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Out On The Mudline

SNAFU Causes Pool Liner Problems

By W. P. Sissell

Another One of Those Weeks

In the early part of the day it has been chilly. Although several of the grandchildren have asked about opening the pool, we have hesitated. Finally we called our helpers in and uncovered the pool.  Actually that is the point where the work of opening begins. Our helpers didn’t realize that and had other plans.

In removing the leaf-net and then the canvas cover, both laden with a fair quantity of leaves, pine needles and trash, it happened: almost all of the skinoviches failed in their function of holding the retofranz side to the offsteady (If you do not know these words—I  cannot help you—you will find them in no dictionary with which I am familiar). These words were coined (I think) by one Sergeant Kappy Kaplan with whom I served in the 673rd Field Artillery Battalion, WW II. In any situation which was unexplainable these words were used. They were/are pure U. S. Army G. I. lingo. The failure caused all kinds of weird events with the pool liner.    

At this later time, three days, many dollars and innumerable gallons of water—most of it chemically treated, we think everything is under control so that I can try to get this article completed for the coming week. We invited in some experts and now the pool is being filled a second time.

A Phone Call

On one of those nights, after returning from Burn’s Barbecue, the phone rang. I could tell from the drift of Nannette’s and the caller’s conversation (I was referred to as a walking history) that the caller was one of our favorite people, Cubell Morgan.  Cubell and her husband, Emmet, moved to our Dry Bayou farm in the late forties. When we returned to our present farm they remained in the Crowder area. Cubell kept our two girls for a couple of years. An especial thing that I remember about her was that she always wanted to know where I was going when I left the farm—something I was not apt to remember to do but Cubell was insistent.

Husband Emmett was an especial person for me. He often volunteered to run the bean combine for me on a Saturday afternoon so that I could listen to a football game—just so he could learn to operate the combine. He always had to “monkey” with the operation of his tractor motor—putting little sticks in beside the sparkplug wires (often this caused the wire to fall out which made the motor miss. He delighted when I sought him out in the field to get him to come and loosen a bolt which he had tightened so tight I could not loosen it. One of his, often useful, assets was the ability to locate electric current simply by sticking his finger into a socket. He sometimes turned this on me by grasping a sparkplug on a running vehicle as I attempted to enter it. He was a mighty fine fellow, a valued helper, and I think of him often.    

Cubell’s call came after her ninetieth birthday last Monday.  In the conversations she also told me that her sister-in-law, Roberta, was ninety-three. It seems that only yesterday she was ironing my jeans. Now that the week is over it seems that it was a rather nice one for in addition to hearing from one old friend and about another I met several nice younger people. I’m about to forget that I noticed that the school board hired a bus driver named Ruel—he is bound to be a good one—that was my father’s name except spelled Reuel. The name is Biblical.  How many of you know the Biblical Reuel?

Our wish for you is a great week. Maybe the wet spring is over.  Robert has finally gotten to plant our beans and that’s a plus. It’s hard to make beans if you can’t get them planted.

You can reach me most of the time at 23541 Highway 6, Batesville, MS 38606 or 662-563-9879.

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