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Finding Joy in a Plant

A tall snake plant sits in the corner of our dining room, and that simple plant makes me happy.  Recent weather forecast for frost signaled the time to bring potted plants indoors.  It felt good, almost soothing, to wipe the dust and grime off the long, narrow, strong leaves.  Partly because when I clean, I want to see a difference and this plant was dirty. But mostly, because it once belonged to my grandmother.

             A tall snake plant in a white pot always set on Grandma and Papa’s front porch.   She called it a mothers-in-law tongue, and her mother gave it to her.  As a kid, I didn’t really like it. The pointed, sharp leaves hurt when I brushed by arm or leg against them and I didn’t think it was pretty.  After Grandma’s death about thirty years ago, my aunt moved the plant to her house and shared two starter plants with me.  Grandma had few material things to pass on so I was really glad to have something that was hers; something she had nurtured.

            Snake plants require little care.  In fact, leave them alone and they grow well.  In the summer, I sat the pots outside and prided myself that the leaves were green and healthy.  When frost threatened, I moved the plants into a garage corner for the winter.  After many weeks, I noticed the tall leaves were limp. So, I set the pots in a bucket and poured water around the soil and left the plants in water all day. In fact, I left them for several days, and the leaves began to turn yellow.  I’d broken the #1 rule about care for snake plants: don’t overwater.

            Root rot killed one plant. Aunt Doris gave me detailed instructions to save the other one and she offered new starter plants, but I was determined to bring my small plant back to life. And I did, and now truly appreciate it as Grandma did hers.  

            The long, narrow, strong leaves earned this plant the name snake plant and prompted other names. Mothers-in-law because we mothers sometimes struggle to hold our tongues.  In Spain, it’s known as Saint George’s sword.  It’s also called viper’s bowstring because the stiff fiber in the leaves are strong. 

            Snake plants are succulent plants and their leaves retain water, similar to a cactus. I finally learned to water mine only when the top few inches of its soil are completely dry and to never pour water on the leaves.  I just learned that snake plants clean the air better than most plants because not only do they give off oxygen, they absorb high amounts of carbon monoxide and filter toxins in the air.  I’m sure Grandma didn’t know her plant helped to keep her healthy. 

            Now, the tallest leaf on my snake plant is about 40”and there are dozens of leaves, so many that it must be divided.  Next spring, I’ll give starter plants to my children.  Who knows how many generations might enjoy a simple snake plant?

Breaking Thanksgiving Traditions

Thanksgiving is about traditions and I cherish traditions. Even before I was born, Mom, her two sisters, and their parents celebrated together on Thanksgiving Day at noon.  The number of place settings at the table has changed over the past 75 years (yes, 75!). Card tables were set up for us children and grandchildren, and then the passing of grandparents and parents meant we children moved to the dining room table.  Thankfully, in-laws graciously gave us this day, and we’ve welcomed parents-in-law, in-law siblings, boyfriends, and girlfriends.

            Now, we who were born into this tradition are grandparents, and although none of us carry our maternal grandparents’ last name, we gather for the Bertram Family Thanksgiving.  But not this year.  On Thanksgiving Day, we might be with a son’s or daughter’s family. Maybe with a few people that we’ve claimed into our COVID-safe bubble. Maybe alone. 

            I wince when I hear someone say that rules are made to be broken, meaning it’s acceptable, or even good, to break a rule. Rules keep us safe and provide peace and order.  But, we all know instances when rules were broken for good at that moment.

            I take that stance with traditions.  Traditions are made to be broken. It’s the safest and best for my family to not be together this Thanksgiving.  I’ll miss my cousins and their families.  The hugs.  The laughing over the re-telling of stories about our parents and grandparents.  The first time to see a cousin’s six-month-old granddaughter.  The dividing of leftovers. The kitchen clean-up with my sister-in-law and cousins because the best conversations are over the kitchen sink, not at the dinner table. 

            Several weeks ago, I came to terms with our decision and pondered how to make this Thanksgiving a celebration with only Husband and Daughter’s family.  It’s the food.  As Daughter said, “The best meal of the year!” We pared the menu to turkey, cornbread dressing, a few sides, bread, and pies.

            And I thought of two things to make our Thanksgiving unique: turkey bread and a tablecloth.  I hope our Grands and their parents look back on Thanksgiving 2020 and remember that’s when I baked bread that looked kinda’ like a turkey, and we drew and wrote on the table cloth. 

