it is true, today is his birthday. And if any of you know
him, make sure you give him big birthday wishes along with
making certain to give him a hard time for turning 54. Well,
now Ive gone and done it. Ive let the cat out
of the bag, as it were, and told everyone his age. Actually,
men dont seem to really be bothered about revealing
their age. And Im not one to get all fussy if my age
comes up in question. Im so open about how old I am,
that it really is no secret whatever. But I have met some
women in my life that are so funny about their age, that when
even the subject comes up, they sort of check out.
Ive actually never understood. Maybe it has something
to do with my own particular genetics. Case in point is my
Mom. Shes 75 years young (oops, there I go letting the
cat out of the bag again) doesnt look or act anywhere
near that age, in fact, she plays tennis a couple of times
a week and is an avid golfer in the summer.
recall our family vacations always being activity oriented,
such as skiing in the winter, walking tours in Europe, even
our yearly Florida sojourns were not just about laying around
on the beach, but rather walking the beach, collecting shells,
trying to swim with dolphins, and major lap swimming in the
Olympic-sized pool. In other words, the Spira Family has never
been slackers, and I dont think ever will be.
Herman grew up on a dairy farm. Which by no means indicates
that he was anything like a slacker either. His chores began
before the sun came up and included feeding and milking the
herd of cows, raising horses, cleaning everyones pens
(I cant bear to go into detail here, in fact when he
started telling me about it, I was forced to block my ears
and start singing, "I dont want to hear it!").
And then there was raising the crops to feed the cattle, fence
mending, machinery fixing, barn and building repairs, in fact,
he tells me they built their own hay wagons (whatever they
are) and did their own welding of broken metal.
even had their own dairy plant, bottling their own milk and
washing their own milk bottles before delivery. Yeah, they
even had to deliver their milk to their customers. Which they
did originally by horse and buggy (before Herman) then by
truck, which actually had the family name on it. By then it
was the year Herman was born, which was 1948.
brings us back to January 20th. His birthday. Today. I remember
him telling me about the time his father offered him the farm
while he was in college. When Herman asked him, "Gee
Dad, what do you think?" His fathers response was
swift, "Farming is 365 days a year, no time off for holidays,
sickness or vacations. And I think farming is going down the
tubes. If you can do anything else, go do it."
has. So, once again, happy birthday Herman. Wherever you are
now in your life, at least your not shoveling
I wasnt going to go there.
Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career
in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from
Caroga Lake here in Fulton County. Previous columns may be
accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com"