Sunday, April 30, 2006

Mrs. Schilling (86/365)

Mrs. Schilling: Obsessed with her lawn, she'd blow a whistle whenever any neighborhood children stepped on it, sending her husband out to yell at us. One Winter's eve Harvey took his snowmobile for a spin across the snowy lawns sending her into an unconscionable tailspin.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Bob "Whatsquirts" Jackworth (85/365)

Bob: Forever I believed his surname was "Whatsquirts". My three older brothers would call from the back of our faux-wood paneled Country Squire station wagon, "Check-out Bob Whatsquirts." Sure enough there he was with hose in hand spraying down his driveway and surrounding street.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Mrs. Virginia Scherer (84/365)

Mrs. Scherer: There is comfort in the music of dishes being washed. When I hear the symphony of clanking dishes from afar I picture Virginia. It is the sound of her love, the feel of a belly full of scrambled eggs, toast, jam and coffee.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Harold (83/365)

Harold R.: Shrewd business man even at age eleven. Pre-Costco days, he bought candy and gum in bulk; had a detached garage where he set-up his little store. The neighborhood kids would line-up when he opened up shop. Sold ice cream bars in the summer.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Mary Ellen (82/365)

Mary Ellen: First job out of college, she took me under wing. The other females in that office were so catty and hostile, but not Mary Ellen. Happily arrived daily to do her job and didn't undermine me doing the same. Made incredible cheese cake.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Crazy John (81/365)

Crazy John: Another emotional casualty of the Vietnam War. His body returned whole; his mind came back in a body bag. For years he stalked the streets of uptown Edgebrook on a secret mission that not even he understood. Keeping the crew-cut......his exclamation mark.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Mrs. Marley (80/365)

Mrs. Marley: Pair of binoculars in hand, she was the original Mrs. Kravitz. Her house served as the unofficial substation for our village police; archetype to Dunkin' Donuts. In September we would wait until dark and feast on the sweet juicy plums from her yard.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Mr. Schilling (79/365)

Mr. Schilling: For years considered our grumpiest neighbor. After his wife died, he came out of his house and his shell. In Summer we would often go for long walks and talks. I was 20ish, he was 80ish. Partially filling in each other's cavernous losses.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Mrs. Ulyess (78/365)

Mrs. Ulyess: Whenever any neighborhood children stopped by for a visit, she would dispense sticks of Juicy Fruit gum. A beautiful symbiotic relationship; she needed her daily fix of youth and we needed the sweet gum. Forever dear to my heart, taught us goodwill's value.

Friday, April 21, 2006

John (77/365)

John: A twinkle in his eye, he was the hardest working man I have ever known. His work ethic so strong he perfected his parent's business. He married his H.S. sweetheart and their marriage is my model. Sang a beautiful song at our wedding.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Dottie (76/365)

Dottie: Sister/best friend with Lynn . Married her H.S. sweetheart. Like her mother exudes sweetness and kindness like an exotic fragrance. A great sensibility and calming wisdom . I secretly wished she could be my mom and cherish the weeks spent at her house every summer.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Bob (75/365)

Bob: Bethie's father, Lynn's "baby" brother. Always the fun uncle, he'd don a red faux-fur hat pretending he was a Russian spy. Since moving south adopted the "Texas Traveler" (ólaim) rule. Easter morning woke us so we could witness the birth of a foal.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Bethie (74/365)

Bethie: Six degrees of separation defined! She's my first cousin, although don't know her well. She moved to Texas when we were little. Newly married, she moved in next-door to my future brother-in-law, meeting my husband before he was a twinkle in my eye.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Jeff (73/365)

Jeff: From behind could be a body double for a blond hunk. Turning around his face looked like a funhouse mirror distortion. When he removed his shirt to wipe his brow I winced at his giant nipple rings and "Jessica" tattooed across his derriere.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Esther Bernice (72/365)

Esther Bernice (My Maternal Grandmother): Beautiful inside and out. Elegant, kind; exuded sweetness and innocence like an intoxicating perfume. A fabulous storyteller she memorized countless poems, songs and stories, always at the ready when we requested a tale. Encouraged and believed in me. Lived to age 96. Beatific!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Scott (71/365)

