Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Work Ethic and good Manners... where are they ?

When I was a kid, a long time ago, we were taught to call adults mam or sir. For a child to be disrespectful to a grown up meant a trip to the wood shed. Grown ups were respectful to each other too. People were nicer to each other that they are today.

Store clerks were pleasant too. Back then a customer in a store received good service and a thank you for shopping there. But that's all gone with the wind. It's a cold hard nosed world out there today.

I think a lot of attention to the customer left with the demise of the family owned , or, mom and pop stores. Success to them meant keeping the customer happy but with the chain stores, there is no closeness between customers and store owners.

The work ethic of the past is just that, a thing of the past. It seems like the clerk, or the technican or whoever the person is who is supposed to be offering service just doesn't care about the job .

Here is an example. I am severly hearing impaired and to use the telephone, I rely on the TTY, relay system. The relay system is for hard of hearing or deaf persons. It would seem to follow that an operator who works for the TTY company would understand that it is for people who have severe hearing prblems. That seems clear to me. But, recently when my daughter called me on the TTY system she asked the operator to speak slowly to me when I answered the phone. The operator asked, " Why, is she hard of hearing, or something ?". Unbelieable!

Till next time.
Marion Springer

Friday, April 24, 2009

If Icould live my life over again what would I do differently ?

If I could live my life over, what would I change ? What would I do differently the second time around ?
Well, Let's see, on the plus side, I have lived a good life, not deleriously happy every moment, but that's life, right ? I was happy more than I was unhappy.
Docko and I raised four healthy and good children to adulthood. That's another plus.
I was able to live my dream of flying while caring for my home and family, another plus.
My marriage lasted for over 48 years, chalk up another plus mark.
I believe my husband Docko, was happy with me ( most of the time ) ,and with our children ( most of the time) and he enjoyed our life together ( most of the time), that's three more plus marks. From the vantage point of 80 years of age I think it says a lot to have more pluses than negatives in my long life.

To be sure, there were times when my patience was sorely tried, especially when the four children were small. It seemed that my four kids and several of their friends were constantly in the house wanting something to eat, or wanting me to taxi them somewhere, or I had to go pick up a kid from somewhere. And all the sibiling squabbles I had to settle!

The house cleanig , laundry, cooking, and taxi service and peacemaker for the family was a round robin...it had no beginning and no end. It was just constant!

There was sweet little Coby with the face of an angel , forever standing in a corner because she had mischieviously stuck her foot out and tripped one of the other children as they walked by. And Dave, one day he leaped from the roof of the garage onto a tree limb like Tarzan. The limb broke and so did his arm when he hit the ground. The same summer my youngest Donna, fell off the porch railing and broke her wrist . Tough little trooper that she was, she finished eating her peanut butter and jam sandwich on the way to the hospital...no tears for the wrist. And Linda, always , always, a free spirit. Yeah, those children ran me ragged and at times I wondered if they would ever grow up. Then suddenly they did and then they left home to follow their own drummer through life.

I remember having tears in my eyes as I watched my baby Donna, walk down the driveway to meet the school bus on her first day of school. It was long ago but it seems like yesterday. Today Donna is a grown up lady and getting ready to retire from the post office.

So, if I could do it again ???? Well, what I really would like if I could live my life over again, would be to raise my children again. I realize now from the point of time how precious those early days were and how swiftly they are gone. Yes, I would love to raise my children again.

Till next time.
Marion springer

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A good Tired

On Sunday I spent the day puttering about in my decrepit old hangar. I did a little work in there but mostly just did house keeping chores. I put up a rack of shelves for storage of oil, funnel, tools, and such and I put some screws in the worn boards of the door to firm the door up some.

On the wall I hung a framed picture of myself flying my gyro . The photo is from an article in Aviation History magazine and is about my gyro flying career. I feel a little self conscious about the title of the photo...it says, 'Gyrocopter Queen'. But hey, Teddy presented the framed picture to me and wanted it to be placed on the hangar wall. Self consciousness be darned, I don't want to hurt his feelings by not hanging the picture. So, it graces the wall to be joined in time with many photos of my gyro flying friends.

Awhile back I made curtains and installed them on the hangar windows. Some of the guys laughed at the thought of curtains on the windows of an aircraft hangar...they thought it was too cutesy or girley or something, I guess. But the curtains give me light inside when they are open and they keep prying eyes from seeing inside when they are closed and no one is around.
Besides, they look classy.

All in all the hangar is looking good all except the ratty old roof which needs to be repaired. But that job doesn't have my name on it. I think my children would have a canniption if I got up on top of the roof but they don't have to worry about me climbing up there. Oh Man, I would hate it if I got up there and the roof gave way under me and I fell on the gyro and damaged it !

So after a day of this and that in the hangar I came home tired , but it was a good tired. I define a good tired as being tired from doing something I really don't mind doing, like working to make things better for my gyro , as in fixing up the hangar . Another kind of tired to me is when I've done some thing that I dislike doing but it has to be done. Housecleaning, grocery shopping, yard work , for example , are just plain old tired and nothing good about it.

So, about 5 PM I came home tired ( good tired) got a cup of coffee , sat down in the easy chair and turned the TV on to see how Tiger Woods did at the Masters. Well, Tiger didn't get the green jacket this time so if he went home tired, it probably wasn't it wasn't a good tired.

Till next time.
Marion Springer

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

That's how it is today

I was talking to a friend a few days ago about how rude sales people are today. I mentioned that I had stood in line at the checkout counter at the supermarket for almost 30 minutes while the checker and the girl doing the bagging waited on only two customers ahead of me .

