(reworked from a 2012 post.)
(with apologies to Irwin Corey)
This is from Wikipedia: "Professor" Irwin Corey (born July 29, 1914) is an American comic, film actor and activist, often billed as "The World's Foremost Authority". He introduced his unscripted, improvisational style of stand-up comedy at the well-known San Francisco club, the hungry i. I agree with everything he says--& sometimes that scares me!!
Some of you geezers & geezerettes will remember the comedienne, Totie Fields, who died in 1978. She was pretty hefty, as you’ll see in the video below. She always wore beautiful gowns, but never in black. She said she tried wearing black once & it didn’t make her look thin. One day she came onstage wearing a gorgeous dress & the women went wild. She told them it was a size 3. Everyone laughed. She said she paid $5,000 for it (in the 70’s) & at that price, it‘d better be a size 3! She & her husband, Georgie, had a wonderful marriage. She said that she told Georgie when they got married that she could only excel in one room; either the kitchen or the bedroom. They hired a cook. Later in her life, she lost a breast to cancer & a leg to diabetes. She asked her husband why he stayed with her. He gave the best possible answer I can think of. He said, “I didn’t marry you for parts!! This is her, in a dress that was very stylish at that time:
I was trying to describe a dish I had eaten at a Parisian restaurant to my sister-in-law. It was the best thing I had ever eaten! I asked, “Nat, have you ever had an orgasm over food?” Her response was, “Is there any other way?”
John, our bank manager, who is a good friend, once called me from work & asked me how well I knew our gardener. I thought that was a rather personal question & asked him why he wanted to know. It seems I had signed his check simply “Fran”. I told him to go ahead & cash it. John was very convenient to have as a friend. We were about to leave on a European vacation (before credit cards) & had forgotten to get Traveler’s Checks. We called him before leaving for the airport & he drove to our house & issued them while sitting on our couch. He worked for Bank of America, so our kids used to call him “Mr. America”.
Bud was in a different B of A branch & wanted to cash a very large check. They told him they would have to get an OK from our branch manager. Bud said that they could call, but John would say to give him anything he wants. The bank officer stepped away so she could make the call without Bud overhearing her. He could see her starting to laugh. She returned & said John told her, “Give him anything he wants!"
We had a fire in our kitchen. The previous owner, herself on in years, had her father living with her. She wanted a shiny floor & didn’t want her dad slipping on wax, so she laid down a coat of lacquer. My cleaning woman, Pearline, was removing it, a little each week, with nail polish remover, which we bought by the gallon at a beauty supply. When she got to the back porch the fumes were ignited by the dryer. I grabbed a kid under each arm (we only had 2 at that time) & Pearline, the kids & I ran next door. My neighbors called the fire department & I called Bud at his office & very calmly--I thought--explained what was happening. Bud says my entire conversation was, “The house is on fire! We’re next door--we’re all fine!!” He turned to my brother-in-law, who was in his office at the time & said, “I think I’d better go home.” My neighbor ran to our house, got the hose from the backyard & stood in the dining room, playing the water into the kitchen. He had a view of the front door & said he couldn’t believe what he saw. He (& I) had always pictured firemen as rushing into the burning building, swinging their axes. He told me that he was yelling, “IN HERE!! IN HERE!!’ while each fireman stopped to wipe his feet on the doormat.
Another fireman story: The granddaughter of one of my friends is married to a fireman. She loaded their new baby in the car & went to join her sisters at a restaurant for their first post-birth lunch. While getting the baby out of the car seat, she cut her hand on something--not badly, but it was bleeding & wouldn’t stop. She asked their waitress for a Band-Aid. She was told they didn’t have any, so she asked to see the manager. The manager repeated (with a very customer-unfriendly attitude) that they didn’t have Band-Aids. Her husband had told her that restaurants are required to have them for their employees. She told that to the manager, who just walked away. She called her husband at the fire station & he said not to worry--he’d take care of it. A couple of minutes later, a fire truck pulled up to the restaurant & four fully uniformed firemen came rushing in. Her husband (one of the four) shouted, “I understand someone here needs a Band-Aid!!!” As I said about our bank manager, it helps to know the right people!!