Almost a Blog

whalew

It’s been at least three decades since the idiot who hosts this site has posted a blog, Frankly, just between you and me, he hasn’t got it in him. Creativity has never been his Sunday-best suit, but some weird stories have been brewing and spewing forth. So I’ll try my hand at quoting some of them for you. Be advised or forewarned, apparently, the guy’s mind is loosely wired like he writes and you never know what hole his rabbit will tumble into. I’d strongly suggest his faculties are within a padded breakroom.

alicerabbit

A couple of days ago he was stuck in the 1950s and 60s, laughing his fool face off about a handful of crazy characters who grew up with him in the government housing projects in Atlanta, Georgia. Bare with me because I’ll be paraphrasing what the goofball related, and my memory is almost as swift as his brain in high gear.

Capitol Homes

It was around 1963 in Atlanta. There was this kid, named Thomas D. who lived in the Capitol Homes projects. Thomas’ apartment was located a couple of buildings away from the dupe whose name is on this site. Supposedly, Thomas had some quirky abilities. Despite being as thin as a dollar bill and as lanky as a one by four, he could eat like a dang morbidly obese cockroach on a marijuana bender.

Well, almost every family in the Homes received a regular check from US taxpayers and some free government food each and every month. They, all of them, cherished the most the grease-saturated peanut butter and block of oily cheese. The host here also did.

One summer’s day, Thomas discovered the Shaw’s had their monthly allotment of food and neither their peanut butter nor cheese had been opened.

Thomas had an idea. “Whale, (that’s what folks called Ron) I’ll make you a bet. I lifted a five dollar bill from Mom’s pocketbook a few minutes ago, and I’m willing to bet you that on this. You know I can stuff thirty-five, uncooked, pinto beans in my belly button. Everybody knows that’s the Homes record. But today, I’ll bet you this five spot that I can break my own record by at least ten beans. I know y’all have some dried pinto beans in the house. Hell, we all do. If I don’t break my record by minimum ten beans, I’ll fork over the five. If I do, I keep the money and eat as much of your cheese and peanut butter as I want.”

cheese

While his explanation of the affair was going on, a few of the local gang had gathered around, waiting for the full details. Kids were screaming for friends to come out and witness the event. Thomas was about to do his belly button stuffing thing. Several adults joined them behind the Shaw’s apartment.

“You’re on!” Whale chimed.

Peeling his dirty T-shirt off, Thomas lay on the dirt yard while the bag of pinto beans was brought from the kitchen. Thirty-five beans were counted out. The larger ones were chosen by the Shaw boy. He was determined to win that money. Slowly, the beans were handed over to Thomas, as the crowd kept count. The old record went by the wayside as bean thirty-six was crammed into his cavernous tummy hole. Laughing like a drunken clown, Thomas ordered, “Get that food ready!”

ronniea

He easily won the bet, obliterating his old record by fifteen beans. Thomas lay there on his back, pulling beans out of his belly with one hand, munching cheese with his other. After a while, he resorted to dipping the chunks of cheese into the peanut butter. It took him less than thirty minutes to finish the entire huge block of greasy cheese and lick the big can of peanut butter clean.

Momma Shaw was not amused at the loss of a month’s worth of cheese and PB, not to mention, the pinto beans wasted in the process. She took a broom to the lot of them, running the rabble from her yard.

Capitol Homes2

Thomas wasn’t much on education either. He’d routinely pull an Ernest T. Bass on his various teachers. If he didn’t wish to be in class, he bolted to a window, hoisting it open, climbing out, screaming and hollering as he ran. Sometimes, he’d turn abruptly, grab a rock or brick, and hurl it at the school…Ernest T. Bass. Yes. Thomas was a dad burned nut, as Barney Fife might opine.

Mayberry Men

But he was smart enough for the Army and to fight in Vietnam. During the war, Thomas D. was reported as an MIA. It remains unknown if he or his remains were found.

Rest In Peace, Thomas D.

Lyndon Johnson Beagles

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6 Responses to Almost a Blog

  1. Love it! Love Thomas and love that ol’ Whale. Boy oh boy, you tell one mean mother of a story, Ron! So sorry about Thomas’s fate. He really had a belly button that cavernous? My mental imagery is not coping….
    PS: We had Kraft Cheddar Cheese in a blue box that didn’t need refrigeration until opened here in Oz. Yes, ’twas the poor mans cheese here, too. I didn’t know there was any other sort until my adulthood and developed a passion for strong, bitey and soft cheeses from all over the world. But oddly enough I still love that old Kraft Cheddar. Keep the blogs coming. I’m a devoted fan.

    • ronshaw says:

      Carole, you are such a brilliant writer and I’m humbled and honored by your comments. I’m certain we share a lot of the same early childhood and adulthood baggage. It was and is a wonderful life because it’s through these experiences that our stories flow. I read this in your superb writings.
      Would you like to have an audiobook of my Without From Within? The man who narrated the poems did an excellent job, and we just finished the audiobook of TraVerses but with a different narrator. He also did a marvelous job. We’re waiting for it to be listed at Amazon. Let me know if you do and I’ll email you a link with the process to receive it free. Email me at gizpix@aol.com. They gave me 25 of them for promotion and of course, I’d rather gift them to my friends, like you.
      You are a very special lady and I’m blessed to be your friend.

  2. Steve Cartwright says:

    Great ( grate? ) example of your quirky humor!

  3. Paul White says:

    I saved this to ‘read later’… Well, now was the the later and I loved every word.

    I am not an American, but I understand welfare and being underprivaliged; not all of my childhood was roses either. One of the reasons I joined the armed forces at the tender age of 15yrs.

    I am a sucker for the nostalgic too, so I was hooked on every word. Great stuff Ron.

    Paul.

    • ronshaw says:

      Hello, Paul. I really appreciate your visit to my site. Thank you very much for your kind comments.
      It’s great therapy to revisit the past. I find comfort in writing about my youth. My poetry has been the best form of writing to lighten my baggage load.
      So you joined the military at 15…wow. At 15, I was barely able to look at myself in a mirror, much less sign the bottom line for military service. My hat’s off to you.
      Stop by often. It is always a pleasure hearing from you.

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