Friday, August 3, 2018

Catching Up While I have Down Time

Hey Gang,
Sitting here at the Jimco Vintage Rally in nearby Thompson, Ohio. What a great group of people and so relaxing. Just what I needed.

I remember Trump during his campaign kept saying you are going to be so sick of winning you're going to say stop, we can't take no more or something like that. Well in a way that's how I feel. I have been going full tilt since late winter and just needed a break from working. But please Trump, don't stop now, keep the gravy train on rolling.

Anyway lots to write about. But in typical Carey fashion I need to rewind to sometime in April. I am at this house I am rehabbing for a friend. I pull in the drive and a car quickly pulls in behind me. A tall well built male jumps out it. Before I can get out he asks do you live here, own this house? I asked are you with the Feds or police? He laughs and says no I noticed this house was empty and I am looking to rent. I invite him and his lady in to look around, next thing I know he sends his wife home and stays to help me paint. Just like that we are painting and talking about everything you are not suppose to talk about, politics, religion, Obama, Trump. By the way he is black. When done he says keep me informed I want to rent the house. No pay asked for, nothing just a handshake, he leaves. God can send angels so I guess why not painters. End of story.

Yesterday, Thursday, I had some disagreements with the person who just signed the lease for the previously mentioned house above. I thought they were going to ask out before even moving in so that unraveled me. Then I receive a text that my tenant next door to the house I just rehabbed may want out of his lease. Nice way to start a day.

So I run over to the rehab house and make straight some concerns. As I am leaving Joe, the man who helped paint drops by and says what happened, did you rent the house? I said yes, I could not reach you in fact I saved the text that was sent back in June. He didn't understand what happened but he said I see the text well I still like you and consider you a friend. He was about to leave and I said wait a minute, read this text from my tenant. Joe did and with that he said if your tenant moves I am grabbing it.

Just like that my day started horrible and turned around. Stay tuned to the conclusion if if my tenant leaves and Joe moves in.

After that I went to Josh's Meats on the corner of Lakeshore Blvd and E 200 in Euclid. Since my new diet I wanted to stock up on meats. Um diet? Yeah ask me sometime. I joked around with Josh the owner when I saw his ground meat almost in the shape of donuts. I asked is that a meat donut? He laughed and said no it came out of the grinder like that. I ignored it and asked again more seriously, now do you powder it and fry it like a regular donut.. He then caught on and asked if I was a comedian. I said no but people say I make them laugh. Seeing an opening I said let me grab something to show you while you get my meats together.

I ran to my van grabbed a book and showed it to him. Josh said OK we are at $23 what about a book and 13 for the meat? So tip number 63 on how to sell a book. Go to your local butcher and while he cuts up your meat you act like a cutup.

So now the day is really going swell. With that energy I pack up the Go-Go Bus which only took me 4 hours. 4 hours?! Yes, I cannot leave on a trip with dirty dishes, an unmade bed, clothes in the hamper. Oh but this is not at home this is the rolling Purple People Greeter. Nothing worse then driving around with dirty dishes. Never know when someone wants to look in.

And now I am at the Jimco Rally. What is funny I live the closest to this event and I am always running late. I didn't arrive until almost 3 am and sure enough just like Tom Bodett at Motel 6 there was Jim with the lights on waiting for me. What hospitality, love these people!

Today Friday I tried to pretend I didn't know the area. I took a couple, Denny and Susie, from Florida and Pennsylvania to Middlefield and Mespo. Things sure have changed in Amishville, Hello Kitty is as popular as hello horsey. None of use were impressed,

Well I best get some sleep. I am excited in the morning I am going with a small group to Fairport Harbor to see a lighthouse and then Painesville, I heard there are out of town Mexicans there. Maybe I can get a photo of one. Build that taco, I mean build that wall!

Its fun being a tourist in your own hometown. You can act stupid and say hey I am not from around here.

Gotta Go-Go!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Weird connections or divine encounters

Hey Gang,
I live the most interesting life. Weird connections always occur to me or maybe they are more like divine encounters. And no I am not talking about the fly in my oatmeal.

