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Thread: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

  1. #31
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    SHEILA/RICK TO GET TO THE VERY BEGINNING OF THIS NOVEL, PLEASE SCROLL ALL THE WAY DOWN UNTIL THIS "THREAD" REACHES THE BOTTOM

    "Cons, galore" (continued)

    25th April 1938

    Conway seldom dined at the National Liberal Club,
    preferring, instead, after his day of writing in the
    morning, during the afternoon, taking part with
    off -duty Marines at practice for Saturday’s match
    against the Marylebone Regents, to stroll to
    “The Coach and Horses" around the corner

    Once within its bright warm busy Saloon Bar
    (even the public houses recognized the British
    class system, they being divided into two separate
    bars, the 'Public' one, informally recognized
    as being for nasty rough men only, usually with
    sawdust on the floor, with the tonier 'Saloon' being the bar
    to which one escorted one's lady - and paid more for the food
    and drinks, therein!), Dan ordered a couple of those great crusty
    rolls, the one containing cheddar cheese with a bite, the other with
    succulent lamb, all to be washed down with a pint of best
    bitter.

    This was a beer that he had acquired a taste for, in
    spite of its not being iced, which would quite kill its
    hearty flavour - so different from that onion-water
    that they served back home, he thought - the cold
    numbing one’s palate, so that it could not appreciate
    the delicacy of the hops and malt.

    One reason for his choosing the Saloon bar,
    was that he could listen in on the conversations of both
    men and women, thus getting an idea of what a broad
    spectrum, of British society - both genders of the working and middle
    classes - was discussing during these turbulent days,

    His other haunt for eavesdropping on gossip, the National Liberal Club,
    itself, offered for his scrutiny, another segment of that hidebound society,
    the British upper crust, mostly male, what comparatively few ladies
    were seen within its marbled halls, were generally lower-class hangers on,
    cashing in on their good looks and/or willingness to consort with a generous
    rich 'gentleman'

    Within the pub, whilst munching rolls; sipping beer; and opening his ears,
    Conway kept himself to himself, not wishing to be recognized as an American,
    for, like children, the Brits, once aware that an outsider was observing
    them, might start playing to the gallery; Dan didn’t want them to put on a show
    for him, he wanted to know what they really talked about, in these times
    which, as the Chinese curse, implied, certainly were “interesting”.

    His repast finished, he left the pub, strolling back to the
    Club, to do some typing in his room, then turn in for an
    early night, the beer and food having made him somewhat
    sleepy.

    This would account for his lack of vigilance, as a black
    van swooped out of the dark Whitehall night, a side
    -door opened, and two burly men jumped out, and bundled
    him into its interior. Dan Conway was being kidnapped.
    (To be continued)
    Last edited by Rongar; 04-02-2017 at 06:22 PM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  2. #32
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rongar View Post
    This would account for his lack of vigilance, as a black
    van swooped out of the dark Whitehall night, a side
    -door opened, and two burly men jumped out, and bundled
    him into its interior. Dan Conway was being kidnapped.
    (To be continued)
    dahn dahn DAHNNNNN!

    My #1 suspect: The Jerries.

  3. #33
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    Question Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Or maybe aliens? I have it from a reliable source that they were invented in 1938,

    It couldn't possibly be Esmerelda Izynmoch up to her old tricks, could it?
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    A Ross Tarreg outing - due to injuries, Ross was used on short rest.
    Code:
    	
    
    Hudson Springers (1-3) at Miami Casinos (2-2)
    
    May 5th, 1938
      	1 	2 	3 	4 	5 	6 	7 	8 	9 	R 	H 	E
    Springers 0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	1 	0 	2 	5 	3
    Casinos 0 	0 	0 	3 	0 	0 	4 	6 	x 	13 	15 	0
    	
    
    Springers 	     AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    A Parko CF 	4 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.313
    B Schuster SS 	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.133
    B Dahlgren 1B 	4 	2 	0 	0 	0 	2 	0 	0 	.286
    M Livingston C 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.267
    F Secory RF 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.188
    I Goodman LF 	3 	1 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.250
    S Martin 2B 	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.286
    J Foxx 3B 	2 	1 	1 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.636
    Ross Tarreg P 	2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    R Harrell* P 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    G Mancuso* PH 	0 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1.000
    R Starr P 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    T Pressnell P 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    Totals        	29 	5 	3 	2 	0 	2 	1 	0 	 
    
    GDP: Mickey Livingston
    
    E: Jimmie Foxx , Ival Goodman, Frank Secory
    	
    Casinos 	AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    Mathew Stites SS 	5 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	3 	0 	.278
    Jason Tremayne LF 	5 	2 	0 	2 	0 	1 	1 	0 	.211
    Maury Lee RF 	3 	0 	2 	2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.267
    Mark Rozenblum CF 	4 	1 	1 	2 	0 	1 	3 	0 	.286
    Gar Vaughan C 	4 	2 	1 	2 	0 	3 	2 	0 	.375
    Max Picariello 1B 	4 	2 	1 	1 	0 	2 	0 	0 	.400
    Rick Grainger 3B 	5 	3 	0 	1 	0 	2 	1 	0 	.250
    Kevin Herschel 2B 	5 	1 	0 	0 	0 	2 	2 	0 	.333
    Todd Willingham P 	5 	3 	0 	2 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.600
    Totals 	40 	15 	5 	13 	0 	11 	13 	0 	 
    
    2B: Max Picariello (2), Rick Grainger 2 (2)
    
    DP: Max Picariello 2, Mathew Stites
    
    Springers      IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    Ross Tarreg 	6.1 	7 	2 	0 	5 	4 	12 	97 	2.01
    Ray Harrell* 	0.2 	2 	2 	0 	2 	2 	0 	21 	6.75
    Ray Starr 	0.0 	5 	1 	0 	6 	4 	0 	21 	45.00
    Tot Pressnell 	1.0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	14 	0.00
    Totals        	8.0 	15 	5 	0 	13 	10 	13 	153 	 
    	
