Enos Quits Smoking 3

Happy Valentines Day! I bought Frau Grace a fishing pole and a six pack of beer. You’d think she’d say thank you. Now my first wife, Billie, never looked a gift horse in the mouth. (As a matter of fact, she was built like one) I’ve added another photo from our honeymoon. Pay attention. There will be a quiz later.

 

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Enos Quits Smoking 2

OK, I was kidding. That wasn’t really my first wife that I posted yesterday. My first wife was a lovely, sweet girl, full of life and fun. I think I still love Billie, even though we’ve been apart for so many years. I know it was my fault she left me. It was probably because I snored. Or maybe my annoying habit of sucking my teeth. I have photos from our honeymoon. Some of them are a little intimate, but what the heck!  Here they are!

 

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Enos Quits Smoking 1

The 2003-2004 collection should be ready Monday or Tuesday. I’ll keep you posted.

Did I ever show you this photo of my first wife?

I forget who asked me for this story. I’ve had lots of requests. Enos has a bad habit…

 

 

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Myakka

Friday Frau Grace and I drove down to Myakka River State Park southeast of Sarasota. (Actually, I didn’t tell her, the reason I took her there is because it’s only about ten miles from Costco just north of Venice, and that’s the only place where I can buy wide toilet paper) But it’s worth the trip if you’re in the area. The last time I was there was in June 1955. I graduated from Anna Maria Elementary (barely) and they took us for an overnight at the park. They have 6 or 8 cabins. The boys stayed in one with Mr. Linton, our teacher chaperone, the girls in the cabin about 100 feet away. I remember that Hank Lark and I snuck out in our underpants for an assault on the girls cabin. Didn’t quite make it. Mr. Linton dragged us back inside. This might be the cabin we stayed in:

There are two natural Floridas, one is the beaches and coast, the other is the inlands. Here’s what the latter looks like:

 

Pretty neat, huh?

Alligators? We got ’em:

There’s five of them. That big guy on the left has to be nearly ten feet long. This is called the Birdwalk:

There are campgrounds, and they rent canoes and bikes, and if you want you can take a tour on the lake in a big airboat. No propellers are allowed in the park:

YOu can get up close with sandhill cranes:

Wildlife exhibits. Here’s a nice stuffed panther:

He’s a big guy. There is a very nice gift shop crammed full of stuff:

It’s really worth a visit.

I’m still answering emails. I’ll get it done this week. The 2003-2004 collection of dailies should be available on Amazon on  Monday or Tuesday. When it is I’ll post a link. Meanwhile, here’s a Sunday from February 2003:

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 6

Hallelujah. 2003-2004 is done. It should be ready on Amazon in a few days. Whew.

There wasn’t much in my Baby Book. But I did find this: It’s a letter to my mother from President Jimmy Carter’s mother! She died shortly after mailing this. She must have been a sweet old lady.

My father died when I was 14. My mother married Charles Courtney when she was 65.

 

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 5

I still haven’t heard from the printer. Maybe I shouldn’t have called them stupid and officious.

Did I show this from my Baby Book? Six years old at the end of first grade.

My old man came home one day late September that year. He said “We’re moving to Florida.” That was that. He had been badly injured in an industrial accident, and he was in constant pain. The cold weather was hard on him. The trailer was a 25 foot Alma. We missed the turn to Bradenton and ended up in Ft. Lauderdale. Well, not Ft. Lauderdale  exactly. It was actually Berg’s trailer park on the edge of a swamp. I was pretty miserable. I’ll tell you about it sometime.

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 4

Ef D. (That’s the name, Don’t know if it’s a man or a woman) mentioned in an email the Bayonne Bridgemen. Never heard of them. Here they are. You even get a view of beautiful downtown Bayonne!

I had to make some changes to the 2003-2004 collection that I’ve been working on. I know what you’re saying. ” That half-wit doesn’t know what the heck he’s doing!” Hey ! Wait a minute. I happen to be the world’s smartest genius, as y0u well know. The only thing I need is somebody to blame it on. Friday, fer sur!