For instance last night, no lets back track to two weeks ago, naw lets go back to last year and then talk about two weeks ago then Sunday night.

Last year at the Ashtabula cruise in at Lake Shore Park I met Jay. Won’t use his last name though he is sort of a public figure because of his YouTube postings so he may read this and say Hey you could have supplied my full name. Anyway Jay approached me as I sat inside the Go-Go Bus. We had a lengthy conversation about vans, travel and what not. After that we connected via Facebook and kept in touch sporadically through comments on our posts.

Jay is originally from Brooklyn, NY then recently moved to Youngstown, Ohio. This spring Jay lands a job in Cleveland of all places. Since he is not familiar with Cleveland he asks if I could find him a place to stay.

What are the chances of meeting someone and for them to move close to where you live? OK maybe no big deal to you but what about this one.

Two weeks ago I was watching the show the Diggers. It’s about two guys with metal detectors that search historical sites. This episode they were looking for clues of where the famous fight of the Hatfield and McCoy’s took place.

The following day a man was sitting on the front porch of the house next to my rental. He had just moved in. I introduced myself and immediately knew he was not from around here. Joe was his name. He told me he was from WV close to the Kentucky boarder. He then proceeded to say he’s a direct descendant of the Hatfield’s. His great great grandfather was Devil Anse.

Joe googled the farm and showed me the layout. I told him I know some of these stories because of the TV show I watched last night. Joe gave me plenty of tips what to see if I ever travel down there.

OK did you enjoy that one, I mean what’s the chances of watching a TV show about a family then meeting a direct descendant?

Now that brings us to Sunday night at the Madison Walmart. I always park on the opposite and of the earth when at any store with the Go-Go Bus to avoid carts and people parking close to me.

So anyway as I was leaving a man with a floppy hat, flip flops and cargo shorts passes me smiling and says Hey I like you shirt! The saying on my shirt was GOD IS NOT FINISHED WITH ME YET. I say thank you and proceed out the door.

As I walk to the parking lot I can see someone has parked right next to me. Upset I say loudly OK what the heck are we having a party or what? The car was a banged up mid 70’s Fiat drop top and in the back seat hanging over the windshield was a surf board. Are we in Ohio?

I thought since he parked so close to me I am going to shove my postcard under his wiper. As I finished doing it a man yells while running towards me Hey that’s my car! When he gets up to me he says Is that your vehicle, I parked close to you on purpose because of my older car and I am the one who just said nice shirt to you. Yes I realize that.

Scott was his name. He is from Toledo and was on his way to Montauk, NY not only to do some surfing but also to meet with someone to raise money for his ministry of helping women in the Sudan.

He then started grilling me about the Bus. So I said here take a look at these, I wrote both of these books. Scott put them under his arm. I said those are for sale can’t give them to you. OH I know I want to buy them but I am short of cash so what about going to the gas station, I will use my card to put gas in your van and I get the books. So that is what we did.

Hey I will even take bananas in exchange for a book, payment is a payment, right?

So how was that story? Someone makes a comment to me in the store and it happens to be the person who parked next to me. But the most fascinating part is Scott wants me to set up for his ministry at the Mecum Car Auction in Harrisburg, Pa. this week.
Will I go? Maybe stay tuned!

Gotta Go-Go

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Jefferson Gazette

Hey Gang,
The Jefferson Gazette did a write up about the Strawberry Festival at the Jefferson Depot.
Well they got it half right.

This is my letter to the newspaper about their mistake.

June 30, 2018
Dee Riley
The Gazette

Dear Dee Riley:

I read your article in the Wednesday, June 20, 2018 issue of The Gazette. I want to thank you for including my book signing event in your article titled Jefferson Strawberry Fest Celebrates 31st Year. However, you stated that Jefferson was mentioned in my first book titled Hey Gang! Ready to Go-Go? But Jefferson was actually covered in my second book titled Cruising Across America!

