Monday, August 1, 2011


Hi Yall!
I can't believe it's already August. August is a two edged sword. It is the heart of summer and also the time when the final hurrah begins. Before long the leaves will start turning colors and falling off the trees. It will be a gradual process that most people don't even notice but I've become finely attuned to the phenomenon because it seems to always start around my birthday. As much as I love summer, I dread this time of year because I know it will soon be over. I love the sunlight in summertime. Fall and winter seems to sap my energy and excitement because of the muted sunshine.

I only remember having one birthday party when I was little. We were still living behind Hale's house. That was the name of our landlord. I couldn't have been very old. I can remember my cousins came to play with me and share some cake and ice cream. We played in the backyard and swung on my swing set.

One time Daddy was going to repaint my swing set so he used marine paint he had for painting his old wooden boat. He left the lid off the can and the paint brushes, too. It was bright blue. I couldn't resist it. When he went inside I decided to paint the swing set for myself. I started painting the legs of the swing set and painted as high as I could reach. I thought I was doing a pretty good job but, when Daddy and Momma caught me, I realized I had gotten just about as much paint on myself as I did on the swing set. It was sticky and hard to remove.

Momma and Daddy got gasoline and made me strip down to my panties. I stood on the back porch in my underwear while they used rags to scrub me with gasoline to get the paint off. It didn't take long for the gas to start burning me and I began begging and pleading with them to let me go and let me take a bath. I danced around screaming as they scrubbed more vigorously. It seemed to take forever before they were willing to let me go so I could run into the house and jump into the shower. That's probably the only time I ever begged for a bath. I bet I was the first blue Smurf in the world. From then on I left enamel paint alone. I don't remember if Daddy ever finished painting my swing set but I know I didn't help. I had enough of painting.

We moved away from Hale's house the summer I turned eight. I will always remember the little house in the woods fondly, but I will never forget my gas bath. Stay away from enamel paint. Just consider it a word from the wise. Oh yeah, and don't leave open paint around kids.

Tommie Lyn, Pat, Myra, Nancy, Nancy, Brenda, Chris, Randy, Jonnie Bell, Glo, Blake, Bob, Justin, Cole, Jerry, and to me

Susan and Bob

Steve Hammontree, Donna Shoates

As Always

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