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(Click the pic to enlarge.)

A thread on Face book today got this going. The points went back and forth about whether or not American’s should be off work on Election day. Would this help bring out voters? Is it necessary to close businesses when we have early voting or mail-in with even prepaid postage in some states?

You know what? Screw work on election day.

Either call-in on Election Day, take the day off or have it off as a National Holiday. It doesn’t matter if being off on Election Day would increase voting tun-out.  We have to stop the madness in America; we have to throw off this, ‘work until you drop,’ yoke American Big business has used to harness American workers.

American companies and big business have come to value profit more than life, and it’s wrong.

American’s should be off on Election Day–it shows and teaches respect for the process; the same for President’s Day. Businesses should close and Americans should use President’s Day to remember the leaders that have helped shape our country and World. Someone once said that actions speak louder than words. It’s true, our children watch what we do at least as much as they listen to what we say. Look both ways; it’s bed time; eat your veggies: how’s all that jabbering working for you as a parent? No, leaders, parents, teachers, workers and politicians should show the way, walk the walk as well as talk the talk. We all need to stop making work the point.

The work ethic in America is bonkers, and we should keep all our Holidays and add Election Day and President’s day to them. We should also throw in four, ‘ the weather is too nice to work,’ days to boot. Farmer’s knew their horses needed to rest; American workers need a rest, too.

What’s nuts about having election Day off? Here’s what’s nuts: we used to not have just President’s Day off when I was young, but Jefferson’s, Washington’s and Lincoln’s birthdays off! It’s true! These three days used to be school holidays and many businesses closed as well. More, every business, but for a very few, closed EVERY Sunday! That’s right—just about no one worked on any Sunday—not ever.

The sky will not fall if America stops the madness and gives workers more time off during each work year.

The workers will drop if we don’t give them more rest, not the sky.

Think! Our American society used to give workers more days off than it does now and what happened? America boomed; that’s what happened. American workers were happier, they were better educated and they enjoyed our society.

Sixty years of decreased earnings (when adjusted for inflation), multitasking nightmares, skinnier staffs with additional work to do, the loss of pensions and less time off has reduced American workers to what we are now: an over worked under paid discontented work force.

The rulers, owners and greedy big businesses have been flushing American workers down the toilet for over sixty years now and it needs to stop.

Let’s turn things and us around.

Let’s take Election Day off so we can elect the right people to office. It’s often said that change comes slowly. You know what? Maybe not.  Maybe change is right around the corner; maybe the sun will come up on America. Maybe American voters can stop the madness.

I hope so.

Franque23

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My wife recently told  a news story on T.V. to “Go Fund Yourself.” It broke me out in fits of laughter….as my wife often does. She’s smart, a wit-full companion that keeps me thinkin’. Thing is, my first editor of everything you’ve ever read from me is also sharp, and more helpful than you know…. Barbara sent me this tonight,, and I thought in our time of strife it might do us all good to take a look at the,’Will  to Survive’. It’s in all of us, to fight for existence, and that we shall prevail…just look at the trees: they lead the way.

Enjoy, and thanks again to Barbara for the link.

Peace, Franque23

Trees have been around for about 370 million years, and as you can see from these incredible pictures, there’s a good reason why they’ve survived for so long.  Whether they’re growing in the middle of gale-force winds, on the tops of rocky platforms, inside concrete tunnels, or even growing out of each other, trees know how to survive in places that few living organisms can, which explains why the planet is host to around 3 trillion adult trees that cover an estimated 30% of the earth’s land.  Considering that plants produce the vast majority of the oxygen that we breathe, we should all think ourselves very fortunate that trees are as resilient as they are.  We wouldn’t even be here if they weren’t.

