Generations Friday, Sep 28 2018 

Four generations of Pullings: My father Nathan Sr. and grandfather Walter on the left, my son Zach and I on the right. The photo of Daddy and Papaw was probably taken in the late 1950s in the front yard of the New Zion Baptist Church parsonage north of Covington, LA. Zach and I posed last month in Rome on our vacation. The Roman Coloseum ruins are in the background.

Thanks to Sarah Morris Pulling for the photo editing!

Image may contain: 4 people, including David Pulling and Zach Pulling, people smiling, people standing and outdoor
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Patio Dwelling: Friday Night Lights Saturday, Sep 22 2018 

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Friday night patio lights!

For most of the years we reared our two kids, Friday nights meant Eunice High football.  Or, the past three seasons that I worked the post-retirement at St. Edmund, Bluejay football.  Those were necessary days for a season of life, a season we would never exchange nor regret.

But, oh, happy day on Friday nights these days!  The Friday night lights are the patio lights.  The football game is on TV.  The seat is comfortable.  I can stand up and walk around if I want to.  Or change the channel if football’s not what I want.  And here’s the list of so  many “no more’s”:

  • No more back-aches from sitting upright for 3 hours on hard bleacher seats in crowded quarters.
  • No more antsy children stepping on my toes as scurry in and out of the stands for  concession stand errands and potty breaks.
  • No more obnoxious, half-enebriated fans with whisky/garlic breath yelling embarrassing and idiotic rants at the officials or the opposing team.
  • No more crowded parking lots.
  • No more post-game traffic jams.
  • No more pre-sunset bleacher-baking on sultry September evenings.

I could brainstorm a few more “no more’s” if I wanted, but I think I’ve made my case for the superiority of Friday night patio lights.  At least for this season of life.

Eat Oysters, Live Longer?: Must be true! Monday, Sep 17 2018 

IMG_1728.JPGNew Orleans is an oyster-eatin’ town.  Growing up in the region, we regarded the salty shell fish as special food for special celebrations.  I recall an aphorism that I may have seen on the side of a refrigerated seafood delivery box truck in the 1960s: “Eat fish, live longer; eat oysters, love longer.”

Well, here’s Mama on her 93rd birthday a couple of days ago, chowing down on fried oysters, not fish.

Me, I like oysters better than fish, anyway.  I think I’ll keep eating oysters and take my chances, if Mama’s genes are any indication.

Speed Poetry: Hump, Lump, and Bump Thursday, Sep 13 2018 

Hump not the lump,

Jump not the bump,

And for sure,

Don’t stump the lump:

Speed kills!

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Lump, bump, or hump: Slow down, for your car’s front end’s sake.  Sarah found these three different street signs, all in  south Louisiana towns.

“Safe and Secure From All Alarms” Saturday, Sep 8 2018 

Wake-up alarms, that is.

One of the most magnificent benefits of retirement is the freedom from wake-up alarms.

Before I retired, I would often rouse at 5:00 or 5:30 for a potty stop.  When I returned to bed from the bathroom, the brain started calculating the time intervening until wake-up.  That was the end of rest!  My mind rehearsed the worrisome routines of the day, anticipating the trials and worrying about waking up on time to get to work on time.

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Roll over and sleep some more!

The result: Stress!

Now, when I make that early-morning potty stop, I return to bed with a smile on my face.  Who cares if/when I wake up?  What are the trials of the day?  (None–they don’t exist!).  I return to my pillow and fall fast asleep.

This must be the way life was meant to be.

Papa’s Little Girl . . . Forever! Tuesday, Sep 4 2018 

papaslittlegirlMy little girl is an all-grown up adult, 29 years old and happily married, ABD in a Ph.D program in kinesiology at the University of Northern Colorado.

But she’s still my little girl!

She blessed us this Labor Day weekend with a visit, partly for her Mom’s birthday.  We were blessed!

But when it came time to bring her to the airport to send her home yesterday afternoon, we endured the torture of watching her from a helpless distance endure the harsh realities of airport security.  Because her arm was disabled, cast in a sling from a dislocated shoulder a few days earlier, TSA  subjected her to the most intrusive security treatment imaginable under the circumstances.  Her Mom and I were beyond the security area but within eyewitness range, so we were privvy to every  demeaning moment of the pat-down.

Had she been healthy, she would have breezed through the scanner!  But because she couldn’t stand in the body scan machine and raise both arms over her head because of a legitimate injury, she was subjected to the cruel treatment of suspicion.

That’s what infurates me even now.  Why are the disadvantaged  subjected to the most harsh ordeal?

I have to bite my tongue and remember—-to convince myself—-that her treatment is in the interest of national security.

And I really wonder how that TSA guard would feel if she had to watch her own daughter with a dislocated shoulder endure the same ordeal.

I bet that guard would repent.  I sure hope she would.  Any parent who’s had a little girl would understand.

That’s because little girls never truly grow up in their Papa’s eyes.  Mine will always be Papa’s little girl.