    Casinos 	IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    Todd Willingham 	9.0 	5 	3 	0 	2 	2 	1 	109 	2.00
    Totals 	9.0 	5 	3 	0 	2 	2 	1 	109 	 
    
    WP: Todd Willingham (1-0)
    LP: Ross Tarreg (1-1)
    	
    Temperature: 75F
    Wind: 2 MPH (out to left)
    Attendance: 9,054
    Time: 2:40
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  5. #35
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    Question Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Unless my arithmetic is awry, there were over 1,000 views of this thread, yesterday...what's the attraction, I wonder...? The baseball? ...the history? ...my Evil Twin taking 999 peeks at the thread to bump up the gratifying numbers?
    Last edited by Rongar; 01-13-2013 at 09:30 PM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    1,810

    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Clearly, the secret is more kidnapping.

  7. #37
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    Smile Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Nah, more probably the sex 'n drugs 'n rock & roll content...
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  8. #38
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    "Cons galore" (Continued)

    From the outset, Dan was not at all alarmed..this
    couldn’t be a mugging, he reasoned, mere thugs
    aren’t that sophisticated enough to organize a task
    force of a van and three toughs- for he was aware
    of a driver, besides the two men who had grabbed
    him-to lift a mere wallet.

    He was further assured by the two words spoken by
    one of his abductors, who hissed “Be quiet!” .

    Once he heard that Oxbridge drawl, Conway relaxed;
    these twits might have all sorts of letters after their
    names, and book-learning stuffed into their soft heads,
    but he was brought up on some of Chicago’s meanest,
    streets, before his family hit pay-dirt and moved to
    the genteel Burnside area, and he fancied his
    school of hard knocks education against their
    pre-digested thinking, any day of the week.

    During the short trip to wherever they were going,
    one of his captors, quite gently, placed a large paper
    bag over his head, further proof, that they intended
    the minimum of physical indignity to him, neither
    binding, nor even blindfolding him.

    The van eventually pulling in - Dan fancied that they
    were still somewhere in the West End of London-
    and the unseeing newsman was guided through a
    door, down some stairs. and, eventually, into a chair,

    The bag was removed from his head, but a strong
    light in his face prevented him from making out
    more than three figures, one of which addressed him.

    “ Sir, would you mind telling us who you are, and
    what you were doing at the German Embassy, two
    days ago?”

    So that was it, ran Dan’s thoughts...the dumb clucks
    ...they didn’t even know that he was an American...
    someone had reported that a guy, obviously not
    a German national, being sans a square head and a
    guttural accent, had called in at the embassy of a
    potential enemy, ergo, he must be some sort of spy
    or traitor, about to hand over the Empire on which
    the sun never sets.

    “Sure...” the American replied easily “ ...I’m Dan
    Conway, a reporter for the Chicago Tribune...I went
    to the Embassy to interview the Ambassador”

    “Oh...” his interrogator became even more hesitant
    “Er, Mr Conway, we hope you’ll forgive this -ah-
    unusual meeting, but you know we have to be careful
    these days...anybody hob-nobbing with Jerry these
    days, well, we’d like to know, in case the balloon goes up”

    “Sure, I understand...” Conway nodded affably...amazingly
    he did comprehend all this vague beating around the
    bush “But as an American reporter, I was there to
    learn stuff, not to give any information about you
    English, which I wouldn’t anyway, seeing as we’re
    friends”

    Dan was getting into his stride; these guys were
    obviously intelligence agents of some category,
    supposed to know everything, yet they seemed
    unaware that the Tribune was a paper hostile to
    them; probably their reading, nowadays, consisted
    of scads of surveillance reports; straws in the wind;
    and teacups.

    “And...did you learn anything interesting, Mr Conway,
    may I ask?”

    Dan leaned forward, and assumed his most earnest
    expression - this was his chance to spread a little
    fear, take a little sizzle out of these armchair
    warriors, maybe have them warn their masters
    against bucking Adolf Hitler...every little bit of
    propaganda counts, he told himself “I’ll say!...
    fellers, you shouldn’t even think about tangling
    with these guys... I tell you, they’re loaded
    for bear!...they ‘re building fifty-seven U-boats
    already, would you believe?”

    One of the hitherto silent figures scoffed “Oh, come
    on, man!...they're bound to tell you that,,,trying to
    frighten you Americans from helping us”

    “On the contrary, Sir...” drawled Dan “ ..the
    Ambassador stonewalled like crazy...denied any
    German intent to re-arm, and how they wanted
    peace with the English, all that malarkey”

    “Then what makes you say...?” the speaker was
    treading on eggs, again, nobody wanted to turn off
    this fount of information.

    Dan winked. He was enjoying himself, immensely
    “Ve haff ways...” he mimicked, in a passable
    German accent “...Seriously though, Guys...those
    Krauts...” he used the derogatory term, intentionally,
    trying to create the impression of an ally “...They’re
    supposed to be so efficient and organized...why they leave
    their confidential and secret stuff all over the place...”

    “Sounds like our security...” murmured one of the
    figures, unhappily.

    “ Shut up, Dickie...!” the leader spoke sharply
    “Go on, Mr Conway”

    “Well whaddya know...” said the reporter, looking
    sly, and laying a forefinger alongside his nose “Once,
    I got outside the Embassy, I happened to find an
    official report about those U-boats in my very pocket."

    He went on " I don’t know the gist of it, as I don’t speak
    German, but I know ‘Unterseebooten’ means U-boats,
    and I can read figures, as well as the next guy...gotta be the
    real McCoy, right?... "

    Dan paused for effect "... and what does ' ‘Geheimsten’ mean
    mean, stamped in red at the top of the document,
    any of you guys know?” He asked innocently, one
    had to give these losers some opportunity
    to show off their book-learning.