#1  A Place Of Enchantment
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#2  This Palm Tree Fell Over And Curved Right Back Up
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#3  This Tree Fell Over And Grew 4 More Trees Out Of Itself
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#4  The Only Tree That Survived The Tsunami In Japan Between 70,000 Trees. Now Protected And Restored.
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#5  Tree Of Life – Olympic National Park, Washington
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#6   A Tree’s Root Spill Over The Sidewalk
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#7   Nature FTW
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#8   A Tree Growing Through Speed Limit Sign
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#9  This Tree That Refuses To Die
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#10  This Tree Still Has Its Leaves Because Of The Light Shining On It
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#11  Life Finds A Way
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#12  Tree Roots Extend Across A Gap To The Mainland For Nutrients
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#13  Life Finds A Way
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#14  Ta Promh Temple In Cambodia
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#15  Striving
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#16  Someone Hung His Skates On A Small Tree When He Was Younger. He Forgot He Had Left Them There And Found Them Years Later

#17  A Tree Growing On Another Tree
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#18 This Tree Is Growing Out Of Another Tree
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#19 This Tree Grew Out Of The Stump Of A Dead Tree And Then The Stump Rotted Away
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#20 A Tree Grows From Third Floor Window
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#21 Life Finds A Way
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#22 I Spent Ages Staring At This Tree Before Taking This Pic. I Hope You Find It As Fascinating As I Did
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#23 This Floating Island That Grew At The End Of A Partially Sunken Tree
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#24 This Wooden Chair My Parents Bought Started Sprouting Leaves
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#25 The Old Piano Tree
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#27 One Tree On My Street Refused To Accept Winter
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#28 My Sister’s Tree Is Eating Her Fence
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#29 This Tree Growing Through A Fence
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#30 Life,Uh… Finds A Way
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I’ve always loved seeing movie footage of the past. It makes this short film below that more special in that I was born and raised just outside of The Big Apple and considered it my stompin’ grounds during my High School days.

More, I’ve had a couple of odd coincidencedinks in life that revolve around my early years spent in New York City. I’d often spent time in  New York City, The Village,  roaming the walk down shops after munching on a seventy-five cent pizza slice. By far, the Leather shops were my favorite to visit. I was immediately attracted to the smell of finished leather goods, their shine, polished to deep warm browns or beige and tan colors.  One shop owner in particular was a bit more out going than most, and that was wrapped by a quick sense of humor all tied together by tremendous wit. His name was, Byan. He stood tall with penetrating dark eyes that glowed above the flash of  his smile. Our conversations were never long but they played in my head usually throughout the following days. Mysterious, that was the word for this fellow.

Fast forward eight or so years and I’m attending a bluegrass festival in Hog Town Creek, just outside Gainesville, Florida. I was singing lead for an agent at that time, traveling to gigs with one of the three bands he managed. I’m thinking my pay was about a flat 75 dollars per week. The music drew me to the festival and there the smell of leather goods at a nearby booth attracted my attention. Sure enough, it was, Byan, running a leather stand. It turned out his parents owned a ranch nearby and he’d left NYC to return to his family’s home. He wanted to learn how to play guitar and I was intrigued with leather work… We traded skills and I ended up being a leather worker running three shops for the next 14 years.

Of course, there’s more. I got to know my wife of 38 years while  learning the leather trade from, Byan. We made items for the local leather shops in Gainesville—there were about four of them in town. I often worked on sewing leather hats of all shapes and sizes. A few years later found my wife and I working into all hours of the night sewing wallets and visors as we started our first leather business. It was years later when all of this came to circle.

Thirty years later, my wife and I visited Denton, England, along with her Brother and his wife. It was there that my wife’s family were once hatters. It turns out they started in Denton and finally made it to New York City and I suspect made ,’a killing,’ as they say in retail. Why? Well just look at what everyone is wearing in the film below. Wow. The story of my wife’s ,’Hatters,’ family is also amazing, but that’s for another time.

Enjoy this glimpse into another era; a time gone by.

One more thing: the air seems much more polluted in this film than it appears to be in New York City now. Maybe too much,’Clean,’ coal back then?

Franque23


(Please note the book recommendation below this post.)

Of course, the President’s so-called tax breaks are simply theft from the American workers to give more money to the already super wealthy—everyone knows this. And dropping controls on pollution dumping into our streams and rivers is completely stupid. Everyone knows this as well, even if they drink the, “Kool-aid.” But,  why do some people support agenda’s that they know are wrong?

Definition of brainwashing 

1: a forcible indoctrination to induce someone to give up basic political, social, or religious beliefs and attitudes and to accept contrasting regimented ideas(Merriam-webster)

That’s right. People support ideas and practices that they know are wrong because they have been brainwashed to think differently about what they know is true. This is what has happened to the Trump supporters. And, really, I don’t blame Trump’s supporters for their beliefs as much as I want them to understand what has happened to them.  We need Trump’s supporters to, ‘Snap out of it.’ We need our republican counterparts in this society to  wake up and smell the coffee; we need to understand that many of us have been indoctrinated to vote against our own well-being.

