"That man could crawl through a barrel of fish hooks and not get a scratch on him.'' Troy Stevenson, who retained the wisdom of his mountain upbringing, once used that expression concerning a man we were discussing. The late Highway Patrolman Randy Sanders once described an individual as: "One who could be used to open a bottle of wine."
We all live and learn. Our wisdom, knowledge and humor come from many various sources. Like the above wisdom of the late Randy and Troy, the following are some tidbits that I have found and collected over the years.
Les Addis says that if you talk about your grandkids for 10 minutes, then you should expect to listen to your partner talk about his for 10 minutes. Marge Small said grandchildren were the first thing in life that she found was not overrated.
Lanning Rasher is the first person who stated the S.C. flag has a gorged and not a crescent moon. The flag which flew over Ft. Moultrie had a gorged and the word “Liberty” on the blue background. Because of the non-shattering pliability of the Palmetto trees, which formed the sides of Ft. Moultrie, the Palmetto tree replaced the word “Liberty.” If you see a Revolutionary War film, you will notice that most officers wore a gorget to help protect their necks. Most officers fought on horseback. Since it was difficult to reload a pistol, most of their fighting was done with swords. Guess you would want to keep your foe from going for the jugular.
Jane Wright and Penny Pullum once gave good advice to young ladies concerning male suitors. They said always watch how a young man treats his mother, his horse or his dog. A college basketball coach at a small school once said the only requirements for his players were that they like girls and that they cry when they lose. If your son or grandson has these characteristics, then he is going to be OK.
One spring afternoon at a baseball game after my son had committed and signed with a college, I was over praising one of my son's teammates to a college coach. I was listing this kid’s attributes and blah, blah, blah. I stated this kid’s best asset was that he was a great kid. The coach looked at me and said, "Thanks, but I'm not here looking for son-in-laws."
Gail Brown Clyburn told her elderly grandmother that she was getting married to a Clyburn. Her grandmother asked her if he was a Kershaw Clyburn or a Westville Clyburn. She said Stephen was from Kershaw. Her grandmother reply was "good.” The Kershaw Clyburns had money and you could tell because they had rubber on their wagon wheels.
Ed Walden said that when he was a youngster during the Depression the meat they had was so thin that it only had one side to it.
Either Stanley King or Ned Beard, each a successful businessman, said, “Take your job seriously, not yourself.” Besides, no one else does.
''I don't have any ice cream in my refrigerator," was the reply that Lloyd Truesdale once gave a friend who asked him why he quit coming to church. The friend was somewhat bewildered by the answer and asked Lloyd what that meant. Lloyd's reply was that excuse was as good as any. The right Reverend Joe Stein says that when you reach age 60, you get your last Sunday School promotion.
My Uncle Andy once stated that if you have a visitor in your home and he starts talking about how religious he is, count the good silver before he leaves.
Dave Ziemke's best advice from his father was that if you get into a bar fight, quickly get your back against the wall. My father gave me two solid pieces of wisdom. The first is that if you ever sit down at a poker game and don't see a sucker, get up. The second is that the graveyard is full of indispensible men. Outside of Robinson's Hardware that is a fairly accurate statement.
A couple of years after my father passed away, my brother called my mother and said he needed a reason to buy a new suit and that she should get remarried. She told him she had had a good man for 53 years and she did not need another one. She added, “Besides I've got friends who got remarried and they are now cooking three meals a day."
Sydney Harris was a noted national columnist who would leave this phone message when he wanted someone to return his calls. ''This is Rocco. Please call me at … to discuss your wife's gambling debt.'' He said it worked every time. Sydney Harris worked in a large building which had a high rise hotel next to it. At break time, he and his buddies would grab the binoculars and watch the hotel for couples who were not very discreet. Knowing about the prank they would play on the couple allowed several former coaches the opportunity to pull the same prank while we were attending a coaches' clinic at Wofford one night. Reggie Dean, Billy Ammons, John Thompson and I were headed back to our second floor rooms in an L-shaped motel when we happened to notice a young couple, who had left their blinds open, starting the mating ritual. We got the room number and called. When they answered, the message was, "This is God. Quit that right now.'' The young lady quickly closed the blinds to what had become a large contingent of cheering coaches.
Thank you for your attention.