Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Amsterdam, NY ,



The creature comforts

Saturday, August 02, 2014 - Updated: 4:09 AM


For The Recorder

Recently on a Friday night, my youngest daughter and her husband having worked hard all week, decided to have Chinese food for supper. When they were done eating she came over to our house, which is next door, to give me my insulin and medications. She brought over a Chinese fortune cookie left over from her dinner. I opened it very cautiously and it read: Today is Friday, tomorrow, you will be the winner of the NY State Lottery. Yeah they were wrong about the weather, too.

Sometimes adversity seems to pursue me. The other night I dreamt I was starving to death. The heavens opened up and tomato soup rained down and there I was ... with a fork. Creature comforts are very important to me, but it seems the powers that be have deprived me of many of these.

They no longer make Bolster candy bars or Zagnut, Forever Yours, Dr. IQ and Mars Bars. No more Jumbo Peanut Butter (which has since been homogenized) or Bond Bread. Now I find that Stewart's has ceased to produce root beer in 12-ounce cans. This existence must be what purgatory is going to be like.

Growing up, my grandmother used to make root beer in the cellar. Later in life, I was taught that Hires, A&W and Richardsons were the best. One day my wife did our shopping and realized that she forgot the root beer. But living in the East End, she stopped at Stewart's. We were hooked. I don't know if it was the aged vanilla that was used in making it, but it tickled the roof of our mouths. Then we noticed their half gallons of ice cream were 64 ounces -- most brands were 48. The stores were very clean and the help was very friendly. Now they're not going to produce that anymore.

I hope you younger fellows have followed my advice relative to scrapbooks. The photography in The Recorder is going to get better. Somewhere down the line if you reach 87 years of age, some Saturday night when there's nothing on TV and you are fortunate enough to have acquired a wife like I have, haul out the scrapbooks. Have a cup of hot Ovaltine and you will be amazed as to how easy it is to fall in love all over again. The fact that my wife is the best cook in the Western Hemisphere has nothing to do with it. When she kisses me good night it's the same as it was in 1951 -- just a little bit better. (I hope when she reads this she'll let me borrow a couple of bucks, I have yet another terminal case of the shorts.)

I'll see you guys next Saturday, Lord willing, and we may discuss some more of Brownie and the Halvey family.

JAMES SHERIDAN is an Amsterdam resident

and a frequent contributor.


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