October 16, 2021: OKTOBERFEST

Octoberfest at the American Legion turned out to be different in many ways from what I expected. It started around 6:00 pm. Five people attended; four Tall Club members, Jean and Pat C., Milanne B., and myself were joined by Tall Club Wanna-be Dave S. 

By the time we arrived, Jean and Pat were holding our chairs because the place was packed to overflowing! Over 300 people, many of them NOT Tall Club members! The line for food and another line for beer was out the door! So after waiting in line for over 20 minutes we finally loaded up on Oktoberfest beer. I have never seen a crowd like that at my American Legion! We saw our old buddy Kathy there with her husband Ron. Finally, we got our allotment of Oktoberfest “grub.” Which was surprisingly tasty. 

That’s when Elvis started singing; the impersonator was talented. I haven’t heard many of his songs in over 25 years (26 actually). Dave said if he wore an outfit like that Elvis outfit maybe his boss would give him a raise. Unfortunately, he did NOT sing “Hound-Dog,” or “Jail House Rock,” (my all-time favorite Elvis song). 

Pat was in “dutch,” with Jean because he forgot to buy her their 27th wedding anniversary gift (I know what that feels like). So a miracle occurs when Pat wins a Raffle basket (coffee and Tiddley Winks). We told Jean that’s what the Anniversary Regulator just so happens to classify as the 27th wedding anniversary gift! I don’t think Jean was buying that, but still, it took some of the heat off Pat. 

I wore my “Honor Flight” shirt to this event which gave me special exalted privileges. Like, I didn’t have to say “excuse me,” if I sneezed. Also, it exempted me from KP duty, saluting toilets when flushing, and having to pick up discarded beer bottles and cigarette butts (which I excelled in during my former military career). I think I was the only person that missed the Polkas

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October, 9: Car Show Event in Morris, IL

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Old Johnny Boy missed this fantastic event because he was in Portland OR visiting relatives and trying to get sympathy for his injured wrist (while at the tall club we just think of him as a klutz). Four people were at this event; Milanne B.t, Dave S. (tall club wannabe), Danny (A yahoo drinking buddy of Dave’s and Tall Club Wannabe), and Yours Truly. 

Dave showed me his arm that got injured while he was playing, “Tarzan at work,” at 32 feet in the air. It’s a small bump, I told him it was about the size of “bumps,” I use to get when I was married and my Ex would bop me in the head with a frying pan for “pissing” her off about something. Dave S gave me a frozen Coors, from his minivan. You wouldn’t believe all the stuff in his minivan. Typically there’s not enough room for Milanne to sit in his minivan. Frozen Beers are always a good gag, because of all the foam that comes out. 

This was truly a gigantic car show with over 600 cars. Johnny Boy would’ve been in his element even though he’d rather go and see an expensive car show at McCormick Place, unlike that this car show, which was FREE; Parking FREE. This was the last and largest Morris Cruise Night shows in 2021, many of the streets were blocked off, Unlike McCormick Place, walking down the street (without a COVID mask), drinking a beer in public. 

September 17: Johnny’s Block Party

Apparently this is a yearly event that allows the neighborhood tyke’s to pedal their bikes and other toys up and down the street. Five people were at this event; Milanne Bancroft, Johnny Alyward (the host), Tall Club Wannabe’s Vern (Johnny’s neighbor, who complimented us on how noisy we were, he said he had to come over to see what all the racket and yelling was about), Dave Sanburn and as always Yours truly. It’s always a pleasure getting drunk on Johnny’s front lawn. There is no tacky ornamentation on Johnny’s lawn, just drunks.

Johnny had his cast on his wrist removed but he still is severely limited use on that hand. When Johnny injures himself, he doesn’t do it halfway. Imagine no longer being able to open a twist-off cap off a beer. Before his injury, Johnny could even open beer bottles using his belt buckle, which, sometimes resulted in his pants falling down! 

We were talking about reading dirty magazines during our misspent youths, which is how most of us guys learned how to read. And we learned math as well when reading about women’s measurements. Surprisingly, most of our fathers enjoyed this as well. Punishment was somewhat muted when our magazines were discovered. Our fathers had to act like they were mad and disappointed at us for looking at such vie creatures or they’d get in dutch with their wives. 

