When I called Karen Adams up in Chicago, she refused to sell me bricks. Instead she insisted on giving them to me. You see, Karen is member No. 213 of the International Brick Collectors Association and that is the way we do it. I am sure I will meet Karen someday to personally thank her for the bricks.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Becky and I spent the
long weekend in Chicago. High on my list was to meet Stacy's new students. Josh is a playwright and producer and Svetlana is a writer/waitress/ graduate student so we had to meet at a way hip coffee house in Wicker Park. Too bad I hadn't brought my own attempts at Russian fiction: Strahk (Fear) or Dvehadtsat Minyt (12 Minutes).
After Jim got downsized in the tech world he took up English as a Second Language and moved to Russia for several years. but he never had time to learn Russian - until now. That just could be the reflection of the Green Mill Jazz Club in the window. It helps to have an in the know daughter like Sarah to pick out spots like this.
Becky met Pam 30 years ago in downtown Cincinnati. Pam is a free spirit who has lived in Athens,Ohio, New Orleans, Pickens, South Carolina and now Chicago. It was at her daughter Niva's wedding that Barb Ernst told me about the International Brick Collectors. There are plenty of Pam stories much too wild for this blog.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Becky really surprised me on my birthday. She approached Newport city comissioner Frank Peluso at a recent meeting and got him to part with one the bricks from his fire pit. They came from the Pink Pussy Cat, a Newport strip joint back in the 60's run by our old friend and neighbor Callie Blaine Eisner whose husband Sammy got gunned down at the club. According to Frank the brick has paint on it from the sign proclaiming the most beautiful girls in town are inside.
Grahn, Kentucky is a company town named for Old Man Grahn, the founder of Louisville Fire Bricks. He owned every one of the 200 houses that comprised the town. Everyone made bricks. Now there are only a few workers making speciality bricks the old way.
I asked the forklift operator how come he got to watch the others do all the work. He replied he had to work there for 40 years before he got to get on the fork lift. That was three years ago.