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~ On my Mind ~

By Jay KantorPublished 3 months ago 4 min read
Top Story - February 2024
Original 'Schtick' Art © Kantor Kreations-Kolections

The Nurse – Show them the NEEDLE...that'll get-um-well real fast...!

- Last Valentine -

NO New Memories – Some Special Ones –

YOU can be a Homeowner dealing with faulty plumbing issues, escalating tax bills, or there's always something! So, what's better? You lease an apartment and once everything's signed you're at the mercy of the landlord; lucky to get simple maintenance. Or should we, now, buy a Condo-Townhouse-Loft or whatever they're referred to as these days. And, then try to deal with the HOA's everyday nonsense once the image of the 'Curb-Appeal' wears off? Nah, the days of owning a sovereign log-cabin are 'out the window' as the American Dream: Dad sold our house for not much profit; just felt he got his innings out of it (Really).

But, that said...!

The SOLUTION ~ Campo Road ~

Remembering: We were so fortunate to be able to buy a lovely Custom-Built Hillside Home/With View. Whew, love at 1st Site~Sight; such 'Curb-Appeal.' Also spent lots of $ for improvements; brick/tile, etc. You know, you're never done with a house. But, not to be corny, we were really into it and proud. It really WAS our American-Dream!

Just finishing up the 1st phase of redo's, and as we were walking out of the front doors one morning, all of a sudden Chickens-Roosters and Hens appeared (don't quite know the difference?) But, there they were in front of our faces, across the wire fence between our properties; smelling like a poultry farm. The neighbor decided to build a CHICKEN-Coop in his back yard that went way up the hillside and in sight of our front doors.

So, why would this be interesting? Well, within minutes the police arrived (neighbor squabbles bring them out fast) along with every neighbor within the police-wailing-sirens hearing range.

After all that: Rita Louise asked, "Why don't we invite them into the house and have them get a glimpse out of the front doors?" Sounds simple, but once they realized (it honestly didn't occur to them) what we were talking about, the very next day the Chicks Cackles Were Gone – Flew-the-Coop!

We had them in for Tea The Next Day – with a Bucket of KFC 🍗 – Good-For-U-Rita Louise !

Favorite Memory: The minute I'd walk into the door Rita would drop everything and run into my arms (always). This was so-so special to me. Never to make this type of comparison to sound disrespectful, but not unlike walking into the door as an excited puppy jumps all over you. Upon reflection my thoughts are not 'comparing' Rita Louise to a dog. But, her expression of unconditional love and joy to the way a dog responds was the most precious expression of love and I will forever cherish the memory of feeling so wanted.

Fondly: We would 'Drop Top' for weekend 'Cruise-Romps' up/down the coast. But, we would rush home, missing the 'Kids' so much - even as annoying as they always were - Anyone relate to these feelings?

Once I brought home a large silver-aluminum ladder that I got on sale at Home Depot. As I was pulling into the garage Rita came up to the driver side window and said, "What have you got sticking out there?" I told her that I needed the ladder to get up on the roof to do a few things. Well, our house was slanted high into a hillside off of the main road; even an experienced roofer might have had trouble balancing himself: And, of course, my Dad would NEVER let us climb on the roof so I really don't know what I was thinking. Simply Rita said, "just because I'm a Nurse, if you get up there and break your head-open when you fall off, I'm not going to be there for you – just call The-Guy!"

Well, I never even opened up that ladder. I left it in the corner of the garage and just glanced at it from time to time as I pulled in. When Rita was gone, I couldn't look at it anymore and gave it to a friend; let him break his head open - Nah -

Rita Louise was very subtle, usually a low key non alarmist. But she knew MY limitations and my, OftenTimes, lack of judgment better than I knew myself. Such a 'Girl' – Such a 'Klutz' ~ Soul Mates ~ You Get the "Point."

We all have favorite Valentines' - Who is Yours?

Authors: Some, of course, have ulterior career or monetary motives. Simply, the Fun-of-The-Game is that we're Good-at-it – we DO it because we CAN –'We GiT' to be Writers.

"I absolutely agree, we GIT to do it, and that is the most beautiful reason to write." Villager 'Kristen Balyeat'.

Jay Kantor, Chatsworth, California

'Senior' Vocal Author - Vocal Village Community -


About the Creator

Jay Kantor

Retired: Write for "The Kids Someday"

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  3. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  1. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (29)

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  • The Invisible Writer3 days ago

    Much respect for Rita Louise. Great story

  • Hannah Moore7 days ago

    I never think it's an insult to compare a person to.a dog. Seems like a wonderful comparison to me.

