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  AFTER HOURS


Several years ago while returning from a client Dinner meeting, passing my Office, I noticed a light on that was unusual as I was the last person to leave that evening and I knew all the lights had been turned off. I made a u-turn killing my lights as I was pulling into the drive. There was a car in the spot reserved for the Boss. Sensing something amiss I switched off the ignition and coasted into a parking place next to his. For the life of me, I could not figure why he was here this time of night. Upon entering the front door, very quietly turning the deadbolt, proceeded toward the sound of a piano. There was a very thick atmosphere of dread while carefully checking out the room walking toward noise of a sad tune coming from the Piano. The music was beautiful but creepy at the same time, along with the line of a funeral march. I stood in the doorway placing every memory of the room in my mind's eye, trying to think of a way of not startling the man at the piano. There was enough light for me to recognize one of the new people in the office. As he finished that song and before he could start another, I said that was fantastic calling his name. He paused and looking over the piano invited me in. As I pulled a chair in position, I noticed a fifth of Jack Daniels sitting on the left end of the bench with a drink on the left side of the keyboard beside a small bottle of medication. Letting my eyes, drift to the other end of the keyboard a small snub-nose revolver came into view making me very glad that he recognized me when I called his name. The chill that was in the room slowly began to disappear, and his rigid back structure began to ease a little. We made small talk about nothing in particular, he asked about the dinner meeting and if I closed out the contract. I told him not entirely, but we had a meeting in his office tomorrow at ten o’clock to work out the details. We then talked about his children and dogs, or it could have been that we talked about his dogs and then about the children. All the time we were talking, he was playing softly on the piano as if he was coming to some decision. Also, as if he had made that decision, he stopped the song he was playing and hit a few “chop-stick” notes and stood as if to leave. I urged him to go ahead, and I would close the office behind him. He sipped the last of the Daniels and swiftly began clearing the piano of the medication and the revolver, placing them in his briefcase. Until this day, I have the uneasy feeling that I was there that night, not by chance but for the particular reason of stopping a suicide. We never again mentioned it to each other, and this is the first time I have talked about it.


Preston T. Duckett Psalm 19:14 Saturday, July 1, 2017




FOOD IS MY FAVORITE FOOD


Age has robbed most of my vices. However, still enjoy a healthy appetite. I must admit to loosely forming a diet structure. (I have loosened my belt, moved buttons on my pants.) Southern Cooking is my favorite. Google tells me it is an eight-hour drive from here to High Point North Carolina. My gobble appetite says to add several hours to that time for the simple reason of stopping at each Bar-B-Que venue, Steak House, Mom and Pop Restaurants and any other place where a large crowd gathers near an eating establishment. Born in North Georgia and living my life, so far, in South Alabama, North Florida, and South Mississippi. Facebook presented me with friends from North Carolina boasting of the best of Bar-B-Que places in the entire universe; therefore, it behooves me to delve into this matter with an increased sense of urgency. There are two reasons for this additional interest, the first is the fact of age, and the more substantial part of years is in my rearview mirror. Therefore, for the time that is ahead of me, it is imperative never to miss an opportunity to sample excellent cuisine from all around the Southland. Because of the increased age, I can only deprive the rest of the world of my judgment of their foods. One of those tasty delicates from North Carolina was Persimmon Pudding from the kitchen of Mrs. Joan (Pronounced Jo Ann) Hines. Have a standing invitation to have as many meals with her excellent cooking as they will allow. I am especially looking forward to the salmon croquet, cathead biscuits, creamed potatoes, with gravy and other beautiful side dishes. After talking with Mrs. Hines on the phone and sampling her specialty Persimmon Pudding and the fantastic reports from her Son about her cooking it may behoove me to become an adopted citizen of your beautiful state of North Carolina. My current itinerary includes one week of eating my way there, at least another week eating while there, and one last week of eating my way back to Lower Alabama. No need for any of you to send me the names of places to eat, my built-in food radar will lead me to all of the right food places. Any of you other Widows that have the delicate food touch I am open to invitations. If you are serious about your food preparations and possible additional interest, suggest you be in the mature beauty range of seventy-five or above years of age. Remember I look for the inner beauty and for that reason; I have not met an ugly woman in the last two decades. Looking forward to a visit that could develop into a Permanente arrangement of location as well as a vocation. Waiting for an opportunity to see “Carolina in the Morning.”


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, May 23, 2017




BLACKBERRIES AND GOD’S LOVE


Outside early this morning moving slowly, watching God’s beautiful clouds floating gently through His magnificent Sky. Saw a vision in my periphery that carried me back to those childhood days of going out into the woods in the Hills of North Georgia with two of my Aunts that were a few years my elders. Our jaunt carried us today on an exploration of picking blackberries for Grandma to make a blackberry cobbler and hopefully for enough of them for her to can blackberry jam. At the end of the morning's jaunt, we had all eaten almost as many as we had picked and blackberry stain was around the mouth and lips of our little threesome, our hands covered with the same dye and with brier scratches. If you did not get some scratches, you were not digging down in the vine far enough to capture that big berry right next to the ground. If you picked one that squashed when picking it was, fair to eat because it would not pass when put through Grandma’s extensive washing and inspection process. Looking down at the berries this morning brought those days of the past drifting fleetingly across my mind's eye. The fruits here on God’s little acre were not as fully loaded or as large as those I remembered from my youth. However, these veins had not the age or size of those of long ago. I moved along the fence edge while picking a berry; I would blow on as if to clean it and then slowly eaten allowing for the savoring of each morsel. Thought about picking enough to make a cobbler. However, a bird fluttering to a landing further down the fence reminded me that God had furnished these berries as food for his creations of birds as well. I stopped myself from going deeper into the area that had been pasture for our goats until a few years ago when we got out of the goat business. Whenever anyone asks about the kind of goats, we had the answer were always only brier goats except one milk goat, which appeared mysteriously one day. The dairy goat is another story for another day. This morning’s tour around the old house was enriching. It reminded me of my youth, provided and delicious before breakfast snack. It also told me of what we have been asking to do for years, and we are too busy to do so. This morning it was a privilege to “stop and smell the roses” except this morning it was “stop and pick the berries.” Heavenly Father we thank you for every morning and the pleasure of spending some time with You, and Your creations and creatures. Of all your creatures Lord, we are the most blessed and the least appreciative. Once again, we Praise Your Holy Name and thank You for Your Blessings.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, May 27, 2017




MEN PAY ATTENTION


There was a country song about don’t come home with alcohol on your breath. Coming back with whiskey on your breath is a piece of cake compared to coming home with lipstick on your collar. The love light suddenly goes out in the wife’s eyes, and a foreboding shadow takes over her entire countenance. It is as if the lightning was flashing and you can hear the thunder crashing. Of course, the easiest way to prevent a situation like this is to stay in your yard and not cross over the fence because the grass looks greener on the other side, and do not get any lipstick on your shirt in the first place. It is a good idea if you have had someone with their arms around your neck to run to the mall and buy a new shirt but be sure it is the same brand and color. Wives do not forget or forgive these things, and it will be a long way out into the future before you regain her trust. You need to renew your old spice or brute or whatever brand you use and even then it is sometimes impossible to cover up the scent of the perfume the person that was leaning on your shoulder was wearing. The moral of this bit is don’t mess around but if you do be sure not to get lipstick on your collar.
Marriage at it best is difficult, so why make it harder by making the kind of mistakes that can wreck it. As I have written before marriage is not a fifty-fifty proposition it is give and take. Sometimes it falls on you to make more of the percentage, for example, you will on occasion carry the load in a ninety-ten situation, and the pendulum will swing in your favor. The important thing in a good marriage is to keep the give and take as close as possible to the fifty-fifty mark.
All marriages improve with the inclusion of God and Jesus in daily activities. Turning you marriage over to Jesus will not rid you of all sorrows and troubles. However, it will assure you that you are not making the Journey alone you will be lifted up and given strength to continue. Satan will use all of his tricks against you, and we are not strong enough to resist all temptations, and this is where Jesus comes in he will be with you and lift you up and carry you trouble and temptations. Put all your trust and faith in the Triune Godhead, God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit these three in one when asked into your life will assure you of a successful walk with the Three in One.


Preston T. Duckett Friday, October 20, 2017




CUDDLE IN THE HUDDLE CLASSES NOW IN PROGRESS

You men that have a mate that loves to cuddle enjoy the advantage of it every time you get a chance. Now I know we are supposed to be MACHO, but it is a lot more fun if you learn to cuddle, even while watching your favorite sporting event. (I always thought this was everybody’s favorite sporting event.) But in my years of interviewing the fairer sex, not all men seem to be fascinated with this game, and believe it or not, the same applies to some of the ladies. (Even the women that told me they did not like to cuddle seemed to appreciate the gentle kiss on the hand when we first met, another good lesson learned from the French. The first one was an imitation of their kiss.) One thing I miss about not having my wife around is the cuddling. Regret the times I would not be as receptive as I should have been, especially in the earlier years. But as the years crept up on me I learned that I enjoyed it more and more. There is more to a mate than just a good cook, and babysitter and grocery shopper. The time in the kitchen will be more enjoyable for both of you if you ease up behind her, slip your arms around her and place a kiss on the side of her neck. (Had to turn the fan up just thinking about this.) Sometimes the food burns, but you can eat anytime. Cuddling is only for special occasions, (Grandma used to say you have to strike while the Iron is hot, but since we do not iron much anymore I don’t guess that is meaningful as it once was.) Remember when they used to wet the finger in their mouth and slap it against the Iron to see if the sizzle would let them know is the iron was hot enough. Back to cuddling if you guys still don’t understand how you might like to read my book for cheerleaders on “Cuddle in the Huddle.” (Don’t know why but a lot of the books were bought by football players.) You guys that have a hard time trying to comprehend cuddling just contact me for admission to my School of Cuddling. We met four nights a week and the other three nights you have to do your homework and the assignment is to practice on your mate, and of course, you need to bring them to class with you so I can better demonstrate the art of the cuddle. Once understand the basics of cuddling you will have a much more enjoyable home life and so will your mate. (You notice I have only used the word wife in one sentence, and the reason for this is I am trying to stay politically correct on every count.) Remember the words of a wise man, who once said, “Cuddle don’t Muddle.”


Preston T. Duckett January 13, 2016



SIDE BENEFITS OF RADIO AND TV


I never tried to talk anyone out of giving me a ticket for speeding. However, the fact that I was involved in the business proved helpful on several occasions. The first one was a vacation trip we were taking to visit my grandparents in North Georgia. An Alabama State Trooper stopped me for speeding in Phoenix City. Occurring back around nineteen-fifty-six or so and when he asked for my license, I opened my billfold to expose the license and handed it to him. The folder on the opposite side held a Press Pass from Radio WOOF. People were more trusting of each other back then, lawsuits were not as common as today, and they did not have to read you your rights and all the excesses they have to provide today. The Trooper looked at my Press Pass and asked if I were working on a news story. I replied no sir we are on vacation. Appearing not to hear me, he said I would just give you a warning and advise you to be careful since you are going on a news story. I was never one to argue with a Policeman on any subject, so I thanked him and told him I was sure Radio WOOF appreciated his help and I knew that it was by me. At which point he folded my billfold and handed it back to me, and I gladly drove off, being sure not to exceed the speed limits.
On another occasion, this time at home on the Ross Clark Circle, where the speed limit is fifty miles per hour. The little Karmann Ghia I was driving was traveling at approximately ten miles over the limit. An Alabama State Trooper pulled me over and when he walked up beside my car that had my name printed in large gold letters on the door. He looked down at the title and then back up at me and said “Damn it, Preston, slow that thing down,” and walked away.
I Was downtown Marianna Florida selling advertising for the Radio Station, and A Policeman stopped me, I handed him my license he looked at my name and asked if I was the Preston T. that was on the radio? Naturally, it was a pleasure to tell him, yes and he gave me a warning ticket and a not too severe a lecture.
When we moved the show to WTVY-TV, we picked up a broader audience because of the power of the station and the newness of Television. I was more recognizable and welcomed in a much friendly manner than when it was just a radio show. I still picked up many warnings but only had to pay for about two speeding tickets. A couple of the police force was not all that impressed by who I was.
Preston T. Duckett Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Who was the Lady with the Quarters?

Have a Grandson that when he was younger enjoyed bicycle riding and as he lived in the rural area around Echo there was at that time plenty of room and very little traffic. Hundreds of times he had biked down that side road that went by his house and today was no exception except when the hit the main road he pulled in front of a lady that was crossing at the same time. When her car hit him, he rolled up over the hood and the top of the automobile. The radio antenna on the car roof broke off, and the stub sticking up ripped him all the way down the back of his body. When the EMT arrived, they rushed him and his Mother to the Hospital in Ozark. While in the Emergency Room, his Mother had to stay out in the waiting room. We did not have cell phones then so she went to the pay phone to call other family members and realized she did not have any change When she turned to go to the desk to ask to use one of the phones at the Hospital. There was an elderly lady that appeared in the waiting room that had not been there just a minute or two before. The lady handed her a bag that had nothing but quarters, dimes, and nickles in it and said: "take this you will need it." His Mother made a call the other Grandparents and us and turned around to give the rest of the change back to the lady, and she was gone. She asks the receptionist who was that lady that was just in here. The receptionist told her there was nobody else in the room and there had been no one in there. She described the appearance of the Lady, but the receptionist said again that there had not been anyone one fitting that description anywhere in the waiting room all morning. Our Grandson was transported by Ambulance to a Dothan Hospital and we were on the way to Ozark to check on him when the Ambulance passed us going in the opposite direction. Several operations later, thank God, our Grandson did recuperate and is alive and relatively healthy today. Damage was severe, and we were concerned that he would never come out of the Emergency Room but as I said thank God he did. After the worst of the ordeal was over my Daughter relayed the story of the Lady with the bag of change that no one else saw. Who was she, I have no way of knowing except, this must have been a Guardian Angel.


Preston T. Duckett October 23, 2015, prestontnt.com


LOVING GOD LOVING EACH OTHER


I hate to admit the following, but for me loving God is one of the hardest things I have ever tried to do. Is it because He already knows everything and we feel inadequate to approach Him? Could it be that our upbringing could have distorted the meaning of Love? There are several other ways we could explain it, but it is something that is essential. We must love God to have a relationship Him. It was not that I ever did not Love God it was just that I did not understand how to love Him. I think this is where a lot of us trip up and fail to love God adequately.
God knows our thoughts and our wishes we ask it and this makes us nervous as well. What I am about to write is not taken from the Bible verbatim, but I think it is in there within the overall concept. Why not approach God and directly ask him to let the Holy Spirit show you how to love God and each other, then be quiet and listen for his answer and it may come in different ways. It may come from the Pastors sermons, your reading of the Bible on just in everyday conversations with others, or as I did about this thought or subject, hearing a Christian song by a group of singers “Loving God - Loving Each Other.” But when you receive it you will know it is from God, and give him the thanks and praise for it. If you have trouble with this subject or any other, you may start by asking your Pastor for help. He has forgotten more scripture than most of us know. There is other scriptures help, but it is best, to begin with, someone that can understand what you are asking and can help you or at least can point you in the right direction to find the help you need. Remember let us keep “Loving God and Loving Each Other.”


Never cease to love your fellow Christians. Heb: 13-1

God Himself dwells in us if we love one another. 1 John 4-12

We love Him because He loved us first. 1 John 4-19


Preston T. Duckett Monday, June 8, 2015


Who was the Lady with the Quarters?


