Roger, not Roggie (Five Photos, Five Stories #4)

Roger is #558 on the Social Security list of boys’ name in 2013.

Roger_baby
When Arthur explained why he’s Arthur, not Art, it reminded me about my aversion to the diminution of my own name, something I clearly inherited from my father.

As I’ve noted, when I was born, my father told his cousins that he was figured out my name, Roger Owen Green, making sure the initials, ROG – pronounced raj – could serve as my nickname. As far as I know, I was not named for anyone.

The name Roger doesn’t lend itself to the common nicknames. William can be Bill, Robert is Bob. Jacob, Michael, Daniel, Benjamin, Matthew, David, and Joseph, to note some boys’ names most popular in 2013, have common shortened forms, though I’m not aware of the same for Noah, Mason, Ethan, or Aiden, for instance.

Roger, BTW, is #584 on the Social Security list of boys’ names in 2014, down from #558 in 2013, and the new lowest ranking, below the #565 in 2012. It’s far from its best showing, #22 in 1945. On the other hand, Owen was up to #38 in both 2012 and 2013, and in 2014, it is up to #36, its highest ranking since the list began in 1880.

Dad was inclined to call me “sport,” which is also what he called his favorite cousin, Sheldon Walker, so that was OK. But that came only from him. Everyone else needed to call me Roger, or Rog. But DEFINITELY NOT Roggie. When some people tried it, especially one of my sisters, it used to make me very angry.

When I was in junior high school, a bunch of us would go by our middle names. I was Owen, Ray Lia was Albert. This guy Walter Sidorenko – not sure of the spelling – who we called Sid, tended to call me Owen Baby. It was oddly OK coming from him.

I was a janitor in Binghamton (NY) City Hall in the spring of 1975, when I dropped out of college, as I’ve mentioned. One of the other janitors -his name escapes me, so I’ll call him Jack – started calling me Flash. It was because I had an eight-hour day, and I got through my routine in about six and a half hours, whereas he and his co-worker Henry would milk their jobs to take the full eight hours by working more slowly. I’d spend the rest of the time, when there was no emergency, reading, or cleaning again the glass doors at the front entrance, which always had fingerprint marks.

Jack, I did not like. In part, it may have been, I must admit because he had two children by two women, neither of which he was married to, and was quite boastful about it. So when he, or Henry, following Jack’s lead, would call me Flash, I would act as though I did not hear them at all.

I DID have a library coworker, Anne, who called me Raji, in which the first syllable sounded like the first syllable in rajah, and somehow, she pulled that off.

But most can’t. So Roger or Rog are my preferences, thank you very much.

Why do people say Roger when they’re talking on their CBs — even though the person they’re talking to isn’t named Roger?

Note: I have been nominated by my buddy Lisa over at Peripheral Perceptions to participate in the Five Photos, Five Stories meme, which simply says I should post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.

The problem is that almost all my posts are stories and have pictures. So I’m cheating and writing only one new post. And I’m nominating YOU!

“The Boy Jesus in the Temple” by Hofmann (Five Photos, Five Stories #3)

A young adolescent Jesus in white robes is shown at the center of a group of wizened, bearded old men who appear to be appraising him.

jesus.sorrow The family spent a few days at this inn on the Catskill Mountains during the school break after Easter. It was a nice place. There were several pictures, paintings of the scenery of the area, a still life or two, and the like.

But right outside our room was an outlier, a painting that looked terribly familiar, something like the one above. This intrigued me, for – and memory is a tricky thing – I believe my maternal grandmother had a reproduction of it in her house. Something quite memorable about that representation of Jesus.

Heinrich Hofmann’s religious works are filled with the deep faith that inspired his life and creativity. Painting subjects from literature and mythology, Hofmann (1824 – 1911) is most famous for his paintings of Christ’s life… Before painting any scene depicting Christ, Hofmann would intently study the Bible. He was adamant that anyone who was not moved to their innermost core while painting religious subjects was not capable of the task.

