BY-WAYS - 3/26/42 - False Teeth. Odds and Ends

"Oh, young Lochinvar has come out of the west!"
Through all the wide border his Ford is the best.
(or so he thought until it burned out a
bearing and left him stranded.)
He used not the brake, and he stayed not for stone;
He swam the St. Joseph (there is no Eske River
between here and Chicago) when Ford
there was none
(That is, he felt like swimming it, only it
would have ruined a perfectly good uniform).

All this ends with the news that young Lochinvar, alias Tommy Young has stolen our girl - and taken her "west," to Chicago, or, more correctly, Highland Park, which is just across from Ft. Sheridan. I guess Tommy figured that if the supreme commander of the Allies could take his family into the danger zone, there was no reason why he (Tommy) couldn't bring his family as far as training quarters, anyway. And so our Easter baby left home - just before her twenty-first birthday.***

Did I keep you up in Greenland too long? I hope you didn't get chilled. Last week's article was as lacking in warmth as Greenland itself. Now, this week, let's stay in the good old U.S.A., and have a laugh or two; maybe a heart throb or two. Life is a strange intermingling of laughter and tears. I really didn't finish my article last week.

I wanted to tell how modern dentistry has improved over that of 25 or 30 years ago. Remember how the old "false teeth" were so obviously false? And the vulcanized red rubber setting no more resembled human gums than cottage cheese looks like limburger. Whew! What a comparison! Aside from the new plastic, made by the DuPont company, which really resembles the human gum, and the lustrous "china," that cannot be distinguished from home-grown teeth, the big modern improvement is in the snug fit of the plate, brought about by a "filler," which is a South American balsam. Remember the old armor plate, cluck-clucking in the mouth? The poor tongue had manifold duties, and when it was too busy forming vowels and consonants, it often let the plate down - figuratively and literally. Here is a true story that came out of Scrubgrass Hollow, near Nowrytown. It was related to me by none other than the late Sara Guthrie, whose married name I have forgotten (because she married after I came to Cleveland.) But I can never, never, forget Miss Sara, who was my heart's delight. Miss Sara, sister of Mrs. A.J.W. Robinson, made her home with the Robinsons, but worked in Pittsburgh, with prolonged vacations at Christmas time - to my joy. During the two winters I taught at Nowrytown, and lived with that grand couple, Mr. and Mrs. Robinson, Miss Sara's home-comings were major events in my life. Her laughter, which was the overflow from a heart brimming over with kindness and love of human beings, was frequent and infectious. The cellar of the treasure house of her mind was well stocked with rich and rare anecdotes - all of them within her own experience. One Sunday evening the minister of the little Scrubgrass church was preaching a soul-stirring sermon. In his fervor he grew quite eloquent - and shouted an exhortation. Out flew his upper plate - over the pulpit, headed for a smashup. But the minister, with the swiftness and skill of a big league baseball player, caught it on the fly. Just a quick duck behind the pulpit - and all was well - if not with the soul (of his mirth stricken audience) - at least he was well-heeled again.***

A big red carnation on our kitchen table, still fresh and spicy after four days "on its own," is a memento of another wedding anniversary - Mother and Dad Taylor's fifty-first. Fifty-one anniversaries - and not once has Dad forgotten or omitted the carnations. Mother's favorite flower. (And not once in all the years I've known them has Mother failed to share her flowers with her children.) Sometimes, Mother said, they could not afford flowers at all. But Dad insisted that there had to be at least two or three. I speak of this because those flowers are emblematic of Dad's love and constancy. Through all the vicissitudes of life he has kept intact the love of one man for one woman - the rock foundation on which homes - and society are built.***

Let me tell you a little joke on "Lochinvar." The "Ford" that I speak of (on paper) is not really the modern counterpart of the gallant Lochinvar's horse in the famous poem. He did not "kidnap" Estelle and take her back in that modern chariot. He simply drove his Ford, which he had given Estelle after their marriage, back to Ft. Sheridan, so that she would have the use of it when she came up there. He took along a large suitcase and a carton of her clothes, so that she would not be burdened on her bus or train journey. Well, the poor Ford had a breakdown in Elkhart, Ind., and Tommy had to go on by bus, reaching the post two hours after the deadline. He looked suspicious, coming in at 1 o'clock in the morning, lugging a big box and a suitcase. So he and the "impediments" had to undergo inspection - to his embarrasament and extreme annoyance. Poor Lochinvar! How quickly a column fills up! I must close. Good-by until next week.

Florence B. Taylor

Next - 4/4/42 - "CHARACTER IS DESTINY"

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