Have a Grandson that when he was younger enjoyed bicycle riding and as he lived in the rural area around Echo there was at that time plenty of room and very little traffic. Hundreds of times he had biked down that side road that went by his house and today was no exception except when the hit the main road he pulled in front of a lady that was crossing at the same time. When her car hit him, he rolled up over the hood and the top of the automobile. The radio antenna on the car roof broke off, and the stub sticking up ripped him all the way down the back of his body. When the EMT arrived, they rushed him and his Mother to the Hospital in Ozark. While in the Emergency Room, his Mother had to stay out in the waiting room. We did not have cell phones then so she went to the pay phone to call other family members and realized she did not have any change When she turned to go to the desk to ask to use one of the phones at the Hospital. There was an elderly lady that appeared in the waiting room that had not been there just a minute or two before. The lady handed her a bag that had nothing but quarters, dimes, and nickles in it and said: "take this you will need it." His Mother made a call the other Grandparents and us and turned around to give the rest of the change back to the lady, and she was gone. She ask the receptionist who was that lady that was just in here. The receptionist told her there was nobody else in the room and there had been no one in there. She described the appearance of the Lady, but the receptionist said again that there had not been anyone one fitting that description anywhere in the waiting room all morning. Our Grandson was transported by Ambulance to a Dothan Hospital and we were on the way to Ozark to check on him when the Ambulance passed us going in the opposite direction. Several operations later, thank God, our Grandson did recuperate and is alive and relatively healthy today. Damage was severe, and we were concerned that he would never come out of the Emergency Room but as I said thank God he did. After the worst of the ordeal was over my Daughter relayed the story of the Lady with the bag of change that no one else saw. Who was she, I have no way of knowing except, this must have been a Guardian Angel.


Preston T. Duckett October 23, 2015, prestontnt.com


CREATION AND ITS MYSTERIES


Heavenly Father, when we try to understand your nature of the Universe. Our brain power is just not enough to comprehend all the magnificent creations made by you. Not only did you create everything but you designed it to continually operate itself with no degree of mishap other than those set up within that development. Your storms have their reasons even though we do not always understand why except it is part of your balance. Earthquakes, floods, and others that we do not know except you in the making of the Universe set it all into motion, and it operates on your schedule. Neither do we understand your omnipotence nor your omnipresence. We know it is true because your Holy Words teaches it to us. We also know that Jesus came, of his submission to your will: that He was crucified, buried, and arose on the third day to become a propitiation for our sins. We can not understand all the above things until we are in your Devine Presence. Until the time when we are with you will we continue our feeble attempts to Praise and Honor you. “May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be always acceptable in Your sight.” Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, December 29, 2016





THIS WORLD IS MADE UP OF A MESS OF PEOPLE


There are those that can but won't.
There are those that can and will.
There are those that can’t but try.
There are those that think they can’t but do.



Christ invokes us that once we put our hand to the plow, not to turn back. This statement upset me when I was just a youngster and helping plow on Grandpa’s farm. You see I knew when you got to the end of the field you had to turn back and plow in the other direction.
This parable or a metaphor is for teaching and what Christ was saying, in essence, was that once you became a follower of His, not to turn back to your sinful ways and serve the Devil. If Jesus was teaching the same parable today, He might say something like, once you start your drive to follow Him put your hands on the wheel and drive on down the road and do not make a U-turn.
Please do not get me wrong from this, because I do believe the Bible is the inspired word of God and it to be taken literally except for the parables which as the dictionary points out is straightforward stories to illustrate a larger lesson. Jesus said to take up your cross and follow me. Jesus did not mean for us to face crucifixion as he was but that our daily life and the burdens that befall us is our cross and we have to heft it up and carry it. Christ also tells us that his Yoke is not heavy and his burdens are light when you believe on him. Christ did not mean that it is easy to be a follower of Christ and that everything will be smooth sailing. However, what he is saying is that even if the problems in life to get more than we think we can handle. At that time he is always with us and will help us through those troubled times. Christ is still with us to help carry our burdens and troubles. And once we turn them over to him we need to leave them with him and let the Holy Spirit direct us in making the right decisions.
Before we make any decisions as to any of our changes in life, it is a good idea to pray and ask God about it before we do it. Most of us go ahead and jump into a new adventure thinking everything looks significant to us and when the bottom falls out, and the project comes to a complete stop. Then our troubles begin to mount at which time we decide to pray to God to get us out of the situation. If we see the future as does the Holy Trinity we would make better decisions. I have been guilty of this several times and most of my adventures that were successful the praying preceded the experience or project. However, when we are bullheaded and jump into a life-changing situation and troubles befall us, praying is still a good idea. However, it is always best to pray and wait on God before making any change.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, October 25, 2016



Swimming in Talking Rock Creek


It seems to me the water was always cold even in the “Dog Days” of summer, but you could survive it if the outside air were warm enough. It was deep enough in the woods and far enough from the road that we did not bother with bathing suits or swim trunks because it was always just us guys no girls allowed. We had a rope on a limb we would use to swing out to about the middle of the creek turn loose and drop in. The center part was deep enough to accommodate a dive or cannonball or just a foot first drop. Did have to be careful because not far enough out and you could hurt something because it wasn’t very deep around either edge. Big rocks were under the water, and you had to make sure you had cleared them before turning loose of the rope, and the same problem existed if you went too far before you turned loose. We smaller boys usually stayed in the water until our lips turned blue and then we would get to the bank, find a big rock the sun had warmed and soak up the sunshine and dry out and get warm before jumping back into the cold water. Now you ladies are going to have to ask your husbands about the next statement because I can not find words to express it without going across a line drawn in my head and mind that I dare not cross. The bigger boys would strip down but they would not get in the water. At the time I thought they just did not know how to swim, but later I found out the real reasons. We called them “Bank Walkers” the would make fun of us younger boys and strut up and down the bank showing off their suntans, muscles, and physical posture. So we would jump back into the water to get away from their jeers and jabs. I won’t mention the names of the older boys because some of their family might resent my intentions, besides later as we grew up to be the big boys we would repeat the ritual. You think we would have known better, but after all, it had helped us to mature and not take any ribbing too seriously, and I guess we owed it to the younger generation to let them experience things that would help them survive in the big world they were to face in the very near future. I guess you could say we were just being good citizens, doing our civic duty giving back to our community and delighted to be able to accomplish it. Never heard of a Bank Walker drowning but I did hear that some of them did get mugged by a bunch of young kids.


Preston T. Duckett October 16, 2015, prestontnt.com

  HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR JESUS


Dear Lord even after all the years since your birth we still celebrate with all humility. Your strength and power are as high as it has ever been and we witness it every day. We are awed by how great You are yet how gentle you can handle mistakes and still love us and forgive us all our sins. Your compassion and healing touch we receive when attacked by sickness or accidents. When tempted by the enemy, Your gentle strength giving us the ability to overcome those temptations and for your loving forgiveness when we succumb to them. On the day we celebrate Your Birthday, we are grateful and thank you for every fiber of our heart. May we observe Your Birthday with demonstrations of Your Love and Compassion shown to everyone we come in contact with not only today but every day. In the name of Jesus, we ask this and thank You, Lord, and wishing You and everyone a MERRY CHRISTMAS.


Preston T. Duckett December 24, 2015 prestontnt.com





WHAT I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS 


All the things I do not have and the world does not seem to be able to give. Mostly I want Peace, Love, and goodwill to all men. Things that have been for centuries and we have not been able to produce them, according to what I read we will not be able to either. It tells us that all of this is coming and that it will be worse before Christ returns and a whole lot worse after that time until the Millennium. I am not a Preacher, an Evangelist or a Scholar. I know we have been told most of our life about the end times and what this consists of in torture and punishment. That people will cry for the rocks and the mountains to fall on them. Grandma told me back in the 1930’s, and 1940’s the second coming of Christ. She was right it could have happened at any time, and we thought things were bad back then. You and I know things are a lot worse now. The lawlessness of every sort of drugs, robbery, shootings, rape, and murder, Just about any crime you can imagine is currently taking place. The Bible tells us these things will happen. With Wars and Rumors of Wars, Earthquakes, and other calamities in diverse places all signs of bringing in the second coming of Christ. Things were bad back in my younger life, but I know we did not hear of as much of it then as we do now, but it was just not as bad then either. Every generation has had its gloom and doom, but I just can not see this old world going on as it is now for an extended period. Above all, we can is pray and as the Good Book says Occupy until Jesus comes for his second visit to this Earth. Pray and be ready for when we expect not is when it can and will happen. There is not a great deal we can do in the rest of the World, but we can start in our community to do what we can. I feel this can only be by a renewal of the old-fashioned values like we had at a younger age. Just as “a man's word is his bond.” and “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (Not a Biblical quote but it is still good advice.) At one time if a man shook hands it was more binding than a written contract is today. Well, I will stop rambling now before I quit preaching and start meddling. May God bless and keep you and Merry Christmas.


Preston T. Duckett December 11, 2015 prestontnt.com




HURTING HEARTS

Mr. & Mrs. Cindy and Danny Hastings, your sister, and sister-in-law have left deep hurt in your heart. Death is normal and natural; However, prayers are going for you and other family members. Your Facebook friends are with you in your sorrow, and we pray, for peace and comfort for all those of you left behind.
Death is one of the more challenging parts of life is what some call the end of life. However, we as Christians feel it is an extension of this life. We left behind miss those that have gone on before us. Jesus, by death on the Cross, paid the penalty for our sins, and with that death, burial, and resurrection he also gave us eternal life in the Heavens. The missing of the departed often overrides the glory of the trip to Heaven. The Glory and Mercy of God will not allow any sorrow that we can not overcome with his help and power. It is easier for us to talk about this when it is not a relative or friend, but Jesus helped me with friends who passed and also family members including a Wife, and a Son, a Brother, a Mother and a Father. It is difficult, but God is gracious to help us through the valleys and sorrows.
It is helpful if we remember only the good times and thoughts of the departed loved ones. When it gets difficult, and you have a burdened heart pray for peace and comfort from the Trion Godhead of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit. Should you feel the need to talk, most any of your close friends will be proud to speak with you. Including Dennis, yours indeed and any of the others. You and the family are in our constant prayers, and our hearts hurt with yours.
Heavenly Father we ask for peace and comfort for all family members and friends of the deceased. We pray it in the Holy Name of Jesus our Lord and Savior.


Dennis Hines, Preston T. Duckett, and all your other Facebook friends.




HOLD YOUR TONGUE


The tongue is stronger than a two-edged sword, according to the written Word. We deviate to expose some of the other things the language can accomplish. There is an old saying that sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me. Bones will heal after a while, but the words spoken in anger are un-recallable. The party injured by words may give you forgiveness, but your words still stay in the heart long after the bones heal. Have any of you been hurt by words never forgotten, and always wave a red flag in your mind. As a young, insecure teen on my first year in a more massive High School in a more populated City than the area where I grew to teenage-hood. I spotted a trio of cute girls in the hallway, and I thought they were looking at me and talking about me. So like a dummy that I was, I asked why are you talking about me? The cutest of the three looked me with a scowl and asked, why in the heck do you think you are important enough for us to talk about you? I forgave them for the smart Alex remarks, but the words were helpful to me after I petted my ego for the comment, however, It has helped me not to think everybody is talking about me behind my back. The put down was one of the smaller of hurtful words that I have suffered in life. However, it sure stopped me from thinking everybody was talking about me behind my back. I should not admit this, but my Ego has reached such heights that I consider it a privilege if people do talk about me, I just figure I need the publicity. The point is that after seventy years, I still remember that put down. Kids of today get many hurtful words, and this is the cause of some suicides among the teenagers of today. Please whatever you do, talk positively to your children and never call them dumb or tell them they are ugly. Words hurt so please encourage your children and help them deal with the stress of cyber bullies. Remember words can help or harm in a young mind.

Preston T. Duckett Sunday, March 12, 2017



FINGERPRINTS OF GOD


God leaves his fingerprints all over the Universe with the planets and stars. Each known to Him and named by Him. Stop and look around in the sky, on and on the earth and water. Take time to slow down and enjoy his benevolence and beauty all around us enjoyed at no extra cost. The mountain ranges, rivers and creeks, the oceans and beaches and they are there at any time just for us taking the time to enjoy them. The work-a-day world with our “nose to the grindstone” may be a necessity but never past the six days, yet do most of us push hard and often. God created the Sun, Moon, and the Earth in six days and on the seventh, he rested as a sign for us to do the same. The Hebrews honored the Sabbath even before Christ came to the Earth and by Christians, Sunday was the seventh day. Until just a few years ago the “Blue Law” kept businesses closed on Sunday, alcohol sales on Sunday were illegal. We now have obliterated all the closings of stores opened the sale of alcohol. Do we not only keep our stores open on Sunday but also have gone from the days of Sundown closing of businesses. Small towns “rolled in the sidewalks” at sundown. Early closings continued for many years after WWII.
The changes were gradual and did not seem to be much of a bother to most people. Stores would stay open until Eight O’clock and then later until nine. Small convenience outlets opened under the name of Seven-Eleven Stores. Other convenience stores soon began and called “Seven-Eleven” regardless of the name on the front of the store. Hours kept creeping up until they were open to midnight and eventually on to all night seven days a week. We now refer to it as twenty-four seven short for twenty-four hours a day seven days per week. These improvements as they are called by some people, not only messed our working hours past the six days and rested on the seventh but also our sleep pattern by having three shifts a night in most stores and businesses. Day sleep is not as powerful as nighttime rest. The only exception to that would be catching a nap when we are supposed to be working. Being the old foggy that I am, Progress just is not worth the extra effort. However, it is too late to change now, so I guess we will just have to “grin and bear it.”


Preston T. Duckett. Psalms 19:14 Wednesday, April 12, 2017


STOP TWEETS AND TEXTS


Mister President, we seem to be bothered by similar problems. Murphy’s law has both of us “up the creek without a paddle.” Your tweets seem to give you publicity but also provides a target for all Democrats and liberals. I will not go into depth about your tweets but I, think everyone understands that a problem does exist in that realm.
I have recently started to text and have made a few mistakes with it but last night was one for the books, according to Murphy, “whatever can go wrong will go wrong” or “whatever may be misunderstood will be misunderstood.” Last evening after going to bed I got a text from an extraordinary person, and in an attempt to rush an answer back to her, I did not bother getting out of bed, turning the light on or getting my glasses. In doing so I sent a text, “Okay thank you, am praying for you love, love you, Darling.” Nothing wrong with that text as I am widowed by six years and her by many more. But here is where Murphy’s law comes in, instead of the text being sent to her I pressed the wrong number and the text went to my Pastor. The phone rang immediately, and He asked me to explain that message to him. Since that was the only text I had sent recently, I explained to him that it was a mistake and that message was to a dear, dear lady friend. I replied, “well I sure am glad that it was not sent to me intentionally," he said. The phone rang again, and I told my Pastor the lady was calling me now, and he said he would let me go and answer it. An explanation to her from me brought forth laughter and a response of “oh no you didn’t.” However, oh yes I did, and I am sure this is not the end of the explanations that will have to be given tomorrow as the Preacher, and I have an appointment for lunch. And when I think of that I feel sickness approaching because the teasing will be unbearable.
I know God must have a fantastic sense of humor to let that happen. I do not blame anyone for the mistake except my carelessness and not getting up and turning on my reading light or putting on my glasses. Every time I awoke during the night, there was nothing to be done except to laugh at my own foolish mistakes. As I have always heard, “if the shoe fits wear it.” Facebook may also come under scrutiny, who knows just how far the long arm of Murphy’s law may be able to reach.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, November 28, 2017, PrestonTNT.com




THEY GOT MY GOAT


I think I had told you about the goatherd and how three of them escaped when the others were rounded up for sale. Two of them died, and one survived and disappeared and is believed to have joined a deer herd in the backwoods. She reappeared about two months ago, and I have been feeding her around ten o’clock in the morning, and when sleeping late yesterday I heard the doorbell ringing which started Barron barking and when I opened the door, there stood Francine, the goat with one paw in the air and looking at her watch. She seemed to be upset because I was about fifteen minutes late getting her food ready. You have seen that pitiful look on your dogs face when they are hungry watching you eating in front of them, or they are upset with you. That same look appears in the eyes of other animals as well. It is the aren’t you ashamed of yourself for not getting the food here sooner. Two viral bobtail cats have started showing up every morning at the same time so now have to prepare breakfast for Tick and Tock they show up just as regular as clockwork but you have to be of the old school to even know about the tick-tock sound of the early grandfather clock.
Awoke early this morning and sleep eluded me. I gave up trying at four-thirty and got up. I was about four hours ahead of schedule with everything because eight-o’clock is my usual time to arise and greet the day. However, today at eight I carried the food over early and Tick, and Tock was there hiding in the grass, waiting for the food delivery. I am not sure but I think Tick was drooling and Tock had a napkin around his neck. Francine was not there yet, but she saw me coming and came from the barn at a trot.
I have to keep a line on Barron for he likes to chase the cats and even tries to get Francine to run from him. However, she lowers her head and meets him head-on with her horns. That doesn’t slow him down a great deal he was at the door night before the last yelping for me to open the door and let him out. I yanked it open, and like a streak, he was chasing him a big Buck deer across my yard and thru the neighbor's yard and into the woods. I yelled at him and got him stopped before he entered the wooded area. Barron eased away from me one morning, and I looked everywhere for him and eventually saw him coming out of the woods, and it looked as if there were two of him until I got a closer look and he was escorting a female Red Fox across the highway.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, November 7, 2017









IT'S HARD TO SAY GOODBYE


Saying goodbye is often hurtful to the person doing it and to those the goodbyes to whom intended. Several times, in my life, it has come to the goodbye time, and each time it was very unpleasant. My first time of feeling the pain was when the draft board sent me greetings. The second time was when Uncle Sam sent me to Anchorage Alaska to guard the snow and ice. There was the time when the daughter walked down the aisle, and I lost my little girl. One of my most difficult Regrets had to say goodbye to my wife after fifty-eight years of marriage and my son two years later. All those were very painful but unavoidable. There was a time back in seventy-two when goodbyes were for the Preston T. Show and you beautiful fans of that time in life. I think you get the reason for this bit of information because most of you have faced something similar in your lifetime. When retirement comes, and we have mixed, emotions about leaving a life’s work, or a business you have spent a lifetime building. Divorce is one of the most destructive types of separation and causes all sorts of broken hearts. The children are usually most upset with this kind of forceful breaking apart. Times of any goodbyes often remedied with one-step or one day at a time. The distance of time soothes some of the disappointment but never thoroughly covers the hurt. Jehovah God blesses us even in these times of despair if we ask him in prayer. In the case of work, opportunity when one door closes another one opens or is allowed to open. Place your trust in the Trion Godhead, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. With Jesus as your intercessor, your prayers are operating in the correct corridor. The above may sound too simple to be acceptable. However, it is a very active lifestyle and always in your best interest even when you are not able to reconcile with it at the time. When it is time for our very last goodbyes on this earth, we can know the reasons when we meet again on the other side of Jordan.


