Those Early Kid Days

I was just thinking about some of my early kid days. You know what I mean, those days of trying to earn your way to summer camp. One of those times, it was selling soap. The brand I remember was called Rosmell. I guess it was a takeoff from a combination of rose and smell. Funny, I don remember trying to put the two words together then be that sixty years of life makes one look at things differently. I remember even having my picture taken for the local paper, the San Diego Union, which we had delivered to our small suburb subdivision called Fletcher Hills. I remember traipsing around the neighborhood saying, I trying to raise money to pay my way to summer camp uggs on sale . Would you like to buy some Rosmell soap? I don know if it was any good or not, I didn use a lot of soap in those days. I do remember that my best customer was my mom. Bless her.

Now that I think about it, I don even remember if I ever made enough to actually fully pay for summer camp. If I did go, it must have been a real unforgettable experience since my memory slate has been wiped almost completely clean. What I do recall is pretty hazy. All those things like paddling around in a canoe, and swinging on a tire into the lake, and stories at bedtime by our counselor to make us laugh as if we were too big to be scared. Though after we went to bed, we would have nightmares most of the night and would curl up in our sleeping bags spread out on the steel spring cots and wishing we were back home. Nope, I don remember having any of that fun.

The weather is mild enough in southern California that temperatures never seemed to be a factor in anything we ever did. We could play outside all year. The threats of drought and wildfires and earthquakes and snakes were always present, but us kids didn worry about them much. Those were big people problems, not ours.

They still there. My local school, my old house and all the nearby houses I used to prowl around on Halloween. I stalked that neighborhood with my paper bag gathering more candy than the bag would hold when it was torn usually hap uggs on sale pened after about the first hour. All we had were the large paper sacks we got with our groceries; nobody had plastic bags in those days. I imagine the perfect bag would be a canvas tote bag, but no one I uggs on sale knew ever had one of those, although I suppose they existed. We be out for hours gathering as much junk as we could. The stuff we got varied. I never cared much for apples. Why would anybody stick a kid with an apple? Now a candy apple on a stick that was different. Those were pretty good, but it was hard to eat a whole one after I had been pigging out on the soft candy for a while first. I would just throw the center part of stick and apple into someone bushes and move on. Those houses with real good chocolate had to be hit several times, of course, just like the hard candy houses were despised and note was made not to go there the next year. Sometimes it saved a lot of effort to catch a departing trick or treater and ask what they got at that place. At the very best homes were usually the ones with the most lights and spiders on webs and stick witches out front would sometimes join another group going to the door so the inhabitants wouldn notice it was my third or fourth time.

Then there was the local elementary school. It was new and opened when I was in the middle of my fourth grade. That was great. I didn have to travel real far on a bus anymore.

It funny what I remember so vividly about that school. I remember hanging around it in the fall which was also football time of year. We used to join for combat on the playground. For one thing, the playground was entirely dirt. Well, technically it was decomposed granite, which is like tan colored Grape Nuts. We never had any padding or other equipment, just jeans and tee shirt. We always played tackle, too. Most of the guys I played with were older and got to throw and catch the ball, so I just played line something position and used try to grab somebody play maneuvers. I used to like to place a two hand vice grip on the the ball carrier around the ankles when they were running and force them to trip flat on the ground while I was being dragged several feet with gravel being scooped up in my trousers and thrown into my formerly white tennis shoes. We have to wait until we got home to scrape the embedded gravel out of our knees and elbows since there weren any first aid supplies anywhere handy.

Several days before the school officially opened, I was racing down one of the outside cement hallways on my skates. They were crummy skates for sure. They kept twisting around at angles, as they didn clamp real well to my tennis shoes. The right one always curved left while the left one wobbled a lot. I hit one of the cracks on the hallway (which we used, as it was the only cement in the whole town) and went flying uggs on sale . I hustled home and reported to my mom that I broke my arm. It wasn too bad of a break, but I did need a cast. Consequently, my first several weeks in class were a little more difficult than they might have been otherwise. One of the most disturbing things about those weeks was that the cast was some kind of rough gauze that got hard after being saturated with a smelly liquid. It wasn even real good smooth plaster, so nobody could sign it with a pen. How crummy is that?

