Today in My History

2000:  Back to Basics
2001:  Oh, My Aching Back
2002:  Spinning Straw into Gold
2003:  Everything Old is New Again...and Again...
2004:  Stop the World, I Want to Get Off
2005:  Biting the Hand that Feeds You
2006 Still Horny After All These Weeks

2007: How Big is a Cubit
2008:  A Little More Stupid
2009:  Boston's Newest Resident
2010:  Four Tennis Racquets
In a Mist
2012: City of the Dead
2013: Shake Down Cruise
2014: Playing with the Little kids...and Big kids
2015: Sunday Stealing
2016: Wine and Roses
2017: Joe and Mika
2018: David's Thursday 13
2019: Yesterday Was Books

Theater Reviews
Updated 3/10

Books Read in 2020
 Updated 3/30
"An Echo in the Bone"

COVID-19 Movie Marathon
Updated 5/8
The Bookshop

Personal Home Page

My family

Books Read in 2020
Books Read in 2019
Books Read in 2018

Books Read in 2017
Books Read in 2016
Books Read in 2015
Books Read in 2014
Books Read in 2013

Books Read in 2012
Books Read in 2011
Books Read in 2010

updated 7/16

(you know how to fix it)

Some Background Links:
The Philosophy of Juice & Crackers
The story of Delicate Pooh
The story of the Piñata Group
Pumpkin pies
Who IS this Gilbert person anyway?


mail to Walt / mail to Bev  

17 May 2020

Welcome to Sunday Stealing. This feature originated and published on WTIT: The Blog. Here we will steal all types of questions from every corner of the blogosphere. Our promise to you is that we will work hard to find the most interesting and intelligent questions. (Past hosts include: Our first - Judd Corizan, Mr. L, Kwizgiver and Bud) Cheers to all of us thieves! 



Excerpted from for Ty and Logan



1. Where did your name come from
My parents planned to name me "Barbara," after my aunt, but then decided having two Barbaras in the family would be confusing, so they gave me her middle name.

2. Where were you born?
San Francisco.

3. What as your house like, growing up
We lived in a 2-bedroom flat that overlooked Coit Tower.

4. What was your childhood bedroom like?
I shared it with my sister.  It was originally a dining room. We had two beds separated by a desk.  The walls were decorated with boxes that had story book dolls in them that we were not allowed to touch. 

There was also a very small closet that my cousin locked me in once--it was terrifying (I had claustrophobia).  Oh yeah--and there were snakes under the bed.

5. Did you travel as a child? Where?
I remember going on the train to Los Angeles once, when I was very small (maybe before I was 4) and my mother, sister and I spent a weekend in So. California at Disneyland in 1956.  In the summer we went to a resort in the Napa area.  My father died at 72 without ever having been on an airplane.

6. Write about your grandparents
My father's parents were in vaudeville when they met.  He was the singer in a barbershop quartet, she was a chorus girl, but she was apparently ashamed about that because they never ever talked about it and I only heard my grandfather sing once...while she rolled her eyes in disgust.  They lived in an apartment almost their entire married life, only leaving when my grandfather had to go into the convalescent home where he died.  Though his "career" was parking cars in downtown San Francisco, they never owned a car and we drove them everywhere, even to Mass every Sunday.  She was very overbearing and I didn't like her much, though she adored me.  My grandfather was very quiet and I really didn't know him well.

My mother's parents lived on an acre of land in Inverness, where he raised chickens and various crops, like corn.  We didn't see them much because my father didn't like to drive to Inverness, so I didn't spend much time with them, but my grandmother was soft and huggy and I loved her.  He had both of his legs amputated before he died -- I don't remember why. I don't remember much about him except when he took me to see a bunch of newly hatched chicks.  I was kind of afraid of him because he was so gruff.  He had lost all his teeth when he was a young man, but didn't like to wear dentures and could even eat corn on the cob with his gums--and he put sugar on his tomatoes. They had 11 children, and lost one at age 4, when she drowned (long before my mother was born)

7. Who taught you how to drive?
My father.  He was a good teacher and taught me more than the DMV expected me to know (he taught me how to parallel park, in our stick shift car, on the steepest hills in San Francisco...the DMV never even had me drive up a hill when I went to take my test!)

8. When did you first leave home?
At 18, when I moved across the bay to go to UC Berkeley.  I never moved back.

9. What did your parents do for work?
My father was a railway mail clerk, working the mail on the train from San Francisco to Los Angeles.  My mother worked for the Bank of America, and retired as an executive.

10. Who inspired you as you matured?
I was always inspired by my mother, and by my typing teacher, Sister Anne, who remained a good friend until her death.

11. What was the best part of your 20s?
Getting married and having five children.

12. What as the best part of your 30s?
Becoming involved with the Lamplighters Musical Theater group.

13. Where is the most fascinating place you’ve visited
Hard to know; we have visited so many places, but our first river cruise, in Russia, was fascinating because we saw so many different things.  My favorite place was Kizhi island, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the church there.

14. What is your favorite family story?
I liked the stories my mother told of her years on a ranch in Valley Springs.  It still makes me smile to think of the "can pile."  My grandfather had a big pile of cans and whenever his kids wanted to do something, they had to move all the cans from one side of the yard to the other.  She never understood why until she was an adult, when he confessed it was just a way to keep them all busy doing something.

15. What was your most memorable birthday?
The kids threw me a wonderful birthday for my 70th birthday.

18. What was your favorite food as a child?
My father made the best potato salad ever...I have never found one like it, and even I can't recreate it.  My mother learned how to make great enchiladas from a neighbor that were everyone's favorites.  Probably my favorite food was fried chicken with shoestring potatoes.  I loved her chocolate cream roll, with real whipped cream in it and a bittersweet chocolate frosting.  I watch cooks on Great British Baking Show trying to recreate a cake roll and wonder why they have so much trouble, when I remember my mother doing it so easily.


Polly has started standing at the back door like this
(tho there is a dog door to her right)
I think she's hoping I'll toss peanuts out for her.


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