Preston T. Duckett Psalms 19:14 Thursday, April 6, 2017




INTRODUCTION TO ENTERTAINMENT


Discovered the wonderful world of entertainment at the ripe old age of ten as my aunt Dorothy, who was slightly older than me, bought a train ticket for us and we rode the five miles from Talking Rock to Jasper Georgia. She paid my way into the theater for a Saturday western with Gene Autry, a cartoon that I do not remember the name of and a cliffhanger “Sheena of the Jungle.” the coming attractions were spectacular, and I wanted to see every one of them. Money was in short supply and until this day I do not know how she managed it. At the movie, we had popcorn a candy bar (Babe Ruth) and a coke. We left the theater and had one hour before the train would come to make the trip back to Talking Rock. Also, this brought about one of the biggest surprises of my life as we entered a regular Café, which was something that this old country boy had never done before. I had no idea what to order so Dot ordered a grilled cheese sandwich, and it is a favorite of mine until this day. My younger Sister and I went to Atlanta before Dorothy passed away and we laughed and talked about that time she said if I remember right the train trip was ten cents, movie, popcorn, candy and drink were twenty-cents, and the grilled cheese sandwich was ten-cents. For a total of forty cents I was introduced to the world of entertainment eating out and public transportation. At this time in my life, I had come uptown, and I liked it, so that removed the boy from the country but there is still a lot of country-blood running in the boy's veins.
The next big jump in entertainment came in Dalton Georgia where Mom and Dad had moved us too. While they were at work, it was my job to do the ironing and watch after my younger brother who would fight me at minutes notice if I ever told him they had me babysitting him, so I never accused him of anything I thought might rile him to fisticuffs. He loved to fight, and I always tried to talk myself out of trouble instead of facing it head-on. Anyway, I learned that the ironing job was a lot easier and I listened to Radio the Lone Ranger, Tennessee Judd and several others. Late afternoon brought on the soap operas, yes we had them on Radio long before we knew about Television. I would watch the wheat swaying as the Lone Ranger and his faithful companion Tonto rode on the scene. I often wondered just what Kimo-sobby meant. I learned to sprinkle clothes the proper amount to press them with the least amount of work with the iron. Never did learn to like that job but I did fall in love with Radio, which later in life made a living for twenty-two years as a disc jockey, news, and commercial announcer, and manager working in a job I loved.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, November 6, 2017


THANKSGIVING TIME AGAIN


At this time of year, things seem to pick up and speed ahead even faster than usual. From now until Christmas it is all downhill. So many things to think about and so many things to do that it is easy to get in a rut and as I have said before the only difference between a rut and a grave is the length.
Thanksgiving day more people do stop to thank God for his bountiful blessings. We should be thanking God every day and not only once a year. Think of the little benefits in your life and find they add to be bigger than the abundant blessings. We sometimes take for granted such things as the beauty of Gods magnificent creations, the changing of seasons, rain, sunshine and sometimes snow. Daily blessings of food, a job enough money to meet our needs. It is easy to think of these things as being due us. However, they are blessings. Other items under the blessing category are health, healings, and breathing, heart beating, strength to walk and do our chores. These blessings sometimes get into short supply when invaded with sickness or increased age and even then the benefits outweigh the ailments. Even with the problems aforementioned, our God is capable of handling the biggest ones of all. Thankfulness should come as a natural process of our thinking. With God first, we can even be thankful for the pitfalls of life because we know God is in charge and control.
Be thankful to God for all things at all times. The blessings will pour down on you when least expected and from the most unexpected directions and or people. Take time each day, even several times a day to Thank God for being with us and for us. We can never thank God too much; that is just impossible.
Make every day THANKSGIVING DAY. And from all of us to all of you HAPPY THANKSGIVING.


Preston T. Duckett Wednesday, November 22, 2017



  NEW YEAR 2018


There were only about three or four years that I celebrated the incoming new year with the usual drinking, singing, and toasting at a nightclub. As best as can remember, the hangover was not worth the celebrations.
The best ones I remember are watching the ball drop in Times Square, on Television with Dick Clark as emcee. These times were without the drinking other than coffee and hot cocoa. Surrounded by family and looking forward to the midnight kiss with my wife for bringing in a new year. Most of the New Years Eve that I did attempt to stay awake until midnight caused the hardship of getting up early next morning to open the Radio Station at four o’clock. For that reason, I usually went to bed first and waited until the morning to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year.
I was awakened at midnight by my dog’s barking at all the fireworks that were exploding. The thanks for a Happy New Year went up to the Holy Trinity with a snide remark to Barron to hush barking and go to sleep, which we both did immediately.
Heavenly Father we honor you and offer praises to You and Lord thank You for allowing the extra years in my life that was not expected by me. Please take whatever time is left on this Earth to enable me to Honor and Serve You. Dear Lord, You know this world is in an upside-down condition, and only You have the power to correct it. We ask that You be with our leaders and let Your Spirit convict and direct them to do those things that will improve our Country and be of Honor to You. Lord thank You for the protection you have given to us and healings you have produced. And thank You for answering our prayers for those that suffer illness and those in particular that are affected by Cancer, please heal those or put in remission for ultimate healing. Be with the researchers to find a better way of treating all diseases. We humbly ask this in the fantastic name of Jesus Christ, Savior and Lord. Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Sunday, January 1, 2017




SOMETIMES TIME IS CONFUSING


Awoke at three o’clock AM and had a serious talk with myself about all the world problems. When I checked the clock on the digital radio clock again it read 3:33 and this got me to thinking how many times a day does it happen that the numbers on the clock will all be the same. The way I calculated it starting with 1:l l and thru 5:55 then again with 11:11 making a total of six times every twelve hours or twelve times every twenty-four hours. This deep thinking lead me to another hypothetical what would it do to this theory if we went on Greenwich Mean Time? Well, in that case, we would lose five times every twenty-four hours because the only one available with the added numbers would be 22:22.
I first confronted with the twenty-four-hour clock and thought of it as Army time because that was the branch of service for which they drafted me. It came to my attention that the Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard all used it, so refer to it as military time. Further delving into the issue before Google was the way to appear smart. It came to my attention that it was called Greenwich Mean Time and for the longest time I thought some mean green witch had come up with the idea. It was hard for me to get used to militarily reporting time. Therefore it seemed to be a mean thing to have to learn the Roman Numerals past twelve. My watch was geared to the twelve-hour segments of time and had Roman numerals on its face therefore when I submitted a report at say four o’clock AM I would report it as IV, and the military wanted it reported as zero four zero, zero hours. I stayed confused for the zero-twenty-one months that Uncle Sam kept me in a Military Police Uniform.
When completely confused on the subject of military time and mean green witches my mind drifted to my dog chasing his tail. I wondered why he could not catch it and on the other hand what would happen if caught. Would he then bite himself because his tail had received a bite. I tried to Google a reference but could not get a correct answer. The report came back stamped STUPID, STUPID, STUPID. I would have felt better if it had come back to me a SECRET, SECRET, SECRET.


Preston T. Duckett Friday, December 29, 2017



ALPHA AND OMEGA


Heavenly Father, we come to you with thanks and gratitude for twenty-seventeen and pray for your continued blessings in the year to come. We have no way of knowing what is in store for us as we can only have faith and trust in your grace and patience with us. Please forgive us as we forgive others and may any malice that may be in our heart be wiped clean by the sacrifice made by Jesus on the Cross. Give us the wisdom to understand what we read in your Holy Word and the courage to tell others that may not know of your love and greatness. Lord, we know you are all powerful and omnipresent. We ask you to hold on to us as we stumble and not let us fall into a temptation too high for us to bear alone. Let your Holy Spirit guide our thoughts and actions for the future lifetime, however long or short that may be. Please keep us on a steady course of helping others and magnifying your love and glory. Please show us the areas you want us to serve and give us the talent to perform whatever task you wish for us to do. Please make twenty-eighteen the most significant year of service ever to you and our fellowman.
May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart always be acceptable in your sight. Psalm 19:14.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, December 30, 2017









WE CELEBRATE JESUS BIRTH


As we celebrate the birth of Jesus do we put the proper meaning into it or do we think only of the gifts we can get? The Good-Book tells us it is better to give than to receive; However as we, age into the second childhood it begins to make a lot more sense. Giving an appreciated gift leaves one with a warm fuzzy feeling for a lot longer than a gift received. If someone you know needs help and a hand-up and not a hand-out then follow the example of a friend of mine in North Carolina, give from your heart. I will not mention his name because most of you know him and he refers to me as the “old rooster,” and most of us refer to him as The Godfather. His heart is as big as Dixie, and he has mastered the act of giving is better than receiving. Before becoming disable to hold a fulltime job he gave through the companies he was employed by and had a much more significant budget to work with but his passion for providing has carried over into his disabled time, and he still cheers a lot of people with his limited budget gifts. He knows how to bargain and persuade discounts from merchants. Older folks have a hold on his heart as witnessed by many in retirement homes and if he had the proper financial backing would cover all those confined to retirement or nursing homes.
I wish to thank him for all the help he has provided for me, one of the old folks, and would like to thank his Mother for the delicious persimmon pudding.
Here is a Preston T. Tip of the hat to my good friend Dennis Hines and Dennis may you and yours have a wonderful Christmas and a very Happy New Year.


Preston T. Duckett Sunday, December 17, 2017






FANTASY LOVE


This love started with an accidental phone call. A friend was talking with you, and as a joke, he called me and made it a three-way call. We only said a few words and carefully spoke with discretion even as sparks began to fly. Unsure if we were correct or not, I called you, and at once we both admitted there was an attraction. After a month and half of nightly lengthily phone conversations, we both agreed that it was love. I would never believe it could happen if I had not experienced it myself. The talks were always upbeat and with an admission of letting the Holy Spirit lead us and agreed not to do anything with haste until we had received acceptance from the Heavenly Host.
The attraction on both sides was immediate and never any hesitation on the fact of love. My drawback was merely a matter of age; I am fourteen-years her senior. Went thru this issue over and over with her declaration that was no problem. It still seemed unfair to her because I was then eighty-four and she only seventy-one. The chances of my death from the human standpoint were much stronger than hers.
We both decided to make no moves toward marriage until we had a chance to date for a year and then if it still looked as if the Lord agreed we would consider that possibility. With all things considered I plan to stay here with my trusty sidekick Royal Barron, Esquire, Pomeranian Extraordinaire. I have finished some of his adventures as well as a friend Jerry Walker has expressed on Facebook “If you want to know anything about Preston T. just read his post because his entire life he expresses in these facebook pages.” He is right most of it is out there warts and all. To get any more in-depth information about me, you would have to skin me I reckon. However, what you read is what you get, and the only thing I cannot reveal is how many of you beautiful women with whom I am in love.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, December 21, 2017




Moving to a new School in Dalton


After my bout with pre-primer in that one room School on Jones Mountain we moved to Dalton. Georgia, at that time known as the Bed Spread Center of the world. Many years later there were the Carpet Mills and it later and is now known as the Carpet center of the world. Dad had rented a place out in the country about 5 miles or so from Dalton. So I had to be enrolled in a county School. When my parents carried me to get enrolled in the first grade. They wanted to know if I had ever been to School and they were told about the one room School in Pickens County. I don’t know if there were any written records of that transaction or not but the Principal told my parents that I would not need to go to the first grade because I had successfully completed the first year. I started the Second Grade and to this day I’m not sure that was a good Idea because all thru School all the girls in my classes were older than me and most of them were bigger. Do not remember a great deal about the Second grade except the country and the different food and different stores in a Town much bigger than I had been in before. Dad was making $12.50 a week and to us at that time that was a small fortune. Dad would by bologna by the big roll and slice it ourselves never had that much store bought food in our lives. Dad got friendly with some of the wholesale grocery companies and would buy bananas by the stalk, candy by the box and the same with chewing gum. “Dad bought in bulk before buying in bulk was cool.” (I don’t think Sam Walden ever met my Dad.) It was a good year for this old boy, I’m telling you. We had a lake in the front of the house and the swimming wasn’t bad and the fishing was pretty good and Dad would catch frogs and turtles and he made turtle soup and I don’t know how much of the frog he ate but I stayed with the bananas and bologna, and of course the candy and gum. There was a Krystal Burger downtown and to the best of my memory they were a nickel each. I do know they were good. When I had finished the Second grade in Dalton. It fell my lot to help Grandpa thru the Summer and then for some reason I stayed on for the next School year in Talking Rock. This was the third grade and my teacher was Miss. Brown and at that time, she had to be the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. This was my first crush on a Teacher, (but not my last). I was used to seeing all the female people I knew working in the fields and dressing for that type of occasion. Mrs. Brown wore skirts and jackets that matched. Beautiful scarves, and blouses and high heel shoes. This was something new for me, but I always did adapt and learn fairly fast for a country boy (that had been dropped on his head as a child.) In my mind's eye, I can still see that classroom and remember the sights and smells of the cloakroom. I did notice also that the girls were beginning to look a little better, and I guess for that reason, from this time forward things started looking up.