    “Most secret!” one of them exclaimed.

    “So there you go...” Dan acted triumphant “...I got
    me a scoop”

    The leader was suspicious “But lax as you say they
    are Mr Conway...” (“Oh-oh...” thought Conway “...
    They’re beginning to spot holes in my story”)...surely
    they would miss so important a document, in time,
    and lay it down to you?”

    The American shook his head, confidently “Not a
    chance...that paper was just one of a pile of copies...
    that report was duplicated; triplicated; multicated,
    all six ways to Sunday; I just slipped one off the top..
    .I coulda had my pick...that secretary’s desk was a
    mess. I'll tell you...strewn with piles of papers similarly
    stamped with that ‘Geheimsten’ word"

    The leader was showing a bit of moxie, now “Sounds
    like a trap to me...perhaps Jerry was bluffing you
    ...or you’re bluffing us, Mr Conway?"

    Mr Conway gave him the wide-eyed look “Now why
    would I blow smoke up your asses?...like I said,
    we Yanks are the good guys ...on your side"

    He thought it was time to turn suspicion aside;
    show a little bluster; substitute attack for defence;
    throw a little panic into the ranks “Okay, say that
    me and the Germans are colluding, to give me a story,
    say that my editor shares your opinion that I’m dealin’ from
    the bottom of the deck, an’ he spikes my story...
    what do I care?...I got me another scoop, that’ll
    stand up - how an American journalist was
    kidnapped by British intelligence officers!”

    “I wouldn’t do that if I were you, Mr Conway” the
    leader’s voice was chilled steel. Dan dismissed his
    menacing tone as the man having read too many
    John Buchan spy yarns.

    He stood up, and stretched “Why wouldn’t I?...I
    haven’t heard word one about any of this being off
    the record”

    “You’re hearing it now, Conway” put in the man
    addressed as Dickie “We have ways, too, you know”

    For the first time, the reporter felt a stab of fear...
    had he gone too far?...had he underestimated the
    ruthlessness of these men?

    “If that means you’re thinking of knocking me off, go
    ahead ...only remember...” he said, throwing in a
    little rah-rah “Just like old Adolf, you don’t know
    what you started, once you go down that road...an
    American journalist disappears, after depositing
    highly secret info with his Embassy, then you
    Brits go knockin’ at their door, asking for a squint
    at it...the Marines are gonna start asking how come
    you fellers know about it...”

    “Your Embassy has that document?” asked the
    leader, sharply.

    Dan nodded “Tucked away in the Embassy safe, right
    now...”

    “But you said it was for your paper”

    “And so it is..." and here, Dan tried not to sound too
    Hollywood heroic “...but, I am a true blue American
    after all, my country right or wrong, blah, blah, so
    my first duty is to hand it to our top people to vet it
    first...then, depending on their say-so we publish it
    over there, or the story gets spiked...”

    He played another card “I know that you English
    have a reputation for eccentricity, but don’t
    you think that killin’ the golden goose is just a bit
    too barmy?”

    The leader frowned “How do you mean?”

    “I mean I’ve got an in with the Germans...they want
    to impress on this influential reporter what good
    friends, but nasty enemies they would make, and
    why we Americans - and you Brits - should not
    interfere with their -ah- just claims"

    He went on reasonably “You see how I opened up to
    you, right away, even though you just kidnapped me?
    I treated you like an ally...don’t you realize how
    much good stuff I can bring out from that Embassy
    to share with you guys and my own, like I have with
    the U-boats?"

    Still dazzled by the light in his eyes, he yet sensed
    their uncertainty...they still didn’t trust him not to
    publish an account of their abduction, but
    cold-blooded murder? Would he live to play
    in Saturday’s game?
    (To be continued)
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  9. #39
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    Question Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Obviously, somebody geeky is manipulating these viewing figures,
    not only for “Spikes”, but for my “Odyssey” stories, also.

    However the perp has overplayed his hand, ; excellent though these stories
    be (smirk), in a cloistered forum like this, audiences increase gradually,
    over time, not go viral overnight...makes one wonder, though, doesn’t it?

    When it’s this easy to manipulate viewing numbers, how many of the claims
    out there in cyberspace that a particular link, or video has “gone viral”.
    are based on numbers that have been boosted like this, only maniifold,
    for profit or political reasons?

    At least I can be assured of one more definite reader besides Granmaw;
    Mom; Wifey; Sis; Petrel; and me....the perp, himself, must have hit
    on my various yarns. (Another smirk)
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Victoria B.C. Canada
    Posts
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Part of another email, sent by a member of my extended family, hence I felt that I could rebuke her with my snide comparison of feline and human demises.

    " I would just comment on the part of your story where the cats
    were drowned. I wondered if you sent that bit to me to see my reactions? I
    thought it was very cruel and unpleasant - how much in the telling, does it
    tell me about your character? It seemed like a mischievous child doing
    something unpleasant to see the reactions of a little girl!"

    My reply to her:

    I sent you that piece purely to remind you of 1938...no sinister motive behind it.

    Perhaps I lacked sensitivity by including that account, and even more so with the
    retelling of the death of George's brother, which, of course, was even more tragic than
    the drowning of the kittens.

    I apologize for causing you distress, and promise that I'll send you no more strong meat
    from "Spikes" saving it, strictly, for Members of the baseball forum.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  11. #41
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    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    " Cons galore" (continued)

    30th April 1938
    Tired; dusty of throat; and a little disgruntled by
    the loss to Paddington, Dan made his way later that
    evening to the ‘Coach and Horses’ to get outside a
    nice foaming pint of best bitter, and couple of tasty rolls.

