Monday, April 6, 2009


For too long you've heard me run story after story about growing up in Saginaw. Many of you doubt my anecdotes. In order to restore civility and integrity to my side stories, I'd like to introduce Blog Nation to my sister Laura Maslowski who can corroborate my stories about growing up in Wanigas.

In Macomb, my students get the shakes when they travel south of Hall Road. In Saginaw that’s like heading south of West Genesee. As a resident of Oklahoma, what kind of national reputation does Detroit have? It's not the best, you say Detroit and people think Eminem and Kid Rock, and if they are older, Motown is not so bad. Oklahoma, you get, Carrie Underwood, Garth Brooks, Reba McIntyre . On the other hand it's an easy visual for somebody. Hold up your left hand and point to where Detroit is then point to your home town and as long as it's far enough away from Detroit people are okay with it.

I remember countless hours of Star Trek. I wasn’t a fan, I just cowered under the fear that you would beat me down if I attempted to change the channel. Will you be attending the new Star Trek movie when it arrives at a theatre near you? Yes, and probably opening nite too. I haven’t been to a convention in a year or two. :)

We just hosted the Final Four in Detroit at Ford Field. It was an exciting time for the city and Michigan State University. Blake Griffin and the rest of your Sooners didn’t make it. Which Sooner team draws a bigger following, basketball or football? If it's in Oklahoma it has to be football. I’m a big Sooner fan, but there are just as many Oklahoma State Fans, and everybody in Oklahoma dislikes Texas.

In order to keep the young ones in my classroom engaged and awake, I occasionally sprinkle in an anecdote or two about growing up in Saginaw. One of the best stories has to be the time I rode my bike over to Don Himmelspach’s house, got hit by a truck, broke my legs and the gift Don gave to me in the hospital was the board game, Life. Ironic: the mishap nearly causes my death and he offers Life. What’s the best story you tell your daughter Victoria about growing up in SagNasty – the local name for our beloved hometown? SagNasty.. that makes me cringe a bit. I guess I still have a small soft spot in my heart for it. I went to the best elementary school, and had my family close. I could follow the dirt trail on my bike along the ditch all the way to Deindofer Woods Park. I guess hanging Roger up by his underwear on the telephone pole because he was so annoying, spending summers riding bicycles, fishing for tadpoles at the ditch behind Bethlehem. Maybe too much romanticizing about it...but I’ve got lots of great memories.

Mark Melzo, Ricky Nappora, Tommy Michaulic, Sonny Moon and Bullet Head are all Saginaw legends in my anecdotes. Who am I leaving out and what story will you never forget? Mark Melzo chasing John Fritz down the street with a snowball, or chestnut, trying to see if he could hit a car on Davenport from our corner. We would sit on the porch watching traffic and getting Jude, the kid down the street, to sing if you gave him a pop bottle.

You make your living with computers and technology. I hear so much grumbling about Vista. Is the whining justified? Absolutely. Keep XP until Windows 7 comes out. Learn a new language and try Linux.

What, if anything, do you miss about living in Michigan? My family first, then all the trees, specifically pine trees, Koegel Viennas. All the summer fun.

Tony’s is a big hit for the shoppers visiting the Birch Run Outlet Mall. I tell my students we had the original Tony’s a couple of blocks from our house. My fear was that the grease from the fried mushrooms would leak through the paper bag and those delicious, artery-clogging vegetables would fall out. What was your favorite food at Tony’s? Hands down fried mushrooms with cocktail sauce. You can get them down here but they are served with ranch dressing.

I can remember the names of our dogs but I can’t recall one cat name. Do you remember any cat names or did we just not name those furry demons? They had names, but I can’t remember any of their names either. I remember the black one, a grey and white one – Noel , a white one, I think the cats mostly hid in the basement, afraid they would get stuffed into a hamster ball and used for bowling.

Pop Flies:
Saginaw or Tulsa? Tulsa
Spatz Bread or Tony’s onion rings? Spatz bread – I do both when I go to visit. :)
Hamsters or gerbils? Hamsters – fuzzier and less prone to jump.
PC or Mac? – PC - I’m not cool enough for a Mac .
Vista or the bubonic plague? Bubonic plague, at least that’s curable with modern antibiotics.
Twitter or a hand-written letter? Can I text you that answer?
Cats, dogs, birds, turtles or iguanas as house pets? Confession time, I have 1 cat, 2 dogs, 2 birds, and my daughter's room smells like turtles.. As to the latter, I am unsure why.
Detroit Pistons or Oklahoma City Thunder? Oklahoma City Thunder
Sooners or Wolverines? Sooners
College football playoff or the BCS selection system so convoluted Confucius couldn’t figure it out? Considering Oklahoma does well under the BCS abacus selection system, but we choke at bowl time.. I don’t know that it matters.
Honda or a made-in-America? I own a Chevy. :)

1 comment:

Josh Evans said...

I always enjoy the Left Field posts. This one was especially enjoyable to read...brings back AP Lit memories.