memoir Writing Workshop yesterday afternoon at the Parkland Public Library given by Jerry Waxler. (He’s also a member of the Greater Lehigh Valley Writer’s Group.) It was awesome. I came out of there with a piece of writing that I’ll be able to use in my memoir someday. But as I was driving home memories of me and my friend Bob flooded my mind.
Bob took me to my senior prom. I wasn’t going to go, but he insisted and paid for everything. He was a few years older and could dance so I know I was the envy of many of the girls that day. The memory that floated through my mind yesterday wasn’t as glamorous as all that.
I used to work in the basement of my house for my dad when I was in high school. I made alot more money than all my friends who worked at McDonald’s because it was piece rate and the faster I worked the more money I made. It was a filthy job. I had to clean the grease off and tear the old leather off of what was called lefts, rights, and binders. They were used in the looms to make ribbon. My dad worked at a ribbon factory so he would bring these home and us kids would make money refurbishing them to be reused again.
After cleaning them, I then had to put rubber cement glue on them and attach new leather and trim the excess with a really sharp knife. Now the best part was the glue was HIGHLY FLAMMABLE and was supposed to be used in a well venilated area away from flames. LOL!!! So I’d be in the basement with one tiny little window with a fan blowing out and the coal furnace stoked up fire blazing just behind me.
The best part was when Bob would come over and hang out with me while I was working. We’d be drinking and partying and smoking and sniffing the flammable glue. Many hours of laughter making a filthy job more tolerable. Then one day he found my dad’s swinger magazines. We laughed so hard. Was mine a perfect childhood? Far from it, but it was most definitely memorable. And I have a witness to the craziness that I called home. Thanks Bob for always being there for me. I miss you, but still love you and can’t wait to see you.
Things I’m thankful for today:
1. Long lasting friendships. Distance and time make no difference.
2. The ability to laugh at the memories of years past.
3. I feel well enough to go to church this morning.