    On a whim, he decided to visit the Public bar on this
    occasion, to get some input from the lower orders of
    British society; in truth, he was a little tired of the
    pretensions that he encountered in the more elegant
    Saloon bar, the loud, ill-informed opinions, after a beer
    or two, uttered by those men who aspired to the English
    (the Celts didn’t bother with class-distinction, so much)
    middle class, the clerks; civil servants; shopkeepers;
    lower - ranked military and police officers; and
    people of the ilk of the trio who had abducted him,
    days before. as well of the subservience of their
    well-groomed, attractive women, who looked
    intelligent enough,to know better, but appeared to
    hang upon their escort’s every banal observation,
    bandied-about cliche’, and misquoted utterances
    from their favourite newspaper; radio broadcast;
    or superior in the social pecking-order in British
    society.

    Yes, England in 1938 was certainly a man’s
    world, he reflected, as he ordered his usual best bitter
    and crusty rolls, from the landlord of the pub.

    His unexpected appearance in the Public bar, had
    momentarily thrown Scotty Sheridan off balance.

    She had purposely been installed in the Saloon bar,
    earlier in the week at the behest of her boss,
    Major Graham Hodder the leader of the Special
    Unit which had kidnapped Dan Conway during the week.

    Her orders were to get close and personal to the
    American reporter, and find out what he was
    really up to.

    Since she was young; pretty; all there, and well arranged,
    plus gifted with a creamy English accent - despite
    being a Scot - and a beguiling manner, she was
    deemed capable of ensnaring a lonely man - the
    Unit had checked on his present romantic status,
    discovering his betrothal to a woman back in the
    United States- a susceptible young American, who
    was assumed to have all his hormones, intact, and raging.

    The landlord of the “Coach and Horses" had been
    coerced into ‘employing’ her for a limited time,
    by means of an overbearing Major Hodder in full,
    intimidating military regalia, armed with a Special
    Order from the Ministry of National Defence, and a
    wad of pound notes from the Unit’s petty cash for
    his trouble.

    Which proved to be no trouble at all, for Scotty
    was as bright as she was beguiling, and he regretted
    that she was such a quick study at tapping a keg;
    drawing a pint; measuring a short; and uncapping
    a bottle, for he found her an entrancing
    trainee, and a definite earner for his pub- as he coarsely
    confided to his potman - once the clientele got a
    butchers 'ook at those tits; them legs; that smile.

    At the Unit’s request, he employed her in the 'Coach’s
    Saloon bar, where Conway was expected to show up,
    eventually.

    Dan was not a regular habitue’ of the pub, sometimes
    gathering his impressions of the British public in
    other venues such as cafes; shops; even the Snack
    Bar of his own National Liberal Club. any place where
    people talked, more or less freely, where he listened
    in, covertly, his unusually keen hearing, standing him
    in good stead.

    Scotty had put in a couple of nights in the Saloon bar,
    already, waiting for Conway to show, and would have
    missed him altogether on this busy Saturday night -
    rendered even busier by her presence - if the landlord,
    ever ready to chat her, once he could escape the eagle-eye
    of his wife, who also served in the Saloon bar, sidled
    up to her, remarking “That Yank don’t know what
    he’s missin’ - fancy him switchin’ to the Public of all
    times...he sees you, he’s gonna be over the bar, his
    tongue hangin’ out...they’re all sex -mad” he mumbled vaguely,
    as he encountered his wife’s frosty gaze, which blew
    him back to his usual place at the Public bar.

    From this brief encounter, Scotty was quick to learn
    that her quarry was elsewhere; neither the landlord
    or his wife knew of her mission, simply that she was
    there and her word was law, which she never laid
    down, until tonight.

    On learning of Dan’s presence in the other bar, she
    increased her already productive tempo, even more deftly
    drawing pints; opening bottles; measuring the hard
    stuff; cutting short the repartee with the ogling
    males; until everyone was served; much alcohol
    consumed, the influx of patrons lessened; the rate
    of drinking, slowed.

    A lull thereby occurring, she turned to the landlord’s
    wife. “Can you cope for a bit, Missus...?” she asked
    that lady “...I’m expecting my boss to show up in
    the Public sometime, tonight...he has some special
    orders for me”

    Mrs Ward was impressed with the girl as was her husband,
    though in a totally different way. Scotty was quick;
    professional; didn't tipple, didn't even smoke, and altogether classy

    Neither did she come the old acid, but left no doubt that she was in charge
    ...her wish, in short, was Mrs Ward’s command.

    “Of course, Dear...you deserve a break...you’ve worked
    like a good ‘un...I can manage here till closing, I reckon”

    “Oh, I’ll be back before then” promised Scotty, as
    she entered the passage way. The landlord and his
    male helper were both busy in the Public bar, as she
    entered, the mainly male customers tended to drink
    faster, besides,the servers, themselves, were slowed
    somewhat, by the drinks that were bought for them,
    it being customary for a patron, even in these hard times,
    to invite the server to “ 'ave one for yourself” when giving
    his first order of the day, that server later saluting the
    gratuity dispenser with a freshly -opened bottle of
    cheap ale, from which the server took quick sips,thereafter.

    Mr Ward, although busy, was delighted to see her, and would
    have fallen to flirting, had she not briskly cut him off with
    “Thought I might help out by picking up a few glasses”

    Before he could point out that he employed a potman
    to do just that, she marched out into the crowded bar.

    Ah, there he was, sitting in the corner, reading a paper.
    dhe recognized Dan Conway at once, having studied his
    photographs, almost as often as they had been secretly
    taken by the Surveillance Unit which worked hand
    in glove with her own team.

    She had liked the pictures of this American - young; good-
    looking; smart; by all accounts, a formidable man,
    as Jock; Dickie; and the Major had briefed her -
    - and the real thing looked even more gorgeous...
    she looked forward to this assignment.

    She plucked up a couple of empty glasses, as she swept
    by the crowded tables. ignoring the beery but good -natured
    “‘Allo, Darlin’” s; “ You takin’ me 'ome ternight, Love?”s
    and aborted wolf-whistles (you try that after a few beers!),
    as she headed straight for her quarry.