  • Anna 2 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!🥳

  • Andrea Corwin 2 months ago

    Holy cow that Rita Louise -such a smart lady!! Invited them over to see and then later a bucket of KFC🤣 A wise way to deal with that. HOAs - good and bad - keep out chickens but don’t forget to ask permission and provide a paint chip before painting your house. Great story! Do a book.

  • Denise Larkin2 months ago

    A wonderful story. Congrats on a top story.

  • Lacy Loar-Gruenler2 months ago

    Jay, I am so happy to have found your writing! I'm beginning here and moving back in time. Congrats on the many Top Stories! I see why! I git it!

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    I love the take on writing in this piece. A fantastic read, Jay. Warming and lighthearted. You make it feel good to be back here!

  • Novel Allen3 months ago

    A hearty read as usual Jay. Soul mates indeed. Your fairy tale life is a joy to read. Great memories for Valentine's day. Congrats on TS.

  • Denise E Lindquist3 months ago

    Great Valentine! Congratulations on top story! 🎉🎉🎉

  • Babs Iverson3 months ago

    Congratulations on Top Story too!!!🥰🥰🥰

  • Babs Iverson3 months ago

    Yep!!! There us always something!!! Fun read and loved your family story!!!♥️♥️💕

  • Judey Kalchik 3 months ago

    Lovely memories. Thankful for those that know us better than we know ourselves

  • Kenny Penn3 months ago

    I knew from the first line this was going to be a good read, Jay. Your sense of humor really shines through here. Great piece of lit here, sir

  • Oh, I so identify with being a klutz. A friend was giving up his motorcycle & suggested I needed to try one out & experience the life. My response was, "So you really want to get rid of me that badly? As big a klutz as I am, having a motorcycle would be a quicker death sentence than hanging, lethal injection, the electric chair & even the guillotine." I'm not sure which sounds better: Rita's welcome or her wisdom. But she sounds like an amazing woman.

  • JBaz3 months ago

    A story with chickens, has to-be good. And three cheers for Rita Louise. Well done Jay, this is great

  • Shirley Belk3 months ago

    Jay, thank you for letting us get to know Rita Louise. I love the way she kept you in line. (and she still kept her humor!) Lot of love in those lines of yours...she is your forever Valentine :)

  • Cathy holmes3 months ago

    Such a wonderful story. Sounds like Rita Louise was always looking out for you. The part about the chickens gave me a good laugh. Well done, Jay.

  • Kristen Balyeat3 months ago

    Jamigo, this gave me all the feels! Laughs and tears. Beautiful memories of a beautiful love between two beautiful humans—Soul mates. Glad she talked her “klutz” out of climbing on the roof and breaking open his dome-cap. “Such a girl” for sure! lol! And your chicken story 😂 🐔 🍗 😂 My Valentine you already know— 19 years married, but a quarter of a century as each other’s Valentines. I also stop everything when he walks through the door. Even if he’s irritated the heck out of me that day, I run into his arms when I see him…right alongside Zoe (our kid-in-a-hair-suit) I love that part of this wonderful piece and that Rita did that for you. Such a beautiful love. Thank you for sharing this story. It’s perfect! And your ‘Schtick’ art is the best!!! Sending a hug to you!

  • Mark Gagnon3 months ago

    My wife and I don't bother with Valentine's Day because for us every day is Valentine's Day. I'm sure it was probably like that for you and Rita. We never go to sleep without saying I love you because at 74 & 75 you never know if that will be the last time one of us will get to hear it from the other. Great story, J-bud!

  • Suze Kay3 months ago

    My fave? A boy who asked me if I liked him in second grade. When I said yeah, and shyly asked him the same, he said “sometimes I think I might. Other times you’re annoying.” Joke’s on him! I turned out great 😎

  • Lamar Wiggins3 months ago

    There he is, theres my guy, showing off his skills again and engaging us with some February vibes. And You’re so right about the dog comparisons. They truly wear their hearts on their sleeves, if they had them, lol. Thank you J-Bud for getting my day started with this piece that brings back some of my own memories.

  • Mother Combs3 months ago

    A very lovely story, Jay. I enjoyed reading about Rita Louise.

  • Caroline Jane3 months ago

    Write on, Jay. Lovely.

  • I don't know if I've read this in a dream before or if you've actually written about this incident before but it felt very familiar to me.

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