Thing is, I can’t remember if the picture in Grandma Williams’ house was in color, as painted, or black & white, like the one at the inn. Did it include the whole image, or cropped to highlight the Jesus character?
Jesus.bw
This painting of “The Boy Jesus in the Temple” was so noteworthy that it was photographed by one C.C. (Charles C.) Pierce (1861-1946)

Photograph of the painting…. A young adolescent in white robes is shown at the center of a group of wizened, bearded old men who appear to be appraising him.

In the left foreground, one is seated with at book, two other standing next to him making quizzical gestures. To the left, a fourth man holds his hand to his chin and a scroll on his hip. Farther back a fifth man without a beard can just barely be seen.

Other titles given for this painting are “Christ in the Temple” or “Jesus at Twelve”. The picture file card reads “The scripture passage for this subject is Luke 2:46-47”.

46 After three days they [Mary and Joseph] found him [Jesus] in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.

Is this picture familiar to any of you, and, if so, in what version?
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Note: I have been nominated by my buddy Lisa over at Peripheral Perceptions to participate in the Five Photos, Five Stories meme, which simply says I should post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.

The problem is that almost all my posts are stories and have pictures. So I’m cheating and writing only one new post. And I’m nominating YOU!

Other than America; ending arguments

Moving closer to the equator doesn’t interest me much

CHILDRENAROUNDTHEWORLDLisa of peripheral perceptions wonders:

I don’t know if you’ve answered this one, but I’d like to know in what city/country would you live if you could live anywhere else in the world. And why. 🙂

I don’t think I have. I did this with states – I came up with Vermont – but not countries.

Part of the problem is that I’m just lousy with languages, so it’d have to be a country where a lot of people speak English.

The default answer for a lot of Americans is Canada. It’s like the US, except they have better health care and don’t fear the metric system, the argument has been. And if the globe is warming, Canada might be a thought. But those waves of cold weather this past winter in the US, all stored to our north, and fueled by the Arctic melting, worries me.

The United Kingdom my wife loves. But it appears broken economically and is subject to that same nasty weather we experience on this side of the pond.

I don’t know enough about Belize, but moving closer to the equator doesn’t interest me much. I loved Barbados, but, in addition to too much heat, and hurricanes, I can’t imagine living on a small island. Not diverse enough geographically, and too expensive.

Ultimately, I think it’d have to be in the Southern Hemisphere. While Australia seems interesting, the ghastly warm weather that has been experienced in the interior the last couple of years, north of 125F/50C would keep me away from everything except the east coast cities.

Another option, I suppose, is New Zealand. This is in no small part because Arthur the AmeriNZ has described it so well in his blog and podcasts. It’s reasonably progressive. Now I may NEVER figure out its electoral system the way I know the US system. Then again the US system is broken, so no big loss.

Climate change will affect NZ too, but the southern landmass of Antarctica may make that a LITTLE less terrible, for a time. Now, it IS on the ring of fire of volcanic and earthquake activities, which makes me nervous. Still, I guess I’ll say New Zealand because at least I’d know someone there.
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SamuraiFrog wants to know:

At what point is an argument over for you? I know someone on Tumblr who recently engaged in victim-blaming just to end an argument. He felt bad about it, knew it was wrong, admitted it, and sincerely apologized. But some people are still invested in making him feel bad about it. At what point do you let something like that go?

It all depends. What is the “crime”, first of all? Some dumb comment someone makes in the heat of the moment might get a pass unless it’s so hateful and vicious that you have to surmise that, deep down, that he or she must be a really awful person.

Michael Richards of Seinfeld fame gave a really nasty racist rant, I hear. I didn’t listen to it. There’s a point, though, that it is in the past, and for me, Richards is there.

