The Norman Transcript

Columns

July 5, 2014

An old path made new

NORMAN — Old paths make good neighbors. Paths worn down from years of visiting or to borrow or return, to bring veggies from a home garden or for nothing at all but to visit.

Clare’s feet knew the way. She needed a cup of flour to finish her cake. “Donna, I’m letting myself in,” at her neighbor’s door. “I need some flour. Helping myself.”

Donna comes in with a towel around her head. “What kind of cake?” she asks.

“That shampoo sure smells good. Just making a chocolate cake for the family picnic.”

“Take some shampoo in a fruit jar and see if you like it. I get it through the mail.”

Grandfather Martin knows when winter comes the paths will be covered by ice and snow. So he makes good use of them in the summer. “Brought you some of my cucumbers,” he tells his neighbor three houses away. “Raised some really good ones this year. I know how your kids love these things.” He lays his fruit of the vine on the cabinet.

“Those look great, Papa Martin. Here, take some of our tomatoes.” His neighbor fills his bucket with ripening tomatoes from her windowsill. “Are you going to visit your kids soon? You might take more, some for them.”

“Haven’t decided,” Martin answers. “Depends on whether my lumbago clears up in time. I’ll bring you okra later on.”

Precious times were those when paths brought all the neighbor kids together. Days when homework from school wasn’t the only thing kids did at home.

“Play ball!” Ralph screams. “It’s my time to choose the game we play.”

“Fine. Then I get to choose who’s first on my team.”

“After that, let’s play ante over,” another says.

“By then we’ll have go in and do chores.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • Congress should close gaps

    Of all of Edward Snowden’s revelations about electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency, the most unsettling was that the government was accumulating vast numbers of records about the telephone calls of American citizens. In ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Border obsession overlooks trade

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry made headlines recently by ordering 1,000 National Guard troops to the border. This bravado comes at a price: $12 million a month. Perry plans to send the bill the federal government. That’s one way to finance your ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Intercession badly needed in this world

    Yesterday was my feast day, or as the Italians call it, my “onomastico.” Since I live in the United States, it went completely unnoticed. If I lived in Italy, however, I would have been showered with cards and phone calls. That’s because ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Porch leap looked muchbigger as a kid

    It’s no secret that porch designs have changed over the years. Drive through new Norman developments and look at the porches. Most only have room for a potted plant and a spot to drop those UPS packages, no place for a porch swing or ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Keeping the war buried

    International outrage over the downing of a Malaysian passenger plane over Ukraine on July 17 does not appear to have affected either the actions of pro-Russia forces in that country or the material support Russia is offering the rebels. ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Gaza’s victims: civilians and peace

    After more than two weeks of fighting between Hamas and Israel, there is no question which side has the upper hand. Thursday’s strike on a U.N.-run school for Palestinian children increased the Palestinian death toll to more than 760. By ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Norman Forward builds momentum

    The quiet campaign to build momentum for a citywide public works project is beginning to attract some attention....

    July 20, 2014

  • Tax those trees out of here

    I read your editorial “Pesky red cedars” in the Norman Transcript of Tuesday, July 15, 2014. I have attended two meetings where the problem of the eastern red cedar trees was discussed. Because of the drought conditions in Oklahoma, we ...

    July 20, 2014

  • Make gun safety a health issue

    Quick, are you more likely to die by a bullet or in a car crash? Common sense would seem to suggest the latter. Cars are everywhere. We are an auto-obsessed nation. To be American is to drive — everywhere. Teenagers itch to get behind the ...

    July 20, 2014

  • They just want to be free ... maybe

    Massoud Barzani, president of Iraq’s semiautonomous Kurdistan region, rattled many cages this month when he announced in parliament that the KRG would be moving ahead soon on a referendum on independence from Iraq. If Kurdistan goes ahead ...

    July 20, 2014