Also, you stated that I mentioned Jefferson in my work, but the reader will discover that my coverage goes far beyond a mere mention. In addition, Jean and Jim Dutton purposely had me set up first by the Depot since I wrote about the Depot and the Jefferson Christmas parade. I believe it does a disservice to not only me, but to Jefferson and the Duttons as well to underreport my coverage.

As writers we both take pride in the accuracy of our work and seek to communicate the most precise and up-to-date information to our readers. For this reason I am requesting a correction in a near future issue of The Gazette so your readers will know that Jefferson was covered in some detail in my second book, Cruising Across America. After buying a copy of Hey Gang! Ready to Go-Go? readers would be disappointed to search – but not find – a discussion of Jefferson in that book.

Again I want to thank you for your coverage of my work in your recent article regarding the Strawberry Festival. I enjoyed my book signing event in your fine community and look forward to returning often in the future.

Carey Masci,
Local Author

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Jefferson Strawberry Festival

Hey Gang!
Jefferson Village, Ohio is only a scant 45 miles from my home base in Wickliffe but it seems so much farther. That is not to be taken in a negative way. I mean it as a positive. 45 miles ain’t much but it really did seem like I traveled much further. Things are so much more laid back, at ease and should I say safe in Jefferson compared to the city. I been to Jefferson enough times I even wrote about their Christmas Parade and depot but never spent time just hanging around and getting to know people. It’s a nice place.

I decided to leave at 3 am Saturday instead of trying to wake at 8 so I could arrive by 10 to set up for the Jefferson Strawberry Festival. I got in town around 4:30 went to the police station where it just so happened a cop was in the lot by his car. I asked him where I could park for the night and he said pull back there under the trees. So that’s where I parked for two nights.

The Strawberry Festival is small but they are working on it to improve attendance and the amount of vendors.

The head of the Depot is Jean and Jim Dutton. What terrific people. I don’t think Jean would mind me telling you her age, she is 90. When you see all she has to take care of at the festival and in between she plays the piano her energy is just amazing. And her husband Jim is right alongside her bouncing around greeting people, making sure the vendors are OK and parking cars. I loved their hospitality.

Sunday there was a car show. Instead of parking with the other cars Jim wanted to park the Go-Go Bus closer to the entrance to attract people driving by. There were some really classy cars there so I was honored to park where he wanted me to.

Saturday was successful for book sales, Sunday lacked but it may have been the heat that knocked the attendance down a bit.
All in all what a great time, making new friends is always fun and selling books on top of that made it very successful.

Thanks again Jean & Jim and for the rest of you, go visit the depot, its a throwback in time and Jean and Jim can tell you the story how it all came to be.

. Gotta Go-Go!!

Friday, May 25, 2018

Three vets and my tour

OK four weeks or so later I am writing about my Sunday. I guess daily blogs should be kept up daily unlike mine where there are week long gaps between stories and then those stores are days or weeks late.

Anyway Sunday April the 22nd I was beyond wiped out. So much to do as always but I was drained. What it called for was a jump in the car for a drive. Not a long one just a drive. Ashtabula is where I headed for spaghetti. Italian + Sunday = pasta of some sort.

The place I had in mind was Tony’s Dog house on Lake Ave. As the name suggests it serves hot dogs and other quick fare. But on the weekends Romano, the owner, makes pasta with homemade sauce. Just wonderful. Ruth not wanting pasta made me go across the street to Lakeway Italian Restaurant in Ashtabula that serves mostly homemade food. It’s been there for years, though this would be my first time going there.

 I asked the waitress about the history of the place and other questions. She said you want to know anything about this area, see that gentleman over there, his name is Glenn, just ask him. So that’s what I did. I approached Glenn, asked a few questions and he took me around the restaurant explaining the old pictures of Ashtabula. We exchanged emails with plans to get together in the near future.

After my pizza I still went across the street to Tony’s Dog House for their pasta special. I couldn’t pass it up.