Preston T. Duckett December 30, 2017 prestontnt.net



SCHOOLING AFTER THE ONE ROOM SCHOOL ON JONES MOUNTAIN


After my bout with pre-primer in that one room School on Jones Mountain we moved to Dalton. Georgia, Dad had rented a place out in the country about 5 miles or so from Dalton. So I was enrolled in a county School. When my parents carried me to get enrolled in the first grade. They were told about the one room School in Pickens County. I don’t know if there were any written records of that transaction or not but the Principal told my parents that I would not need to go to the first grade because I had successfully completed the first year. So I started the Second Grade and to this day I’m not sure that was a good Idea because all through School all the girls in my classes were older than me and most of them were bigger. When I had finished the Second grade in Dalton. It fell my lot to help Grandpa thru the summer and then for some reason I stayed on for the next School year in Talking Rock. This was the third grade and my teacher was Miss. Brown and at that time, she had to be the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. This was my first crush on a Teacher, (but not my last). I was used to seeing all the female people I knew working in the fields and dressing for that type of occasion. Miss Brown wore skirts and jackets that matched. Beautiful scarves, and blouses and high heel shoes. This was something new for me, but I always did adapt and learn fairly fast for a country boy (that had been dropped on his head as a child.) In my mind's eye, I can still see that classroom and remember the sights and smells of the cloakroom. I did notice also that the girls were beginning to look a little better, and I guess for that reason, from this time forward things started looking up.The rest of my grammar School education was at Talking Rock School and I got a lot of experience picking up limbs for the big potbelly heater along with reading, writing, and arithmetic. We called it the three R’s. The stage in the auditorium was used for several events that were outside of the learning from books. I seem to remember a gospel singing group that appeared. I am not at all sure but I want to think it was the Chuck Wagon Gang. Remember this was in the late 1930’s, and one night there was a country group but I can not remember who that was. I remember the Darnell Family Singers, from Talking Rock, but I think we saw them only in the Churches of the area. We even did a Christmas Show one year and I think it was the Fifth or Sixth grade. It started my desire to be in the public eye which led me during High School to be in a production of “The Importance of Being Earnest” and a College Playmakers production of “Three Little Indians” and later a job in Radio and TV. We did not have enough students to cover all the characters needed to do the show correctly. So I was one of the Two Kings from the Orient because we could not find a third King.
When I entered the 7th grade my Brother started his first year in School.
We were staying with Grandma and Grandpa to help out on the farm so he entered his first year of school in Talking Rock. As reported to you before it was a small School sitting on the side of a hill that had been bulldozed out flat for a playground area and then up about twenty feet another area was flattened to place the Schoolhouse. It was a wood building with a small auditorium with a huge “pot belly” wood heater in the center of the room and this was the only heat for the building so all the doors to each classroom opened into the auditorium. The bigger boys had to go into the surrounding woods and pick up sticks and dead limbs to keep the fire going during the wintertime. My Teacher was also the principal and his name was Sherman Duckett a relative to Dad,   Now back to my Brother he was feisty as I told you in the last bit about him. He thought he was bulletproof and would fight anyone at any time no matter the size. Well, he had a fight every day of his first year in school and the teacher would send him to the principal and he would have to spank him and he did it in the seventh-grade classroom. Instead of being embarrassed Joe considered it a badge of courage to get his butt beaten by the Principal. One day Mr. Duckett said, Joe, what am I going to do with you? Are we going to have a hair-pulling fight to settle this? Joe looked at him and said No Sir that wouldn’t be fair cause you don’t have any. Trying to keep a straight face and not laugh Mr. Duckett whipped his butt again as he had to do every day his first year in school. I am sure Mr. Duckett was glad when Joe went to Dalton, GA for the 2nd grade. My High School for the next three years was at Dalton High as well.

Preston T. Duckett November 28, 2015 prestontnt.com





FARMBOY EARLY 1930'S AND THE 1940'S


Cane Syrup Making Grandpa Cain Style


As a youngster, I used to help (mostly watched) Grandpa make Syrup. Now, this is not the sugar cane syrup that most of you in Alabama, Florida and other states where sugar cane grows. Some of you folks further North, especially in North Georgia, will know it at sorghum cane syrup. They look similar but is only about one-quarter to one-half as big around. Instead of peeling it down to chew the cane as in sugar cane, to get the juice out of the rod you would put the stalk in your mouth, twist it and suck on it at the same time to get the juice. You had to be careful, or when you spun it, your tongue would get in the way and get cut by the sharp edges of the cane stalk. There was a lot of bleeding tongues in that part of the country during the cane season.
Now back to the subject with which we started. Grandpa had the reputation of being one of the best syrup makers in that part of the country. People came from all around to bring their cane, or the ones that were not farmers would come to buy syrup from him. We put most of it up either in gallon buckets or gallon jugs, never any little bottles or jars. When we sopped syrup in that part of the country, we would not stop with a small amount of the butter. We mixed up a batch because it along with the eggs and ham would have to keep us supplied for hard work until lunchtime.
We would start early grinding the cane by hitching a mule to the cane mill and as she walked around and around it would turn the rollers that mashed the juice out of the cane. Transferring this cane juice into a large copper bottom cooker that was about 3 or 4 feet wide and 6 or 8 feet long and around 10 to 12 inches deep, as the juice went from one compartment into another it would slowly cook and become sorghum. There was always a fire going on under the copper bottom cooker. We would all think it was time to drain the syrup, but Grandpa would say not yet, and when it reached the color and thickness he desired then he would let it be drained off.
There was always a white foam substance that had to be skimmed off the top of the cooking cane juice and discarded which we threw on top of the cane stalks that had been through the mill rollers.
Grandpa’s cane mill was next to the cow pasture and thru the years erosion caused by a Branch that ran through the field. The source of the Branch was an underground Spring on the hillside above. As it ran down past the cane mill, this constant flow of water plus the flooding from heavy rains over many years had washed a deep gulley the entire length of the pasture.
This eroded area is where we would carry the processed cane stalks with all the juice mashed out of them. On top of the discarded stems, we would throw the cane skimming that came off the cooking syrup that I mentioned earlier.
Over a period this began to ferment and smelled of the same. The cows were eating the skimming and cane stalks, and we noticed the animals walking peculiarly and staggering. The cows were drunk from eating the fermented cane stalks and skimming. We eventually got them led into the barn and their stalls. Have you ever tried to milk a drunken cow? I could not tell if she wanted to slap me off the stool with her tail, (that was full of burrows which hurt when it hit you in the face,) or lick me to death as she would turn around try to slap my face with that long sandpaper tongue.
My aunt had trained one of the cats to sit in the doorway, and my aunt would squeeze a teat and squirt milk toward her, and she would open her mouth and gobble it down. Today the cat sat there for about five minutes drinking this fermented dairy from this drunken cow then fell off the door jamb and lay there drunk and asleep until the next morning.
We milked about two gallons of milk that evening. This amount would last a couple of days before Grandma put it in a churn to make butter and buttermilk. We all raided the kitchen more often than usual until the milk was gone. However, we all felt good for a couple of days.
After moving to South Alabama, we would go back each year and get a gallon or two of Grandpa’s Sorghum Syrup, and I have never found any other syrup that had that taste and thickness since Grandpa went to his reward, to that large cane mill in the sky.

Preston T. Duckett August 28, 2015 prestontnt.com






The Power of “X”

Back in the hills of North Georgia, (about 45 miles from Talking Rock, where I was born,) there was a small mountain community. I will not call it name, were a lot of people in the late 1930’s that had no way of going to School so most of the people in that area not only couldn’t read and neither could they write. Most of them signed with an X. and when something had to be witnessed it was also with another X or two. It became very important to be able to distinguish between say John’s X and Jim’s X.
There was one man in town that was used as an X writing expert by Judges and Sherriff’s as well as any person that had a debate about whose X was legitimate or not. His credentials were that he was more Xs than anyone else in the community. He was an ex-farmer, ex-family man, an ex-student at Georgia Tech., a three-time ex-husband, an ex-Senator, and ex-serviceman so this made him an X writing expert.
This “X” problem drifted into the farmers of the area because a lot of cattle had been stolen. One farmer had relatives that lived in Texas so when he saw them branding their cattle it gave him the idea of branding his with an X. This worked fine until the other farmers in the area started branding their cattle with an, you guessed it, with an X, when he accused a neighbor of stealing a cow from him. The neighbor claimed it was his cow because it had his X on it. Naturally, this had to be taken to court and the Judge called in the X writing expert. Now the man who claimed it was his cow and his X said he could prove it was his because he always stood at the back of the cow while branding and most everyone else branded theirs by standing at the animal's feet. Therefore his brand was on his cow upside down when the cow stood up. The X writing expert agreed with him and told the Judge. Yes-sir-ree your honor that is an upside down X if I ever saw one. The Judge did his duty and ruled for the plaintiff and the community went about its business divided by the decision as is the case of most either legal or illegal decisions. My uncle Earnest always said there are three sides to every story, my side, your side and the right side. Uncle Earnest was a thinker in the community so no one ever questioned his X’s and his wife made the best “cat head” biscuits I ever tasted. This has nothing to do with the story but it is what I remember of that time. All of the facts in this story are not Xactly correct. You didn’t really Xpect them to be, did you? Sometimes life gets double X complicated, does it not?

Now it was in this community that I got my first Kiss.

I was somewhat of a fast learner when I was young. I can not remember how that first kiss tasted, however, I seem to sense peppermint. The girl had short curly hair, dark eyes, and a dark complexion, a big smile and glistening white teeth. She was a real beauty. Her name comes easily to my lips, Monica Westwood, and it was my first time falling in love. This started a trend with me, number one it was easy for me to fall in love, as I have many times in my young life. If they looked my way and gave any indication of a smile I was a goner sure as shooting. But we are getting ahead of the story let us get back to Monica. She was different because she was my first love. We were “playing house,” under a weeping willow tree with the limbs hanging down to the ground. You had to take your hands and separate the limbs to get under the tree. While you were under there you could not see out, but the best part was no one could see in either.
We were sitting on the ground with our back against the tree when Monica turned to me with her hand on my shoulder and looking me in the eyes with our faces close together. Her arms went around my neck and my arms slipped around her waist (well I had to do something with them.) and it came so naturally. Then the kiss, which was followed by a loud buzzing noise, lightning flashing thru my brain followed by stars and the best hopped up feeling I had ever known in my young life. Since that time I have had a good number of kisses, but never too many, and I have loved them all. I would still be doing it but there is something about being Eighty-four years old that makes it kind of hard to find that right partner but I am open to suggestions. Now as I told you I was a fast learner as a youngster. Well, this all happened when Monica was six years of age and I was seven. Now as I told you I am now eighty-four and still trying to fall in Love at least a dozen more times before this life ends and the wings get in the way of hugging.


Preston T. Duckett June 30, 2015, www.prestontnt.com



Frog Kissing by a distant cousin living in this same community.


Had a distant cousin, when she read a story about a frog that turned into a prince when kissed by a pretty girl? It inspired her so much that she started hunting frogs and kissing them. She did this until the time came that she began to enjoy the frog kissing. The only thing we could see she was getting out of this was warts. Grandma always said, “Every person to their own opinion said the old lady as she kissed the cow.” I’m sure that had a deeper meaning but for the life of me, I never could figure what. This cousin got so carried away with the frog kissing situation that she moved to Texas because she heard they had bigger frogs than anyplace around, besides she had kissed everything that would let her in Georgia. Texas didn’t last too long until she started throughout the mid-west frog kissing. She heard of a club for frog kissers in California. Naturally, she migrated into the LA area and saw Kermit the Frog on television for the first time and after a series of letters to him, with no response, she decided that Miss Piggy was the reason Kermit was not answering her mail. So she sent Miss Piggy a challenge to a Duel. Miss Piggy didn’t answer either so she got a Billboard company to print 25 advertisements and post them throughout the Los Angles community. To be sure she didn’t miss any chances she also hired an advertising agency to handle Radio and TV. To no avail she spent most of her money and in the end it worked out very well for her because she went to a dermatologist to remove her warts and as fate would have it he was intrigued by her story and since he kissed like a frog they fell in love and spent the rest of their lives removing warts and kissing. The truth of the matter is that I have no Idea of how this came about but I am sure that she must have been related to me in a closer fashion than a distant cousin because this story makes absolutely good sense to me.


Preston T. Duckett September 6, 2015 prestontnt.com


FORTY-FIVE YEARS AGO



We bought some property forty-five years ago. Attempted farming on the place we called a farmette. The total acreage was only fifteen; therefore, we would work on the bottom four, where the prominent farmer would work on his back forty or upper forty and so forth. I think you get the idea. Did not have any types of equipment to start with all we had were the house and a barn. A neighbor got divorced, and I was able to purchase an eight N Ford tractor from his wife and accumulated some two-row equipment, a turning plow, disks, and a bush hog. My big crop was corn because that was all I had any idea of how to raise. The land is hard red clay, and if the weather did not cooperate and give you some moisture, it was hard to grow anything even corn. I started out with a couple of pigs and they got all the corn that was left by the deer population. A couple of the deer had a complaint about the variety of maize and the size of my fields. They were waiting for me one evening when I returned from the Grocery store. Two of them were in my carport ringing the doorbell. Evidentially they didn’t recognize my car because they ran away before I could find out what was the problem.
One of the hogs was ready for slaughter, and I did not want to do it the same way they did back in Talking Rock Georgia when I was just a boy. So with a neighbors borrowed trailer, loaded him up and went to Abbeville to a meat processing company. A young boy showed me where to back the trailer, and he jumped into where the hog was and started to punch him with a cattle probe. The pig had never had, and electrical probe used on him and was running in circles trying to get out of its reach. I yelled at the young man and informed him, with a few soft words to get his butt out and quit scaring my hog. He was a little upset and reminded me that they were killing him anyway. After that, with a few more soft-spoken phrases and gentle persuasion informed the young person something to the effect if he stuck that probe to the hog again he would be wearing it home and gently explained to him just because the swine was scheduled to die it did not give him a license to torture the animal. In the event, any of you ever catch yourself in a similar situation, do not, and I say again do not ever let your kids name any animal or make a pet out of them that you are planning to have butchered. Even though that was some of the best ham, pork chops, and bacon that I had ever encountered it was a little hard to enjoy it to the fullest while being reminded that you are eating poor old porky. That was the last hog raised at the Duckett plantation, did try a beef calf a little later; however, that is another story for another time.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, August 28, 2017


HOLY HEAVENLY FATHER


Heavenly Father, Praise Your Holy name and please keep us faithful to Psalm 14;19. May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be always acceptable in Your sight. And thank You Lord for Protection is the current weather situation. The balance of Your rain and sunshine always seems to work out just right, and right on time. Never too early or too late for Your plans and balances. Thank You, for answering the Prayers of Facebook friends for other Facebo0k friends. Father thank You for also for leading and directing our nation's government. May Your Spirit give wisdom and direction to all branches of leadership. Open their hearts to accept your love and guidance and let it pass from our leaders at the top, President and Vice President and all of those that fall under them. From our National Leaders, down to our State leaders, County, and Local leaders. Please let your Holy Word be the guide which leads our Country. We ask this in the Holy Name of Jesus. Amen and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, March 19, 2018











THOUGHTS OF AN IDEAL WOMAN


Looking for a mature lady, preferably an unmarried woman retired School Teacher. A degree in English and Literature would be helpful. This lady does not need to have lived a life of massive finances. “Poor as dirt” would put us in the same category so folks could not say we married for money. She would not need to be extremely friendly except to my dog, in the age range of between seventy and a hundred, preferably still alive. She would need to understand that not a lot of work expected of her only the things I am not able to do. She would also need to know that I can do nothing. It would be helpful if she were able to drive a stick shift. My car has an automatic transmission, however; if she learned to drive using a stick shift, her coordination is a lot better than if she had never driven one. It would be helpful if she has always entertained herself. Maybe an avid reader and have a huge desire to help me with my writing, thus the English and Literature Major. I hope that she is starved for attention and would not mind sitting in twin rocking chairs and holding hands, or a stroll in the moonlight with arms around each other and steal a kiss or two under a full moon. Elaborate and heavy petting would be out of the picture, and besides, we would both be too old for that type of nonsense anyway. The reason for being self-entertaining is for those moments when I have my head stuck in the computer and trying to remember the direction the current story is going. It is very upsetting to be disturbed when I am working, and besides, you need to work quietly around me because when in deep concentration it upsets me when awakened. Another reason for having to love dogs, Barron enjoys waiting for me to drift off while sitting at the computer. Then decides at that particular moment it is time to bark to go outside. She could be very helpful in taking him for his walks while I dream up another story. Therefore, you ladies that might fit the high static’s have and enjoy some warm after supper coffee and snuggling. I do not care to watch television because of all the violence and "bed jumping" of the participants. I lived during the heyday of the Great Depression, and for that reason, it was hard work and entertainment was the Word of God, Summer Revivals at the local Churches. Some Preachers would build brush arbors and hold their Revivals under them as they could not afford a tent. The lady that I prefer would need to have lived the same way and therefore would need a minuscule budget for entertaining. I do have a popcorn popper.


