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The Malakoff News
Malakoff, Texas
September 15, 2006     The Malakoff News
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September 15, 2006

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i ,|lim~m~qpm r r. ~;-.; ~,r. ",~.v--.v~ Page 12 - The MalakoffNews - Friday, September 15, 2006 Escapades of Emily The music still sounds as good Words of wisdom inspired me for a long time, those words about talent - "Use it or lose it." Well, where that advice was wise in my younger day, s, I'm beginning to see the other side, I can play' the piano, not as an accomplished pianist or a child prodigy', but I play' well enough to accompany large groups of singers. I'm not as good as I once was, but ]?or one song I might be as good &s I ever was. Today I lose my place looking at music and have to improvise for a short time of panic, and when playing as someone else plays on the organ, I cannot hear well enough to know if that per- fomaer is ahead or behind me. l'm too short to see over my piano to send fhcial signs to the organist. I took three years of piano lessons starting at 9. Then my beloved teacher moved. I discovered 1 could play, in small fashion by' "ear," and from the age of 13 I began playing the piano or organ somewhere. Once or twice I was borrowed tbr recitals in a nearby' town. Lately people have noticed a dearth in the piano-playing department those growing to maturity. Even with my blunders, I find myself a rarity. When we moved lock, stock and all we had in our next to last time fh0 and stayed in that town for 28 years, ! became the tempo- rary pianist for a church 26 or 27 years. Our children were small, 2, 4 and when 1 began Emily Lundy playing the organ or piano in 1.972 in this town and were left to their own while I played and Dad ushered. The children grew up, repro- duced, and grandchildren discovered fun in sitting under my baby' grand piano, hidden from the audience by the altar railing. Because I taught in the public school of this tovm for 20 years in high school, 1 was asked to play for wed- dings often. Would I be paid or not? I would never speak up and expected to perfoma free for relatives and good friends. Sometime they paid more than anyone. Next a daughter-in-law began singing solos to recorded music or my accompaniment at many wedding. We were a team. At a large wedding in Pa ae Springs, this young woman was to sing to a recorded tape. I was given two min- utes' instruction on how to operate the sound box. Rotate one button and push on another. I must have reversed the instructions becattse the solo modulated rhythmically in volume. Oh the looks I mttst have been getting from my son's but I didn't dare look up. "Trumpet Voluntary" and my own rendition of "Canon in D." Awway, my" in-law was too embarrassed tbllowing the wedding to go to the reception. We went home, Some time later, the bride's mother came by to pay' us/br our services. We knew she had not had time to view the wedding video. As we sat visiting, I noticed a roach going up the wall behind our guest. For some unknown reason, I immediately stood up to go to the kitchen, grabbed a magazine, and slapped the soup out of that bug, scaring the guest enough to make her jump. After she left, my daughter-in-law said, "Why' did you do that? She would- n't have kmovm a roach was there if you hadn't hit it." The two of us laughed until we couldn't stand. I've played for my last wedding now. I lost the nice payment in check. Blame my retirement on my eyes, my ears, my brain-hand coordi- nation or my age, but l,m try- ing only to hold on to the bench at a small church play- ing with at] organist "at the same time," supposedly. Sunday a song was announced, the organist started the intro, and I noticed the book with the song lay on the floor beside me. Apologizing to the organist later, she said, "Oh, don't wor j. Maybe some thought we planned it that way." I tried to concentrate That'smy, mantra these doing the Bridal Chiorus days: "Make plans but flawlessly. I even learned expect anything." Accepting M~I~, ~ Health Stew CHIPS & Most Other Ir~urance Patient Friendly Health (903) 489-0101 815- 3 Royall Blvd. Hwy 31 * Malakoff Mon. Thurs. 9am- 5pm Fri. 9am- 12 Noon - The Old Fogy getting tired of heating I listen to TV ads about Medicare Plan D. I see a woman whining, "I'm just a poor, little old lady, too old to understand Plata D. I'm con- fused. I'm too old and stupid to decide which plan is best for me by May 152' It's a personal prejudice but I get tired of hearing, "I'm confused." As a teacher of mathematics I really got tired of hearing, 'Tm confused." The phrase doesn't mean that the person is confused; it's a catch phrase for an almost total lack of knowledge or interest. 'Tm confused," is a whiney, poor me phrase. "I didn't understand what you said," is a stand up, to the point phrase. I would tell my students to say, "Indeed, Socrates, I do not know" if they didn't know something. (It comes from a dialog between Socrates and Meno.) The elderly woman could have said, "What's this time limit crap? What's this penal- ty for not signing up in time? Do you think that all I've got to do with my time is sit at a computer and go over differ- ent versions of Plan D? Give me some slack, Jack." Being a person in their 70s, I rather resent being por- trayed as a wimp. I presume the woman in the ad was an actor, in which case she is a senior who is quite different than the woman she portrays, a bit of irony. I must admit up front that my choice of Plan D was made for me by the University, of New Mexico. I Jeff Davis studiously avoided looking ,at the myriad plans and haven't been curious enough to look at the plan and see what it has. i've got better things to do with my time. Another phrase I'm getting tired of hearing is "national security." I was listening to a play I wrote in 1980 and I had a fictitious senator say that learning calculus was a threat to national security'. I hadn't realized that "nationN securi- ty" had been used as a shib- boleth for so long. I suppose that "national security" as a general concept is OK but when in every, speech I hear in the Congess there is the avowal of the prime importance of "nation- al security." The speaker points out that '"national secu- rity" is more important than any'thing he or she, as the case may be, might talk about, but, "We do have to look at tort reform, social security, health care and Education, even if they do pale in significance compared to "national security." Immigration, defense, agri- culture, energy.', transportation and NASA are obvious "national security" concerns. Indeed "national security" is the font from which all policy springs. There was a time when the Universal justification was, "The Devil made me do it." Now the universal justifier is "national security." But when something so obvious as "national security" is harped upon, over and over, I begin to wonder if "national security" means what I thought it meant. I thought that it meant to keep our national honor secure, to keep our national ideals secure. Now I'm not so sure. Where did Jesus say' that it's OK to respond to insult by taking your ball home, where did He say that it's OK to respond to injury' with cruise missiles? Where He say that torture is OK. V q]at does it profit a coun- try' m gain security but lose its honor and ideals, lose its sotd? Thus Spake The Old Fogy. 322 East Main St. Gun Barrel City 75156 887-0236 Fax (90 ) 887-7619 1 Administraton Karen Abbe, RN If illness or injury has made everyday life difficult for you or someone you love, ixo 'Nxlal home health re services can help. Out skilled,helping are dedicated to nurturing people's health and wellness in the comfort of their own homes, providing physical and support when it's neeaea most. Skilled Nursing Care - Home Health Aides Speech Therapy - Physical Therapy Occupational Therapy Cedar Lake Home Health & Hospice. Malakoff 903-489 2043 Gun Barrel - 903.887.3772 Athens- 903-677-5999 . ,~ ,t A