The GOP regime has relentlessly assaulted the American voters with a barrage of fear-loaded slogans that aren’t true, (Immigrants are taking your jobs—not true.)slide-of- mouth motto’s (America, love it or leave it—against all American principles!) Make America great again!—ha!, and the famously flawed,’Trickle Down theory’.) It’s all a lie told over and over again,.

The verbose reiterated barrage against pollution controls, banking regulation, the U.N, the Gay, the Woman and less fortunate are all lies propelled into the minds of so many. And all of them by means of one simply truth: say anything well enough, long enough and often enough and it doesn’t matter whether it’s true or not—people will believe what they have been taught to believe through repetition.

But is Trump a fool? Many point to his mid-range popularity and say, “It ain’t so.” But here’s the thing: Trump’s standings, polling, none of that changes what he is: wrong in just about everything.

Trump’s poor vision with regard to pursuing fossil fuel development verses renewable exploration and expansion, his disregard for increasing pollution, human rights, specifically women’s rights and minorities, his attack on EAP standards and lack of support for science advancement are a few hot spots to focus on when it comes to thinking Trump a fool.

So much about this man is wrong and stupid, yet so many cheer him on??? I’m thinking a fool can win at cards, but not at life. I hope I’m right. Right now, we’re in the mists of a Russian(and others) financed brain-washing campaign of the American people. The results aren’t pretty.

Like it or not, our population has been worked on by powerful interests so that we’ve become divided from one another. We’ve been told that the under educated cannot reason or fend for themselves(not true); we’ve been told that ‘Southerner’s,’ are racists and that blacks and minorities are somehow inferior(not true). And to what gain? Remember, United we stand; divided we fall. This is why some American’s have been taught to hate and disregard reason. The powerful want to control us, use us, and all to their own gain at our cost.

The first thing to teach an indoctrinated, brainwashed person is that they have been. This is the first step back to reason.

Marching, yelling and sign holding might help identify our difference of opinion, but teaching and informing our populace about the tools being used in our society to cause us to work against our own interest is of utmost importance. We need to identify those mechanisms present in America that work to divide us and cause us to not protect our own welfare and root them out.

Now is a great time to understand we have been brainwashed as a people. Now is a great time for us to trump this brainwashing and get back together.

 

Franque23

History can teach us a lot and, Revolution is not a dinner Party, by Compesti, gives good insight into China’s Mao zedong revolution..maybe at your local library…too.

https://www.amazon.com/Revolution-Dinner-Party-Chang-Compestine/dp/0312581491


Okay so I’m not talkin’ about the boob-heads in Congress, but, to be thoroughly transparent, the ones that go walking by—not that I’ve ever noticed.

So, let’s get this straight, or straighter.(yes-I’m a guy)

It is all about what we know and hope to learn. Otherwise, we might as well live inside a brown bag and bang about in it for the time we live. Either we look out and try to learn from history  as well as the present or we live like a snail clinging to the side of a Grand Canyon wall without a clue.

But, what does this have to do with boobs?

I’m not sure when we all started to notice…

(1957- Sophia Loren glimpses an eye-full of Jane Mansfield.)

Back in my day (and on another planet) the expressions we used to endear ourselves to our friends as we corrected their thinking often didn’t sound so friendly. Thing is, they were. When we called someone a,’boob,’ what we meant was,’Hey-you’re wrong, but you’re part of our group so get it right.’ My world of friends moved along with a crap load of expressions that somehow cheered us up! “Hey, brain dent,” was a nice way of saying hello. “You’re a mistake looking to happen,” could ring loud and clear at any moment along with, jerk, dope, bozo, buffoon, schmuck, doofus, klutz, nincompoop, nimrod(predecessor of dick-head if you ask me) and, of course, boob-head. Yep, the lingo connected us all through a barrage of slander and smiles. And thank goodness I was born when pillock and snollygoster had gone out of fashion-that would’ve been embarrassing.