Preston T. Duckett Psalm 19:14 May 29, 2017


PRAYER OF NEEDS AND THANKSGIVING


Merciful Heavenly Father, Thank you for the multiple blessings You have bestowed on us year after year. Thank you for the warmth coming back and warming up these old bones. And thank you for the fact that no matter how bad things look or seem to us, You are still in Control. Father, please let your Spirit give us the wisdom to turn all our problems over to Jesus, and learn to leave them there. Much too often we give them to Him and when it appears that a solution is not coming on our timeline we get to thinking we can do it and take the problems back and then we are back in the same old rut. As we read in Your Word, let us be guided by the Holy Spirit, for wisdom and understanding. Your Word remains true and correct through all ages. It is the same now as it was when Jesus left this Earth to return to sit on your right hand in Heaven.
Thank you, Lord, for your healing of those that need healing on Facebook and for giving your peace and understanding to those that have lost loved ones. A lot of the requests for prayer are for the dreaded Cancer word. In these situations, we ask for more Grace for the easement of pain and of the fear of this horrible disease. We present this to you in the wonderful name of Jesus our savior and redeemer. Amen and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, February 15, 2018









THANKS, AND APPRECIATION OF THE EASTER SEASON.


Heavenly Father, we thank you for the blessings you have given to us. So many of them you awarded without the asking. Times when your protective, hand covered us when we thought we were alone. The misses and near misses of all kinds of accidents. The times of the miracle healings and times, you guided the hands of the surgeons for needed operations. Thank you for those times you led us to the right Doctor’s that knew what was wrong before it went too far. For the times we went against Your Will, and your Grace still prevailed and protected us. Thank you for the times you let things happen that kept us from the wrong location and defended us by Your wisdom and knowledge keeping us from harm. Thank you for the times you have had to get our attention with things we did not see and appreciate at the time. Lord, thank You for the leading and guidance of Your Holy Spirit directing us thru the hills and valleys of life. Open our hearts to receive Your Love share it with others and return it to you. Most of all we thank you for sending Your Son to be our pathway to salvation. These thanks and requests made in the name of Jesus Christ at this time of celebration of His Death and Resurrection. Amen.


Preston T. Duckett March 21, 2018, PrestonTNT.com










HEAVENLY FATHER HOLD US STEADY


Holy Father may we Praise Your Magnificent and Holy Name. We hold in awe the miracles you have recently performed in our friends and our own life. The honor and praise we offer You will never be enough to repay You for your Sacrifice of Your Son giving His life for us because of our sin conditions. Thank You that he died, was buried and mostly we are grateful to You that He rose the third day as the propitiation for our sins so that all who believe and trust in His name will have our names written in the Lambs Book of Life assuring us of our place in Heaven.
Thank You, Lord, for the opportunity to come before Your Throne and have Jesus as our intercessor for the Prayers we send to You. Thank You for answering Prayers for our Nation and Leaders seeking peace in a turbulent World and Prayers for friends to cover their sicknesses and ask for their healing. Prayers for those that have lost loved ones and may you cover them with peace and comfort. We are thankful to You for the times you have walked with us through the “valley of death” holding our hands all the way. Thank you for being a Triune God with the Holy Trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. In the name of Jesus Christ, we submit this prayer.


Preston T. Duckett Sunday, July 23, 2017










I RECKON THAT IS WHY


As a youngster, one of my favorite pastimes was listening to the radio. I guess my favorite part of radio was the stories or radio plays. A lot of them I remember and many have been forgotten until tapped by a memory shot. A memory shot is a word, sound, or smell. There were a few radio shows that did smell because they were so rotten. However, most were good and helped shape my thinking and actions. There were too many shows that were good enough to remember, but the commercials always held a special fascination for me and in most cases they were jingles, or verses, rhymes or whatever you wish to call them, and especially was entranced by the lyrics of songs. One was “Momma get real-kill, real-kill quick it knocks ‘em down fast, spray real-kill on and watch it last.” There was “Super Suds, Super Suds, lot’s more suds with Super Suds. Richer longer lasting too they are the suds with the super-do.” Of course, I could not leave out “ninety-nine and forty-four-one hundred percent pure, it floats.” Then Marietta bread sponsored The Lone Ranger, and one of their better commercials was “always demand the best in bread” which was flubbed at least once but we will not mention that because there may be some children up at this hour and we would not want to shock their sensitive natures or those that are my age that was raised with one.
Now, this is where I reckon, I reckon the above was part of the reason for my love affair with Radio. And it could have been a big reason for my twenty-two-year stint with that love affair. All those years spent mostly in the Wiregrass area except for a one year trip to KBYR Radio in Anchorage Alaska while in the military. Most of my Radio and TV career was spent in the announcing arena; however, a lot of that times was expended in selling and writing commercials for different sponsors. And I reckon that is why commercials have such a fascination for me, even when they keep interrupting a show or movie I am watching. (Sometimes the commercials are more interesting than the show.)
I reckon that is enough reckoning for today and we will return right after this brief announcement from our sponsor so don’t touch that dial we will be right back.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, March 15, 2018



TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGING


I have written to you about my first car, which was a hand me down from my Dad. It was a thirty-eight Chevrolet that was standard built.
The transmission was a standard shift; the air conditioner was 240, two windows rolled down and forty miles per hour. The starter was on the floorboard next to the gas peddle with a floorboard dimmer switch also on the floor next to the clutch. The gear shift was on the floor Nowadays the dimmer switch in on the side of the steering column along with the signal flashers, which mine did not have. We used hand signals by extending the left arm straight out the window for a left turn. And bent straight up at the elbow for a right turn and dropped down at the elbow for a stop signal which was hard to distinguish sometimes because the driver would be lazy and drop the whole arm down against the side of the door and it was hard to see from behind them. My student training for being a driver started when I was twelve years of age. My instructions consisted of the steering wheel was to guide the car, turn the wheel to the left for a left turn and right for the right turn. To crank the car push the clutch down with your left foot, turn the key to the right, push the starter with your right foot and when it cranks ease your right foot over to the foot feed while slowly going down on the gas peddle ease up on the clutch at the same time. The idea was to start slowly, but I always liked to make the car jump a little on my starts. After a couple of turns and rounds in the cow pasture, it was time to hit the dirt roads of North Georgia, In a recent visit back home all those roads that were dirt had been paved and not near as much fun as the dirt road. Especially in wet weather because most of the roads there were of the red Georgia clay variety. For some of you that may be too young, let me bring you up to date on some of the expressions used above. The foot feed and gas peddle you may know better as the accelerator, and the switch was for the key, but now you turn the switch to the right to start the vehicle, back then you had to mash the starter with your right foot. The dimmers are now on the steering column along with your turn signals. The speed monitor is now called odometer. The automatic transmission was not considered standard equipment in my early days. If any of the above is confusing to you let me know and I will send you a copy of my dictionary of Early North Georgia sayings. Just send shipping and handling.


Preston T. Duckett Wednesday, March 8, 2017



LIFE’S INFLUENCES


Our influencing lifestyle by all things that happen to us from birth. If blessed with loving parents protecting us and having enough love to discipline and teach us then we got off to a good start.
At a very young age, my Father taught me two things; you do not throw rocks at your Dad and run. My Uncle urged me to do that showed me two things one was that old man was faster than me and when he told me to do something I had better do as commanded. It also taught me that a belt over the backside was a deterrent and that pain comes with disobedience.
As most of us think the world revolves around us and are taught very early that we are not alone on this planet. In High School years,
early on as a bashful former country boy with a great deal of insecurity, I was walking down the hall, and three girls were huddled, whispering to each other. I always felt whenever someone was whispering among themselves around me they were talking about me. So I asked them why they were talking about me one of the girls retorted “what makes you think you are so blamed important that anyone would be talking about you,” whoops, drew my head back into the shell and never again presumed anyone was talking about me.
A lot of you have experienced somewhat similar conditions, and each encounter knocked another notch into our personality. The environment in which we grew to be an adult also shaped and sanded our character for better or worse. We as Christians are also being molded, sanded, and polished. There are times that God must also handle us with love and chastening. Choose Jesus as your blueprint for life and pattern your life after none other. As we move away from Easter, let us not walk away from the fact that Jesus died for us sinners and the Bible tells us that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. None of us are perfect and cannot live an ideal life, and the only way to perfection is to let the blood of Jesus cover all our sins and shortcomings. God expects perfection from us to enter the gates of Heaven, and with the blood of Jesus covering our sins then God dismisses them as not happening. The above statement does not give us the option of continuing to live the sinful life thus we must first believe that Christ died, was buried and arose on the third day. Once established in your head then ask for forgiveness with your Heart. Give it your best shot not to sin anymore but when you do, seek mercy once more.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, April 2, 2018



CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME


Within the last few days I posted a status about helping our country instead of letting our people be homeless and Veterans not getting proper help that had been promised to them and of course older people that needed help and asked a simple question why can we not use the billions and billions we give to other countries to help them why can we not use some of that money to help ourselves. Several of you Condemned it as being political and that it should not be posted because of that. It was not political it was just good common sense. Charity begins at home and I do not think most of us would donate part of our check to help people in other countries if our children were starving. This is exactly what the government has done, both Parties for the last seventy or more years.
I have no problem with helping others and try to do it all the time but if it comes to helping a stranger when my children are going hungry, then I am sorry but blood is thicker than water and we must take care of our own before offering helping hands around the world.
This rant is not because someone wanted to block my status that someone else had written but because a friend reposted it and some of you wanted them blocked for a political post.

Preston T. Duckett Saturday, February 10, 2018









FANTASY LOVE


This love started with an accidental phone call. A friend was talking with you, and as a joke, he called me and made it a three-way call. We only said a few words and carefully spoke with discretion even as sparks began to fly. Unsure if we were correct or not, I called you, and at once we both admitted there was an attraction. After a month and half of nightly lengthily phone conversations, we both agreed that it was love. I would never believe it could happen if I had not experienced it myself. The talks were always upbeat and with an admission of letting the Holy Spirit lead us and agreed not to do anything with haste until we had received acceptance from the Heavenly Host.
The attraction on both sides was immediate and never any hesitation on the fact of love. My drawback was merely a matter of age; I am fourteen-years her senior. Went thru this issue over and over with her declaration that was no problem. It still seemed unfair to her because I was then eighty-four and she only seventy-one. The chances of my death from the human standpoint were much stronger than hers.
We both decided to make no moves toward marriage until we had a chance to date for a year and then if it still looked as if the Lord agreed we would consider that possibility. With all things considered I plan to stay here with my trusty sidekick Royal Barron, Esquire, Pomeranian Extraordinaire. I have finished some of his adventures as well as a friend Jerry Walker has expressed on Facebook “If you want to know anything about Preston T. just read his post because his entire life he expresses in these facebook pages.” He is right most of it is out there warts and all. To get any more in-depth information about me, you would have to skin me I reckon. However, what you read is what you get, and the only thing I cannot reveal is how many of you beautiful women with whom I am in love.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, December 21, 2017




FATHER IN HEAVEN


Heavenly Father, please be with our Facebook friends that are facing all types of difficulties and are undergoing the challenges of this life. Especially for those that have lost loved ones. Please give them peace and comfort, surround them with your arms of love. Help them over the difficult times of their loss and strengthen them so they can face life one day at a time. Lord, praise your Holy Name and thank you for the great Grace and Glory of Your Holy Trinity.
Dear Lord, please keep us on the straight and narrow path that will lead us to the shores of Heaven. Please give us wisdom and strength to work thru and around the wiles of the devil. Put your protective hedge around us and strengthen our abilities to clothe ourselves with Faith, Power, and Knowledge. Forgive us our mishaps, missteps, mistakes and other things that can lead us to a path of sin. We humbly ask this in the name of Jesus, our Lord, and Redeemer. AMEN AND AMEN.


WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 2018











“I’M ALABAMA BOUND”


Leaving the Hills of North Georgia and headed to the flatlands of South Alabama. It was late 1948; the Chenille mills were all closing in Dalton Georgia, and Dad had acquired a job in the small town of Geneva Alabama. Mr. Morris, the owner of the Chenille Mill in Geneva, had sent a ten-wheel flatbed to transfer all our belongings from Dalton. Everything was packed on the truck, covered with a tarp, and fastened down with as much security as possible. We did not know how to get to Geneva, so we all piled into the old nineteen-thirty-eight Chevy and followed the truck. Money was tight, and there were no McDonalds on the way, so Mother had packed a picnic lunch for later in the day for us to eat on the road with the usual goodies and we were off on a great adventure. We were a little uptight not knowing what was ahead of us and most hate to make a change even when it 's right for us.
The school was out, and I was to be a senior the next year. We landed in Geneva and moved into a new house that Mr. Morris had rented for us. Did not know anyone in town and my younger brother and I were tossing a football around in the front yard, and a couple of neighborhood kids soon joined us. They invited us to go to Westview Baptist Church as their Vacation Bible School started the following Monday. I had been driving, with Dad's approval, on the Georgia dirt roads. Therefore I was able to convince him to let me use our old automobile for transportation to Church and Vacation Bible School since he had purchased a nineteen-forty-two Chevrolet. My birthday was still a few months away, so I was only fifteen years of age.
At vacation Bible, school the first thing that caught my attention was the number of cute girls attending. One was a standout, blue eyes, blonde hair and the prettiest face I had ever seen on a person before. I was extremely bashful, but I did not want to miss this opportunity. I introduced myself and asked her where she lived, and she told me about two miles to the South, and it was getting to be hot walking, so I ask her to let me drive her home. She agreed, and after Vacation Bible School had let out her and two of her friends from the Mill Village started to get in the car, one of the girls began to get up front with me, but the little blonde-haired person took her arm and said no I am sitting up front with him. That solidified my determination to get to know her better.
At fifteen, everyone said I was crazy to tie myself down to one girl mainly since she was only thirteen. Now I have told you once before that I fall in love quickly and this time there was no doubt that, I was a goner. We continued to be with each other at the Church, and as I was fifteen, and she was thirteen, her parents consented for us to ride around on Sunday afternoon after church if her two friends went with us.
When School started in Geneva, Dad went with me to register. The Principal said I would have to go into the eleventh grade, and it would take me two years to finish School. Georgia at that time had only eleven grades. I asked Dad if I could go back and live with Grandpa to complete School. It appeared that I had my Dad's approval for going back to Georgia and finish School. The Principal asked if I played any sports, I told him no Sir. He hesitated just a minute and said well since that I would graduate in one year in Georgia; he signed me into the twelfth grade. As a senior, I was dating a girl in the eighth grade. Remember, I skipped the first year and now the eleventh, so I was set to graduate at sixteen years of age, not for intelligence but just kind fate.
Ellen, the lovely blue-eyed blond and I continued to date and by this time, her parents liked me very much, and they allowed us to date at night with a ten o'clock curfew. We continued to date all thru High School. When I enrolled at Troy State Teachers College, I would come home every weekend. We dated thru the three years except for one break-up that lasted for about a month, and after that, we went solid with each other until we got married. Getting a little ahead of myself now, we had decided to get married, but there was a three day waiting period on the blood test for a marriage license in Geneva. We knew we could get a blood test and a certificate to apply for your permit in one hour in Dothan, Alabama. We did not own an automobile at that time because my old nineteen- thirty-eight Chevy had bitten the dust. The forty-two Chevrolet that I had been driving to Troy was also out of commission. My parents worked the first shift, and her parents worked the second. We borrowed Dad’s car in the morning under the pretext of looking for me a new suit that I needed for my job with the local Radio Station and Newspaper. We went to Dothan, got our blood test and headed back to Geneva. We waited until after two o’clock so her parents would be working used their car for our date that night. We then went to the Courthouse, got our marriage license, and drove out into the country to find the preacher that had married her parents and her brother and his wife. We got to the Preachers house around four o’clock, and his wife said he was still plowing in the field, so she sent one of the children to fetch him.
He soon entered with his overalls on and the usual amount of dust when working in the fields. We explained that we wanted him to perform the marriage and reminded him he did the ceremony for her parents and her brother. He said "ok, but let me go out and rinse away a little dust." He was back in about thirty minutes dressed in a suit and tie. He performed the wedding not knowing Ellen was underage. When asked how much he was owed he answered the usual “well what do you think she is worth?” I said to him “a lot more than the two dollars, but it is all I have.” I had borrowed it from her by the way, and it was all she had too. We had rented a furnished apartment from Mrs. Brown for thirty dollars a month, which was a week's pay at that time. We carried the car back to her parents and waited for them to get home. We had been by my parents and told them we were married, so now it was time to inform her parents. Pop, as I called him, was the standard hard-working, rough old man that did not seem to let anything get to him. However, that night I saw him cry for the first time. I was taking his baby girl away, they soon settled in and gave us their best wishes, and we walked to our new apartment. The extent of our honeymoon was nonexistent, and we never did get to take one after that either; however, we always planned on having one.
Here we were with no automobile and not much chance of getting one. My younger brother, Joe, had two Cushman Airborne scooters, and we borrowed one of them until drafted into the Army, that story for another time. Most of the people we knew at that time felt as if it was a mistake and the marriage would not last a year. Well, they were right it did not last one year it continued fifty-eight years, until her death in 2011. Still, see that young blue-eyed blonde-haired person in the channels of my mind and my dreams.