Anyway here is Glenn’s background which I don’t think he would mind at all. It is some resume and why I was wanted to meet up with him again.

To give you some of my background, I have been a baker working in a bakery, set up farm equipment for my father when he sold and serviced J. I. Case farm equipment, served four years in the Air Force maintaining radio ranges, marker beacons, Tacan, and insturment landing systems.
After discharge, worked in molded fiber casting for a short time, then moved on to Davidson Development Electronics, making chassis, wiring many different kinds of specialty equipment.
I have worked as a control operator making Titanium dioxide for about 32 years, and worked in their storeroom putting away parts, issuing parts, and maintaining inventory for about 5 years.
I have volunteered at the Ashtabula Maritime Museum for about 5 or 6 years and was an assistant director for about 2 of those years.
Now, have been with D-DAY, OHIO going to 6th year helping to maintain and operate one of their 2 Higgins landing craft and helping in Conneaut's D-DAY Museum.
My hobbies are woodworking and genealogy.

Let’s fast forward….
Yesterday Thursday May 25th I met with Glenn. Driving up from Hermitage, Pa to join us was Vince and his friend Tim. All three served in the military during the Vietnam years. Sometimes I know when to just sit back and listen; this was one of those times. There was a lot of reminiscing amongst them coupled with their knowledge I was just taking it all in. What a great meeting.

Bringing home a Korean War vet

The food at Lakeway was terrific, hey homemade cavatelli with meatball, wow, had to throw in another food commercial.

Now a couple of Careyism’s.
I am not sure the order if it was my friend John giving me two WWII era cots or if I met Glenn first who told me he was involved with the D Day reenactment and the D Day museum in Conneaut, Ohio. Regardless it doesn't really matter which came first it was back to back. I mean what is the chance of getting your hands on old army cots then meeting someone involved with a WWII museum?Again this happened back to back.

So I brought the cots along with me to the meeting so I could donate them to the museum Glenn is involved with. He said I am not sure if the cots will fit in my car. I replied just tell me where you want the cots and I can deliver. Glenn suggested let’s try the museum, it’s closed today but maybe we will get lucky and someone will be there if not we can leave the cots at my sons.
I told Glenn leave your car and I will drive. I was glad Glenn agreed to come along in my vehicle. I was given a tour of the harbor, given an up-close look at a Higgen’s boat and on top of that when we arrived at the museum the chairman was there. I was able to donate the cots, have my picture taken and just hang out. What a great experience.

Well enough of my rambling, look at the photos and watch the videos for the rest of the story.
Thank you Glenn for a terrific afternoon!

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Mike and Donna's Wedding Ceremony

Hey Gang!
One of the captions for a photo in my newest book "Cruising Across America" is never pass an opportunity to expand your horizons.  So when I was asked to officiate and come up with the words for a civil ceremony I didn't pass it up. I was nervous but excited to be asked.

They requested that it would be short and concise. These are the words I came up with, though I did ad lib freely when I spoke it.

Friends of Mike and Donna thank you for coming.

When I was asked to do this I said without hesitation "Sure, Mike has always been a gentleman to me and Donna, well we always kid each other and have fun, I enjoy being around her."

Because of reasons that preclude Mike and Donna from legally getting married we are gathered here to witness this civil ceremony which was put together by Jamie.

But does a lack of a government issued license make Mike and Donna's union or marriage any less binding? No not at all.

In the Garden of Eden when God put together the first couple, Adam and Eve, God didn't tell them to go to city hall for a license. God just introduced them and said "Here is your mate"!

And after 14 years of Mike and Donna being together I think we can all agree that God put this couple together.

Not only that but a promise to God has way more merit than one made to the government.

Mike before the vows would you like to say anything to Donna?

Donna before the vows would you like to say anything to Mike?

We will now say your vows.

Michael do you take Donna to be your wife?
Do you promise to love, honor, cherish, continue to be her mate and companion?

Donna do you take Michael to be your husband?
Do you promise to love, honor, cherish, continue to be his mate and companion?