            Neither idea is original. The bread is baked in a round cake pan with one big round roll in the middle (the turkey body) surrounded by smaller rolls (feathers), and a bread dough turkey neck and head draped over the body.  A whole clove marks the turkey’s eye and yellow and brown and orange sprinkles decorate the feathers.  We’ll draw and write on the heavy flannel-backed white table cloth that’s been around for years.

            Sometimes breaking traditions is good.  We Bertram cousins will be together next Thanksgiving and I have a feeling we’ll have a couple of new traditions.  Thanksgiving dinner won’t be complete without turkey bread and the tablecloth from 2020.

            May everyone stay well and enjoy a Happy Thanksgiving.

When Clothes Talk

“Hi, Gran, you look like Dad!”  Micah said.  I’d walked up behind my six-year-old Grand while he played with Matchbox cars on a track he’d made in the dirt.  He turned quickly and looked up to greet me.

             “Micah,” I said, “why do you think I look like your Dad?”  Son2, aka son-in-law, and I are about the same height, and he could wear my t-shirts, but his would be a bit tight for me.

            “What you’ve got on,” my Grand answered. “Doesn’t Dad have a shirt like that?” My t-shirt had a bicycle on it and because Son2 has ridden in many biking events, he often wears t-shirts with a picture of a bicycle.  I shook my head to answer Micah, and realized I was wearing blue jeans and tennis shoes, like Son2 wears most days since he’s been working at home during these months of the pandemic.

            Now, I love Son2, but Micah’s words that I look like him made me think about the clothes I wear. What other time in history would a child’s father and grandmother wear the same type of clothing?  I can think back one generation when my mom wore pants, but not jeans.  Her pants often had elastic waistlines and were made of stretchy fabric, and Mom wore long Bermuda shorts in the summer.  I never saw either of my grandmothers wear pants; even when Granny hoed the beans and pulled weeds from her flowerbeds, she wore a cotton shirtwaist dress. 

            History tells us that in the mid-1800s, women wore bloomers under dresses. By the early 1900s, women’s trousers appeared on high-fashion runways. During World War II, when more women entered the workplace, they wore pants for comfort. It wasn’t until the 1960s that pants became fashionable and popular for women.  And even then, we college students in the late 60s remember that pants weren’t allowed in classes.  I often wore my lightweight knee-length raincoat over shorts or pants to class.  

            By the early 1970s, pants suits, made of matching or coordinating fabrics, were poplar and comfortable.  The long tops were several inches above the knees and covered loose wide-leg pants.  And then the hippy revolution hit, with bell-bottom pant legs and jeans, and women began to wear pants everywhere.

My favorite jeans were bell-bottoms, wide legs that dragged so long that I almost tripped.  Now, like most women, I have several pair of jeans and I’ll keep wearing them.

            Who doesn’t have a collection of comfortable t-shirts?  We wear them to support sports teams, state our beliefs, and show where we have travelled.  But Micah made me think that I’ll wear other shirts when I’m out and about.            

The day I wore a t-shirt without writing or a picture and visited Micah’s house, his mother said, “You’re dressed up.  Going somewhere special?”  I didn’t tell Daughter that I was wearing a plain pink t-shirt because of something her son said, instead I said, “Yes, to visit with all of you!”

It’s About Time

It’s that time again when I have to adjust to ‘old time,’ the term Papa, my grandfather, used for standard time, and he called Daylight Savings Time ‘new time.’  It takes a while to get used to sunset at 4:50 p.m. and the sun shining brightly at 6:15 a.m. My body and brain don’t immediately adapt, but the most difficult change is when I travel across time zones. 

            Drive across the United States from Maine to California and you’ll go through four standard time zones.  Travel to Alaska takes you to another one and Hawaii covers two more, except Hawaii and Arizona don’t observe Daylight Savings Time, but the Navajo Nation, in northeastern Arizona, does observe Daylight Saving Time.

            This thinking about time sent me on a search to remember when and how time zones were established and to learn other exceptions.  The need for a standard time became necessary with the beginning of railroad travel.  Prior to 1883 there were over 300 local times across the United States.

            Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) was adopted universally in 1884. The world is divided into zones by longitude, with each hour 15 degrees apart.  The starting point is the Prime Meridian, 0° longitude, that runs from the North Pole to the South Pole and passes through the Old Royal Observatory, in Greenwich, England, near London. Here in middle Tennessee we are in the GMT-6 (hours) Standard Time Zone so when it’s 4:00 p.m. in Greenwich, it’s 10:00 a.m., six hours earlier here. Counting around the world an hour difference for each fifteen degrees would mean there are twenty-four time zones. 

            Except, it doesn’t exactly work that way because some time zones are determined by political and geographical boundaries and some by choice.  So, there are forty time zones and all aren’t based on an hour.  India, Iran, Afghanistan, Burma, Newfoundland, Venezuela, and parts of Australia use half-hour differences from standard time.  I would be really confused traveling in Australia because there are three time zones: GMT+8, GMT+9½, and GMT+10. When it’s 4:00 p.m. on the west coast, it’s 5:30 p.m. in central Australia, and 6:00 p.m. on the east coast. 

            Time in some places is even more unusual. Nepal, a small country in the Himalayas and bordered by China and India, adopted GMT+5¾ in 1956, and the Chatham Islands in New Zealand is GMT+12¾ so those are 45 minutes past the hour. China is also unique; geographically it covers five time zones, but in 1949 the country established one time zone, Beijing time which is GMT+8.

            I imagine that the scientists from around the world who created Greenwich Mean Time in 1884 thought they’d set the world straight. But the lines for worldwide time zones are more crooked than the Caney Fork River. 

            Everybody just doesn’t go along with a plan.  Like Papa who never changed his clock that hung above the kitchen table to ‘new time’ because dinner was always eaten at 12:00 noon on ‘old time.’  

A Fun Halloween Surprise

What’s the most unusual thing you’ve received in the mail?  When Daughter was a college student, she sent a shoebox filled with leaves.  Colorful fall leaves from Berry College in Georgia.  Why would she send this when our yard and driveway were completely covered with leaves? 

            As teenagers, Daughter and Son teased me about my Leaf Reports.  Beginning when they were very young, I talked about leaves.  “Look, the trees have big buds.  In a few days, we’ll see leaves,” I said in the spring.  During summers, we identified trees by their leaves.  My children said I gave daily Fall reports: the changing colors, falling leaves, and the crunch of dried leaves.  Daughter’s box of leaves was a happy surprise, and I kept that love gift for years, stacked with other shoe boxes in my closet.

            Last week the mail carrier delivered an even more unusual gift.  Our 15-year old Grand was visiting and said, “Look what you got in the mail, Gran.”  He pointed to a small pumpkin, about seven inches tall and six inches in diameter.  It has a jagged-tooth smile, a triangle nose, and smiling half circle eyes drawn with a black marker.   

            “What?” I said, “This was in the mailbox?”  My Grand explained that the pumpkin was delivered to front porch.  “Where’s the box it came in?” I asked.

            “There wasn’t a box.  Look, your name is on it,” he said. There’s a hand-written address label secured with clear packing tape and a United States postage label showing the mailing cost, $8.70.  Another postal service label gives the tracking number. 

            “You mean it came through the mail like this?” He looked at me with the look that only a teenager can give.  I’m glad he didn’t say, “Duh, Gran.” 

            There was no return address so the person who sent Happy Jack wanted to remain anonymous.  The only clues were the hand writing looked familiar and “Mailed from zip code 38501” was on the label.  But who’d spend $8.70 to mail a pumpkin?  Why not just deliver it? 

            Maybe it was the person I’d talked with a few days before and she and I agreed that we love a good mystery and love solving it.  Maybe it was the friend who left a foot-tall yellow rubber duck on my front porch a few years ago.  Maybe it was the friend who likes to play jokes and knew I needed a good laugh.  All three of them responded to my text inquiries, “No, not me.” 

            I sent pictures of Happy Jack to Daughter and Son and they shared them with their families so we all laughed about this surprise and tried to figure out the sender.  After many guesses and sending many texts of inquiry, I received this reply: “Yes! I thought it’d be a fun thing to show all those Grands!”  

            Happy Jack sits on my back door step, and he is fun for all of my family.  But I’ll not tell who sent him because, after all, he was sent anonymously.             Happy Halloween!

