Vintage Bowls

We were watching one of my wife’s favorite cooking shows when she noticed a set of colored bowls the woman on the television was using.

“My mother used to have a set of bowls just like that!” she said. “I always loved those bowls. I wonder whatever happened to them? I wonder if she still has them? I’d love to have a set of those. They bring back so may memories!”

Before she had finished the last two sentences, I was already ...

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Driving Without A License

 

I was sitting in the living room on the avocado green couch watching daytime TV when I heard the back door open.

I was the only one home, but I didn’t even turn around to see who it was. In the mid-1970s in Arkansas, you didn’t worry about who was coming in your house. People just let themselves in. Especially if it was a relative.

I heard my uncle’s voice.

“Hey,” he said. “I need you to drive a car home for me ...

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Thanksgiving Monopoly

The holidays are just around the corner and with their arrival, many universal family rituals return. When individuals who haven’t seen each other since last Thanksgiving (or sometimes even longer) reunite to partake of good food, football, and gossip about the relatives who didn’t show up, inevitably, out come the board games, decks of cards, and puzzles.

Now, you’re either all in or all out on games and puzzles at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Some people live for the annual 8-hour game ...

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A Cup Of Joe

Joe DiMaggio was great for baseball, but bad for coffee.

The man who got a hit in 56 straight games in 1941 and married Marilyn Monroe, could do no wrong in the eyes of most people. I agree except for one thing: he killed the percolator.

Prior to 1972, most American households used a percolator to brew their morning beans. But, that year, two bad things happened. Richard Nixon was re-elected, and the Mr. Coffee drip brewing system debuted.

I’m sure there will ...

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The Chicken Fried Stakes

 

There is a short list of things in the South that you’d better know how to do correctly or someone will quickly say, “Bless your heart.”

Making a good chicken fried steak is near the top of that list. There’s a lot at stake when it comes to claiming you make a good one. Pun intended.

For the most part, cooks south of the Mason Dixon Line know how to make a decent chicken fried steak. Those who don’t, know which restaurants ...

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The Pioneer Skillet

My momma’s skillet and this columnist are featured in the fall issue of the Pioneer Woman Magazine.

Well, it used to be my momma’s skillet. She gave it to me when I left home almost 40 years ago.

And there it is on page 72 of Ree Drummond’s new magazine.

If by chance, you aren’t familiar with Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman), she has built a media empire that grew out of a blog she began writing in 2006. It chronicles her daily ...

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I Love You, Too

You can always tell from the timbre of the voice of the person on the other end of the line when bad news is coming.

A thousand things go through your mind during the milliseconds between the realization that what you’re about to hear will change your life forever and receiving the rest of the message.

It was my father. He asked if I was sitting down.

My mother had just left a couple of hours earlier from a visit with my wife ...

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Life Lines

 

“Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.” – John Lennon, “Beautiful Boy” 1980

I recently glanced at the calendar and discovered that somehow, I got old.

I don’t mind birthdays. As a matter of fact, having them is quite preferable to not having them. It’s just that most folks, regardless of our age, never feel old. We may be old, look old, and act old, but inside, we don’t think of ourselves as aged.

In my head, I’m still ...

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Are We There Yet?

Lying on the deck behind the backseat and staring upward through the rear glass of a Buick gave a kid the perfect view of the sky and clouds. A cloud could look like a bear one moment, and a crocodile the next.

Family road trips of the 1960s and 70s obviously did not have safety at the forefront, but boy, were the car rides memorable.

No family I knew had enough money to ride in airplanes to their destination. So we, and ...

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The Years of Sears

I stood patiently waiting to pay for my socket set. There was a couple in front of me who, with the help of an employee, were thumbing through a sale flyer. Whatever it was they wanted to buy, it seemed that it was in the flyer but not in the showroom.

“I know I have some in the back,” said the clerk.

The three then left the register area and headed that direction.

There was one other employee in the tool department. He ...

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