I met many of Johnny’s neighbors; younger families loaded with little tykes. The parents were always telling their children, “don’t do this, or don’t do that, or you’ll end up like Johnny.” Johnny said, “It’s like my neighborhood is being reborn, they stick the old people in nursing homes and young people replace them.” This statement was met with some trepidation on my part because when I look in the mirror and the guy looking back looks just like the other guys at the nursing home. Lots to eat, too much actually, just sniffing the pizza box is what I need to be doing, rather than actually eating anything. 

I don’t know how much longer Johnny’s boss is going to buy Johnny being an invalid. His boss is mad because it’s driving up his Workman’s Compensation costs. I also saw Dave S. with an arm injury. The ladies on the Kitty Litter Scoop production line (where Dave S works) were complaining that they couldn’t see because the lights went out. They even stuck the handles on the wrong end of the scoops because it was so dark. So Dave was on the man-lift 38 feet up in the air replacing fluorescent light bulbs. Dave said he always “sings,” when he’s changing light bulbs at ridiculous heights, otherwise he’d be scared and swearing. He was singing, “Pistol Pack’in Mama,” when an entire light fixture swung over into a huge 16 foot (in diameter) ceiling fan and that’s when he got his arm whacked. That’s when the singing stopped and swearing took over. He was still 38 feet off the floor. The ladies on the Kitty Scoop line were terrified and weren’t much help at this point, so Dave S. had to get man-lift down and stick a band-aid on his arm (a very big band-aid). Why didn’t you go to the hospital I asked Dave? “What! then my boss would figure out I didn’t follow some type of safety rule I’m supposed to know about. Plus he’s mad about his Workman’s compensation costs.” Dave also said, “Normally I like to get a little shut-eye during safety meetings anyway, if I reported this incident, imagine all the paperwork I’d have to fill out!” All these injuries, yet I (the Ace Re-porter) remain miraculously unscathed and we wonder why women live longer than men. 

 

October 17, 2021: BEARS GAME at SLICCY’S

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Eventually, seven Tall Club members and two wannabe’s showed up. Milanne B., Peggy R., Nancy C., Jean and Pat C., Johnny A., and I plus two Tall Club Wannabe’s, Dwayne and Dave S were there. It’s been a long time, thanks to COVID, since such an event has occurred. 

Chris, the owner, was elated because we’re such big tippers. Cumulatively we left over $3.12 in tips! We enjoyed buckets of beer and plenty of yelling. Dave S, who was one of the former chief singers and yeller extraordinaire, now doesn’t watch the game for entertainment purposes anymore, only for commentary purposes. He no longer lends his melodious voice to our group singing of the “Bears Fight Song.” 

As a group, we still truly do have an impact. As always, the pizza was pretty good. Dave S requested “Ghost Peppers” on the pizza, a truly Halloween-type ingredient. I think I would rather eat glass than Ghost Peppers. Nobody ordered Sliccy’s highly touted (by Milanne and Dave) squid platters. Eating something that can squirt ink at you with translucent tentacles seems to have a limited appeal for some reason, although it would make interesting Halloween fare. Other than our group, there were only four other people in the entire place, so we were free to run amok! I told what turned out to be a lame joke (surprise surprise). I need to up my joke-telling to at least where Milanne sticks her fingers in her ears. 

Johnny was last to arrive. He was upset he had to put his yacht away for another year after he and Dave S kicked out the homeless people taking refuge in Johnny’s lavish yacht. This year Johnny reused his shrink wrap from last year re-stretching it over his yacht in dry dock, thereby saving $47. 

No idea when Johnny will return to work with his bum wrist, he says “this is just like being retired. My boss keeps complaining about Workmen Comp claims for some reason.” As a group, there was also quite a bit of bragging about various grandchildren. Stuff like “my grandchild can load a diaper faster than your grandchild.” “My grandchild can cry way louder and longer than your grandchild.” “My grandchild can bite much harder than your grandchild.” I always put in earplugs when my grandchildren are coming over. I’m going to teach my grandchildren how to cheat at cards, how to smoke cigars, tell dirty jokes, and how to hide stuff. 

We didn’t have any takers for anyone taking any of Milanne’s cats, she’s thinking of giving them away at Halloween. Sticking them in the little tyke’s treat bags, instead of candy. Typically at Halloween, I stay at my daughter’s house while her family goes out “trick or treating,” handing out sugar-laden treats to the little scamps.