 

Meantime, Check this out! It’s from Mark S. I think I had one at the bar last week. The appetizer almost ate me.

 

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 3

The 2003-2004 collection should be available tomorrow. I’ve had a heck of a time. I just saw on Amazon that somebody is trying to scalp an Ernie book for (Get this) $275!!!!! Don’t fall for it. It’s like the stock market. About to take a plunge. I’m working hard to get everything in order. I’ve finally updated my Buy Stuff page. There will  be more updates soon.

Here’s the new book cover:

 

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 2

I’ve gotten so many emails, I want to say thank yo for all of them. I will answer them all, but it will take some time. Here is an example. Ted (by the way, his email address is one of my characters. I don’t want to tell you which one in order to protect his privacy) met me years ago.

I don’t know where to start but let’s start with you.  I hope all is well with you and your wife and while I’ll miss the Piranha Club immensely, I am happy for you and you getting to retire.

I’ve been a regular reader of the Piranha Club (and Ernie) for as long as I can remember.  It’s has brought great joy and countless laughs to me, my wife and friends.  Let me mention a few ways in which you have touched my life;

I met you years ago with a friend of mine in Washington DC at a fundraiser for the National Cartoon Museum.  I purchased one of your original Sunday comics that day (Elvis turning back a car’s odometer by driving it backwards around the used car lot).  You also drew me a picture of Enos holding a martini which you addressed to my wife (my friend and I were suppose to head back to Philadelphia that night but decided to spend the night instead in Georgetown, my wife was not happy but your drawing eased my pain.)

I once brewed a batch of beer that I called “Ernie’s Beer”.  The label featured Ernie as well as Earl and listed among its finest ingredients “water from the swamps of Bayonne”.  I think I actually gave you a bottle when we met that day (or at least a label, I like beer).

I also founded a chapter of the Piranha Club at my watering hole, the Chestnut Hill Athletic Bocce Club.  While the allure of the chapter has since faded at the club, I still have the chapter certificate hanging proudly in my office along with the art work mentioned above.  Call it my little shrine to all that is Ernie and the Piranha Club.  I also have a number of Earl lapel pins as well as a few of your books.

One of our favorite strips was when Zerblatt was looking for a part for his spaceship and found it in a hardware shop.  Zerblatt states in the last panel “You’ve got to love these mom & pop hardware stores”.  My wife has worked at a little mom & pop hardware store in Chestnut Hill, PA for 20 years and that strip is taped to the front of the register for everyone to see and get a laugh from it.  But your observation was spot on, those mom and pop stores carry things you’ll never find in a Home Depot or Lowes.

Damn, I could go on and on.  I’d love to get together for a beer sometime but not sure if I’ll be in the Tampa Bay area any time soon.  You and all your wonderful characters will be greatly missed be myself and many, many other fans.

Take care and good luck!

Ted B

Can you see why I’m so appreciative of all the mail you’ve sent? Thank you.

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Sid’s Rent-a-Truck Part 1

Lars Å from Sweden asked to see this sequence from the fifth week of Ernie. Effie had already made her appearance a couple weeks earlier, hence the reference to deja vu. By the way, for those of you who weren’t in my high school French class taught by the laid back Mr. Gobin who didn’t teach French too well (He always had this lazy grin on his face. I can see him now leaning back in his chair grinning at Ilona, the 19 year old blonde Hungarian immigrant. Whenever the topic came up, we would ask him,”What’s your favorite sport, Mr. Gobin?” He’d lean back in his chair, eyes half closed and say “Parlor rugby.”) Oh, I was going to tell all you people who didn’t study French with Mr. Gobin that “deju vu” was French for “already seen”. But you knew that. The Bayonne Tattler is the local newspaper. But you knew that too.

By the way I’m still working on the books. I worked all day today on the 2003-2004 collection. It’s 5 o’clock. Time for a little relaxin’!

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