Scott: Although I never formally met him, I met the new and improved version. Heather looked absolutely radiant at the coin show. A near impossibility, but she left Bob speechless. What an amazing thing surgery is! I hope happiness comes with those equipment changes.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Heather (70/365)

Heather: Met at a coin show in BillyGraham Country. Smoldering in her fuchsia sweater and matching lipstick; jet-black hair shimmering in the artificial lights; the way those hips sashayed like she'd been doing it all her life, oh my! Scott had to be proud.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

George (69/365)

George: A Terry Bradshaw look-alike, invited me to his place for stir-fry. As dinner was simmering, George debonairly tried to swirl wine into the Wok. Instead it hit the cabinet sending shards of glass into dinner. Attempting to serve glass-tainted stir-fry endlessly traumatizes me .

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Rose (68/365)

Rose: Near the end of her long, successful life Rose held annual pizza parties for her eleven grandchildren. The first year under each of their plates was a check for $10,000, the following years only netted $1,000. Her legacy set with patrimonial naming rights.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Matt (67/365)

Matt: How could you outwardly act so generous but deep down be so cruel? Did it make you feel more of a man to treat me like you did? My fondest memory is the night Carlos the garage-man took matters into his own hands.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Sheila (66/365)

Sheila M.: Her sixth birthday party, I learned about the freedom of making my own choices, designing my own pizza. I cried when she moved away, promising to write, but never did. Cried again when I heard she discovered her father dead in the driveway.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Death (65/365)

Death: I met Death 23 years ago today. Hearing his famous rattle in the breath sounds of the man I loved most dearly. I watched as Death took over body and mind. Then I held his cold lifeless hand and kissed his blue lips.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Mary (64/365)

Mary: Loves to remind me, "I'm your second Mama." Indeed! Cared for me when I was 6 months old while my parents and Steve traveled in Arizona. The day Bobby Darin died she was at our house, how we cried and danced all afternoon.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Joey (63/365)

Joey: It's April so I imagine Joey's down at Leone Park sitting on the sea-wall; buckets and nets at the ready. It's Smelt season in Chicago! Eternally grateful for those smiling blue eyes and his guidance and tenderhearted presence during my painfully difficult exigence.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Kimberly (62/365)

Kimberly: She's the reason you can't judge a book by its cover. What a pretty cover! The beginning chapters, awesome! Somewhere in the middle her plot went bad. I closed her book. Her soon to be Ex and children deserve better dynamic character development.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Joel (61/365)

Joel: The baby in a house of comedians and a nun he is Still Standing. After finding his Dharma he left the Second City for the bright lights. H.S. was funnier because of him. One of many of Cathy's boyfriends, she"stole" his tighty-whities.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Sandy (60/365)

Sandy: Is a sunny 76 degree day with a gentle breeze blowing, a few big fluffy clouds. Look closely at those clouds, you will see pictures full of depth. Comfort in her breeze, be kissed by her amazing grace. Earth mother's gentle hammock ride.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Ben (59/365)

Ben: Enlightens me, brought me back to God. Patient, kind and sincere. His laughter fills my heart, warms my soul. I feel safe asking deep spiritual questions; he is further down the same path. Ironically, his last name doesn't match him or his profession.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Lynn- My Mom (58/365)

Lynn: A 79 Y.O. old wonder. The life of any party. Great skin, beautiful smile, awesome poet. Received the Hippest Grandma Award from 9 Y.O. Katie. Defines aging gracefully with style and enthusiastic energy. Her secret? Stay busy, have fun, walk daily, eat fiber.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Angelo the Mumbling Fool (57/365)

Angelo: Never knew a bigger fool, bumbling-grumbling-idiotic waste. Mike said if you weren't such an old man he'd beat you shitless for talking to Lynn like that. (Un)Luckily I wasn't there; I don't play by those rules. Get your own damn candles fat-ass Fool.