Preston T. Duckett June 2, 2016






Swimming in Talking Rock Creek


It seems to me the water was always cold even in the “Dog Days” of summer, but you could survive it if the outside air were warm enough. It was deep enough in the woods and far enough from the road that we did not bother with bathing suits or swim trunks because it was always just us guys no girls allowed. We had a rope on a limb we would use to swing out to about the middle of the creek turn loose and drop in. The center part was deep enough to accommodate a dive or cannonball or just a foot first drop. Did have to be careful because not far enough out and you could hurt something because it wasn’t very deep around either edge. Big rocks were under the water, and you had to make sure you had cleared them before turning loose of the rope, and the same problem existed if you went too far before you turned loose. We smaller boys usually stayed in the water until our lips turned blue and then we would get to the bank, find a big rock the sun had warmed and soak up the sunshine and dry out and get warm before jumping back into the cold water. Now you ladies are going to have to ask your husbands about the next statement because I can not find words to express it without going across a line drawn in my head and mind that I dare not cross. The bigger boys would strip down but they would not get in the water. At the time I thought they just did not know how to swim, but later I found out the real reasons. We called them “Bank Walkers” the would make fun of us younger boys and strut up and down the bank showing off their suntans, muscles, and physical posture. So we would jump back into the water to get away from their jeers and jabs. I won’t mention the names of the older boys because some of their family might resent my intentions, besides later as we grew up to be the big boys we would repeat the ritual. You think we would have known better, but after all, it had helped us to mature and not take any ribbing too seriously, and I guess we owed it to the younger generation to let them experience things that would help them survive in the big world they were to face in the very near future. I guess you could say we were just being good citizens, doing our civic duty giving back to our community and delighted to be able to accomplish it. Never heard of a Bank Walker drowning but I did hear that some of them did get mugged by a bunch of young kids.


Preston T. Duckett October 16, 2015, prestontnt.com


MISSED WATER



Had an enjoyable visit this week with an old friend and we talked and reminisced longer than we thought, and it was dark before arriving home. Went thru the usual procedures of checking all my burglar traps and when none of them had been disturbed. And Barron had traced his, and other animal tracks with his head mounted flashlight. It was time for the nighttime shower. However, when I turned the tap, there was no water. The only time this had happened before was when the pipes had frozen, but this was early evening, and we did not have any frozen lines. Naturally, the water department was not open, so I put my dirty self to bed.
When morning arrived, I was on the doorstep of the water department demanding an explanation as to why I had no water. The answer was fast and to the point. “We get no money from you. Therefore, you get no water from us.” It seems that in my haste to check on facebook and to write another verse I had forgotten to make a payment to the water department. As there is no one living with me, I had no one to blame for the mix-up, so the only thing to do was fall at the mercy of the water department. The lady employee that took my money must have noticed the shaking of my hands and feeling sorry for me ordered another water department worker to go to my house and turn the water back on. She thought the trembling hands was the sign of a pitiful old man but the truth of the matter is that departing with my money has always given me the shakes.
“All is well that ends well.” Grandma had always told me that “you never miss the water until the well goes dry.” She was correct, and that was a long fifteen minutes before my water supply returned.
How often do we encounter similar conditions when we take for granted all the blessings from Jehovah? We go day by day never thinking about our source until we miss the benefits of that particular item. My Dad was a machinist, and his big thing was preventative maintenance. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” any day of the week. Our best prevention is the study the Word of God, commune daily with Jesus and the Holy Spirit and send our “knee-mail messages to God.”


Preston T. Duckett Friday, January 26, 2018



ALPHA AND OMEGA



Heavenly Father, we come to you with thanks and gratitude for twenty-eighteen and pray for your continued blessings in the years to come. We do not know what we face in the future so we can only have faith and trust in your grace and patience with us. Please forgive us as we forgive others and may any malice in our heart be wiped clean by the sacrifice made by Jesus on the Cross. Give us the wisdom to understand what we read in your Holy Word and the courage to tell others that may not know of your love and greatness. Lord, we know you are all powerful and through the Holy Spirit, omnipresent. We ask you to hold on to us as we stumble and not let us fall into temptation too hard for us to bear alone. Let your Holy Spirit guide our thoughts and actions for the future lifetime, however long or short that may be. Please keep us on a steady course of helping others and magnifying your love and glory. Please show us the areas you want us to serve and give us the talent to perform whatever task you wish for us to do. Please make twenty-eighteen the most significant year of service ever to you and our fellowman.
May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart always be acceptable in your sight. Psalm 19:14.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, December 30, 2017









SATURDAY LIFE DURING THE LATE 1930’s & THE EARLY 1940’S


The little store near Grandpa and Grandmas in Talking Rock, Ga. Was about two miles away and the only thing they bought there were the things they could not grow on the farm or in Grandma’s garden. I would walk or ride a bike, to the store with a one-gallon kerosene can get a gallon, and the store owner would take a potato and jam it down on the spout. He did this cause he knew that being a kid I would swing that can around and spill half of it before I got back home. This day I decided to ride my Uncles bike and about a half a mile before I got the store I was riding on the dirt beside the roadway and passing close to the bank, too close, a stone twisted my front wheel enough to throw me over the side. The bike and I rolled and tumbled for several feet; we parted company; it went South, and I went North moving another 10 or so feet. The kudzu cushioned my fall, and it was a good thing it was on that bank instead of the rocks that usually were on the side of banks such as this one.
About the time I stopped rolling, I thought, wonder if I can make it out of here before any snakes find me. It was 30 feet or better before the kudzu ran out, now it is hard to walk in knee-deep kudzu, but it is even more of a struggle to push an adult-sized bicycle out of there. The most embarrassing thing about this was the accident happened in front of the twins, Eugene and Eulene Silvers; you may have read about them in another little topic that I had written. When I got back on the road I pushed the fender back into place and tried to straighten the basket, but didn’t have any tools with me; The kerosene can still hang on the handlebars, so I finished my errand by going to the store and getting a dime's worth of kerosene. I made it home and only got yelled at by my Uncle for bending his bicycle basket. It was a good while until supper time, and I had worked up a sizeable appetite, so I helped myself to some onions from Grandmas garden, cornbread from her warmer oven in the top of the old wood stove and a glass of buttermilk and overate. My usual after-school snack came from here, but today was Saturday. Grandpa helped us get the bike straightened. All was well between my uncle and me, at least for the next few days.


Preston T. Duckett Feb. 10, 2015, prestontnt.com



BELOVED TRINITY GODHEAD


The Trinity Godhead, the three in one, consists of God the Father,
God the Son, and God The Holy Spirit. The Trinity had neither
beginning nor end, just as eternity has neither beginning nor end.

God gave the master plan, and Jesus created matter. Then spoke all things into existence within six days.

God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void. Darkness was over the earth. Then God said let there be light. And he saw the light and that it was good. God divided the light from darkness. And called the light day and the darkness he called night so was the evening and morning of the first day.

Then God said let there be firmament dividing In the midst of the waters to divide the waters. The firmament God called heaven, so it was the evening and morning of the second day.

Then God said Let the waters be divided and let the dry land appear. And God called the dry land earth. And called the waters gathered together seas, and God saw that it was good. Then God said let the earth bring forth grass, the herb and fruit trees that have it seed In itself according to its kind. And God saw it was good. It was the evening and morning of the third day.

Then God said let there be lights in the firmament to divide the day from night. And let them be signs of seasons for days and years, and it was so. Then God made two great lights the greater to rule day the lesser night; He made the stars also. So was the evening and morning of the fourth day.

Then God said let the waters abound an abundance of living creatures, and let the birds fly above the earth across the face of the Heavens. So God created magnificent sea creatures according to its kind. And God saw it was good. So the evening and morning were the fifth day.

Then God said let the earth bring forth living creatures after its kind, and God saw it was good. Then God said let us make man in Our likeness. So God created man in Gods own image, male and female he made them. Then God saw everything that he had made, and it was very good. So the evening and morning were the sixth day.

O the Sabbath he rested, declared it Holy and Commanded all to rest on the seventh day.


Preston T. Duckett Friday, March 2, 2018





PRAYER OF GRATITUDE


Heavenly Father, thank you for your generous blessings. Thank you for the healings and also the safety in our travels. Lord, you know the needs of all of the Facebook friends and others that have requested prayer for whatever reason. We see prayer does work and appreciate for all the prayers sent to you from those that are on facebook as well. Please guide our thoughts, actions and reactions. Lord let your Spirit fill our hearts with your love and may it overflow as we share with others and return that love to you.
In the days ahead give us wisdom, strength, and courage to be of more service to you and our fellow Christians. Lord, we are weak and easily discouraged when things go in a way we do not feel is correct. During these times, please remind us that you are in charge and things are going to go for our future good and allow us the courage to trust for the long haul and not the short distance we see. Lord, we lift everything up to you and ask for your supervision and direction for us. Thank you again for all your Grace and Glory. In the Holy name of Jesus, we make these requests. Amen












A PRAYER FOR OUR TIME


Our Father in Heaven we magnify your Holy Name and give gratitude and praise for all of your blessings. We come before you with a troubled world on our minds. We do not understand all the thoughtlessness and lousy temperament of many of your children. Trouble abounds in our Schools with the murder of students. Others are taking lives for no apparent reason and without remorse. God, you are in control, and this is the only thing that makes any amount of logic. Your Book educates us to the fact of turbulent times before the second coming of Jesus. Please give us the wisdom to know and be prepared for His second return. Please let your Spirit guide and direct our minds and actions to be ready for the time of His arrival. Please fill our hearts with your love and allow us to share it with others and return it to you. Lord we ask your answers to the prayers of our Facebook friends for all their needs. Those that need healing, those that need peace and comfort and those that feel no need to go on in this life. Please give strength to those of us that need it and keep us in your will. Humbly we ask this in the Holy Name of Jesus Christ, our savior, and redeemer. Amen and Amen


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, February 6, 2018










PRAYER FOR AMERICAS LEADERSHIP


Praise and Glory be to our Heavenly Father. Thank You, Father, for your love and Grace. Thank you for the abundant blessings You bestow on every one of us. Thank you for answered prayers and the privilege of praying to you Through your Son Jesus, as our mediator and advocate.
Lord, we lift our Facebook friends and enemy’s up to you and ask you bless them in a mighty way. You know their names and needs to Jesus, please help us in this realm.
God, please let Your Holy Spirit lead and guide the leaders of our Country, from top to bottom. Starting with the President, Vice President and down thru the Congress and Senate, all areas of law enforcement, Judges, firefighters, first responders and of course our Military members also. Please direct our State leaders, County leaders, and local leaders as well. We humbly submit this prayer in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, April 3, 2018












PRAYER FOR GRACE AND GLORY


Our Father in Heaven, Blessed be your Holy Name and Praise You for the peace and grace you have given us. We have just gone thru the Easter Season, and it was a reminder to us of how much love You extended to man through the death, burial, and resurrection of Your Son that was all God and came to Earth and took on a human body where he became all man. For thirty-three years Jesus had the human form and made himself endure it knowing the Cross was ahead. And he bore the pain and suffering so we would be set free. Christ made himself the sacrificial lamb and died to cover our sins and to give us the pathway to salvation. Lord, we thank you for every good and substantial gift you gave to all of us. Lord we are receiving many prayer requests via Facebook, You know the needs of each one of us. Please heal those that need healing, and bless those that need a blessing. Help those with financial needs and the pressures that go along with money problems. Please give peace and comfort to those that have lost loved ones and those under the influence of stress. We ask for this in the Holy name of Jesus, our Savior, and our Redeemer. Amen, and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, April 2, 2018














THANK GOD FOR GUIDANCE 


Heavenly Father, Praise Your Holy Name, Your Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. God, we are thankful for all blessings, and we know it is from You. All of our beautiful surroundings created by You. The very air we breathe if from you. The ability to think, to stand, to walk and even to sleep is in Your Hands. Moreover, we thank you for all this and the other creations and creatures. You have given us.
Today we ask blessings for all our Facebook friends. You know their names and needs. We pray for healing for those that need it and peace and comfort for the family and caregivers of those that have passed. We ask you to bless those that have needs that are unmet. Not their wishes but may You meet their needs. You furnish food for the foul of the air, and all your creatures that are in the wild. So naturally, we know you are going to meet our needs. There are times when falling short of having the Faith and Trust we should have in You. Fill our Hearts with Your Love to overflowing and allow us to pass it on and return it to You.



Preston T. Duckett Thursday, August 9, 2018




The Power of “X”



Back in the hills of North Georgia, (about 45 miles from Talking Rock, GA., where I was born,) there was a small mountain community. I will not call its name, were a lot of people in the late 1930’s that had no way of going to School so most of the people in that area not only couldn’t read and neither could they write. Most of them signed with an X. and when something had to be witnessed it was also with another X or two. It became very important to be able to distinguish between say John’s X and Jim’s X.
There was one man in town that was used as an X writing expert by Judges and Sherriff’s as well as any person that had a debate about whose X was legitimate or not. His credentials were that he was more Xs than anyone else in the community. He was an ex-farmer, ex-family man, an ex-student at Georgia Tech., a three-time ex-husband, an ex-Senator, and ex-serviceman so this made him an X writing X-pert.
This “X” problem drifted into the farmers of the area because a lot of cattle had been stolen. One farmer had relatives that lived in Texas so when he saw them branding their cattle it gave him the idea of branding his with an X. This worked fine until the other farmers in the area started branding their cattle with an, you guessed it, with an X, when he accused a neighbor of stealing a cow from him. The neighbor claimed it was his cow because it had his X on it. Naturally, this had to be taken to court and the Judge called in the X writing expert. Now the man who claimed it was his cow and his X said he could prove it was his because he always stood at the back of the cow while branding and most everyone else branded theirs by standing at the cow’s feet. Therefore his brand was on his cow upside down when the cow stood up. The X writing expert agreed with him and told the Judge. Yes-sir-ree your honor that is an upside down X if I ever saw one. The Judge did his duty and ruled for the plaintiff and the community went about its business divided by the decision as is the case for most either legal or illegal decisions. My uncle Earnest always said there are three sides to every story, my side, your side and the right side. Uncle Earnest was a thinker in the community so no one ever questioned his X’s and his wife made the best “cat head” biscuits I ever tasted. This has nothing to do with the story but it is what I remember of that time. All of the facts in this story are not Xactly correct. You didn’t really Xpect them to be, did you?    Sometimes life gets double X complicated, does it not?





 to be did you? Sometimes life gets double X complicated, does it not?




Now it was in this community that I got my first Kiss.

I was somewhat of a fast learner when I was young
. I can not remember how that first kiss tasted, however, I seem to sense peppermint. The girl had short curly hair, dark eyes, and a dark complexion, a big smile, and glistening white teeth. She was a real beauty. Her name comes easily to my lips, Monica Westwood, and it was my first time falling in love. This started a trend with me, number one it was easy for me to fall in love, as I have many times in my young life. If they looked my way and gave any indication of a smile I was a goner sure as shooting. But we are getting ahead of the story let us get back to Monica. She was different because she was my first love. We were “playing house,” under a weeping willow tree with the limbs hanging down to the ground. You had to take your hands and separate the limbs to get under the tree. While you were under there you could not see out, but the best part was no one could see in either.
We were sitting on the ground with our back against the tree when Monica turned to me with her hand on my shoulder and looking me in the eyes with our faces close together. Her arms went around my neck and my arms slipped around her waist (well I had to do something with them.) and it came so natural. Then the kiss, which was followed by a loud buzzing noise, lightning flashing thru my brain followed by stars and the best hopped up feeling I had ever known in my young life. Since that time I have had a good number of kisses, but never too many, and I have loved them all. I would still be doing it but there is something about being Eighty-five years old that makes it kind of hard to find that right partner but I am open to suggestions. Now as I told you I was a fast learner as a youngster. Well, this all happened when Monica was six years of age and I was seven. Now as I told you I am now eighty-five and still trying to fall in Love at least a dozen more times before this life ends and the wings get in the way of hugging.


