I Would Love to See More Of . . .

Frank Fontaine -- what a singer!
Frank Fontaine -- what a singer!

Time for a heart-wrenching confession:

When you are finished reading this piece and all you do is judge me as a broken man with a sad, almost-deadly case of nostalgia, I won't argue. Because I learned years ago not to argue with the truth. I also learned another gem of wisdom: Truth never respects race, color, or title. It serves all who seek it.

On top of being eaten-alive with nostalgia, I am also enduring a terrible nameless demon who is closely-related to nostalgia. His name is "change." I would wager a hundred-dollars that you have met him a time or two across the span of your life. On some occasions, you liked "change." On others, you almost gritted your teeth off to a smooth edge for hating how "he" rearranged you life through your job, marriage or even your health.

Fight back, my friends.

Don't accept denial like I did for years until I learned to face these two "monsters" who are always hiding in some clump of bushes just waiting to sink their filthy fangs into some innocent soul. I learned that accepting and facing life at its toughest is not saying I am weak. Quite the contrary. This is saying that I am wise enough to see things that I once cherished now fading from my life, and some from my memories, and I am powerless to stop these mindless-beasts that let-off a nauseating odor of the sewer system in Boston.

One of my coping-mechanisms is borderless-dreaming. Sure it sounds corny, but it works. And when something works, you stick with it. e.g. if you are driving through Nebraska, "The Cornhusker State," and you decide to park alongside of this mostly-deserted road and pick a few ears of corn to send to your cousin, "Bill," in Chicago. Poor soul. He's never seen an ear of fresh corn up close.

A young Chet Atkins, a true master of the guitar.
A young Chet Atkins, a true master of the guitar.

Dream power works.

But as soon as you hit the ignition, you hear that unmistaken-sound of "that" harbinger who never brings sweet news: Your battery is dead. You are stuck in the wide-open spaces and you do not see any buffalo who are roaming. Frankly, you are scared out of your mind. You have heard those horror stories about ghosts of farmers who passed away while tilling their cornfields. Why did these farmers whose deaths spread from 1908 through 2003? No one knows. Not even the reality-thriller, "Paranormal America," steered clear of this happening.

Then, as your hands began to shake, "something" maybe in your backseat told you to stick an ear of corn over your battery posts (those lead-colored things where your battery cables are attached) and like magic, your car is running like showroom new. And you are on your way. From that day forward, you observe an hour of silence on the day you used the corn to start your car because of one thing: Dreaming. Did you think that corn on a battery really worked?

If my dream-power is a reality, then let's put it to a test.

I Would Love to See More of . . .

Two legends: Joe Namath and Paul "Bear" Bryant.
Two legends: Joe Namath and Paul "Bear" Bryant.
Andy, Barney, and Opie.
Andy, Barney, and Opie.
Aunt Bea, Opie, and Andy Taylor.
Aunt Bea, Opie, and Andy Taylor.
Barney Miller.
Barney Miller.
"Capt. Kangaroo, Bob Keeshan; "Mr. Green Jeans, Lumpy Branam; "Mr. Moose," Cosmo Allegreti, puppeteer.
"Capt. Kangaroo, Bob Keeshan; "Mr. Green Jeans, Lumpy Branam; "Mr. Moose," Cosmo Allegreti, puppeteer.
Craig Stevens was "Peter Gunn."
Craig Stevens was "Peter Gunn."
Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.
Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.
"The Clown Master," Red Skelton.
"The Clown Master," Red Skelton.
"The Great One," Jackie Gleason.
"The Great One," Jackie Gleason.
Alfred Hitchcock-- master film maker, writer, producer, director.
Alfred Hitchcock-- master film maker, writer, producer, director.
The late, Ken Curtis-- member of Sons of The Pioneers, "Festus Hagan," on Gunsmoke.
The late, Ken Curtis-- member of Sons of The Pioneers, "Festus Hagan," on Gunsmoke.

Enjoy the ride.