“You boob!” first bounced its way into our visceral in the book, Tropic of Cancer, in 1930. My time meant Play Boy was propping up large Boobs. That lit a racy fire laced by a litany of terms: twins, headlights, leaders, points, jugs was common, hangers never made sense in my young crowd, sweater puppies worked but, strawberry cream? No, I don’t think so… Hooters, yes, and way before the chain so call us all psychic.

It’s not just men that celebrate the boob.

This is a picture of a young Marilyn  Monroe. Is there anything missing?

I’m really not sure;

I am sure she had to bare all to make the movie scene.

And Dolly,( ‘I have not had surgery’) yeah, she seemed to grow.

Notice any difference?

Just asking?

Yep. I do think it was when I was young that the preference for large breast took hold in our society…and I have to wonder, no, I know, how that made/makes a large percentage of girls and women feel about themselves.

It’s all completely wrong, almost an obscene blight in our society that how one aspect of a women can define their over all appeal. But, it may have always been this way. Way back in the day—like 250 years ago or so—large (we call them voluptuous) women were all the rage. The skinny women of today would be outcast, shamed, no matter the size of their breast. So, it’s all odd…

No, these breasts aren’t natural……

Thing is, this entire post is about breast, and what their size has done to us as a society, and the people it’s hurt…

Okay-here’s the point.

According to a report released by the American Association of Plastic Surgeons, 279,143 breast augmentations were performed in 2015. For those who are keeping track, that’s a 31% increase from the number performed back in 2000. Yes, the American obsession with abundance has officially gone ‘breastal’.

http://www.alternet.org/sex-amp-relationships/big-boob-love-what-life-large-breasts”

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, breast implants are now the number one cosmetic procedure in the United States. How ironic is it then that a procedure that is undertaken to supposedly enhance a woman’s self-esteem has resulted in a finding that women who get breast implants are at least three times more likely to commit suicide.

http://www.salon.com/2013/08/17/9_weird_facts_about_breasts/”>http://www.salon.com/2013/08/17/9_weird_facts_about_breasts

See? This breast thing is a mess. I’m thinking this whole ‘MeToo’ movement will get us out of this dumb, fascination with breast and help us guys, at least, focus on the female’s being. That would be nice, enlightening, a step in the right direction.

Heck, we might even drop one hundred terms men use for breasts and call them, well, breasts. Men are sometimes called, ‘dick-head,’ for a reason.

A gown for the awards..okay?

But, can man ever learn not to afflict a physical attribute on to a woman and attached it to what she is worth? This is the question and trial for the next generation…..good luck. I’m on your side but, for now, boobs R us.

Franque23

 

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There’s a morning wind.

Today, from where I sit, the breeze will reach the sea some sixty miles off as it blows east. There, the translucent waves of green and blue roll beneath the calling gulls as the cooling, wet shore line comforts the feet of those strolling by. The shell white sand of the beach waits to be renewed or reclaimed by the pounding surf, and beyond it rises beige, wispy sea oats and dark green sea grapes that root in the dunes. A transforming landscape of sand and grass rises and falls to form a panorama that seems a dried mirror image of the ocean’s undulating surface. The oats will sway in the breeze much like sea weed moves with the ocean current. Here, two realms so different remain joined as one. The wind will touch it all.

It’s a peaceful thought as my coffee scents the air.

There was a time I thought I’d end up living along the shore, in the wind, with the sun, with the sounds and smells of the sea. Mom did as a child in, Recife’, Brazil, and somehow I dreamed I’d be as lucky. She took me to the shore often and taught me the ways of the sea, the surf, the hot sand and how the tiniest shell could sometimes be the most spectacular of the lot found that day. There were those sand crabs to dig after as they burrowed only to be caught so they might wiggle in my palm. We went to the ocean as a family and soon that vast, blue lined horizon became as much a part of ours as dad’s backyard apple blossoms.

Mom by the sea.

Sometimes I wonder if our dreams die like we do, or if they exist forever.

I’ve a good cup of coffee, but the memories are so much better. The wind entices me to wonder. When did I give up on that dream to live by the sea? I should have written the date somewhere.

But, I think I came to Florida in 1971 , in part, to be by the sea.

My wife and I have always visited the sea—our hearts beat with the waves, the light, the clouds and all those rolling, crashing waves.

A unique understanding comes when a person interacts with something as large as a mountain range, a desert, an expansive ocean or anything so vast as the diamond night sky. There’s a sense of oneness with the pebble, sand or shell at your feet, or single star overhead——they are so much like the size of us when compared to the entirety of life.