So Many Putnam Counties

In this column last week, after praising Library Friends for its support to our public library and encouraging everyone to become a Friends member, I provided a link to Library Friends for Putnam County, Indiana.  The correct URL for our Putnam County Library Friends is https://pclibrary.org/PCL%20Friends.html.  I hope many of you join.

Ten years ago, when my friend Jennie encouraged me to write for publication, she said, “Just look around. Observe. There’s an idea for a story or column in almost everything you see and do.”  She’s right. In fact, my mistake provides two ideas: Putnam County and mistakes.

Do you know nine states have a county named Putnam? Counties in Tennessee, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, New York, and West Virginia are named for Israel Putnam.  It’s not certain if Putnam County, Ohio is named for Israel or his cousin Rufus, and Putnam County, Florida could be named for Benjamin Putnam, an officer in the first Seminole War and a Florida politician.  And two states, Connecticut and New York, have cities named after Israel Putnam.

What do you know about Israel Putnam?  He was born in 1715 in Massachusetts and died in 1790 in Connecticut.  As a young man he moved to Pomfret, Connecticut, where he became a prosperous farmer.  He served in the French and Indian War (1754 -63), was captured, and gained the rank of lieutenant colonel in 1759.  Putnam most distinguished himself as a major general in the Continental Army when he fought at the Battle of Bunker Hill during the American Revolution in 1775.   He deserved recognition across our country.

The next time you go the Putnam County Courthouse stop and read the tall silver sign about Israel Putnam to learn what year our county was established.  All nine Putnam Counties were named between 1807 and 1849.  Tennessee’s wasn’t the first or last.

So, there are nine Putnam Counties and nine Putnam County public libraries and most have a Library Friends webpage.  On my last revision of last week’s column, I cut words to rewrite the last paragraph because I wanted space to include the Friends group webpage link and that’s when I goofed.           

No excuses, just facts, I was tired and wanted to finish quickly.  When I first googled Putnam County Friends, I noticed the headline banner read Florida so I tried again, and I didn’t notice Indiana on the second one.  I copied and pasted and said to myself, “Done!” 

Isn’t that often what happens when we make a mistake?  We’re in a hurry or tired or both.  Then we have choices: fix it, if possible, or hope no one notices.  My mistake was fixed on the Herald-Citizen online edition and corrected in the next printed issue, but I wanted to ‘fix it myself’ as my young Grand says.  Winston Churchill said, “All men make mistakes, but only wise men learn from their mistakes.”   It’s true that everyone makes mistakes, and yes, I learned from mine.  And now I’m collecting more stories about mistakes for another column.

Be A Library Friend

Are you a friend of the library?  Not just someone who likes the library, but a member of the Putnam County Library Friends organization?

            Library Friends is a large group of people, some who generously give their time and money and many whose only support is through membership dues.  Its purposes include connecting people who are interested in libraries and raising public awareness of libraries.  It works with the library staff to provide programs and services.

            October 18-24 is National Friends of Library Week, a time for public libraries to show appreciation to Library Friends, a time to make more people aware of this organization, and to encourage membership.  When I received the recent bi-annual copy of Book reMarks, published by Putnam County Library Friends, I put it aside until I could sit a bit, with a cup of hot tea, and read this eight-page newsletter. 

            This edition tells about the current library services, some are limited due to COVID-19.  It includes pictures and articles about recent library renovations and the success of the summer reading program for children, teens, and adults.  The article that most interested me told about Open Books, Open Doors, a partnership between Putnam County Schools and the library. Librarians are visiting 7th grade Language Arts classes in all four Putnam County Schools to enrich the students’ experiences in oral storytelling, comic arts, and virtual book borrowing.  Last year through this program, many students received their first library cards.

            I reread that sentence.  These 7th graders, who are 12 years old, got their first library cards.  I thought of my young Grands and how proud they were when they were 5 years old and showed me their cards.  “Look, I can get my own books!” Micah said last year.  Having their own library cards, children are likely to choose more books and want to hear and read those books.  I’m glad our community’s school system and public library work together to encourage middle-school students to use the library.  

            Perhaps Library Friends is best known for its monthly used book sale, and unfortunately, it has not been open during recent months.  I have a stack of books to donate when the sale re-opens, and every time I have gone to the sale I leave with an armload of books for just a few dollars. 

