In a World Gone Mad
Rick Bragg is a writer from L.A. – Lower Alabama – who writes a column each month in Southern Living Magazine. This column in particular caught my attention as, this year, snow is a significant part of my life. He writes in part…
The yellowed photograph, the size of a playing card, is tacked to the wall in my mother’s house, right above the desk. It shows a tiny frame house blanketed in white. An old woman, my grandmother, stands in the open door. You need a magnifying glass to read Ava Bundrum’s expression, but on her face appears to be a look that is part fascination, part suspicion, as if she is trying to decide to step off into this alien stuff, or duck back inside and wait for the thaw.
No one here seems to remember how that picture came to be but I fixed it to the wall because I like looking at it, it makes me smile. It is proof of the Southerner’s never-ending wonderment with snow.
Ava never went north of Lookout Mountain. She lived her life in the low hills along the Alabama-Georgia line, and seldom saw deep snow. Though one year, a late snowfall did all but cover the buttercups she had planted inside an old tire at the edge of the driveway. And because it was so rare, it was always wonderful.
If enough of it fell onto the cars and trucks in the yard, she would wrap a shawl around her head and slog through it, a dishpan in one hand and a spatula in the other. She would scoop a gallon or so of the snow into the pan, then hurry inside. Working fast, she would mix in sweetened condensed milk, a little sugar and some vanilla flavoring. Then she would portion it out to us boys, her grandsons, and announce to us: “Snow cream.” And it was good.
The yankees say we don’t know how to drive in it, how to walk on it, or even stand. They may be right. But if they had not come down here to live among us, abandoning the tundra of home, they would not be here to know it.
(Copyright Southern Living Magazine, Birmingham, Alabama)
The number of years depends upon the age of the person commenting, but this is, apparently, the worst winter in a long, long time. Not that I would know the difference anyway. It’s just plain cold and miserable.
Many northerners groan about the humidity in the South but, hey, you don’t have to shovel humidity or scrape it off your windshield. Lord, I miss it!!
I am confident that the Lord is looking for new tenants. I learned a new texting acronym – SMH – “shake my head”. That must be what He does every time He looks down upon the Earth….
High school student sues parents to force them to pay for her college education
Rachel Canning is an 18-year-old senior at Morris Catholic High School in New Jersey. She is a cheerleader, lacrosse player, and honors student. Rachel is also gaining attention for an unusual lawsuit she has filed against her parents, Sean and Elizabeth Canning. Rachel is suing them for financial support and to “force them to pay for her college education.”
In papers filed at the court, Rachel maintains that her parents decided that on her 18th birthday, she would be cut off from them, “both financially and emotionally.” In the papers Rachel also said, “My parents have rationalized their actions by blaming me for not following their rules. They stopped paying my high school tuition to punish the school and me and have redirected my college fund, indicating their refusal to afford me an education as a punishment.”
The school, despite being owed over $4,000, will not kick Rachel out of school. So how is Rachel able to afford an attorney if she can’t afford school? Rachel left her parents’ home and is staying with a friend. Her friend’s father, John Inglesino is funding the lawsuit, believing Rachel to be in the right.
So what of the parents, Sean and Elizabeth Canning? They maintain they never told Rachel to move out. They also, “contend she had disciplinary problems at school last term, was suspended twice, ignored her curfew at home and bullied her younger sister.” Their attorney, Laurie Rush-Masuret, noted…
“Mr. and Mrs. Canning did not tell Rachel to move out; rather they advised her that she is welcome home so long as she abides by their rules under their roof, which is completely reasonable. However, Rachel decided that she does not want to live within her parents’ sphere of influence and voluntarily moved out, essentially emancipating herself. Obviously, she cannot decide she will no longer live within her parents’ sphere of influence and simultaneously seek payment from them for support…”
Sean Canning, who before retiring, was Lincoln Park police chief, told the newspaper, “We love our child and miss her. This is terrible. It’s killing me and my wife. We have a child we want home. We’re not Draconian and now we’re getting hauled into court. She’s demanding that we pay her bills but she doesn’t want to live at home and she’s saying, ‘I don’t want to live under your rules.’”
Additionally, they say Rachel’s college fund has not been withdrawn or re-allocated.
I’m going to get me a bucket of snow, some sweetened condensed milk, some sugar and head down to the heat and humidity along the Georgia-Alabama line.
Would the last sane person north of Lookout Mountain please turn out the lights?
Oops, too late.Share