    He knew that she was coming, Scotty, trained in such
    techniques, herself, could tell...his newspaper was
    just a front, while his eyes and ears were observing
    all around him. She paused at his table, picked up
    the empty plate where a few crumbs remained of the
    repast.

    “What, the Saloon bar not good enough for you,
    tonight?” she asked him. He looked up, pretending to be startled

    “I’ve never seen you there...” he replied quickly
    falling into the flirtatious mode that most men did
    when confronted with Scotty’s charms “...I surely
    would have remembered you!”

    She smiled, and quickly improvised “I’ve just started
    with the pub...worked the first two nights in here,
    then, tonight, was promoted to the Saloon bar...I
    must be doing something right...an American, aren’t you?”

    He nodded “Then you really ought to come round and
    see us sometime...” she suggested, paraphrasing the
    famous sexy Mae West line “...and tell us all about
    yourself...fascinating country” She drifted away,
    her work of seduction continuing, as she rolled her
    hips.

    “Poetry in motion...” thought Dan, immediately attracted

    He was never surprised by English women hitting on
    him. That American accent glamourized in so many
    movies, and encountered so seldom in the drab daily
    round of life over here, was an open sesame to the
    glories of British womanhood.

    He had never cashed in on his natural charm
    for the Brit girls...he was too enamoured of his Mary
    back home...but tonight, he was tempted by this honey
    of a barmaid, who had done everything short of
    presenting him with a written invitation.

    The spell was broken when an inebriated patron,
    slumming tonight in the Public bar, his usual lady
    companion in the Saloon bar having thrown him over
    (for his making advances to Scotty, there, as it happened)
    recognized the girl as she glided by, yelled “Hey, Scotty”

    She turned and and gave a dainty little wave at the
    man in acknowledgment, and, suddenly, everything
    fell into place for Conway.

    She was a Mata Hari...those guys who had given him a hard
    time during the week...his keen ears had picked up
    the name “Scotty” from that loudmouth Dickie, who had later
    mentioned “ton of bricks” , which Dan knew was English for
    infatuation.

    So this vision was meant to be foisted on him by those
    Brit secret agents whoever they were, for whatever reason

    Very well - two could play at that game...and with a playmate
    like the celestial Scotty- why, that was almost as good as playing ball.
    To be continued)
    Last edited by Rongar; 03-20-2015 at 02:10 PM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Victoria B.C. Canada
    Posts
    16,821

    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    A Dan Conway game
    Code:
    	
    
    Paddington Star Blazers (11-12) at Embassy Marines (17-6)
    
    April 30, 1938
      	1 	2 	3 	4 	5 	6 	7 	8 	9 	R 	H 	E
    Blazers 4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	5 	9 	1
    Marines 2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	2 	4 	0
    	
    
    Star Blazers 	AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    Brian Challinor CF 	4 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.297
    Greg Broderick 2B 	4 	1 	0 	1 	1 	1 	0 	0 	.243
    Chris Mohon 3B 	3 	0 	1 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.225
    Ed Fox SS 	4 	3 	0 	1 	0 	1 	1 	0 	.372
    John Moran LF 	4 	2 	0 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	.270
    Noah Decker 1B 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.275
    Norman Burkatov RF 	4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	2 	0 	0 	.420
    Samuel Wrentham C 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.232
    John Woelfel P 	3 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.133
    Totals 	34 	9 	1 	5 	1 	5 	3 	0 	 
    
    2B: Brian Challinor (8)
    HR: Greg Broderick (1)
    GDP: Noah Decker
    CS: John Woelfel
    
    E: Ed Fox
    	
    Marines 	        AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    Dan Conway C     	3 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.318
    PFC R Holliday 3B 	3 	0 	1 	1 	0 	0 	2 	1 	.344
    LT A Krajewski 2B 	4 	1 	0 	1 	1 	2 	1 	0 	.353
    PFC J Everhart LF 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.196
    CPL B Ellsworth 1B     	4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.308
    C Ruskin SS 	        4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.289
    B Verreault RF    	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.200
    S-SGTD Bennett CF 	3 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.317
    PFC B Hamnett P 	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.077
    PFC J Diggs P 	        0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    Totals        	      31 	4 	2 	2 	1 	2 	6 	1 	 
    
    2B: CPL Brian Ellsworth (4)
    HR: LT Avery Krajewski (1)
    
    DP: Dan Conway, CPL Brian Ellsworth, PFC Ryan Holliday, LT Avery Krajewski
    
    Star Blazers 	IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    John Woelfel 	9.0 	4 	2 	1 	2 	2 	6 	121 	3.45
    Totals 	9.0 	4 	2 	1 	2 	2 	6 	121 	 
    	
    Marines      	IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    PFC B Hamnett 	8.0 	9 	1 	1 	5 	5 	3 	98 	2.77
    PFCJustin Diggs1.0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	7 	0.00
    Totals 	        9.0 	9 	1 	1 	5 	5 	3 	105 	 
    
    WP: John Woelfel (4-1)
    LP: PFC Brian Hamnett (3-2)
    	
    Temperature: 48F
    Wind: 8 MPH (right to left)
    Attendance: N/A
    Time: 2:13
    Last edited by Rongar; 03-20-2015 at 02:00 PM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  13. #43
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Victoria B.C. Canada
    Posts
    16,821

    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    George learned early that he could make people laugh

    His first audiences were mere babies, like little Billy Tarreg,
    easy to amuse, one just had to play peep-bo with them,
    surprising them by disappearing from their view, as they
    lay in their cots, and re-appearing in an unexpected area of their
    vision.

    Or one could play “This little piggy went to market”
    with the babe’s toes, but George regarded this as cheating
    rather, since it smacked of tickling which could make
    anyone laugh, besides his mother had warned him about
    the dangers of over-stimulating one so young by tickling.