• Black and white films in the style of “The Wild Ones,” with the late Marlon Brando.
• More television sitcoms like “The Andy Griffith Show.”
• Authentic westerns like “Gunsmoke.”
• Drama’s like “Peter Gunn.”
• Drive-in’s, but styled like those in the 50’s.
• Films like “Sargent York,” that told true stories of valor and courage.
• Animal presentations such as “Wild Kingdom,” with Marlon Perkins.
• Children’s shows that were simple, but yet, taught basic respect, manners, and a healthy view of life for kids.
• School teachers who knew how to talk to their students.
• School teachers who knew the meaning of the word, “dedicated.”
• Students who were taught discipline and respect for authority at home by parents who cared about how their children would turn-out in life.
• Men who proved that they were “real”men by not getting into fights, abusing liquor, or verbally and physically-abusing their wives and children.
• Men who knew the meaning of the words, “work,” and “responsibility.”
• Wives, mothers who taught their daughters how valuable they are and to never act or live in any way to show a “cheap” behavior.
• Employees who respected their bosses by showing-up on-time for work and worked in the time they were at the factory, store, or office.
• Employers who treated their employees fairly and were men and women of their word.
• Companies in our country who pay their employees a fair wage to produce a product that is affordable for all Americans.
• American television networks who produce shows that is not embarrassing for an entire family watch.
• American television networks whose shows are not “anti” police officer, military, or any authority figure.
• Restaurants that are built in the style of the small diners in early America that had a peaceful atmosphere and great food served by happy employees who were proud to have customers.
• Police officers who study every crime before making an easy-assumption.
• An American president who is not eager to land our country into (a) war abroad because he “suspects” a security-threat toward the United States.
• (As in my photos to the right) comedians like Red Skelton and Jackie Gleason who loved their work of making us laugh more than the money they made.
• Adventure screenwriters and authors who know what true adventure means and it has nothing to do with adultery, stealing from innocent people and lying one’s way out of a situation where they are guilty.
• American-made vehicles that do not require a Ph.d to drive.
• American-made vehicles that do not talk to the driver.
• Young men who are taught from birth by their dad and mom that women are not punching bags and livestock that is bought and sold.
• Lawyers and judges who are not working in our court system “just” for how much in bribes they can make.
• More homes in (my part of the world) the South where one can find a good supply of “mama’s cooking,”-- Southern-fried chicken; apple pie; green beans; fresh tomatoes and corn on the cob with fresh cornbread on the side.
• Talk show hosts made in the pattern of the late Johnny Carson.
• Talk show hosts who will try to remind us of David Letterman, when he retires on May 20.
• Actresses who look like Donna Douglas who was “Ellie Mae,” on “The Beverly Hillbillies.”
• Action series like ABC’s “Batman,” and “The Green Hornet.”
• Small town communities where neighbors not just know each other, but are willing to help and protect each other.
• Sitting on the front porch on a Sunday afternoon with the soft breezes blowing and just talking and relaxing with family and your neighbors.
• “Watermelon Cuttings” where two or more families gather on a pretty summer afternoon and cut the fresh watermelons they have grown themselves.
• Making ice cream with an old-fashioned ice cream maker and if you are a kid, you ge to lick the beaters on the mixer.
• Book authors like J.D. Salinger and Zane Gray whose works are considered literary masterpieces.
• Producers, writers like the late Alfred Hitchcock who had the illusive gift of making films so suspenseful that you could only watch them from the edge of your seat.

I apologize for . . .
This is not a complete list of things that “I wish we had more of,” I know. And I also know that there are millions of other things I have overlooked. For that I am sorry.
Hopefully I will see enough days that I can publish part two of this piece.

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Comments 8 comments

bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 19 months ago from Central Florida

I love your list and agree with each and every one of them. Can't wait for part two!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 19 months ago from Minnesota

Hi Kenneth-what a great list of good ole memories. I will miss David Letterman, and loved Johnny Carson. Change can always be a difficult task but I think it's how we react to it that makes all the difference.


Dana Tate profile image

Dana Tate 19 months ago from LOS ANGELES

Ken I am with u on this article. Especially on the respect and dedication. I would definitely love to have drive in movies again.


cygnetbrown profile image

cygnetbrown 18 months ago from Alton, Missouri

As I was reading, I was thinking about all the good times I miss from my childhood. Sometimes I would love to go back, but most of the time I know that I am here now, not there. It is here that I can make a difference.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 18 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

cygnetbrown,

I am with you in you're thinking of going back to your childhood, but I do not want to travel back that far. I would love to start in junior high school. There is someone there I need to tell something about them in their future.

Thanks for stopping by.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 18 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

bravewarrior,

I appreciate you and your comment so much.

I am in serious debate with myself as to if a part 2 would be feasible.

So the argument so far is yes, but I need some time to locate artwork.

Thanks again.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 18 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Minnetonka Twin,

A heart-felt "thanks" to you for such a nice remark. Yes, change for me has always been scary and eventually, I would get into the flow.

But the older I have become, the adjusting is more difficult than ever.

Have a great day, my friends.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 18 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hi, Dana Tate,

Thank you for your comment. It is very nice to have someone such as yourself to agree with me. I am a bit nostalgic, but I simply cannot help it.

Dear Dana, my good friend, have a peaceful day and please

keep in touch with me.

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