The two women were doing more talking with each other than they were checking and bagging groceries. They were just visiting while customers cooled their heels in line waiting to be waited on. By the time I got to the head of the line my legs were tired and my back was aching from the long period of standing . My patience level had dropped to zero.

Finally, when the checking and bagging of my groceries had completely stopped so they could continue their discussion, I said to the bagger, the one doing the most talking, " If you will stop talking the clerk can do her work and I can get out of this store before bedtime". It was about 11 AM at the time. All converstion between the two stopped and they finished up with my groceries very quickly but the bagger put the bag containing the eggs in the cart hard enough to break two eggs..." take that, old woman", she was probably thinking. So I got two broken eggs for my auduacity in speaking up.

My friend then told me of his recent experience with a salesgirl in a Radio Shack. The salesgirl was leaning on her elbows on the counter while a male co-worker was standing beside her patting her posterior. After waiting to pay for his items and being ignored , my friend said to the sales girl , " I want to join the party". She asked him what he meant...he said , " I want to come behind the counter and do like he is doing".

With all seriousness, the girl replied that he couldn't do that. My friend couldn't believe that she didn't get the message that he was being sarcastic and was in his own way telling her that she
should be waiting on customers.

So he and I talked about the work ethics, the rudness and generally how different is is today from the time I was young. He said me, " you just have to put up with it for that's how is is today ". In other words, the ethics and morals and courtesy and consideration of the past is gone and forgotten, outdated.

I don't believe that common courtesy , consideration for others and good work ethics is ever outdated. They are just not practiced today. The best book I ever read was ,
" Atlas Shrugged ," by Ayn Rand. It was all about personal responsibility in everything. The book was published in 1957 and has been in print ever since. I read recently that ' Atlas Shrugged', is used by most big businesses as part of their code of ethics by their management...I can't believe that managment took the book seriously considering that so many of those big companies are being bailed out by government today because of mismanagement and how so many of the CEO's took huge salaries and split when the company received the government's support money.

Yeah, things are sure different today but not better, sad to say.

Till next time.
Marion Springer

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Where do other people keep their " stuff ? "

Small items seem to collect at my home and I don't know where to put them. a book mark, a small stapler, Several mechanical pencils without any lead...a small tube of lead for the mechanical pencils, several small spiral bound note pads, a couple of post it note pads, a bean flipper that came apart, old sun glasses that don't work for my eyes anymore, a dog collar , a bunch of emails that I was going to answer about two years or so ago but for some reason didn't, and a lot of other stuff that just doesn't seem to belong anyplace.

I live in a mobile home so storage is limited, thank goodness, for if it wasn't then I would likely have much more stuff to try to keep out of sight. So I do toss some of it but the good stuff or stuff I might need some day and other stuff gets put in the middle drawer of my computer desk.

It's risky putting anything in that drawer because the drawer is not attached securely. If I bump the drawer it comes tumbling down to the floor and when that happens, my six year old , forever young cat Georgie , has a great time going thrugh the stuff while I am trying to pick it up.

Yesterday the much overloaded drawer fell to the floor and this time I will have to repair it before I can put it back in the desk and refill it with the stuff that fell out of it. Meanwhile, I put everything that came out of the drawer into a plastic dish pan and set it on the table ( the loaded down table is a whole other story ). Georgie who has always considered the desk drawer her personal property anyway, is in kitty heaven now for she naps on top of all the stuff in the dish pan and when she wakes up she entertains herself by pawing through and scattering the stuff she digs up from the pan.

I wish I had the nerve to dump the contents that used to be in the drawer into the trash but there's probably stuff in there that I will need some day.

But I have been wondering, where do other people keep their stuff ? I have a friend whose house looks like no one lives there . Nothing out of place, no signs of life there at all, just antiseptically clean and neat.
Another person I know vaccums her living room so that the vaccum cleaner leaves a pattern that no one dares to step on and muss up the pattern. Her house has no stuff anywhere to be seen. It's just clean and neat and without life.

I know these people must have things like pencil erasers, extra key holders, pens, note pads, and the kind of stuff that overloaded my middle desk drawer but they keep it well put away and neat. Tha'ts something I never have gotten the hang of.

But at least Georie is happy with all my stuff sitting on the table in the plastic dish pan where she has unlimited access to it.

Till next time.
Marion Springer

Monday, April 6, 2009

80th Birthday gyro Celebration flight

Last week I reached the grand old age of 80 years of age and to commemorate the day I made a birthday celebration flight in my gyro. The day was cold with the wind blowing about 25 mph. Just right for a gyro flight.
After conducting a preflight inspection of the gyro and pronouncing all OK, we refueled and I suited up in my orange flight suit and helmet and cool looking shades then strapped into the seat, ready to fly.

Since my engine doesn't have a starter someone has to pull the propeller through to get it started so my friend Peter Prentice, also a gyro pilot, propped the machine for me.

My daughter Linda and another gyro friend Teddy, were there with cameras at the ready.

I started the blades spinning with the prerotator and with the strong wind helping they were ready to fly in no time. After a short take-off run I lifted off and went straight up. What a thrill the take off is in wind!

The flight was around a half hour in length, not long at all but wonderful! I can't think of a better way to celebrate a big 80th birthday than to fly a gyro.

Teddy made a video of the birthday flight and put it on YouTube. If you want to check it out , look under Tadgyro , then Marion Springer 80 birthday flight.

The amazing thing is that the magic of gyro flying is as great today as it was back when I was young. May it always be so.

Till next time
marion Springer