    He could get in a bit more sophisticated comedy with
    three-year old Audrey by means of the “Two little dicky
    birds sitting on a wall” trick. She had yet to puzzle out
    how he could apparently make both “birds” - bits of
    paper stuck to the forefinger of each hand - fly, and
    return.

    George promised himself that when she eventually
    discovered the trick - substituting a bare third finger
    for the papered forefinger to make the “bird” disappear
    - and reversing the process, to bring it back - he would
    graduate to showing her the two card tricks which
    he knew; meanwhile, when she grew fretful at being
    bamboozled by the birds, he showed her a game in
    which she could participate.

    “Codem” a game that contestants played by guessing
    in which hand the opponent held the coin- a farthing,
    being the smallest coin of the realm as well as that of
    the least value, being worth but a quarter of a penny.

    If the contestant guessed right, it was his or her turn
    to hide the coin, in either hand...there was no scoring,
    Audrey being unable to count yet, the game being
    meant merely as a diversion to entertain her, which
    it did for a long time, she enjoying sheer possession
    of the coin for long periods, George, being easily able
    to ascertain, in which of her chubby little fists she
    inexpertly concealed the farthing, so he, chivalrously,
    chose the other .

    When they first started playing, George, for a lark,
    concealed farthings in each of his hands, so that
    when Audrey prodded one closed fist to indicate her
    choice, he’d open the other to show how wrong she
    was; in her tender innocence, it didn’t occur to her
    to demand that he open the other fist, but at length
    he took pity on her frustration at not being able to
    guess right, and let her into the secret, thereafter,
    playing the game fairly with her, indeed more than
    fairly, since he started “guessing” wrongly, on
    purpose, to allow his little sister to retain possession,
    which she hugely enjoyed, three-year-olds being so
    easy to please.

    Whenever anyone saw them playing together, they
    marveled at the boy’s patience, in entertaining his
    sibling who offered no competition at all, but George
    would have told them that the enjoyment of the 'opponent’
    was shared by him, also. The high point of the game of Codem
    occurred for him, one day when a confident Audrey
    slyly played the ‘coin in each hand’ trick on him...
    a sign that she was fast losing her innocence, and
    growing up.

    Perhaps he wasn’t so happy about other things that
    made people laugh at him; he, being on the anemic
    side, was once taken by his concerned mother to a
    doctor who recommended a course of malt, a lovely
    sweet caramel-like substance, beloved of kids, in
    which was concealed nasty medicines like cod-liver
    oil, and iron supplements, normally unpalatable to
    children, but cheerfully ingested when flavoured
    with the toffee-like malt.

    When George returned home and gleefully announced
    to elder brother Ross “I gotta have malt 'cos it’s got tin in it!”
    the family around, roared with laughter.

    Another time, when out with his mother and elder
    brother, he was playing some childish game of walking
    with one foot on the pavement, and one in the gutter,
    when, predictably, he fell and banged his side; he hadn’t
    much tolerance for pain at age seven, and when his
    brother, Ross, picked him up, George caused much merriment
    amongst his elders by groaning “Ooh...I’ve fractured me ribs!”

    He was to commit his most embarrassing errors,
    later on in his time at school, before co-ed classes
    of forty, or more, pupils.

    In response to a teacher’s question of “What are our
    senses?” George proudly rattled off “1st Sense; 2nd Sense;
    3rd Sense; 4th Sense; 5th Sense; and Sixth Sense!”
    and could not fathom why the teacher would comment
    that she must send that answer in to “Teachers World”
    magazine.

    Another time he was a member of a debating team in
    class, when in dismissing somebody else’s point of
    view, he described it as being “unre-elastic” having
    misread the word in the early stages of his literacy.

    Mistaking the class’s laughter as approval of his rebuttal
    of the opposing team’s case, he repeated the word,
    when he sought to drive home the point in overkill,
    and was suitably punished for his egocentricity,
    by having the teacher, and pupils chanting, together “It’s 'realistic’,
    Tarreg!”

    But his most salutary experience of childish stand-up comedy
    came when the family, later in the year moved from the shop
    in Mayfair, to a housing estate in Brixton, a changeover that
    to a New Yorker, say, would be similar to exchanging a Manhattan
    boutique, for a tenement in the Bronx.

    Exploring within this new estate was a dangerous enterprise,
    as young George, discovered, one wintry evening, when he
    decided to go visit the four-storey housing block, named
    “Ben Jonson” to see how it compared to his own “Chaucer”
    house, of similar design.

    What he didn’t know was that the younger male tenants
    of the House had formed a gang named after the literary
    giant, whom they must have mistaken for some outlaw of yore
    - young British males of that time, were very militant,
    it was a feature of schoolday life, for example, that entire
    ranks of boys would march around the school yard during
    recess, chanting “We want war...we want war” seeking
    a fight with a similar mob; this usually proved a futile quest,
    they, themselves, having scooped up all the doughtiest
    warriors available in the yard!

    Whether or not the “Ben Jonson” gangsters were doughty,
    there were four of them, all older and bigger than George,
    and they demanded to know what the intruder was doing
    on their “turf”...when he meekly replied that he was
    “just lookin’ “, they began to threaten him. and taunt him.

    On the principle that the soft answer turneth away wrath
    he began to play up to their insults, mugging like an
    ‘idiot’ ; capering like a ‘clown’ ; excelling at playing
    the shrinking “Cowardy, cowardy, custard” to the hilt,
    and his tormentors’ infinite amusement.

    In the end, beguiled into mellow mood, by his comic
    performance, they let him depart the stage, with a
    stern warning that he darken the portals of “Ben Jonson”
    house, no more, which was rather counter-productive
    of them, in view of the fact that they’d enjoyed this
    particular visit of his, so much.

    George returned. thankfully, back to his own House,
    which, as far as he knew, had no regular gang of its
    own, though the Milldun boys next door, and even
    more so, the Sewell gaggle of girls on the other side
    of the Tarreg apartment, Mary, 11; Judy 9; and
    Rosemary7; looked likely gangster material.