Mike ready to put the ring on Donna? I Mike take Donna to have and to hold, to love and cherish from this day forward until death do us part.

Donna ready to put the ring on Mike?
I Donna take Mike to have and to hold, to love and cherish from this day forward until death do us part.

As God is our witness and everyone who attended - Mike and Donna you are now husband and wife!

As I wrote above I was nervous thinking about doing it but once it was completed I felt great partaking in such a memorable event.

After the cake it was time to head outside so the couple could release their balloons. I told Ruth beforehand to sneak off and buy some bird seeds to toss at the couple. Today it is no longer in vogue to toss rice, releasing balloons to me is just not the same, bird seed is much closer to tradition. Too be honest, I am not sure if this is something I seen before or something that just jumped into mind.

One of the things I like to do when I am charge of events or asked to participate is watch how people react. I have been told, sometimes people think I still act somewhat immature. They don't get it. I enjoy life. Maybe this was instilled in me by my parents, by God or maybe both. Age has no bearing on having fun. Regardless I opened the bag of seeds while still in the restaurant not thinking. I told everyone to grab a handful. We had seeds falling everywhere. Walking out I asked the patrons not with us if they wanted any birdseed. Blank stares was the only reply I got.

Once outside we started tossing the seeds at each other. That's when I took a step back and watched. People who are normally way more reserved were at first hesitant then they got into the act. I marveled at how fun and silly everyone was acting. I said hey do you know we are tossing more seeds at each other than the couple? It was a great natural high, just a lot of fun with the energy lingering until we left.

Question: I've wondered since I've only been to white weddings in the past where white rice was thrown, but what about at black weddings, do they throw brown rice? Just wondering, don't throw bricks at me, bird seeds will do.

Gotta Go-Go!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Walmartians and the brazen theft gone bad

Timing, what timing, seems like I have been blessed with timing even though I run late all the time, I have the uncanny ability to be at the right place or wrong place at the right time.

For instance today after work at about 3 am I went to the communist store (Walmart) in Eastlake for some junk food - a jar of honey, loaf of potato bread and organic apple cider vinegar (just kiddin' there folks).

I asked the lady who was playing watchman over the scan n go to help me out. I told her "I hate these self-checkouts, one time I noticed when I got home that I got free milk, for some reason it didn’t scan, so what happens if this should occur again, who is going to believe it happened by accident if someone should stop me"?

So after the worker checked me out, um I mean the items, we noticed a woman with a cart half-filled proceed to exit the store. The worker yelled "Hey, stop, excuse me, lady, STOP"!

The zombie like Walmartian kept on briskly walking the cart right out the door into the parking lot. She didn’t panic, no look up to see who was yelling at her, just a steady brisk pace out the door.

I followed the worker to the parking lot and said loudly “This ticks me off, man does this make me mad.” The worker put her hands on her hips and just stared then said "I can’t even call the cops because my cell phone is inside.” I said "Here use mine.” After figuring out how to use an older flip phone, Melissa the worker, reached the Eastlake police.

She gave a play by play of what the Walmartian was doing. The zombie like thief kept on going with the cart to the opposite side of the parking lot when suddenly out of nowhere a car zoomed up, doors flew open, stolen goods thrown in, and in the back seat plopped the free loader.

The getaway vehicle took off but within seconds three patrol cars chased it down. On my way out I drove past the cart which still had some goods in to so I returned and told Melissa. 

I went home the same way as the mad dashers and the boys in blue went. Sure enough the car was swarmed with the law.

So it infuriates me, really infuriates me.
1. These no gooders could eventually cause a store to close or alter their hours because of these kinds of heists.
2. It causes increases in prices
3. It could cause our stores in America to turn into third world fortresses with armed guards checking you as you enter and leave a store.

Here I am so concerned I may walk out unintentionally with a gallon of free milk but there are those who are now so brazen they don't even hide what they are stealing or doing.
I would love to throw the book at these scum and if I had my book in hand I would have.

Gotta Go-Go!