Of course, with Thanksgiving just a few days away, it’s time for some grateful introspection: to do some cerebral mining in the tunnels of our lives to this point, sorting through our personal hardships and the national stories that so often sadden us, and search for some nuggets of positivity.
On September 8, the United Kingdom lost her Queen, Elizabeth II, who reigned for 70 years, 246 days, the longest for any female head of state in world history. At 96, she didn’t quite make it to the 101 her mother did, but 96 is a really good run nonetheless. The TV coverage, of course, was quite extensive — both the mourning period and the funeral itself, which, given all the postmortem pomp and circumstance of such a personage, actually didn’t occur until September 19.
Psychologists have told us that one of the most common behaviors we practice is transference, which occurs when people transfer feelings from past experiences to their current experiences. As with so many facets of human behavior, it was Freud who first coined the term to describe this universal tendency.
Each year as Halloween approaches, I think back on an October trip in 2014 that Lady Jane and I took. The trip took us to some terrific places, including north of the border to Quebec City, through much of Vermont and on into the Empire State to prove to ourselves than New York is a whole lot more than the most populous city in the United States, New York City.
As a devotee of Seinfeld during the show’s 180-episode run during its nine seasons from the late 1980s through most of the ‘90s, I remember most of the episodes’ openings, which feature Jerry in a nightclub setting doing his standup. In one of those openings, the routine focuses on the difference between how men watch TV and how women watch, depending upon who controls the remote.
Several years ago before the great basketball player John Havlicek’s passing in 2019, I had the good fortune to spend some time with John and his wife Beth. They were in Lima to take part in a golf outing to benefit cancer research and to see Gary Gearhart and his wife Kay. Gearhart was a teammate of Havlicek’s on Ohio State’s only NCAA championship squad back in 1960.
For everyone I know, seeing someone famous is rare unless you paid to see him or her on stage or at an athletic venue. When it happens, it always seems to give someone a story destined to be repeated.
Let me start by saying what I know about farming wouldn’t fill a thimble. A Chicagoan by birth and for the first six years of my life, I saw nothing in the way of an agrarian lifestyle. After my dad’s transfer to Ohio to take over a Central Steel and Wire sales territory, during the early June drive in 1958 to some place called Lima, Ohio, the topographical changes I saw amazed me. I left a world of mostly concrete and a dearth of greenery to field after field rife with growth.
In the 1935 Broadway musical “Dumbo,” Jimmy Durante was leading an elephant across the stage when stopped by a policeman. Asked what he was doing with the elephant, Durante replied, “What elephant?” As time evolved since that early refusal to acknowledge something as obvious as an elephant on a stage, the expression “the elephant in the room” has come to mean that obvious something that someone refuses to see.
With fall’s commencement, for me, there’s always an urge to take some inventory of what transpired over the summer. There were the positives, such as warmer weather that comes as a welcome relief to all who call Ohio home.