The Picture Shows

It was 50-cents to get in. The additional 50-cents my mom gave me covered the cost of popcorn and a Coke, plus more if I wanted a giant dill pickle.

Williams Theater was an institution in my hometown of Ashdown, Arkansas. Wedged between the store that sold Buster Brown shoes and Piggly Wiggly, generations of residents walked through its doors to enjoy an afternoon or evening away from their cares.

The first girl I ever went steady with, I met there.

The family ...

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The Table of Wisdom

 

The clanking of the plates and silverware was constant. The waitress smiled as she refilled the diner’s coffee cups. She laughed at the old men’s jokes. Jokes she’d heard many times before, but she always laughed. Her laughter made the men feel good, and it didn’t hurt her tips.

The cigarette smoke hovered in a thick haze under the ceiling tiles. After filling and refilling cups, she emptied their ashtrays.

This went on in constant repetition. So reliably that you could exit ...

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A Write of Passage

The invitation came from my buddy, George. He and I go back 30 years. That was one of the main reasons I agreed to speak at his Rotary Club’s luncheon.

Like most of us, my schedule is overextended. I spend far more time with my coworkers and running a business than I do with my family. So, for that reason, when I get an invitation to speak, I’m often unable to accept. But, when George contacted me, it worked out. For ...

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