Several years ago, I went by the school. Nowadays they have the playground all surrounded with chain link fence and even locked gates. Funny, but I didn feel any compulsion to sneak in there on the gravel and throw myself down chin first from a running position while I held on to someone ankles. Imagine that.

Those black bags have not been put out to celebrate year of the rat

By Pat Brosnan

CORK city has become dotted with something resembling an outbreak of big black mumps which many foreign visitors probably imagine to be an avant garde art exhibition staged as part of the European Capital of Culture programme.

Closer inspection, however, informs the senses that far from being aesthetic, these are more mundane examples of local endeavour to evade refuse charges.

The Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has diagnosed them as a health hazard; Cork City Council says they’re uggs on sale not.

The smell should tell the visitor which opinion to believe, but if the uggs on sale y see any little eyes squinting out at them, they had better not think they belong to a leprechaun. The chances are that they’re attached to a different class of an animal.

It’s extraordinary that in the year the city is European Capital of Culture, the only event that’s on the minds of the locals is a possible gathering of rats and other rodents to celebrate the fa uggs on sale llout from a row between the city council and people who object to paying the new charges for refuse collection.

Actually, there’s nothing funny about the situation, as the IMO warned during the week.

And there is most definitely nothing amusing about the response to that warning from City Hall, which seems to be adopting the favourite posture of the ostrich.

Dr Ronan Boland of the IMO has a practice in the city’s Blackpool area. He warned that the present build up of illegally dumped refuse could lead to life threatening Weil’s disease through the attraction of rats and other rodents.

The initial response to that from the council’s environment department was a denial there was any health hazard and that any submissions the IMO or anybody else might like to make would be looked into.

Consider that reaction, or lack of it: having been warned that a serious health hazard exists that could become life threatening, they invite submissions.

Subsequently, city manager Joe Gavin sought to reassure the populace with the far from reassuring statement that they had “a regime in place that is dealing with it very well”.

He added: “We have issued 40 fines in the last three weeks and we’re monitoring the city all the time, and we have people out there day and night. It is our objective to have all illegally dumped rubbish removed within one week and I believe we are achieving this goal.”

To the best of my knowledge, and I wouldn’t pretend to have any expertise in this field, the issuing of a summons is not a great deterrent to rats. On the other hand, the mere thought of those furry lads is enough to put the fear of God into any sensible person.

Far from reassured by the city manager, Fianna Fil TD Noel O’Flynn, under the circumstances, was more inclined to listen to the medical opinion.

“I’m alarmed by the response from City Hall. The city manager has a duty of care to the people of the city, and when qualified experts in the area of health are saying it is a hazard, they should be doing something about it.”

There was cross party agreement on this issue.

Labour’s Kathleen Lynch said, even before then, that the crisis had already brought rats into the city.

“I walked down Blarney Street the other day and was shocked at what I saw you wouldn’t see it in the Third World,” she said.

Ms Lynch also warned of the meteorological impact on roaming rodents because she said that once the cold spell is over and the weather gets warmer, disease would spread rapidly.

She wrote to Environment Minister Dick Roche, expressing her concerns and in an admirable display of initiative and executive action. he wrote to the city council for a report on the situation.

If the council doesn’t get its act together soon, the furry lads will be vying with the tourists to ring the nearby bells of Shandon.

The problem is, the council says it has got its act together, despite the dire warning from the IMO.

This is not the time to ignore the IMO’s categorical statement that there’s a health hazard, despite the city manager saying there’s not.

It isn’t very often doctors give out free advice, and Mr Gavin would be well advised to take it.

Possibly the IMO’s warning about a health hazard has prompted Cork’s Michel Martin to get as far away as possible from the city, so he’s off to Australia. He’s just one member of the Government who’s helping to ensure that the St Patrick’s Day Travel Agency is in for another bumper year.

It’s an amazing uggs on sale thing at this time of every year when the approach of the national saint’s day infects practically the entire Government with incurable wanderlust.

This year the President will be in Japan and Korea, the Taoiseach will be in Washington and the Tnaiste will be in San Francisco.