Of course, it matters if it is a real apology. Richards sincerely apologized. I’m sure I must have mentioned this topic somewhere about bad apologies. Oh, there it is, from 2009:

DON’T use the word BUT. An example would be, “I’m sorry, BUT you started it.”
DON’T use the word IF. My least favorite apology: “I’m sorry IF you’re offended.” The clear implication is that you really SHOULDN’T be offended, but I better say it anyway.

Lame apologies get zero points from me.

Nasty words written are more difficult to forgive. I do know that people can get caught up in a debate on social media, though, which is why I tend to minimize my contribution to the same.

But some acts are so egregious that even a sincere-sounding apology is hard to accept: “I’m truly sorry that I molested those boys over a 20-year period.” Not satisfactory.

Now, online fights, I’ll just walk away from, even if THEY think that, by not responding, they think I think they’re right. I suspect that your Tumblr acquaintance, assuming he keeps his nose clean, will come out OK, if only because his critics will latch on to someone else.

Whereas a face-to-face or phone argument might be a different issue, especially among friends or relatives. You may have heard stories of fights that went on for years or even decades. True of my maternal grandmother and her brother over the fact that he was “living in sin” with a woman in the 1960s.

Go, Argentina!
Go, Argentina!

And speaking of arguing – Not an ARA question, but rather a comment by Lisa to this post:

I would encourage you to try and get back into one of the groups at your church. That seems to be an area of importance for you and may be the best place to nurture those human interactions. But you’ll always have us…….:-)

As it turned out, I actually had an odd incident at one of these groups back in April, and it’s not entirely settled.

It was after The Daughter was starting to get better after her terrible March. I hadn’t gone to the previous meeting, partly because it was Lydia’s birthday, but partially because she was still having issues. Getting together with this group was something I was clearly looking forward to, as I had purchased lots of snacks.

But one guy dominated the conversation with references most of the rest of us did not understand for a good half hour. By the time I got to say something, someone made a joke that less upset me than distracted me from what I had hoped to be talking about. I angrily stormed out and didn’t come back for the last three or four meetings before the summer break. I may return in the fall.

Still, it’s not the same as one-on-one conversation with an old friend.

Fans of Andy Warhol: ABC Wednesday, Round 15 is a comin’

This coming round, I will be writing something new for each week only half the time.

abc15Seven years ago, Denise Nesbitt from England created ABC Wednesday. It was brilliant in its simplicity. People, literally from around the world, post an item – pictures, poems, essays – that in some way describe each letter of the alphabet, in turn. I’ve been participating since the letter K in Round 5, my Keating Five post.

Denise recruited a team of her followers to do some of the intro writing and visiting, which eventually included me, because doing it all was too exhausting. Two years ago – that long, already?- she was getting a little burned out. So I became the administrator, assigning who reads which posts, making sure somebody is writing the introductions (and writing them myself, when necessary), and inserting the link that allows everyone to participate. The team is pretty good at noting when someone grossly violates the simple rules.

Read about the significance of this round’s logo by Troy. He’s designed the logos for the last ten rounds, I do believe.

The Netiquette for the site is this:

1. Post something on your non-commercial blog/webpage having something to do with the letter of the week. Use your imagination. Put a link to ABC Wednesday in your post and/or put up the logo.

2. Come to the ABC Wednesday site and link the SPECIFIC link to the Linky thing. It’ll be available around 4 p.m., Greenwich Mean Time each Tuesday, which is 11 a.m. or noon in the Eastern part of the United States.

3. Try and visit at least 5 other participants… and comment on their posts. The more sites you do visit, the more comments you will probably get.

I’m happy to note that SamuraiFrog has been participating in the current round, and Arthur@AmeriNZ has done so in the past.

I am looking for a few good people, not only to participate, but to visit other people each week, and/or to write the occasional intro. Here’s a recent example of an intro by me.

