Tag Archives: Park Forest Village

My annual Christmas Eve Light Ride tradition is in jeopardy

Greetings, readers. With Zipcar no longer an option for me, my Christmas Eve Light Ride tradition may be coming to an end. Since I was a little boy, I’ve only missed one year and that was due to an ice storm. Rebecca and I were just on the Hertz car rental site and discovered that though it would be easy and convenient (the office is down the street from me) the cost would make the one night event outrageously stupid, even by my standards. You know me, readers, I never like to cancel anything that is traditional.

This past year I have just not made that much money. My books have not been selling and my other sources of income have come in a trickle. I always tell myself that things will work out somehow, but this year I just don’t see it being economically feasible.

To rent a car for three days, they are probably closed Christmas Eve, will cost approximately $400.00, according to our research on their website. One passenger who wants to go with me said that she’ll chip in for the cost. At least one other passenger would have to do the same to make that price tag possible. Right now, dear readers, I give my traditional Christmas Eve Light Ride chances only at 20%.

Now, on Christmas Eve, the buses still run at least to a certain time. It may very well be that my friends and I will ride CATA’s W bus and let it drive us around Park Forest and surrounding areas. I will be sure to let the bus driver know that is what we are doing so he doesn’t look at us and ask if we have missed our stop. The only other alternative, which I will tell you just dawned on my this very second, is to see if anyone else made a YouTube video of the same kind of ride, or walk around their neighborhood. It’s been said that besides porn, you can find almost anything on YouTube.

On to a different topic. Guess what I’m doing tonight, dear readers? I’m going to my first Shakespearean play experience, a movie playing at the State Theatre, called A Winter’s Tale. I really don’t have a good idea what it is about, but I am intrigued because it is a Shakespearean dramedy. I am not much into Shakespeare though at my age I should be. Hell, with me being a writer, I should have been into all the classic authors. It’s ironic that I am a writer that doesn’t read other people’s material. I think I just solved my problem!

I am starting to change that. On Spotify music I found a delightful version in an audio book of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Secret Garden. I have seen two movie adaptations of this story and love it. It is one of my favorites … probably second to Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. It is read by an unnamed younger woman I’m estimating is in her late 20s to early 30s with a delightful voice and she is able to bring all the characters to life. I would love to find out her name, then go to Google images so I can take a peek at who is reading to me. So far, no such luck. It is the unabridged version of the story and I’m listening to it, as I said, through Spotify, which is now connected to my brand new Alexa. Oh, what great sound. It sounds like there is a human being right here in the room with me.

Yesterday, again on the internet news page, I saw such headlines as shootings, the stock market is tumbling, and plane crash kills nine. I stopped right there. My therapist told me to stay away from depressing news topics. I realize it is kind of hard to keep up tp date without reading the news. I would love to see a news broadcast that gives as much equal time to good honest heartwarming stories which raise peoples spirits as it does to the bad news stories which tend to depress people. I remember one time, I think I mentioned this before, I was watching a newscast on a New York channel which consisted literally of 50 minutes of bad news, a few minutes of sports, about three minutes for the weather, and then a oh, yes, by the way, nice story to close out the broadcast. I had to wait the whole hour to get the two minute final story that perked me up for the evening. Blech. Fortunately that channel is off our cable system and I don’t watch much news from any other source. Some people say I’m uneducated or not in the loop. Well, readers, I know what I know. I shan’t be bombarded with one bad news story after another. Maybe one day this world will learn that violence and revenge is not the answer. Okay, I’m done with my mini-sermon.

Well, readers, only two more blog entries with Rebecca until our nine-year stint comes to an end. 😦 But as mentioned before, my blog will stay open for you, my readers, to peruse and enjoy, and I shall strive to put a new one up either every Wednesday or every other Wednesday. I can’t lose the few steady readers I have, and I am blessed to have you.

Until next Wednesday, have a wonderful week, love one another, if you are thinking about hatred-give peace a chance, take care and happy reading.

Top ten happy memories from my childhood

Greetings, readers. I thought long and hard this morning of things that made me happy when I was a youngster and teenager. The following is a list – this time in order – of the top ten happy memories.

#10. Watching the Indianapolis 500. [It used to be shown in prime time and they would always announce right before the show who had won the race in the ABC news break.]

#9. Trips to Pittsburgh. [In the early years, my mom practiced psychology not only here in State College but also in Pittsburgh. For the first eight or so years of my life, occasionally the family would take a weekend trip so she could see her Pittsburgh clients.]

#8. Park Forest Junior High Fun Nights. [Every six to eight weeks, on a Friday evening, the commons area and gymnasium would be opened up from 7 to 10pm for music, dancing, and basketball. It kept us kids off the streets.]

#7. The trip to Maine with Mom and Dad. [I had many fun times in the car looking at the pretty scenery, listening to my music under headphones, Dad’s classical music on the cassette tape, or having conversations with my family.]

#6. Watching college football games on Saturdays and NFL games on Sundays.

#5. A special weekend at the Altoona Sheraton. [About once a year or so I would beg Mom and Dad to go to Altoona to the Sheraton for a fun weekend getaway, mostly relaxing and swimming in the big, heated indoor pool.]

#4. The holiday season. [From the Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade until the end of the college bowl season, it truly was my favorite time of year, and still is.]

#3. The Memorial Day carnival. [Expensive but fun. Sadly it no longer comes around anymore.]

#2. Nerf footfall and Wiffle ball games with my best friend Dave Trost.

#1. The Christmas light ride through Park Forest Village and surrounding areas. [Through my childhood and teenage years it remained the single happiest evening of the year.]

Ok folks, there you have it. Chime in with yours via reply. Let the debating begin. Until Friday, have a great day, take care and happy reading.