    Not that George had any notion of joining such a gang ,
    who perhaps, would march, mob-handed, over to “Ben Jonson”
    house, and give the local denizens what-for; he had
    felt degraded by his own comic performance,
    successful as it had been, but he had learned one
    valuable lesson which he would apply through life-
    that self-deprecating subtlety suited him better than
    buffoonery, the smartest thing that he had said
    during that whole ordeal, the only laugh that he
    really appreciated gaining from his jeering
    audience, was when the bullies, on learning his
    name by coercion proceeded to chant, in unison
    “Georgie Porgie, Pudden an’ pie - kissed the girls
    and made them cry...” he, swiftly mugging a
    satisfied lover, added “...for more!”, which
    broke them up, and made him realize, that
    this was the sort of humour that he wanted
    to dispense from then on.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  14. #44
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Victoria B.C. Canada
    Posts
    16,821

    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    Inspired by the attendance at the game of his driving instructor - and current girl-friend, Rose Brownhill - Ross Tarreg struck out ten batters,and hit a double, scoring a run.
    Code:
    	
    
    Hudson Springers (3-4) at Orlando Idols (1-6)
    
    May 9, 1938
      	1 	2 	3 	4 	5 	6 	7 	8 	9 	R 	H 	E
    Springers 0 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	2 	8 	1
    Idols 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	6 	0
    	
    
    Springers   	AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    B Schuster SS 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.111
    I Goodman LF 	4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	0 	.174
    A Parko CF 	4 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.345
    M Livingston C 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.222
    Z Bonura* 1B 	3 	1 	1 	0 	0 	1 	1 	0 	.182
    F Secory RF 	4 	2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.222
    S Martin 2B 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.240
    J Foxx 3B 	3 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.571
    Ross Tarreg P 	2 	1 	0 	1 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.200
    G Mancuso* PH 	1 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.500
    R Harrell* P 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.000
    Totals 	      33 	8 	1 	2 	0 	2 	2 	0 	 
    
    2B: Andy Parko (1), Ross Tarreg (1)
    CS: Ival Goodman
    
    E: Jimmie Foxx
    	
    Idols 	AB 	H 	BB 	R 	HR 	RBI 	K 	SB 	AVG
    Bryan Zimmerman CF 	4 	0 	1 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.212
    Bruce Tracy 2B 	4 	2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.313
    Mike Edgar LF 	4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	2 	0 	.379
    Kevin Bland RF 	4 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	1 	0 	.250
    Kevin Drewry SS 	2 	1 	0 	1 	1 	1 	0 	0 	.280
    James West 1B 	1 	0 	2 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.296
    Jon Bonney 3B 	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.185
    Brian Hamer C 	4 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	3 	0 	.167
    Scott Johnston P 	3 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	3 	0 	.000
      Tom McErracher PH 	1 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	0 	.667
    Totals 	30 	6 	3 	1 	1 	1 	10 	0 	 
    
    2B: Bruce Tracy (3), Tom McErracher (2)
    HR: Kevin Drewry (2)
    HBP: James West, Kevin Drewry
    CS: Kevin Drewry
    
    
    Springers 	    IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    Ross Tarreg 	7.0 	3 	2 	1 	1 	1 	10 	96 	2.01
    Ray Harrell* 	2.0 	3 	1 	0 	0 	0 	0 	31 	3.60
    Totals 	        9.0 	6 	3 	1 	1 	1 	10 	127 	 
    	
    Idols  	        IP 	H 	BB 	HR 	R 	ER 	K 	PIT 	ERA
    S Johnston 	9.0 	8 	1 	0 	2 	2 	2 	107 	1.69
    Totals 	        9.0 	8 	1 	0 	2 	2 	2 	107 	 
    
    WP: Ray Harrell* (1-0)
    LP: Scott Johnston (0-1)
    	
    Temperature: 85F
    Wind: 4 MPH (left to right)
    Attendance: 4,283 plus Rose Brownhill.
    Time: 2:14
    Last edited by Rongar; 01-23-2013 at 06:31 AM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

  15. #45
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Victoria B.C. Canada
    Posts
    16,821

    Re: "SPIKES" ...on their combat boots...

    May 1938

    Ross was paying his fair share towards the upkeep and
    gasoline for Charley Whittaker’s old Ford, but his
    team-mate wasn’t satisfied

    “Seems to me, I’m your goddam chauffeur these days,
    Boy...” the veteran pitcher growled “Whyn’t ya learn to drive?...I’ll
    teach ya”

    “Learn to drive like you...?” demanded Ross, affecting incredulity
    “...In your old crate? ...not bloody likely, Mate!”

    He reflected awhile before remarking “Good idea, though, Chas...
    if only to get me out of this danger area -your bloomin’
    passenger seat!” he assured his grinning friend.

    After that, Ross went looking for a driving-school ...
    he didn’t have to go far; one fine Spring morning,
    he decided on a conditioning run around the Hudson
    Springs mobile- home park, itself.

    It wasn’t that big a park, covering less than an acre,
    he estimated but it sprawled over a bridge, which forded
    the Spring, itself, edged a wood on one side, and ran
    along a golf-course on the other.

    As he puffed his way past one dwelling, he noticed a
    sign reading “Rose’s Driving School”, he stopped as
    much for want of breath, as interest; an instructor
    who was probably a woman, or Jewish?...either was an
    intriguing possibility to Ross.

    He was a positive kind of racist in that he considered a Jew, at his
    best, to have talents beyond that of any other breed, and
    he wondered if that was why the world had kicked
    the descendant of Abraham and his brethren, around, so
    much over the centuries - sheer jealousy, perhaps?

    As for women, why they intrigued Ross because they
    were so- different from men.

    He knocked on the door “Come in” sang out a young
    female voice - first question answered ...no it wasn’t,
    he corrected himself, as he entered, and saw the
    owner of the voice - this must be the daughter,
    scarcely older than his own 18 years.