Ask a mountain climber, a diver or those who love to walk the desert why they do what they do. They will think, ‘Because I do’, and then they will offer words about this or that, words that can never fully explain the gut of the matter. Perhaps, the best way to answer is to say, “The majestic helps clear the clutter.”

Lake Bonaparte has a beauty each day, though different from one day to the next.  The views allow the heart to rest.

We all need to clear the clutter in our heads—the majestic world is our best reflection, our best chance to right the wrongs in our thinking. Our environment is us; say hello.

We need to make peace with ourselves.

Do you remember being ten and testing out a new pair of sneakers? How fast you ran; how you seemed to fly: you’d never be undone!

I’m the 8ish year old with his hand on his hip….and black speed-o

Growing up is fascinating and maybe we never stop owning that same self amazement throughout our lives. Maybe, internally, we all hunger for the truth, a correction in our way of thinking that sets us in place, a certain notion that helps identity our true sense of being in the universe.

My sister and I still meet at the ocean whenever we can…this is Roatan.

Maybe, this understanding is why we yearn to face the magnificent spectrum of life as it appears before us from place to place. It’s more than humbling; it’s being united.

Let’s get together. Let’s listen to the morning wind; it whispers the truth. Good morning.

Franque23.


About that Morgan-Franquemont conflict: The Royals verses the pirates.

It’s a miracle any Morgan Pirates survive, with Joe Morgan driving off of bridges as a kid, with ladies running a muck who need,’How to wear hat lessons,'(This photo blocked by the Who knows Who) and Dave Morgan, now gone, bless his soul, who once fell into the brink at age three without a care in the world or knowledge of how to float. Ripley’s Believe It or Not has maybe called me twice about this family,* but I’ve taken the high, Royal Road and decided to write this glob only.

To begin, it’s obvious the Noble Franquemont line is ready to take control.

It’s a Royal bunch…those who will lead us are pictured above and below.

We can rest assured of our humble Leadership.

And here is pictured the foundation of our Royal belief…our backyard entrance to our home’s Nobel courtyard in Germany-*(Thanks to my wife for this wonderful shot.)

Should you dare step inside the courtyard of our ancestral home, you would see this.

And here are some of our joined generation that solidified the Franquemont (okay, Morgamont) victory at Lake Bonaparte.

But, truthfully, most Morgan pirates need to be in jail. NO, really, I think I could sell them time shares in prison!

It’s not because of their politics, their thievery, their gluttonous drankin’ and absolute aversion for just about anything normal, no,,,these are their very best parts. The worst of the lot lie in the shadows of innocent looks, half bent smiles and spineless attacks when the Royal Franquemont Guard is sleeping, or talking , or eating, or just fartin’ around paying no attention to the Pirates.

Do you see how young the pirates begin to sneak their way into our unsuspecting hearts!

And Pirates the Morgan’s be, every lad and lass of them, the worst sort. Call the cops! No, wait, he’s one of them no good, double fistin’ potato chip eating lot.

The fellow on the right is by marriage one of them, and he’ll arrest anyone of us on the spot—the cop that he is. The middle man, Nick Morgan, be just that, a go between who claims the Morgan name but not the politics. And on the left, a Royal, Craig the Car-is locked,(Carlock) member who listens to all sides.

Well, at least the Morgan’s will have trouble posting bail….oh wait, one of them was or still is a fierce bail’s man guys?

The Morgan man at Dakota’s back was once a bailsmen. Ben the Morgan is now an insurance guy. Ha! He wants to insure your life.

The Crime as witnessed this past July on the 24ish upon the dock of Innocence….

It was a clear day, the waters calm, as I stood unsuspecting on our new dock, recovering from three cracked/bruised ribs, a torn right leg and fatigue it’d cost me to build it**.  Mike the Smile, Pirate Murphy, as he’s called, came kayaking up to me all, well, smiles. Aye, if I hadn’t been in such a pleasant ruling mood I might have notice his smile seemed a bit skewed. Sure enough , our pleasant conversation was soon followed by Nick the Wicked and his protege, Blake, known as Blinko the Pirate, who laid my smiles to waist. I always take the high, Royal road so I never suspected foul play as Blinko raced up the stairs while Mike the Smile Murphy and I shared conversation. Moments later, Nick and Blinko hauled ass off in their kayak with my beers and soda’s in hand!!! Yellin’ all the while! This will forever be known as the Slithering Smile theft of 2018.

