Four Slides

In the course of making 2018’s annual Williams calendar, I scanned some extra slides. One of the following was done for the calendar, and the rest just because. Looking through the central core box of slides (Mom’s slide case, complete with lighted viewer), I see fewer slides left that I haven’t either scanned or have decided not to scan. Hey, is any of the younger generation interested in stuff like that?

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A TRIO OF BABBITTS: Lucile, Mary, and June, with no date. Aunt June is clearly unhappy with all the flying black specks. Aunt Mary is thinking about the flying black specks. Mom has clearly decided to make the best of the situation, specks or no.

A little bit of color adjustment was done for this, as for all four of these slides. I made it a point to make specks in faces (and sometimes hands, and even hair) go away, but have found that life is much longer if I don’t chase each and every bit of dust, ancient or modern, in every photo I scan. Sorry for the specks, ladies.

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SEAL BAY, 1954: (ID’d as such on the slide frame), with Dad and his two girls. Martha has a life jacket. Kathryn has a watering can and a hat. Dad has two girls and a boat.

martha givhan kathryn ~56.jpg

SOUTH BROADWAY, ca1956: There was a packing crate, and it was a sort of house thing. Martha says she was always creeped out by it, so she’s inside, holding a doll out the window. Kathryn says she was creeped out by tunnels under the yard across the street (not depicted). Givhan’s being a kid. I was probably closer to the camera than any of them, gestating.

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EASTER 1960 at 512 Laporte Ave: The image is square because I didn’t put the slide in at a 90° angle, so the top and bottom were cut off. It would have been taller. Reluctant to scan it again and throw out my work despecking faces and correcting colors. But if I see our house number on it, I’ll be tempted anyway.

This concludes today’s presentation. I’d like to welcome my dear sis Kathryn for subscribing to this here blog. Because she is a subscriber, she receives notification of new blog posts, like this one, so she’ll know before anyone else. Wow! That’s something to think about.


Calling Time

I always loved the fact that you could dial a phone number and get a recording with the time. 484-7070 got you some variant on: “The time is *Eleven* *Twenty* *Two*. Phone Mountain Bell. Downtown temperature: *Fifty* *Six*.” The voice was a male without much personality, somewhere between Paul Harvey and Earl Nightingale in sonority. The middle part never changed: We were always to phone Ma Bell, as if there had been any alternative during those days.

There was a joke of the day sixty miles away in Denver: “Ear Whacks.” When I worked at the answering service, I’d sometimes use our Denver line to listen to it. Did it have an ad? I don’t remember. I don’t even remember any of its jokes. Must have been an ad, though. Anyway, it came and went.

Good old Time, though, or Time & Temperature as it was more accurately known (nobody mentioned phoning Mountain Bell), was around till I moved away. In ’76, I was rehearsing a show at Laurel—the community center in the former Laurel Street Elementary School, a near-clone of the now-demolished Laporte Avenue School (see photo) where I went to kindergarten—and there was a phone on a desk in the open floor with a dial lock on it. I felt obliged by some sort of honor code to defeat that, which I did by rhythmically engaging the hook button to mimic the pulse dial signal. I wasn’t doing it to rob them of anything that cost money, though, so I only called Time. It was the principle of the thing. (Tough number, too, with those sevens and zeros to keep straight. Talk about cultivating a skill that is now completely useless.)