Thursday, January 25, 2007

Being Frank: What a weekend!

By FRANK PHILLIPS
Monday, January 22, 2007 9:17 AM CST

frankphi@hotmail.com

January is about 3/4 over and this weekend we got our first snowfall, our first trip to the Super Bowl and our first chance to hear from our “freshman” state legislator (not necessarily in that order).

While I try to avoid “personal matters” in my columns (You have your own life, right?), I had to tell you about this weekend from my perspective.

It started Saturday morning at the Cory Firehouse with the Crackerbarrel meeting. You English teachers may debate whether Crackerbarrel should be one word or two — until the dust settles I will spell it as one.

Now, I love these political meetings. They are part of our heritage.

I understand the meetings get their name from the old cracker barrel that set in general stores across America in the 19th century. My grandfather had one in his store in Pulaski County, near Winamac.
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The guys would gather around the stove in the winter and sample the saltines in the barrel while talking and playing checkers. What an opportunity for the local politicians to share news and ideas with constituents!

This Crackerbarrel was better for me than past ones because our “freshman” state legislator, Amos Thomas, participated. So many of us in the 44th District (and elsewhere) called Amos “friend” before his election to the General Assembly.

It was great to hear him share his wit and wisdom as well as listen to his constituents on issues such as the corn check-off (a small portion of each load of corn is held by the elevator and used to promote ethanol) and full-day kindergarten.

From Cory, our exotic feline (our Mercury Sable) took me home to write my reports on what the legislators had to say during the previous two hours.

That task was completed about 3 p.m. (with time off for lunch). Then the cat headed north to see the kids and grandkids. We spent part of last Monday in Lafayette, where we met our daughter, Amanda’s, new boyfriend. Ed is a graduate student in mechanical engineering. I understood part of what he told me he did. I’m sure Amanda appreciated the fact that I listened.

Saturday night was Terry and ’Becca’s turn.

After a nice visit, we took them to Steak & Shake.

Logan sat across from me and Mammaw and Cailin was on my left.

Like her good Aunt Amanda, Cailin will keep me on my toes. If I didn’t pay enough attention to her, she tried pushing her china plate filled with chicken and fries on the floor.

After Mr. Logan finished most of his supper, we had strawberry shakes (mine made with yogurt). I shared with Miss Cailin, of course, and she kept me busy, doling out tiny spoonfuls of frozen bliss into her waiting mouth.

Sunday found our first “tracking snow” of the season. It precluded our Sunday morning trip to Alamo Christian Church, where I have been their interim preacher for about 12 years.

I have wanted to hear Gary Scroggins preach for a long time. We didn’t know how many people we would know at the Presbyterian Church, but found many of our friends there. The service was inspiring and I will remember Gary’s illustration about the man with dementia — the importance of forgotten treasure — for quite a while.

We were able to enjoy lunch at Pappy’s Bar-B-Cue. It’s great to have that restaurant in Brazil, though they may want to add employees.

Then, Sunday night — what can be added to that Colts game? WOW! I couldn’t watch the whole thing. The first two quarters were too depressing.

But switching back, the last 5:00 on the clock was so great!

Some 20 years ago, I followed the Bears march to the Super Bowl — and their victory over New England! How great will be this Super Bowl!

(By the way, here’s a quiz: Can you write out Super Bowl 41 using Roman numerals — without looking it up?)

The last line of “Christmas In Connecticut” is “What a Christmas!”

I can truthfully say, “What a weekend!”