I’ll have em’ walkin’ the steps to the lake when I catch up to them.

(Our half way dock steps.)

They took my very best beer—not to be replaced throughout the reunion—and some super soda I’d never miss. It was a horrible sight, and then Mike, the bad smilin’ Murphy, slid like a snake away in his kayak to follow the pirates.

This is typical stuff from the Morgan Pirates; I have to cheer, Nick Morgan, however, who is smart to realize in his own words, “Trump is a con, a cheat and lizard eating suck head with no brains…”***So there is hope for the genes. Anyway, with our Franquemont Royal empathy I will spare the Morgan lot this time.

For now, let them eat ice cream!

(BTW-this is one shot of the new dock.)

The decree has been decried? It reads like this: “I don’t know, something will happen in two years at our next reunion…dead fish in the frig…something.” This man in a new Franquemont helmet guarantees it!

Meanwhile, I’ll be checking passports when getting aboard from now on.

But there is one more thing. Through tough negotiations, tireless days and nights on scotch and beer, we have decided to claim the Morgamont dock, ( a half-way dock located between the bluff and lake as pictured four shots above), as a safe heaven from any intentional farting, photo bombing or fire burning, stuff like that. It’s sorta like during World War 11 when countries agreed to not bomb special places like France’s, Versailles, as they bombed and killed 60 million people else where.

We will, instead, follow this new helmet wearing man to the,’New,’ Marina and camp ground…

It’s all good.

Franque23

Calling me the absolute, forever King will do for now.

  • Not true….believe it or not.
  • **Our ancestral home in Germany.
  • ***See previous glob—Bonaparte Dockin’
  • ****This may not be an exact quote….

 

 

 

 

 


Long before Elvis knew he’d be a star

Or, when Chuck Berry showed the world how to play guitar on Johnny Be Good…

Yes! Even before John Wayne saved the West…

The Morgamont genes were already in motion.

Simply…Two households, both not alike in dignity,
One in fair Iowa, where we lay our scene, and then to the lake,
From ancient grudge of dogs. Socks and Specks, break to new mutiny,
Where pirate blood makes Royal hands unclean.
From forth the fatal loins of these two friends
A slew of star-cross’d cousins take each other’s beers;
Whole misadventured piteous throws in the lake
Do with their new sign bury their parents’ strife. (As if…)*

So long ago, before their division, they stood in the same row, but without a boat between them.

My dad(far right) and his sister, Virginia,(middle) had grown from among the flowers in my Grandma’s garden.

So near the Dutch Elm lined streets of Des Moines, Iowa.

And as to my father, neither he nor his dad and brother’s knew before the war what fate lay ahead for their lives and their children’s frolics. The sun shone on every face.

(My Dad, Max, is the oldest next to his dad…before WW 11)

Soon, the brothers split into different war divisions to fight for America. New uniforms were put on, new bonds were made and the flower of family grew beneath the struggle of separation.

My dad stood strong.

His sister, Virginia, met a soldier.

And during the war, the new families met at Grandma Franque’s house in Iowa, or where they could.

My mom helps at the table in Des Moines while my sister, Sharon, seems quite happy!

Here is some very early evidence of the merge to come between the Morgan pirates and Royal Franquemonts!

The die was cast, as my Uncle Mo, Aunt Virginia, and the Roland and John Franquemont group conspire to create history. My grandparents stand helpless to stop it.

My Uncle John and Aunt Donna were too happy to notice how the drift of time was tumbling..

Only the very young, Robin and myself, crying as we were so aware, foresaw the coming, Franquemont, Morgan, Morgamont was near..

Bill and Buzz Franquemont stood in shock while Jim and Joe planned their escape on bikes…

Alas, those Morgans grew a cute bunch. Robin with his Bow tie and Joe with a look that could sell any car he’d driven into the river. Claudia a looker from the start and Ginny realizing she had her hands full.

Yep, in the end, I’ve come to love each and every last one of them—and I’ve met some in far off places…like the two wearing super funny hats…

.

As it turns out, what the Morgan pirates steal best is the theft of the heart.  So back in the day, I guess the grandparents, the parents, they all knew what they were doing and they could not have laid the bonds between our stars stronger.