            By being a member of Library Friends, I put my money where my mouth is.  Children, and adults, learn by reading.  It’s true that children learn to read, and then they read to learn, as well as for enjoyment.  I want public libraries to be around forever.  The library offers more than printed books, such as public computer use, online printed and audio books, and meeting rooms.  Check out the Putnam County Library website and Face Book page.

            The Friends’ mission is to promote literacy in all its forms, to facilitate equitable access to information, and to encourage lifelong learning and a love for reading. Membership is available to any person, corporation, or organization that shares this mission. You can join online at https://pclibrary.org/membership%20form%202016.pdf.

We Need Nice

“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything,” Mom told me again and again and again.  Sometimes, she’d raise both eyebrows and say, “Now, be nice.” Even now, sixty years later, her words ring in my ears and hit my heart. Mom knew children; we could be jealous, self-centered, rude, and cliquish.  We needed to be taught, by example and words.

            I didn’t like being told over and over to be nice, but as an adult, a parent, a teacher, an advisor to a college sorority chapter, I found myself saying Mom’s words. And my Grands will tell you, they’ve heard her advice more than once.

            I never questioned what nice meant when I was young.  I just knew.  But when I read 6th graders’ writings about a story character who was nice, and when I sat with coeds who wanted their best friends who were really nice to be sorority members, it was necessary to define the word. Whether talking with twelve-year-old or nineteen-year-old students, I found out that everyone didn’t have the same connation of the word. 

            Nice had to be described by actions, by behavior.  This reminded me of one of my grandmother’s sayings:  pretty is as pretty does.  What does a nice person say and do?

            One dictionary meaning is someone who is pleasant in manner, good-natured, and kind. Synonyms for nice include pleasant, likeable, agreeable, personable, charming, delightful, amiable, friendly, kindly, congenial, good-natured, gracious, sympathetic, understanding, compassionate, and good.  Antonyms are unpleasant and nasty.

            It’s impossible to be nice all the time.  I’m sure some students and their parents would give examples of me as a mean teacher.  We’ve all had experiences when we weren’t at our best – pleasant and kind.  I regret those times.  And we have to bite our tongues to avoid speaking, harness our fingers on a keyboard, and simply not respond when our thoughts are hurtful to another. 

            I started this column after scanning online news reports and social media. I wonder if not seeing the person we’re speaking to face-to-face, or maybe not even knowing that person, removes the filter to be kind.  Being nice and kindness are life lessons most of us were taught when we were children.

            I’ve saved writings about life lessons.  One is a newspaper clipping from a Dear Abby column published in June and it’s worth repeating.  This advice caught my eye because it was first published in the 1960s, a time that Mom came down hard on me when I wasn’t kind to others.  It’s entitled ‘A Short Course in Courtesy.”

            The six most important words:  I admit I made a mistake. 

            The five most important words:  You did a good job. 

            The four most important words:  What is your opinion?

            The three most important words:  If you please. 

            The two most important words:  Thank you.

            The one most important word:  We.

            The least important word:  I.

            In today’s world, with so much division and so many people hurting, we need common courtesy.  We need kind.  We need nice.

Hurricane Sally Turned

I never wanted to ride out a hurricane, but that’s what happened Wednesday, September 16. A few days earlier when Husband and I drove to Fort Walton Beach, Florida, Hurricane Sally’s predicted landfall was Louisiana, but she took advantage of a woman’s prerogative to change her mind and turned toward Florida.

            On Tuesday, I watched from our fourth-floor condo balcony as the ocean mimicked the clouds and became gray, blurring the horizon.  Powerful waves created tall water sprays.  White caps formed on distance water.  The branches of palm trees swayed.  I was awed by the power of nature.

            Husband, two friends, and I watched weather forecasts and we didn’t like what we saw.  As evening came, we moved the balcony furniture inside, located flashlights, candles and matches, and then we worked on a jigsaw puzzle, listened to 60’s music, and played cards until the wee hours of the morning.

            At 3:40 a.m. we four stood shoulder to shoulder in a small utility room after being notified of a tornado warning.  Electrical power was out so we held flashlights. We heard the wind howl and knew Sally could hit the coastline.  When the tornado warning ended, the logical thing to do was go to bed in bedrooms farthest from the sliding glass doors facing the ocean.

