Days Gone Bye: Double Dog Dare (Retread from 29 Aug 2001)

Published 4:07 pm Sunday, August 13, 2023

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I don’t know that I’ve double dog dared anybody to do anything lately, but sure did back in the day.  Matter of fact, seems like a heap of our good talking stuff has gone on away from heah.

Y’all know the difference ‘tween a hissie fit and a conniption fit?  How ‘bout that good ol’ word, “cattywumpus?”  Used that in a sentence lately?

Back then if you raised the race issue, you were talking about who could run the fastest, no matter the complexion of the runners.  Good thing about making mistakes when we were youngsters…all you had to say was “Do Over.”

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Buddy Frank walking the streets of Linden didn’t worry a lot about his vocabulary.  He just pushed that wheelbarrow, wearing his knee high rubber boots as he did even when my mama was a girl.  Nobody ever disputed Buddy Frank owning the streets, but he always obliged folks by giving permission to walk on ‘em.

My Ol’ buddy, Tommy Mack Jones, dropped me a post card the other day.  (Notice how we all the time talk about Ol’ Joe or Ol’ Sam or somebody.  That’s what we did, and I still do).

Anyhow, Tommy Mack read about Ol’ Dale Barger and them winning that state baseball title many a year ago, and he recollected “pick up” games out at the old Linden ball field.  About the best hit, said Tommy, was over 2nd base in short center field.  The reason for that was the center fielder had to run up to get the ball, and if he was barefooted like everybody else, he had to be mindful of that daggum sticker patch in short center, unless he had calluses on the bottom of his feet as thick as Moose and I always did.  We usually started wearing shoes to school around November each year.

Tommy also recollected Kenneth Gunter playing third base hollowed at his little brother, Lefty, to “Get Down!”  Kenneth chunked to first base, and as Lefty paid no attention to his brother, he caught that baseball right in the ear socket.

I stopped to chat with my good buddy, Bobby Kidd, at a funeral the other day, while he was out there in the parking lining up folks, before he went into the funeral home to line ‘em up.  I asked Bobby if he knew who he reminded me of, and he remembered right off watching the late Leon Spigner of Cook and Spigner Funeral Home fame sweating out in the lot to beat the band.  You never did see Leon in a dry shirt ‘til ‘bout the time Moose and I started wearing shoes to school each year.

I never could figure out where Leon, Shelly Cook, Bobby and all the rest of the funeral directors got lessons in walking, but they all knew just how to walk down that aisle.  Never seemed to touch the floor, or look where they were headed.  Y’all look at the funeral folks walk next time you go funeralizing.

Hey, what did y’all understand it to mean when you went uptown instead of downtown?  I always figured you went “up” to Birmingham on account of north is at the top of the map, and you went “down” to Mobile for the opposite reason. That would explain why come we travel “over” to Montgomery and “over” to Meridian, don’t you reckon?

Hey, don’t forget that the best time to be happy is….right now.