The Fix Was In

Mr. Harless’ TV and radio repair shop wasn’t on Main Street, but it wasn’t far from it.

The hardware store and clothing shops took up most of the main drag through my hometown of Ashdown, Arkansas.

But, if you turned east off of Highway 71 on the street just before the city’s sole flashing red light, you’d find Mr. Harless’ fix-it shop.

He often was sitting with his back to the window as he worked.

In the 1960s, television was still fairly new ...

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Getting The Band Back Together

 

 

There’s still a debate over whether we spelled it “TRAX,” or “TRAXX.” What’s not in doubt is that it was a high school rock band that five friends from the Texarkana area played in during the late 1970’s.

What’s also not debated is that after 40 years, those same friends rejoined for one night to play some of the same tunes they had last played when Jimmy Carter was president.

“So, I’ll be back in Texarkana in about six months for my ...

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Driving Down Memory Lane

 

Seeing a classic or antique car always reminds me of someone. That someone is most often my father.

“That’s a 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air,” my father would say. “Most people preferred the 1957, but I never understood why. The ‘55 is a much prettier car.”

He was right.

Cars are a connection to our past. I can think of no other item that we buy, use and then sell, that lingers with fondness in our minds.

I’m not ...

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A Fab Four Days

“Hello, my name is Clark Gable,” said the man sitting next to me in the airport.

I turned to greet him. His Master’s hat from Augusta was the second thing that caught my attention – the first, of course, was his name.

As we shook hands, I’m sure I had the same look on my face that he’d seen many times during his seven or eight decades on the planet.

I didn’t bring up Gone ...

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On The Record

There are certain items that remind me of my grandparents. Some items I see, others I inherited.

Formica Dinette sets and tabletop radios are on that list.

It takes just a glance at something in the background of a television show or something at a flea market, garage sale, or antique shop, to send me way back in my memory banks.

As a younger person, you associate specific items with previous generations. But, it would seem that now that I’m the grandfather, some ...

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Gaming The System

One of the biggest mistakes you could make when I was growing up was to tell your parents that you were bored.

The minute you uttered those words, you knew that the next several hours would be filled with manual labor.

Growing up in a world with just three TV channels, my sister, cousins, friends and I had to find ways to amuse ourselves. Oftentimes, we relied on the contents of a stack of boxes that sat inside a bookcase.

Those boxes contained ...

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The Ways of Fold

 

You would think that there’s only one way to fold towels.

But, you’d be wrong.

My momma showed me how to fold them, as well as shirts, socks, underpants, and other personal sundries, when I was a kid.

I assumed that this skill set would carry me all the way though until people were standing over me singing hymns.

But, I was wrong. More than once.

I’ve been married twice.

Within minutes of returning from my first honeymoon, I loaded the washer and ran a load. ...

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Are You Kitten Me?

You forget how much energy a kitten has until you get another one.

Our last cat was 19 when she crossed the rainbow bridge, so it had been awhile since we’d experienced the exuberance that a kitten possesses.

We live in the country, so for the first several months after we got our new cat (who we named Cola because her color is the same as the beverage), she stayed in the house. Coyotes and other vermin are plentiful in our neck ...

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Beam Me Up

I was watching an episode of Star Trek. Captain Kirk went to a wall, pushed a button, and asked the computer to look up all of the information in the data banks on the earth colony of Tarsus IV.

In a matter of moments, the female voice responded with several pieces of information.

I looked down at my iPhone and realized that Captain Kirk had nothing on me. I could do the same thing on my phone without getting up and going to ...

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The Wheel Deal

After an accident sent my first car, a 1966 Mustang, to the junkyard, my dad found me a replacement. It was and still is the coolest car I’ve ever owned. It was a 1972 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme.

The car was a metal-flake gold color inside and out, and had bucket seats with a center console with an automatic shifter.

The one thing the car lacked was a decent set of mag wheels.

The factory wheels were OK, but I was surrounded by buddies ...

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