Plum Pitiful

By TIM BEELAND,

Ask and ye shall receive. I did, and I did! Calendars, that is. After last week’s rant in this space about the difficulty I was having locating a proper calendar for the kitchen, my problem was quickly solved the following day.

Thursday morning, bright and early, Granville Freeman showed up at the office with not one, not two, but three calendars for my personal use, and my wife sent me a text message and photograph that same afternoon, when she arrived at home from work, of a stack of calendars some anonymous donor left at our front door. Thanks Granville, and thanks to whomever left those at the house as well. We are good to go for 2020 with room to spare. Or should I say calendars to spare?!

The only bad thing about having calendars now is that it will be easier to watch the time fly by. Saturday morning during all the storms I sat at the kitchen table and copied all the births and deaths and such from last year’s calendar to one of the new ones and as the months rolled by so did much of my life. Especially when I got to the end of September and had to add the day my mom died to the list of others that have come and gone though the years. Life sucks sometimes!

Sunday afternoon it was kind of nice outside and we fed the birds and blew off the porches and noticed that the change from daylight to dark was a bit later in the day. Wife, Danny, commented to that fact, and I tried to express the thought that it seems to me that daylight gets longer more quickly after winter solstice than it stays dark before, and it came out of my mouth just about as clearly as it came out of the end of my fingers onto this page.

We both did agree that it would be nice if we didn’t change back and forth between daylight saving time and standard time. “Who wouldn’t want longer days,” Danny asked rhetorically, and I couldn’t help but agree. It is bad enough that days blend into weeks, that blend into months, and all of a sudden we’re well into a whole new year.

Seems not so long ago — although it was actually 25 or 30 years ago — that the weeks were longer than they are now. I’m sure the days were longer. Even in the dead of winter we could gets lots of other work done at night at home after the paying jobs.

I remember one year in particular that Danny and I started this giant project of converting a portion of a huge attic in our 100-year-old home into a family room. I began tearing out a wall that went into a giant spare bedroom on the day after New Year’s and over the next few weeks the two of us took down the wall, moved it back about eight or 10 feet, and then built two flights of stairs into the attic in the old wall’s space.

We did it all at night, after work, and on the weekends and things seemed to come together pretty quickly. Once those stairs were up we floored the attic, built some walls up there, put in some insulation, sheetrocked and finished it all off with a couple coats of paint and some floor covering and moved in the furniture.

How we had time to do all that, just two people, working two full time-plus jobs and doing all the rest at night I can’t imagine. Not compared to today’s standards, anyway. Of course I realize I was barely 30 then and probably 30 pounds lighter too, but still, that doesn’t make the days any shorter.

Now we’re heading to February, the January weeks are flying by, they’ve blended together again more quickly than in the previous years, and other than blowing off those porches, I’ve not done a productive thing except put up the Christmas decorations this year.

That’s plum pitiful!