    “Good morning” he said. Ross liked what he saw; she
    wasn’t bad-looking at all. He always considered
    himself a hair kind of bloke; he remembered that
    smashing poem of Shakespeare’s that spoke of a
    lover writing ballads “to his mistress’ eyebrow"
    http://www.nexuslearning.net/books/h...20of%20Man.htm

    Ross figured that he, himself, could compose one
    such, to a particularly fetching wig. This daughter
    had big hair...sun-bleached lots of it, done up in a pony-
    tail, a hair-style that he’d always considered most
    feminine.

    “Um...I’m looking for someone called Rose” he said
    thinking that Rose pater or mater must be out on a
    lesson or something.

    “I’m she “ the girl said brightly.

    She certainly sounded educated. He’d only heard
    such correct introductory grammar on the really
    toniest radio soap-operas, never in real life.

    Ross didn’t mean to be rude, but it slipped out “ Are
    you old enough to be even driving a car?" He
    wasn’t sure that he, himself, was, here in America.

    Her laugh was a merry tinkle “In this State it’s
    eighteen- I’m an old hag of twenty-one...what can I
    do for you?"

    “Well ...” he looked at her, doubtfully “...I’m thinkin’
    of learning to drive...”

    “Then you’ve come to the right place...” she broke
    in “...Take the Rose Brownhill four-hour course, and you’ll be driving
    like Sir Malcolm Campbell...you’re English, too,
    aren’t you?...I love that accent...where are you from?”

    “I was born in London...” he began when she interrupted
    him, again “Hey, I know you...! you’re that new
    pitcher for the Springers, right...?” a grin spread
    across her freckles, as she asked, mischievously
    “ ...your name’s Toerag, or something”

    He aimed a mock punch at her as he grinned back
    “That’s Tarreg, if you please, Miss Anthill

    They both laughed comfortably, together...good
    driver or not, Ross really liked this girl “You follow
    baseball then..?” he asked.

    She nodded “‘Specially the Springers...they’re not
    that good...” she sighed “...but they’re the only game
    in town” She looked at him “I hear that you’re
    pretty hot stuff, though ”

    He grimaced “I didn’t do so well, m’ last outing”

    She nodded, sympathetically “Well, to be expected,
    wasn’t it?...short rest and all...it was in the St Pete’s
    Times”

    “You go to see us, at all?”

    “When I can afford it..." Rose shrugged
    "... fifty cents for your cheapest
    seats is a bit rich for my blood...business isn’t
    exactly booming for me, right now...everybody and
    his grandmother, down here in Florida, already
    seems able to drive, these days...how come you can’t,
    yet?...what’re you- eighteen?...some kids here, start
    at puberty”

    He shook his head “We aren’t so car-minded in
    England...bikes, buses, and in London, the Tube -
    subway” he added, seeing her puzzled look.

    “So you gonna let me teach you?...” she asked,
    remembering her sales pitch “...a dollar an hour,
    that, and studying the Florida State manual at
    home, you should be proficient enough to apply
    for your learner’s permit after four sessions
    with me...what say?”

    He looked from her to the various motoring plaques
    and certificates which adorned the mobile’s walls.

    “What sort of car have you got” he asked

    She indicated that he look out of the back window
    of the mobile.

    Ross caught his breath “Crikey!...that’s a bramah...
    musta cost a bomb!” He turned to her “Thought
    you said you were hard -up?”

    She shook her head “ No, just that my business was bad
    ...I have backup...the family’s loaded...we’re Florida crackers, you see”

    “That’s good...? “ he queried “...back home, crackers means that you’re off your trolley”

    She laughed “Here, it’s sort of special - like a rancher
    in Canada...or landed gentry in England...or the laird in
    Scotland...we made our money, way back, in cattle”

    “So, why d’ya go into this business?” he asked with
    a nod toward the car “ ‘ Cos I’d make a lousy
    cowhand...” she laughed “...but I do like cars - and
    baseball, in equal measure”

    She joined him at the window...he caught a faint whiff
    of her light, pleasant perfume “So...what do you think
    Mr Tarreg...?" she asked him "... yonder is a
    1938 Packard 12 bought and paid for by my proud Daddio
    for his darlin’ daughter’s twenty-first birthday, also to celebrate
    her garnering all this driving- instructor accreditation”
    jerking a thumb back at all the testimonials, lining the walls
    of the mobile home

    “Don’t know much about cars, but that looks some
    job..." Ross shook his head, doubtfully “I doubt if
    I’ve got the bottle for it ...dunno one end of a
    steering -wheel from the other”

    She smiled at his joke “ Ah, you’ll learn, soon enough
    ...you’ll be in good hands...what with my instruction
    and the Packard...lovely car...once you drive that,
    you can drive anything..., hey, once you drive that,
    you won’t want to drive
    anything else!”

    He, already, didn’t want to drive with anyone else,
    but her...already there was chemistry between them.
    .. ever the romantic, he envisioned Ross and Rose, together
    - blimey, what a beautiful pair, they'd make...but still, he didn’t
    want to rush into anything “What about...” he
    began “ ...I sign up for your course, in exchange, I
    get you a ticket to see our next game at the stadium?”

    He had read her aright “It’s a deal!” she exclaimed.

    They shook hands on it - a handshake that lasted for a very
    long time....after all, it was Spring...the season for
    young love to blossom.
    Last edited by Rongar; 03-05-2015 at 12:25 PM.
    "Whate'er should be our Zodiac's star
    We all are born to make or mar.
    To each is gi'en a bag of tools
    Some mentors, and a set of rules:
    And each must carve, ere life has flown,
    A stumbling block, or a stepping-stone"

    (Author unknown)

    Generation 35.

    "Spikes" The cleats on baseball boots
    "Spikes" On which newspaper editors impale copy for future reference, or ultimate destruction.

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