This coming round, I will be writing something new for each week only half the time. For the other half, I’ll be linking to something I already posted in 2014 instead, mostly 70th birthdays. I got the idea from Lisa of Peripheral Perceptions, who saw my Supremes post (I think) and thought it was so detailed that I should have used it for ABCW. So in Round 15, I WILL.

Bloggers, consider giving ABC Wednesday a try, if this sounds interesting. We’ll be starting with A again in a couple weeks. Write to me a rogerogreen (AT) gmail (DOT) com.

May Rambling #2: New Zealand music

I rant about the JEOPARDY! Million-Dollar Tournament.

America.duck
Descendants of Solomon Northup, who recounted his story in a memoir, 12 Years A Slave.

The Real Origins of the Religious Right. “They’ll tell you it was abortion. Sorry, the historical record’s clear: It was segregation.”

Dustbury points to an article about how the ineptitude of the Department of Veterans Affairs, and its predecessors, go back nearly a century.

The Worst Argument Ever Made Against Gay Marriage.

Amy Biancolli’s book: To plunge is to live. Also, her parents in love.

Judy Sanders, a former local news reporter and photographer, is dying of ovarian cancer. Confronting the long goodbye from Paul Grondahl, and a piece by her former colleague, Ken Screven.

Diane Cameron’s blog Love in the Time of Cancer has been going on since 2008, but I just discovered it.

Getting kicked out of the prom.

New York Erratic asked: “Have you ever dated anyone who turned out to be gay?” I had a serious relationship with a woman who left me for another woman, with whom she stayed for some time. About 20 years later, she married a man, an old friend of hers.

Dan writes about The Casino And All The Promises, which is both a local issue and a cautionary narrative if casinos are offered to your town.

Lisa has been having the same blog problems I have

Mr. Frog on meeting celebrities

The Good Wife is my favorite TV show. Here’s why I love it, and why I have a difficult time explaining it to others.

Dustbury reminds me why I love word processing, and wish I had a goat.

A great interview with Mel Brooks, who’s promoting the rerelease of Blazing Saddles.

Dead Man Walking, and Burying the Bentley.

Mark Evanier’s childhood, and the color orange. Sweet story of coincidence.

New Paltz Students Find $40K in a Couch; NP is my alma mater, BTW.

Luckiest Unlucky Man or Unluckiest Lucky Man?

You’re Not Here. Abbott and Costello with the famed movie tough guy, Mike Mazurki.

How did Fred Astaire literally dance on the ceiling in the movie Royal Wedding?
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The Oatmeal cartoon about irony. Is it ironic that the song Ironic is not about being ironic?

LYNDA BARRY SELLS OUT. I love her work.

Irene Vartanoff writes about Marvel Comics’ original artwork in the 1960s. And she would know.

Drawn Out: The 50 Best Non-Superhero Graphic Novels.

The Documentary “Stripped” shows the past and future of comic strips. I supported Kickstarter for this.

Arthur celebrates NZMM: New Zealand Music Month. Lots of good stuff, but I must note #14, “New Zealand’s First Record.”

Tosy: U2 – Ranked 80-71 and 70-61.

Another great review of the niece’s album: Rebecca Jade & the Cold Fact. (Hey, it’s good!)

Pantheon Songs remembers Marvin Gaye.

Muppet section: Joe Raposo and Roosevelt Franklin and Time In A Bottle. “Today me will live in the moment unless it’s unpleasant, in which case me will eat a cookie.” – Cookie Monster.

What IS a photocopier?

How do you spell the color: grey or gray?
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The local Jewish Community Center had an ad campaign many found offensive. Several others thought it was poor because they couldn’t even read what it said. In any case, the ad is gone, and a couple of people suggested my blog post on the topic may have helped.

SamuraiFrog said ‘Why Not Ask Me Anything?’ and blamescredits me for him doing so. He answers my questions about music, and specifically about Billy Joel.

Likewise, Arthur’s Internet wading was my fault, or suggestion.

I rant about the JEOPARDY! Million-Dollar Tournament.