Preston T. Duckett June 30, 2015, www.prestontnt.com



COINCIDENCE OR NOT


Things happen for a reason. Some call it a coincidence, very seldom have things happened to me that did not have some ulterior motive. This morning my car would not start. The battery was dead, I had left the lights on accidentally after driving in the recent rain. Not a big deal, however, when I raised the hood to check on the battery, a kitten sat there looking at me, then skittered down off the engine. Had I been able to start the engine when I first entered the auto it would have, more than likely, caught the kitten in the fan or under a belt, which has happened to me before and it is not very pleasant to the driver or the cat.
Royal Barron had been telling me for the last two days that something was in the car. He would go around barking at each wheel. And even crawled under the auto barking. I kept trying to convince him that whatever had been there was gone now, but he insisted he knew an odor when he smelled one. So I guess he was right and I was wrong. However, I can never admit that to him, or he would never let me forget it.
Got the battery charger out and had to repair the extension cord before I could make the charger, charge. By the time all of this was accomplished, my daily amount of energy had been usurped, extinguished, depleted, disappeared, deprecated and was all gone. Sat down and waited for my second-wind but it never came, and I continued waiting until an hour had passed and I figured I had missed the second-wind, so I kept sitting and waiting.
Thanks to all you lovely folks that called to ask if they could help and bravely I told them we had it under control. I know you are not supposed to tell a lie, but sometimes it seems more comfortable to stretch the truth than to explain. So I told them everything was copasetic.
Truly did miss Church and social gathering after the Church service as well. Understand I missed an excellent sermon at least that is what the Pastor implied. I will have to verify that reply with our sermon committee at our Wednesday meeting. Puts me in mind of a message that was posted on the bulletin board at the Episcopal Church. “For God So Loved The World He Did Not Send A Committee.”


Preston T. Duckett Sunday, July 8, 2018




DEATH IS CERTAIN


A friend of a friend unexpectedly died a little while ago in an accident. Fortunately, they had chatted and expressed their Christian love for each other a short while before the accident. Needless to say, my friend is devastated and heartbroken.
Do not have any more information at this time but it did occur to me just how fragile life is and how quickly it can be snuffed out. The burden on my heart is for those that are not prepared to face death. Fortunately, this man was. What I am asking you is are you ready or prepared for where you will spend eternity? The decision needs to be made now, to often it is sometimes put off until it is too late. The solution is simple, believe in Jesus, and that he was crucified, died was buried and arose on the third day. Pray for forgiveness of your sins, and believe in your heart that Christ is who he said he was and your sins will be forgiven.
Moods can change from lightheartedness to disaster in a matter of just seconds. With society being as it is today we never know what to expect and when to expect it. Pray for this mans family that God will send peace and comfort. Death is never pleasant but it is even more terrifying when it is sudden and unexpected.


Heavenly Father, praise Your Holy Name and we thank you for your blessings and ask you to be with this family and please give them peace and comfort and the knowledge and understanding this brother is with You and Jesus. Give them strength to work thru this tragedy and the Grace to continue going forward. We ask this in the name of Jesus, our Lord and our Savior. Amen and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, July 23, 2018










The Power of “X”


Back in the hills of North Georgia, (about 45 miles from Talking Rock, GA., where I was born,) there was a small mountain community. I will not call its name, were a lot of people in the late 1930’s that had no way of going to School so most of the people in that area not only couldn’t read and neither could they write. Most of them signed with an X. and when something had to be witnessed it was also with another X or two. It became imperative to be able to distinguish between say John’s X and Jim’s X.
There was one man in town that was used as an X writing expert by Judges and Sherriff’s as well as any person that had a debate about whose X was legitimate or not. His credentials were that he was more Xs than anyone else in the community. He was an ex-farmer, ex-family man, an ex-student at Georgia Tech., a three-time ex-husband, an ex-Senator, and ex-serviceman so this made him an X writing expert.
This “X” problem drifted into the farmers of the area because a lot of cattle had been stolen. One farmer had relatives that lived in Texas, so when he saw them branding their cattle, it gave him the idea of branding his with an X. This worked fine until the other farmers in the area started branding their cattle with an, you guessed it, with an X, when he accused a neighbor of stealing a cow from him. The neighbor claimed it was his cow because it had his X on it. Naturally, this had to be taken to court, and the Judge called in the X writing expert. Now the man who claimed it was his cow and his X said he could prove it was his because he always stood at the back of the cow while branding and most everyone else branded theirs by standing at the cow’s feet. Therefore his brand was on his cow upside down when the cow stood up. The X writing expert agreed with him and told the Judge. Yes-sir-ree your honor that is an upside down X if I ever saw one. The Judge did his duty and ruled for the plaintiff as the community went about its business divided by the decision as is the case with most either legal or illegal decisions. My uncle Earnest always said there are three sides to every story, my side, your side and the right side. Uncle Earnest was a thinker in the community, so no one ever questioned his X’s, and his wife made the best “cat head” biscuits I ever tasted. This has nothing to do with the story, but it is what I remember of that time. All of the facts in this story are not Xactly correct. You didn’t really Xpect them to be, did you? Sometimes life gets double X complicated, does it not?


Preston T. Duckett July 25, 2016





PRAYER FOR TEMPER CONTROL


Our Father in Heaven Praise Your Holy Name and forgive us our sins as we forgive those that sin against us. We know this is the start of what a large group of people calls The Lords Prayer. Thank you that we can come to You with our petitions because of Your Love and Grace.
We ask for knowledge, wisdom, and strength to deal with what is necessary to sustain our life. You have given us many blessings that we sometimes forget to thank You for them. Please add to this request, peace, and love in our homes. When there is stress, please replace it with contentment and love. Forgive us the times we are cross with family members and friends. Let Your Word guide our spirit, forgive us for the times we are cross and irritated and spoke harshly, Forgive our profanity and especially the use of Your Name in vain.
We apply in the precious name of Jesus Christ, Amen, and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Friday, July 20, 2018










CUDDLE IN THE HUDDLE CLASSES NOW IN PROGRESS

You men that have a mate that loves to cuddle enjoy the advantage of it every time you get a chance. Now I know we are supposed to be MACHO, but it is a lot more fun if you learn to cuddle, even while watching your favorite sporting event. (I always thought this was everybody’s favorite sporting event.) But in my years of interviewing the fairer sex, not all men seem to be fascinated with this game, and believe it or not, the same applies to some of the ladies. (Even the women that told me they did not like to cuddle seemed to appreciate the gentle kiss on the hand when we first met, another good lesson learned from the French. The first one was an imitation of their kiss.) One thing I miss about not having my wife around is the cuddling. Regret the times I would not be as receptive as I should have been, especially in the earlier years. But as the years crept up on me I learned that I enjoyed it more and more. There is more to a mate than just a good cook, and babysitter and grocery shopper. The time in the kitchen will be more enjoyable for both of you if you ease up behind her, slip your arms around her and place a kiss on the side of her neck. (Had to turn the fan up just thinking about this.) Sometimes the food burns, but you can eat anytime. Cuddling is only for special occasions, (Grandma used to say you have to strike while the Iron is hot, but since we do not iron much anymore I don’t guess that is meaningful as it once was.) Remember when they used to wet the finger in their mouth and slap it against the Iron to see if the sizzle would let them know is the iron was hot enough. Back to cuddling if you guys still don’t understand how you might like to read my book for cheerleaders on “Cuddle in the Huddle.” (Don’t know why but a lot of the books were bought by football players.) You guys that have a hard time trying to comprehend cuddling just contact me for admission to my School of Cuddling. We met four nights a week and the other three nights you have to do your homework and the assignment is to practice on your mate, and of course, you need to bring them to class with you so I can better demonstrate the art of the cuddle. Once understand the basics of cuddling you will have a much more enjoyable home life and so will your mate. (You notice I have only used the word wife in one sentence, and the reason for this is I am trying to stay politically correct on every count.) Remember the words of a wise man, who once said, “Cuddle don’t Muddle.”


Preston T. Duckett January 13, 2016




YARN OF LITTLE HOUSE ON THE HILL


Situated atop the highest point above sea level in North Webb. Not to be confused with the highest hill in East Webb. The little house was not always situated in its present position. We found the home for sale, but had to be moved, near the Alabama and Florida line. This we proceeded to do
By hiring a House Moving firm. They transferred the House for us and set it up on one acre of our small farm in Webb. The house was rather old when we purchased it, and the best guess was it was built either in the late 30’s or the early 40’s.
Sometime in it’s earlier life of the old house, the back porch was closed in, and a bathroom added. This porch covered the entire area of the house which left a small room off the main bedroom, a laundry area and the bathroom. We started an immediate renovation by applying paneling that was much too dark which meant it was rather dreary inside and the paint my wife chose for the outside turned out to be a mustard color instead of the yellow it was designed to be. My son, Greg and his wife Ann moved into the house with their two children. Stephanie, and Bryan, who was the youngest. The house had only two bedrooms, so we renovated the small part of the back porch and put him in there with swinging doors, that were miniature versions of the old Western Saloons, and also ranch house type bunk bed built against the wall.
As the family outgrew this facility they had a triple-wide mobile home moved in and the little house was empty for a short period of time. It acquired the name of Granny’s because my wife wanted to keep the house and store her supply of sewing machines. This didn’t work at that time we reworked the house for my Grandson, Bryan and his wife, Heather. After they moved out, the front porch fell in, and there was another remodeling project. With this completed, we did put Granny’s machines in the house. After the death of my wife, a good friends brother took on the task of remodeling and did a fantastic job much better than what Greg and I had done. He ripped out all the paneling and painted the natural wood which was tongue and groove and very beautiful when he finished. Tommy also put a metal roof on for me, and with that, I moved out of the big house and
Made granny’s my permanent abode. I love it here, and the old house and I are about the same age. We both have creaks and groans, but the fit is fantastic.
The house was painted blue at that time and is now Grey and White.


Preston T. Duckett Thursday, July 12, 2018


A PRAYER FOR AMERICA UNDER GOD


Our Father, in Heaven, blessed be Your Holy Name. We praise and glorify Your Holy Being. Thank You, God, for all blessings.
Many of Your Children that are on Facebook need a healing hand from You, and others need peace and comfort because of the loss of loved ones or some other sorrowful event in their lives. Holy God, place a healing hand on those with the dreaded “C” disease. So many of Your children have a fear of this hanging over them, and please extend to them healing and comfort, strength, faith and courage to deal with it.
Please give wisdom, strength, and courage to our Nations Leaders,
From the highest to the lowest. We are thankful for your Majesty and Praise Your Holy Name, and we ask as always, all of this in in the precious name of Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord. Amen and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, July 10, 2018








FROG KISSING, KISSING COUSIN !!


Back in the hills of North Georgia, there was a small mountain community; I have written about before, and this bizarre tale came from there.


Had a distant “kissing” cousin, living in that area, when she read a story about a frog that transformed into a Prince when kissed by a beautiful girl, It inspired her so much that she started hunting frogs and kissing them. She did this until the time came that she began to enjoy the frog kissing. The only thing we could see she was getting out of this was warts. Grandma always said, “Every person to their opinion said the old lady as she kissed the cow.” I’m sure that had a deeper meaning, but for the life of me, I never could figure what. This cousin got so carried away over the frog kissing situation that she moved to Texas because she heard they had bigger frogs than anywhere around, besides she had kissed everything that would let her in Georgia. Texas didn’t last too long until she started throughout the mid-west frog kissing. She heard of a club for frog kissing in California. Naturally, she migrated into the LA area and saw Kermit the Frog on television for the first time, and after a series of letters to him, with no response, she decided that Miss Piggy was the reason Kermit was not answering her mail. So she sent Miss Piggy a challenge to a battle of fisticuffs. Miss Piggy didn’t answer either, so my cousin got a Billboard company to print 25 advertisements and post them throughout the Los Angles community. To be sure she didn’t miss any chances she also hired an advertising agency to handle Radio and TV. All this publicity was to no avail, she spent most of her money, and in the end, it worked out very well for her because she went to a dermatologist to remove her warts. As fate would have it, he was intrigued by her story, and since he kissed like a frog, they fell in love and spent the rest of their lives removing warts and kissing. Truly I don't have the foggiest notiion of how this came to be. One thing I am sure about she is related to me in a closer fashion than a distant “kissing” cousin because this story makes perfectly good sense to me. Never kissed a frog but a lot of my early dates were very close.


Preston T. Duckett September 6, 2015,



NORMAL OR NOT


In eighty-four plus years, I have had the privilege of meeting many ordinary people. Some of the regular people that have been encountered by me, some were abnormal, some subnormal and others paranormal and just about any prefix you desire to put on them. Several typical students greeted me as I entered the halls of Troy State Teachers College back in nineteen-fifty. Some of the people I met first came as a real shock as all my previous
years were either on the farm or in small towns. My first two roommates consisted of a southern music major from South Alabama, and the other one was from Chicago Illinois sporting a very high IQ, so they had me outnumbered from the beginning. They both taught me a lot.
The following year we transferred to a new dormitory building where the roommate from Chicago stayed with me but a healthy short person that thought he was bulletproof and ten feet tall, after graduation he returned to Mobile and became an Episcopal Minister, but that is another story for another time.
I left the ivy halls of Troy to do a fifty-eight-year stint as a Husband and Dad. Also, a two-year stint with Uncle Sam as a Military Police Inductee, even another story for another time. My first fulltime Radio job came after the military span I worked as an announcer at WOOF Radio in Dothan Alabama. It was here that a very seductive voice on the phone had me almost climbing the walls. I never knew of this ever happening before especially to me. The sound was dripping with smooth southern suggestions that I dare not discuss or repeat except to say this old boy was shaking. After a few days of these calls, I wondered what would happen should someone hear these phone calls or leak this information back to my wife. Therefore, I chickened out asking her not to call me anymore with these seductive phone conversations. She agreed, and that ended the phone call seduction for this disc jockey; however, checking with WDIG and WAGF soon learned that I was not the sole recipient of these calls. It seems that most of the Fire Department, Police Department, Service Station employees and a few serving in the City electrical and water departments. These phone conversations stopped many years ago, and of all the phone calls of later years, I never heard a voice as compelling as those that came from a woman I never met and never heard from again. You current disc jocks let me know if she is still calling. Does that make me abnormal, subnormal, or paranormal?