            6:30 a.m. The good news was that the palm trees were still swaying, not flat on the sand, and the boardwalk wasn’t damaged.  But where was Sally?  And how long would the electricity and internet be out?  We used our cell phones sparingly to avoid eating up data and draining the batteries.  My friend JoAnn, who I dubbed JoAnn the Jaunty Weather Girl, sent texts with TV pictures of weather maps showing Sally’s path and status, including her 105 mph wind speed, and the damages along the coastline. 

            We were relieved that the hurricane had travelled north of us and alarmed that there was destruction only fifteen miles west in Navarre.  Instead of coffee and a hot breakfast, we drank water and ate breakfast bars and fruit.  The refrigerator and freezer were stocked for the next five days, including fresh shrimp and chocolate ice cream. ‘Save the Shrimp’ was our goal so we opened the freezer and refrigerator once to put all the ice and the shrimp in a cooler, and the ice cream was the perfect consistency for milkshakes. 

            The ocean waves were even stronger, taller, wider than the day before. The water sprays higher. It was mesmerizing.  We had no TV, no internet, no electricity, no music.  But, thankfully, we had running water and were safe.  Taking advantage of daylight, we worked on the jigsaw puzzle and read.  When the electricity came on at 2:30, our afternoon naps were interrupted by lights we’d tried to turn on.             By Friday, internet was restored and the ocean was blue and calm.  We sat on the beach and counted blessings.  I’d never choose to be that close to a hurricane again, but I might drink a chocolate milkshake for a mid-morning snack – even if there’s no hurricane.

The Best Lunch

When Gloria said, “I had the best lunch Saturday,” I wanted to know exactly what she ate. I didn’t expect her to say, “A fried bologna sandwich.”

            Fried bologna.  I could almost smell it cooking in my black skillet, the same one Mom used. When I was a kid, bologna sandwiches, sometimes fried, were often Saturday lunches and they weren’t my favorite. We ate bologna between two slices of soft white bread slathered with Miracle Whip.

            Surely, Gloria’s lunch was better than what I remember eating. “How did you make your sandwich?” I asked. 

            Buy thick sliced beef bologna.  Cut three small slits around the edge of the slice so it will stay flat when it’s cooked.  Brown both sides of the meat in a skillet, using the medium heat setting.  Spread mayonnaise on both pieces of bread. Put lettuce on first so the bread won’t get soggy.  Layer sliced tomato, pickles, fried bologna, cheese, and the other piece of bread. 

            What kind of bread and pickles?  Any special mayo and cheese?  Gloria’s favorites are wheat bread, bread and butter pickles, Hellmann’s or Dukes mayo, and cheddar cheese.  “Other kinds of pickles could work,” Gloria explained, “but they should be sweet pickles and it could be American cheese.” 

            It’s been a long time since I’ve eaten a sandwich with just bologna, but it does add flavor to a deli sandwich I make with ham, roast beef, and two kinds of cheese.  I’m one of those people who wonders what bologna is made from and if I really knew, would I ever eat it?

            One well-known bologna label lists mechanically separated meats (chicken or turkey or pork or beef), water, corn syrup, salt, dextrose, mustard, sodium phosphate, sodium propionate, potassium chloride, beef juices, sodium ascorbate, sodium nitrite, sodium benzoate, flavor, hydrolyzed beef stock, extractives of paprika, and celery seed extract.  (Now I know why sodium is at the top of the nutritional listing.)

            If I had to explain to people who don’t know what bologna is and I want them to eat it, I definitely wouldn’t encourage them to google the word.  I found it’s a cooked, smoked sausage made of cured pork or beef or a mixture of the two.  It might include choice cuts, but usually contains afterthoughts of the meat industry – organs, trimmings, end pieces and so on.  Who wants to eat afterthoughts? 

            Bologna is a throw-back food that takes us to the 1950s when a bologna sandwiches were staples in lunchboxes, those carried by students and factory workers.  And most were like Mom’s, a piece of meat between white bread.  Later bologna fell out of favor when people became more conscious of healthy eating, but it’s made a comeback in recent years.  Maybe we need a little nostalgia in our lives.

            I haven’t tried Gloria’s sandwich yet, but I will.  And I’ll take the advice I discovered on an online advertisement: don’t think about how your bologna is made or what exactly it’s made from, and just sit there peacefully and eat your sandwich.