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Milli Gilbaugh

Speed speak, is it?

Food For Thought

I keep getting cards and letters in my mail, offering me special deals on hearing tests and hearing aids. I don’t know where these people get their mailing lists, but someone has found out I’m 82 and might be hard of hearing. I don’t think I have a problem in that regard, although there are a couple situations where I don’t always hear clearly what someone is saying. One situation in which I have trouble hearing, or understanding, what someone is saying is when there is a lot of background noise, as at a party where there is music playing or several groups of people talking at once.

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What’s so funny about that?

Food For Thought

I find myself watching more television lately than I have in the past. Not that I’ve become addicted to certain programs and hate to miss them, but because I’m getting older and find I need to just sit and relax once in a while during the day. The TV set is there, so I grab the remote and flip through the channels to see if there’s anything interesting going on. I’ve never been good at remembering on which channel or at what time certain programs appear, so it’s always a hit or miss matter when it comes to what I end up watching.

Truth in packaging

Food For Thought

I think the people who design the packaging and labels for products are becoming as sneaky as the telephone solicitors we have to deal with these days. If you buy a bottle of grape juice that says “100% juice” you expect it to be pure juice, right? Then, when you read the fine print, you see the first ingredient listed is water. The second ingredient is grape juice concentrate. Well, okay, so the water is to reconstitute the juice concentrate.

What’s so funny about that?

Foot For Thought

I find myself watching more television lately than I have in the past. Not that I’ve become addicted to certain programs and hate to miss them, but because I’m getting older and find I need to just sit and relax once in a while during the day. The TV set is there, so I grab the remote and flip through the channels to see if there’s anything interesting going on. I’ve never been good at remembering on which channel or at what time certain programs appear, so it’s always a hit or miss matter when it comes to what I end up watching.

The worst thing about March

Food For Thought

My mother used to remind us, if we couldn’t say something nice about someone or about a situation, then we shouldn’t say anything at all. That little warning had a dual effect. We usually searched our minds for some relatively benign trait we could point out without too much guilt, and it kept us from tattling or otherwise airing our silly childhood squabbles in public. It also had the side-benefit of giving Mother the reputation of having raised four “nice” daughters.

The worst thing about March

Food For Thought

My mother used to remind us, if we couldn’t say something nice about someone or about a situation, then we shouldn’t say anything at all. That little warning had a dual effect. We usually searched our minds for some relatively benign trait we could point out without too much guilt, and it kept us from tattling or otherwise airing our silly childhood squabbles in public. It also had the side-benefit of giving Mother the reputation of having raised four “nice” daughters.

Little green men?

Food For Thought

About this time of year, Iowa seems to be overtaken by a race of little green men– well, maybe they’re not so little, but they seem to have a definite affinity for the color green. They dress in green clothing and seek out green food and beverages. Green beer seems to be particularly appealing to them, though no one can find any documentation that supports its importance.

Help me, Grandma

Food For Thought

Most of the times my telephone rings, it turns out to be someone telling me they are returning a call, at my request, for information about a back brace. Well, I know I made no such request so I simply hang up on them. Often it is a cheerful woman from a credit card company telling me there is no problem with my account, I thank her politely and hang up. In the past, she has managed to slip in the information that this is my final opportunity to take advantage of an offer to lower my interest rate.

Autumn in February

Food For Thought

One day last month, I stepped out my door and was disoriented by smells more suited to October than to February. This was the aroma of Halloween, leaf-burning, fall picnics from my childhood. Okay, so it has been a strange winter in our little pocket of the Midwest. Little snow, mostly mild temperatures, 40 degree drops and rises of the thermometer from one day to the next. But those autumn bonfires emitting that smoky, woodsy fragrance? What was going on?

Slang, idiom, metaphor, poetry

Food For Thought

Four times a month I meet with groups of creative friends with whom I share ideas and accomplishments. Twice each month, the group consists of around 20 people, specifically writers; writers of poetry, fiction, fact and opinion. Another group, all poets, is smaller and while we examine and critique each other’s poems, we have the luxury of time to discuss many related topics that arise out of the discussions of poetry. The third group is made up of professionally successful artists, writers and composers, although the writers make up the majority of members.

Love and marriage

We got engaged on Valentine’s Day, 1956. I don’t think either one of us planned or even thought about it being a romantic time for the proposal and acceptance. In fact, I don’t recall any mention of it being Valentine’s Day or any of the usual accouterments, such as flowers or a box of chocolates. It just happened to be Feb. 14, and the whole thing was coincidence. I guess, when you’re young and giddy with daydreams and hormones, any day will do.
Well, that was 61 years ago, and we were married for almost 50 years before my husband died.

Ultimate selfie

Food For Thought

My friend commented on the latest fad of taking photos of oneself with celebrities, be they politicians, sports figures, movie stars or any one else who is famous, admired or envied. As I thought about it, I began to realize that the practice is hardly new. The medium (the ubiquitous cell phone) may be relatively new, but the idea of having physical evidence that we have, at some time, had personal contact with this or that famous person is not. I think it is quite similar to the practice of collecting autographs of famous or admired people.