Maybe the night sky at Lake Bonaparte whispered the truth loud enough so we could hear.

And to think, they’re always there…

Yes, I think Lake Bonaparte can help show the light.**

 

From the old to the new. The lines will continue to grow together, and never apart.

 

On a night to remember Dave Morgan…

(around 1956)..(I’m the sexy kid in the Speedo)

We’ve come together many times at Lake Bonaparte. And of the last two times….

 

(2014)

(2018)

The full moon came over the Morgamont Dock for the first time. (July, 2018)

(Franquemont camp and dock is on the right—the Morgamont deck  is just above)

Cheers

Franque23

  • Read more Shakespeare
  • **Yes, these are actually night sky shots taken at Lake Bonaparte…Thanks for them, Ross Franquemont.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thirteen years ago I built a dock with cousins. This year’s dock is my last, uno over, no mas, caputio, last forever to build. Promise—

building the dock 13 years ago.

The reunion of our families happened again this year, and in a big way. First, though, there was lots for me to get ready for the crowd. Me? I hoped to fish, fish, fish during the eight days lead time I had until the reunion start day plus some other stuff done—like covering our aging dock in plywood sheets to steal one more year out of the structure—

I arrived to an empty camp…

And thought about the picture I’d had taken of me while holding a shot of my dad sitting before a fireplace when he was in college some zillion, light-years ago.

I thought about the fishing I’d get done before the gang arrived…

This shot is from 2012. Not a bad night in Mud Lake.

2008

hmmm forget date,,thought it was on picture.

I’ve caught a number of good fish over time but the monsters usually come years apart. This year was different.

It took Thursday evening and most of Friday for me to ready camp before I could venture out across the Lake and ‘test’ the waters at about 6 P.M.

Boom, as pictured in the previous glob, the big ones hit.

I stepped off the boat and about promptly fell thru the dock to my hip/.

My right leg was bruised from calf to upper thigh, and those marks would take twenty days to almost vanish—It seemed after inspection that topping the dock for the reunion was a no go, and I’d have to replace the entire dock before 49 people including 21 children showed up in a week’s time.

The official estimate to replace the dock was 7 thousand, so I bought 2 grand worth of lumber and rallied with friends, Randy, Brain and Tony to get her done. I spent two days ripping up old dock boards and hauling the wood laden with nails away for safe keeping to a burn pile. Then, Randy showed me a better way to remove the boards-rather than plying them up one by one, he cut the heck out of them first so the small boards could be sledge hammered up and off.

Three days later we had about 2/3 of the lumber in place for use to build the new dock and tools in hand.  Dock work is tough in and out of the water work, and dangerous. Tony took a broken piling steel cable into his leg, but he’d just gotten a tetanus shot so he carried on. My leg hurt but so does life. It was the third day as I walked on an old beam we’d all used as we moved docking boards when it gave out under me. I fell like a stone and hit a piling timber with my ribs. My guess was I’d fractured a rib or three….but what can you do with that? Nothing. I steadied to realize I could breathe, move with pain but not danger. The job went on, but from that moment on I couldn’t use my left side for strength, and resembled a snail on dry land while working, especially when hauling my butt in or out of the water.

The job took 135 man hours, (65 of mine)and some long days-Randy worked one 13 hour one day by my side. We  sorta finished—all but for one hundred top deck screws I did later—exactly one half day before my grand children arrived and one and 1/2 days before 49 relatives came.

We had the most glorious week for the reunion…and all the while I remained thankful the weather had held for us dock workers the previous week. Up there at Bonaparte, bad weather can stop everything for a day or two if it decides to.

It came time for everyone to leave and I dropped my grand kids and wife off at Utica for the train with another day and one half left to fish–at last…..Ha;hahahaha…. not.

For some reason I thought my dock injuries were done?!!? Yeah, so my last night there I hit Mud lake only to have the sky dump rain on my head as I raced back to the dock. Once there, I notice an umbrella had been turned over all the while of the reunion. If only I’d realized the one dock board with nails I hadn’t removed was secretly hidden beneath that umbrella’s fallen top. I lifted that umbrella top to right the stand, the board slipped off the upright and landed a 16 penny old, rusty nail into the top of my ankle.

