Reminisce of Days Gone By… {Part IV}


Pops didn’t take no mess!  He was a quiet man who carried a BIG stick…  more than that, he knew how to swing that stick!  He was something like E. F. Hutton… “When he spoke, everybody listened”!  I mean even the cats and dogs would stop dead in their tracks!  lol!

I have many stories that I can tell you about my dad, but since I’ve been sharing butt-whippings these past two days, I share one more that I’ll never forget!  Let me set it up:

If you knew me before the age of 21, then you knew that I grew up on a street called Eastbrook Circle.  The good thing about growing up in a circle is that the street could be used as a multi-purpose field due to the fact that not much car traffic took place in cul-de-sacs… I’m sorry, they were called circles back then.  Some of the multi-purposes of Eastbrook circle was that it could be used for Hop-Scotch, Kickball, Football, and my favorite… Knock-Out-Catch-Out!  It’s a game kinda like baseball for individuals.  If you caught a ball in the air, you got to bat.  If you caught 2 balls off one bounce, you got to bat.  If you caught 3 ground balls, you got to bat.  Mind you all ages played this game…

Here’s my story, I was about 8 years old and was one of the youngest to play Knock-Out-Catch-Out.  Alfred Marks was at bat and I had ran down 2 of his ground balls.  All I needed was one more ground ball and I could bat!  YEAH!!!!  Then I heard that E. F. Hutton voice saying “RICHIE… COME HERE”!  Puzzled and not wanting to leave the game, I ran in the house to see what Pops wanted.  He was laying on the couch, 5 feet away from the television and he looked at me and said, “Change the Channel…”

{This was before they had 3D TVs.   This was before the remote control TV…  This is before WE had cable…  this was when we only had like 4 channels… ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS!  We had an long antenna on the house to get those! LOL!  Key was, if you wanted to watch a different channel, you had to get up and turn the top dial… then the bottom!  LOL}

I looked at him like, I know you just didn’t call me in from Knock-Out-Catch-Out when I have 2 of Alfred’s ground balls with the possibility of getting that third, so that I could go bat ONLY to tell me to change the channel? Thinking about the consequences, I hurriedly changed the top dial and ran out!  By the time I got to the end of the driveway, I heard that voice again saying “RICHIE… COME HERE”! So I did a 180 and went back in the house.  He said “You didn’t finish what you started… I didn’t ask you to change the channel, I told you to change the channel”.

This was the last straw!!!!  I looked at him and told him to change your own damn channel and how dare you call me in from my favorite game when I’m so close to bat!  And next time, if you want me, you better get up off the couch and catch me if you can!!!  I WAS BAD!!!  I also said all of this in my mind! Sad part for me is that my dad was a mind reader! LOL



I did learn something from that episode… “Always Finish What You Start”!  This world is not going to give you many opportunities to get a second chance to get it right.  Although I didn’t get to bat that day, my day has come…  Therefore, I’m swinging at almost every good ball that comes my way.

I can honestly say that I had childhood that I many people would die to have and I wouldn’t change it for nothing!  I didn’t understand earlier in my life why Pops wasn’t always available but I understand NOW that he was out making a living so that we could have clothes on our backs.. food on the table… and a roof over our heads.  If I grow up to be half the man that he is I know that everything is going to be alright.

That old saying is true… it takes a village to raise a child.  A community has a vested interest in seeing to it that every child is well cared for, well educated, and well raised. And the best way for a child to be well cared for, well educated, and well raised is for every person in the community to have a vested interest in that happening.

…Eastbrook was my village.

What will you reminisce of days gone by…

Part V tomorrow:  Finale!

Posted on March 31, 2011 in Personal

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Responses (12)

  1. Richie Carter
    March 31, 2011 at 5:42 pm · Reply

    And thank you Aunt Bern!

  2. Richie Carter
    March 31, 2011 at 5:42 pm · Reply

    Thanks Valerie!

  3. Bernice Richardson
    March 31, 2011 at 5:02 pm · Reply

    I am impressed with both your style and stories!

    Aunt Bern

  4. Valerie Simmons Britton
    March 31, 2011 at 3:28 pm · Reply

    This Valerie loved her time spent with the Carter family!

  5. Valorie
    March 31, 2011 at 11:18 am · Reply

    Another winner!!–You forget to mention Dad wasn’t always around because he was out making money so we could go to the Skating Rink. One day, Colonial Hills was having a skating party after school. I asked Dad if I could go. He pulled out a few dollars and said “You gonna take my last dollars?” I reached for it and didn’t look back! Thanks Dad. I had a blast.

    • Richie Carter
      March 31, 2011 at 11:34 am · Reply

      Only Valorie or Von could get away with that! Must be something about first born and last born!

  6. Kisha
    March 31, 2011 at 7:02 am · Reply

    It is great to see a family stick together and reminisce on the past. You all have given me great laughs. Thanks for sharing your family with me. :0)

  7. Van
    March 31, 2011 at 6:46 am · Reply

    If ever someone deserved a butt whipping, it was you. Can’t wait to hear some of the thoughts of Nicholas…………..

    • Richie Carter
      March 31, 2011 at 11:33 am · Reply

      Van –
      By the time Nicholas is able to tell them, they’ll have 1-800 numbers for parents on kids!

  8. Von
    March 31, 2011 at 6:15 am · Reply

    OK, you have me tearing up a little. This was a wonderful read and a good memory to share!

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