Recalling a long-ago breakfast row over school spending

Tuesday is named for the Roman God Tyr, and the rest of the days of the week were named by the Romans after the Sun and Moon. Then came other Roman gods to fill out the remaining five.

Those Romans were responsible for a lot of things that we still use today. Today, when we try to do something with our calendar (like the Romans) we have a tendency to make a mess of it like changing the time back and forth an hour.

The Old Men of the Mountain traveled to Quaker Street on Tuesday, Nov. 14, to have their morning repast at Gibby’s Diner. Gibby’s is tough to miss. Quaker Street has just four public buildings along Route 7: a church, the village store, the fire department, and Gibby’s.

The column has mentioned that many of the OMOTM have had chances to get out and about. Part of the discussion at Gibby’s was how to drive in Europe.

It also should have been brought up how to drive in the U.S. Those who have never driven in Europe think driving there is a little weird and don’t think they could handle it, while those that have had the opportunity say they were able to catch on pretty quickly.

One rule that was mentioned (and exactly where was not brought up) was that trucks are not allowed to run on Sunday. That is OK maybe in countries no larger than many of our states, but it was thought in our country which is about 1,600 miles long and 3,000 miles wide, early morning Monday deliveries would be rather tough to make.

Driving on any day in bad weather with the spray from trucks makes driving very hard, especially at night. One OF thought the spray from any vehicle in bad weather and wet roads is hard.


Duct tape

On TV, there once was a show called “The Red Green Show” and Red Green was a miracle worker with duct tape. Currently there are ads where Phil Swift makes boats out of a duct-tape facsimile; then there is NASCAR that patches whole cars that are traveling 200 miles per hour around the track with duct tape.

We now have one OF who has become a duct-tape aficionado, maybe not to the point of giving lessons yet, but close. It seems this OF was working on a project following the routine and right way, but nothing seemed to be working out and nothing fit or went together.

Finally, after many hours of frustration, the OF said, “Screw it” and proceeded to go the way of the infamous duct-tape repair. Apparently this approach worked very well, and for some reason it usually does.

Those OFs who have gone to the duct-tape saver are so satisfied with the results they never go back and remove the duct tape to do it right.


Memory lane

Now for a trip down memory lane of OFs, which in a way shows nothing has changed. The OFs — back when — had to follow a set of bylaws and a constitution, with a mission purpose. Yeah, right! Those OFs didn’t even know what those words were, but politics and religion were off limits, not completely, but rarely used.

Back then, the OFs had some members who were teachers, and one was a retired principal. Also in this group was a professional OF agitator.

This OF just liked to get people riled up. At one breakfast at the Home Front Café in Altamont, the OF got these educators so perturbed and demonstrative on the school budget and taxes at that time, the principal started shouting and jumped up shaking his fist, while the others were banging the table.

The retired principal became so red in the face while shaking his fist that it was thought it would become necessary to call 9-1-1. This scribe does not remember ever having another OMOTM breakfast like that one.

The OF who started the whole thing could hardly contain himself from laughing out loud; he had to turn his back so it would not excite them more. 

This never made the paper; only now that all the participants have passed on there shouldn’t be any problem. Some of the OFs after this outburst thought the ranks of the OMOTM at the next breakfast would be slimmer, but it wasn’t. Everyone involved was there for the next breakfast and many more beyond.

The apparent attendance of the Old Men of the Mountain at Gibby’s the OMOTM found their way and those who were there are: Bill Lichliter, George Washburn, Glenn Patterson, Mark Traver, Joe Rack, Jake Herzog, Roger Shafer, Harold Guest, Wally Guest, Jack Norray, Lou Schenck, Dick Dexter, Herb Bahrmann, Gerry Cross, Ted Feurer, Jake Lederman, Elwood Vanderbilt, Bob Donnelly, Dave Hodgetts, Allen Defazio, John Dab. Rick LaGrange, Paul Guition, Doug Marshall, Warren Willsey, Russ Pokorny, Gerry Chartier, Paul Whitbeck, and not me.