RSS Feed Print
90 yrs
Posted: Friday, May 24, 2019 11:04 PM
Joined: 9/8/2017
Posts: 2329


My good neighbor, Charles, had his Surprise 90th Birthday celebration today.  He turned 90 on the 22nd!


The venue was nice, and his daughters did a wonderful job arranging everything (Food was delicious! And there were some German Chocolate cupcakes!).


It was nice to watch Charles slowly walk into the hall seeing all of us there.  I took several photos of the slow passage. It begins with one of his daughters opening the door, him walking in, mouth open, then a smile, walking closer to us, and finally several people gathering around hugging him and posing for photos. Big smile on his face.  It was too cute.


Charles and I have always got along, and he has been very helpful.  When my father was going downhill with his disease, Charles advised me many things.  We would talk for hours.  Even though I had so many things to do and felt anxious, he still knew how to make me stay with him to discuss what was important and what I needed to do. 

Although Charles has been diagnosed with dementia, I do not see the disease has gotten the best of him like it has my father.  Charles was diagnosed with dementia years prior to my father, but he is not advanced in the disease.  It’s more like a typical old age dementia, I think.  I’m might sure what that means, but he’s just not like my father.  So, I’m not sure what his diagnosis really is.


I remember one time I told him, “Charles, you are very sharp.  I trust listening to you and taking your advice more than my own family.”  Which is very true because I don’t have brilliant folks in my immediate family. 


I always found Charles to be a very brilliant man.  And today I learned he once had a janitorial business.  I knew he spent some time in the service, and managed some property, but I did not know about his business.


His daughters talked about how he taught his children to work hard and save money.   And some of funny things that was mentioned about him was how he would make sure his friends wouldn’t spend too much money.  One of his friends said that when he had bought a hot dog at a football game, Charles asked him, “Now, how much did you spend on that hot dog?  You know, you can get that cheaper at….”


But even though he’s always been good with managing his money, I learned he’s also very generous.  Many of the people who came to the celebration talked about how Charles has helped them which include a home repair project, finding work, and helping families.  And he adopted two children (I never knew that one).


Anyway, the event went well.  But I was kinda worried watching Charles walking around non-stop greeting everyone and he just wouldn’t sit down.  A couple times we passed each other, and I told him, “Charles, aren’t you gonna sit down and get something to eat?”  Finally, someone made him get a plate and sit. 


I liked the decorations the daughters worked on.   And the placemats had historical facts about Charles’ birth year, 1929. 


Here’s what I learned from what was written on the placemats:


US Population reaches 120 million


The first car radio is made by Motorola


First Oscars – 270 attended the 15-minute ceremony


First film to win “Best Picture” was the 1927 silent film “WINGS”        


Museum Of Modern Art opens in New York


A start is made on the Rockefeller Center in New York


The soft drink 7-up is invented by Charles Leiper Grigg


Sam Foster begins selling sunglasses from his counter Woolworths


San Francisco Bay Toll Bridge opened in March – It costs $7.5M.




The First Public phone booths appear in London         


The German airship Graf Zeppelin completes a round-the-world flight


Swiss engineer manufactured the first gasoline powered chainsaw


Total of over 200,000 die from Influenza Epidemic


Vatican City gains independence from Italy


"Enjoy Memorial Day Holiday everyone!"




Posted: Saturday, May 25, 2019 1:19 AM
Joined: 1/23/2017
Posts: 1285

There is a certain  perspective to be gained by viewing chronological trivia. For instance, the last line of the monograph written about Alois Alzheimer that I just read on Wikipedia states, " His colleagues knew him to be a dedicated professor and cigar smoker. "

Who'da thunk it ?

Posted: Saturday, May 25, 2019 4:03 PM
Joined: 3/7/2012
Posts: 1751

Ruth, you are awesome. I love reading your posts and replies. There is a genuine depth of thought in every one of  your anecdotes. Food for my mind to face things and open the heart. For there is living to be made.

While journeying into the future... Memories... In remembrance...Of our human past... Peoples. Events... From the beginning of time. Being and doing. And becoming... Beings.  Truly human beings. Being human... In all its glory.

Posted: Saturday, May 25, 2019 11:03 PM
Joined: 9/8/2017
Posts: 2329

Chris, I think mine will be "Her colleagues knew her to spend too much time on Musings and then she became a raisin...."

w/e, thank you.  I can imagine all the history behind Charles and so much he's seen and taught.  A man who was a child during the Great Depression, encouraged by his mother to move forward and excel in his life.  

Lately, he tells me, "Oh...I'm really slowing down..."  He has a wonderful family and I'm glad that they decided to do this for him. I'm not sure he's ever had so many "thank yous" in one day, but that is truly something he can be sure he's accomplished in his time here with us.

Jo C.
Posted: Sunday, May 26, 2019 8:16 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 11597

What  wonderful story, Ruth; thank you.  It certainly had me smiling.  This reminds me of my aged aunt and uncle in the U.P. of Michigan. 

I called one day to catch up and chat.  In our conversation, I asked Aunt how my 96 year old Uncle was doing.  "Well," she said, "He is really slowing down."  That was a bit concerning.   I asked what he was doing at that time and she replied, "Oh, he is up on the ladder fixing something on the eaves of the house."  He had an old Model T that he fixed with a snow plow in the winter and plowed his drive and property.

Slowing down at 96; still makes me smile.