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LOOKIN' GOOD FOR AN OLD GUY
12 April 2009
We helped Uncle Dave turn 75 tonight.
He's not really anybody's uncle. He and Walt worked together for many years, both in Berkeley and here in Davis before Dave transferred up to the Portland office. But our kids always called him "Uncle Dave." We don't see him often--the last time was at Walt's reunion, so we were thrilled to be invited to his birthday party.
The party was planned by his kids, three of whom live in this area and one of whom lives down in San Jose.
Chris is the youngest, and was born about a year and a half before Jeri was born, so they are all older than our kids, but our kids spent a lot of time around them when they were growing up. Moni and Susie used to babysit for them and have always been known, lovingly, as "The Yucky Babysitters."
They did a really cool thing. They asked all of the people they invited to dinner at the Old Spaghetti Factory to send in 5 memories of their time with Dave and they put it together into a book for him, which was a great hit.
Walt and I each contributed two individual memories and one joint memory. He talked about an incident when they were out in the field together at work, when Dave quelled the anger of a farmer by speaking German to him. He also remembered that Dave used to call me "Bodacious Bev." I remembered the time when we had visited Dave and his wife Joan in their home in Oregon. It was after a big storm and one of their neighbor's trees was leaning precariously. Walt and Dave were out examining the tree, came into the house and within 5 minutes, the tree fell right where they had been standing. My memory was actually "I remember when Dave tried to kill Walt by dropping a tree on him.
My final memory was how Dave and Walt used to be really into photography and they had all these plans for what they were going to do "when they were rich." I asked when that was going to be because it was getting pretty late for the two of them!
Walt and I also remembered the "Farkle Party" that I surprised Walt with on his 30th birthday, where everyone dressed as someone in the Farkle Family from the old Laugh-In show.
The Farkel Family was a recurring skit on the show. The Farkel parents, Frank Farkel (played by Dan Rowan) and Fanny Farkel (played by JoAnn Worley), both had dark-colored hair and good eyesight. Curiously, all the children had red hair and wore glasses, just like their "good friend and trusted neighbor" Ferd Berfel, played by Dick Martin. They also had the twins, Simon and Gar Farkel.
The youngest was Sparkle Farkel, and Jeri was Sparkle Farkle at our party, and I remember what a hit she was because she was just SO excited to be dressed up for Dad's party.
Much of the action in the Farkel sketches consisted of introducing every member of the large family by name. Otherwise the dialogue would lead to tongue-twisters ("That's a fine-looking Farkel flinger you found there, Frank").
Walt remembered how Dave took him shopping when he went looking for a hat so he could be Frank Farkle. He didn't, of course, tell Walt what he needed this silly hat for. The day of the party, all the Farkle-dressed guests met somewhere else and came to our house en masse. It was really a fun afternoon.
Anyway, we had a great time this evening, celebrating with Dave and remembering things like the Farkle family. When dinner was over, we drove back to the hotel where Dave and Joan were staying and sat around in the bar (because the lobby was being turned into an Easter banquet room) for another couple of hours.
This was my favorite picture of the night. I'm not even sure if this baby (Charlie) is related to Dave or to one of his friends, but isn't he cute?
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Happy Birthday, Dave!
MILES TO NOWHERE: 104 miles