Think Mash (tv show) when I pulled that nail out of my ankle…I ran up 48 steps to wash out the wound and get a towel to soak up the blood… ten minutes of pressure and a first aid kit later I raced to local medical center room but it was closed. I headed back to the lake and noticed the sky had cleared and hobbled down to go fish again…(clearly, I’m a fisherman with a huge problem, doctor.) In truth, the real pain didn’t set in for about two hours. Once I returned to camp, I realized I was in the worst pain I’d ever felt. A relative got me to Carthage hospital for x-rays, antibiotics, and pain killers.

I was resting in bed by four A.M. wondering what I might have caught this year if fate didn’t hate me.

So now,,,almost a week later, I’m home, working, recovering as the swelling and pain are subsiding. Dang it, if I’d only gotten to fish more.

Here’s to docks everywhere–they are a pain in the butt to build. Dock nails can go to hell and if you catch a big fish this year at Bonaparte that was the one I would’ve had if only…..Nah, actually, it’s all good. I loved building the dock with the guys; I’ll fish next year and not fall thru it!

Franque23

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Lake Bonaparte has a knack for drifting the sand while holding the heart.

This shot is of my first night out this year, just before my plans came crashing down along with my dock. But please, don’t ask me about the dock we HAD to re-build before this year’s reunion. Heck, the next glob is about that. For now, it’s all about my first night out fishin’ and me coming back all grins.

What you see here is a 5 pound bass, a 4.5 pounder, and two smaller varieties though one may be that huge sunfish I caught to kick off the night. I had the larger ones measured and weighed by a fellow who was also fishing in Mud Lake at the time with two lovely women. Some guys have the best luck! Thing is, it’s been near about ten years since I caught a monster bass, and these two came within 30 minutes of one another. All top lure, split Rapala’s.

I think they both went 18 inches, but the main thing is I’m as convinced now as I was then that this year is the year of the lunkers…Good luck fishing. One man in our reunion group caught about a four pounder off the dock, and another slightly smaller right in his boat house. But, perhaps the strangest catch was Dakota’s reel in of a good size bass that wasn’t connected to his line or lure at all, but to a line the fish had broken previously that got tangle in Dakota’s lure on the retrieve!!!!

I couldn’t wait to get out to fish again, but I about never did for the next of all the twenty day’s I had left to fish up there. There’s good reason—that’s the secret in the next glob.

It was a reunion year, and the Franquemont-Morgan gang had a freakin’ blast.

This is the cook-off contest and the five judges were clearly paid-off not to pick my stuffed mushrooms but some other foreign dish cooked by Nick with a name no one could pronounce.

But, before I sob in my gravy, someone asked me how big fish used to be in Lake Bonaparte, and although I’ve no idea , there’s this picture of a kid bringing in his catch to Priest’s so long ago. As a kid, I heard plenty of stories(all true no doubt:-0) of Northern’s pushing six feet long coming out of the lake. I’d give about anything to have those pictures that lined the eatery and penny candy store at Priest’s….One huge, gigantic fish after another,,,the types we don’t see at all anymore. (Thank you  Jesus since I skinny dip, or now, chunky-dunk)

This is an old photo of a typical catch long ago at Lake Bonaparte

We did a zillion things as a family this year, pirate hunt, pan fish, dance, bowl, Ice cream sundae day, games, dock-out, and rock out with painting them.

But, the Ice cream boat!!! Oh my…

We mobbed the boat every chance we got..the reasonable prices hit the mark and the selection drooled the mouths.

The two families slid in every direction and never met a face they didn’t love.

In fact, the Morgan—Franquemont families have decided to name our 1/2 way dock down to the Lake….Morgamont. Now, if you see the sign you’ll understand.

Of course, some couldn’t make it this year, and other’s never will as they’ve gone to the other side or maybe flipped the Venetian blind between us.

I’ll forever miss my cousin Rob Morgan

And so many others who did or didn’t know the lake.

The waters run swift in season in a State Park,  just east of Harrisville (Glenwood Falls)

But when the 21  children of our reunion handed me a petition to return our reunion to a two year cycle instead of the four we were on, I knew what had always been true:

Nothing runs as deep as the bonding waters of Lake Bonaparte—that’s the truth, and the soul knows.

Have a great August and Fall at The Lake….

Franque23

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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