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, September 16, 2017





A PRAYER FOR HEALING


Heavenly Father, Praise Your Holy Name and thank you for Your miracle healings on and off the Operating Tables. Thank you for being there for friends and family that are at the stage where they need you to guide the Doctors thinking, actions and limbs as they perform delicate operations. Praise Your Name for giving them the knowledge, skill determination, and confidence needed for their task.
We ask the same for our Facebook friends and those that have lost loved ones; please give them peace, comfort, and strength to carry on with life. The void that is left, please fill with Your Love and compassion.
All of the above we ask for each person and we ask it in the Wonderful Name of Jesus Christ. Amen and Amen.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, July 17, 2018









FOLLOW UP CLASSES


Impact Counseling Service, a division of Impact Advertising Agency, many years ago, was a company specializing in Advertising and Death Planning. Wrapping up a nonproductive day on the brink of closing for the day, when a haggard looking young man entered the office. Went through the usual procedure of asking how I could be of help, as we shook hands and I motioned for him to have a seat. After a few minutes of getting acquainted, he broke down and told me his problem of working in an office all day with six adorable women and then going home to a wife that still had her hair up in curlers and pajamas that had the several day use look. He was afraid he was getting to “jump the fence,” and try making advances to a couple of the single ladies in his office.
I gave him the parable of the man with a car that he loved, but it had some rattles, unattractive surface, and just a little ping in the engine. He debated over the purchase of another automobile which was several thousand dollars over the price of getting a tune up and a new paint job. He decided on the cleanup and was very happy with the results. I suggested he and his wife be to enroll in a class we had started, “Marriage Spruce up 101.” it was a month-long class that was held two nights a week and very reasonable in price.
Six months later he stopped by and told me the class had made a world of difference in the marriage. Getting home now, the house was clean, and she was dressed to the nines, perfectly made-up and had him a fresh drink and would often sit on his lap in preparation for a beautiful night of lovemaking. Thought everything was in good order when he once again stopped by the Office for a chit-chat. This time his problem was reversible from the previous issue. He said that now he was working with ten beautiful women in his office. And when he got home, it was another lovely lady, And there was just no change from the office. To get a change and add the old feeling of home he had started to stop by Wal-Mart’s to observe what he had once hated at home. However, now found it to be a delightful way to relax by watching all the women that had their hair in curlers and some of them still in their PJ’s. Also was thinking about asking one of them to marry him. I informed him we could get a reversal for his wife and her evening preparations; however, I would make him an appointment with a psychiatrist friend of mine. Hope it’s not too late.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, July 21, 2018





FOLLOW UP CLASSES


Impact Counseling Service, a division of Impact Advertising Agency, many years ago, was a company specializing in Advertising and Death Planning. Wrapping up a nonproductive day on the brink of closing for the day, when a haggard looking young man entered the office. Went through the usual procedure of asking how I could be of help, as we shook hands and I motioned for him to have a seat. After a few minutes of getting acquainted, he broke down and told me his problem of working in an office all day with six adorable women and then going home to a wife that still had her hair up in curlers and pajamas that had the several day use look. He was afraid he was getting to “jump the fence,” and try making advances to a couple of the single ladies in his office.
I gave him the parable of the man with a car that he loved, but it had some rattles, unattractive surface, and just a little ping in the engine. He debated over the purchase of another automobile which was several thousand dollars over the price of getting a tune up and a new paint job. He decided on the cleanup and was very happy with the results. I suggested he and his wife be to enroll in a class we had started, “Marriage Spruce up 101.” it was a month-long class that was held two nights a week and very reasonable in price.
Six months later he stopped by and told me the class had made a world of difference in the marriage. Getting home now, the house was clean, and she was dressed to the nines, perfectly made-up and had him a fresh drink and would often sit on his lap in preparation for a beautiful night of lovemaking. Thought everything was in good order when he once again stopped by the Office for a chit-chat. This time his problem was reversible from the previous issue. He said that now he was working with ten beautiful women in his office. And when he got home, it was another lovely lady, And there was just no change from the office. To get a change and add the old feeling of home he had started to stop by Wal-Mart’s to observe what he had once hated at home. However, now found it to be a delightful way to relax by watching all the women that had their hair in curlers and some of them still in their PJ’s. Also was thinking about asking one of them to marry him. I informed him we could get a reversal for his wife and her evening preparations; however, I would make him an appointment with a psychiatrist friend of mine. Hope it’s not too late.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, July 21, 2018




HOW DO WE FACE THE END OF LIFE


In our strength, not very well but with the Grace of God, we can overcome and sometimes even look forward to it. The books tell us there are three stages to accepting death. First is with denial, then anger and finally acceptance. These three parts are pretty well right in most cases, but with the help of God, it can be a lot more pleasant. There are three times in my life that I know I have faced it and several times that without the Grace of God it would have been over. I will not go into details at this time because this is only to Glorify God and not to receive sympathy. The first time I do not remember but my parents informed me that as an infant I was dropped from a mule-drawn buggy or wagon on my head and had everyone upset about this. When I was around thirty years of age, I once again faced death from illness and went through the above mentioned three stages. Finally, with acceptance, it was turned over to God, and by his Miracle, He healed me. At fourty-seven years of age they diagnosed colon cancer, operated on, and the growth removed. Cancer appeared at no place other than in the extension itself. Of all the people I know, I have been one of the most blessed. Now at the age of Eighty-four, I once again face death as all of us do. I do not know how many more years the Lord is allowing me to stay here, but whatever time it is, I hope and pray to make the most of it and not waste it. God holds the answer for all of us, and in his infinite knowledge, he gives us the peace of not knowing the time or the hour. Anyone of us can be called at any time and with the world now in the horrible shape it is in I believe that the end of the World as we know it is coming in a short time. According to the Bible those that are dead in Christ will meet him first in the air, and then those that are alive will be called up to meet them. This quote is not verbatim, but it is the essence of the Word. Just be ready and on guard, and may we all meet in Heaven.


Preston T. Duckett November 23, 2015 prestontnt.com







DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND SOME THINGS


There are several things I do not understand. Why do girls always have neater handwriting than boys? I have noticed this for many years with the cursive as well as the printing style. The cursive style is soon to be a thing of the past for several reasons, but the main one is it is no longer taught as it once was. My handwriting is so bad that when it gets cold, even I can’t read it. It does no good to heat it in the microwave because that does not help a bit and if you leave it there too long, it can catch fire. It was so sorry that when I was in service writing home and my wife would have to carry my letters to the Drug Store and get a pharmacist to decipher them; she figured if they could read a Doctors prescription they could surely figure out what I had written. As I wrote mostly the same thing in each letter, she finally got to where she could read them without any help. I was reading a Readers Digest several years ago, and it had a primarily printed word IF and it got me to thinking about how much importance could be in words. I think we have all looked back and said IF I had only made a different decision on a particular matter things would be different. However, once you made a decision and followed through on it, do not look back and try to second guess, Once it’s done no need to try and second guess your choice. If the decision was wrong or harmful, learn from it and never do it again. No need to worry about something that you can not control or something that has already happened. Worry is like the old saying “no use beating a dead horse.” Telling my age with this one, how many of you remember Alfred E. Newman, of Mad Magazine with his expression “What me worry?”
Many of our older citizens used all sorts of “sayings” for example. “Waste not and want not.” this one does have much meaning behind it. “Time waits for nobody.” Another truism handed down thru the centuries. Ben Franklin said “a penny saved is a penny earned” a double meaning because if you do not spend it, that is the same as earning another one. Another saying that I kept on my bulletin board was “Tomorrow I’ve got to get organized.” Also “Tomorrow never comes.” The statement is true because when you get to tomorrow it then becomes today and today becomes yesterday, thus the saying “Today is yesterdays tomorrow.” If you have more sayings to add, please feel free to do so.


Preston T. Duckett Tuesday, July 31, 2018





REPORT OF GOD'S STRENGTH, MY WEAKNESS


Feel a deep impression to share this with you today. It is my desire and hopes to express optimism in most everything done in the way of writing to you. However, as you know, Roses have thorns, and life has pitfalls as well as mountaintops. Several years ago while on the morning shift at Radio WOOF-AM as explained to you earlier, my Boss, R. A. Dowling, while cutting fire lanes on some of his property, was killed as the tractor overturned on him. While doing a live newscast with a notice of his death handed to me, I started reading. The news was naturally a shock to me, but I was able to get a record started before collapsing. Because of this information and other pressures that I will not go into now, however, this “breakdown” caused the loss of voice on an open mike or even on the telephone. This malady lasted for around two years. Resigning as production manager of the station because of a feeling of non-productivity, accepted a job in Mariana Florida at WTOT Radio as Station Manager, with the understanding of not having to pull a shift as an announcer. During the time in Marianna was plagued with depression, and the feeling of creatures crawling all over my body. Nighttime often found me trying to sleep in a fetal position, as these crawling creatures seemed to swarm over my body. With the problems mentioned above, I accomplished no notable performance in Marianna. Upon our return to Dothan to meet the household expense, my Wife went to work at a sewing factory. My depression continued as I drove her to and from work. She disliked that job very much and looked like a zombie walking in and out of the plant. Please do not get or stay upset about me reporting this to you. The reason for reporting the above is to let you know no matter how bleak life seems there is an end to the pain and suffering. Some of you are facing situations similar to the above or even worse. God delivered me from this as He opened a way for me to start announcing again and developed the Preston T. Show on WDIG-AM. I explained all the how’s in previous writing. By starting to talk before I opened the mike on Radio or answered the telephone, I was able to perform the task with no one being aware of the problem with my voice. While doing the Preston T. Show, sometimes my voice would break; at this point, I would drop into a falsetto voice, reprimand myself with the alter ego and proceed with the program. Jesus has blessed me many times and many ways and this time of trouble while appearing to be forever actually made me stronger for the struggle. Thanks to the Holy Trinity, The Father, Son and Holy Spirit, being with me through the situation and lifting me out at the correct time. Psalms 19:14.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, April 8, 2017


TIME IS SHORTER STILL


Time is short, and it deserves enjoyment to the fullest. Soon if the Lord is willing, I will have completed eighty-five of the years that He designated for me. It seems as if it were only yesterday or the day before when I was young and thought I would never get to twenty-one but from that time on the pace of time has increased too much faster than the speed of light. Moreover, the older we get, the quicker time flies.
Each day God gives to be used with awe and reverence. Upon arising, we should thank God for another day he has allowed us to enjoy. God has blessed all of us more abundantly than most of us can even consider. Those everyday blessings that most of us take for granted are specials granted by our Heavenly Host.
The very air we breath is a gift from our creator because he created it as he also created us. Every morning I like to go outside and look at the new beauty God has for me that day. In doing so, I very deliberately thank God for the day and the vision he has created around me. I enjoy the morning even if it is raining. Sitting on the front porch of this old house and listen to the rain pecking against the metal roof and the smell that only showers bring.
Another year is half gone as we prepare soon for Thanksgiving and then more quickly following that will be Christmas time and then the first of 2019 if the Good Lord tarries for his second coming which has been anticipated and should look for every day. The Bible teaches us that none of us knows the day or hour but that we should be diligent in watching and always be prepared and watching night and day.
Some scoffers and unbelievers say it is not going to happen, but it was told to us by Jesus that he was going to prepare a place for us and that he would come again to carry us back with him. When Christ splites the Eastern sky The bodies of the dead are called to him in the air and then in the twinkling of an eye, those repented ones that are alive will be called up to meet them in the air.
Do not know about you but that is one trip that I want to take. There are no tickets to by, but we must believe that Jesus is the Messiah and that he was crucified, died, and buried but arose on the third day. With this belief and heartfelt repentance and asking forgiveness for our sins, we are ready for that great and glorious day when we met our Savior face to face.
Preston T. Duckett Monday, July 30, 2018



I WONDER YES I WONDER


When I was very young I could see on Radio the wheat as the wind gently made it
wave back and forth, ripe for harvest, to be baked into wonderful loaves of Marietta bread and the camera of my mind faded to black, as the William Tell Overture started to play, the Lone Ranger comes into view mounted on the back of his wonderful horse Silver as he rears and leaps forward at a gallop, and you hear as if in the distance "Hi-Yo-Silver Away" and riding into the scene from his
left was his faithful Indian Companion Tonto, on his Indian pony "Scout".
I had all types of adventures as the little red light under the old radio dial drew me in for a ride with Hop-along Cassidy. Then there was one that I think may have been a regional broadcast called Tennessee Judd and his companion would always say "there he goes Tennessee, get him." The rifle would fire and you would always hear a ricochet and the sidekick would say. "got'em Tennessee dead center." Always had a little trouble trying to figure out if he banked the bullet off the rock and then hit him a dead center or if his rifle was powerful enough to go all the way through his victims, then the ricochet occurred. One of the deep problems of life that I can not Google my mind and get the answer. Lash Larue, so good with a bullwhip that he could put his Initial on a man's chest Like Zorro did with a sword.
Stories like the shadow, have gun will travel, the adventures of Superman and Bat Man and Robin, by this time I would drop off into a deep sleep and dream of more adventures, with yours truly, as the star of each new endeavor. We also had Gene Autry on the movies and there was one group of Indians that hated Gene so bad they still hated him from another movie. There were other cowboy movies but Roy Rogers and Gene Autry were referred to alternately as King of the cowboys and I wondered if they sometimes wore that crown under the big Stetson's they wore. What about Dothan's own Johnny Mack Brown he had some good adventures in the movies as well. (along the style of Abbeville's own Yellow Fellow.) Bob Steel was a good mentor for us little guy's. Tex Ritter was a favorite as well as Allen Ladd, Rocky Lane, John Wayne. Leaving out some I am sure but
not intentional. Big problem, always in my mind was how can the coaches and wagons run forward while the wheels turn backward. Still can not figure it out and evidentially neither can Hollywood. I tried to get one studio to try shooting the film of the turning wheels thru a mirror because it reverses everything and then when the film was processed it show the wheels turning forward. They sent me a note thanking me for the idea but they said they did not have anybody that could hold the mirror steady enough to keep the wheels from bouncing so they would just let then run backward. I think this Idea must have stuck with them because most of the stuff they are coming out with now is all backward. I guess that is just part of the folly of Hollywood.



DOTHAN EAGLE CIRCULATION


During the twenty years working at the Dothan Eagle a lot of good things happened, and then there was always the oddball or off the wall type.
This particular day a customer was upset about the paper being late, we had a breakdown during the night, and he informed me that was no excuse. Moreover, he was getting blankity blank tired of all our new explanations, and he said: “I think I’ll come down there and stomp you’re a - -.” By this time I was beginning to get upset, and I did something that I was taught not to do and always to remember the customer is always right. My retort to him went something like this. “Listen here mister, you give me your name and address, and I will save you a trip to Dothan.” Hearing the dial tone the conversation was over. In just a few minutes the Boss called me into his office and said: “A customer had just called and said you threatened to go to his house and stomp his A- -.” “No sir,” I answered, “he said he was coming down here to stomp mine and I replied to him that if he would give me his name and address that I would save him a trip.” He dropped his head just as a half grin began to appear and he did not want me to see it. Then he asked, “would you have gone to his house?” “No, but I did not want to size up everybody that came into the circulation department, wondering where I would have to fight them or run for cover. So I reversed it on him and let him worry about ever stranger that goes near his house instead of me worrying about him coming in on me.”
The standard rebuke from the Circulation Manager about how the customers were the ones that caused us to have a job and that we should not talk to anyone in such a manner. I carefully stood for the tongue lashing, and inside I felt vindicated, and I believe so did Mr. Underwood. At another time when he was called in on the carpet, he said that “sometimes it is easier to apologize than to apply for permission.” Then admitted I was wrong and apologized profusely, and then reminded him that, “a great man once told me it was easier sometimes to apologize than to ask permission.” To which he replied, “that’s the trouble with you guys you only remember what you want to.” With a grin, I left his office, and I was pretty sure I heard laughter behind me.


Preston T. Duckett Monday, July 23, 2018







ARE YOU, OR DO YOU KNOW, A HYPOCRITE


If you are staying out of a Church because you know a hypocrite that is in attendance. If this is the case, I have a suggestion that worked for me and many others.
Find you a right Bible teaching Church where the Preacher is a Pastor and not just a preacher. A Pastor is a minister of God that tends to the needs and desires of his congregation. He has Sheppard’s heart and love for the members God has placed in his care. This Church more than likely will be conservative in nature. Believing and teaching that the Bible is indeed an inspired word from the Three-in-One Godhead. Moreover, there is only one way to be escorted to the Heavenly Shore. The only way is thru Jesus Christ, belief in his Crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection on the third day. Take this belief and a repentant heart, and a love for the Holy Trinity and you have a free ticket to Paradise. If enough of us that love and serve in the Church that is true Christians then the pretend Christians or hypocrite, will either become a real servant for the Work of the Lord, find another Pretend Christian Church or stay at home.
God gives all of us talents and expects to use them. Some have more than others, and a lot of us may feel we have none. However, we all do have some talent. Pray, asking God to give you wisdom, courage, and strength to use your ability to the most significant advantage.
God who created us and all that is in existence was here many years before we came along and will be here many more after we leave this old world. God never changes, we change, and all our changes are not to the best advantage. To be with your Creator for all of eternity, get your heart right with God. Love and be a servant to others, and to Christ.


Preston T. Duckett Saturday, July 14, 2018











A TYPICAL KNOW IT ALL


I thought I had all the knowledge I needed when I left the halls of Troy State and started climbing the ladder to success at Radio WOOF Dothan, Alabama in the year of fifty-five. Since then I have been lied too, lied about and told a few lies myself for self-protection. However, kept learning at every stage of whatever operation that was going at the time. I have plowed mules rode and advertised motorcycles, turned down the opportunity to haul whiskey. Flirted with many of the wrong women, had my face slapped, my cheeks pinched, and never regretted any of those things.
Going back further has had castor oil in a dozen different mixings that were supposed to make it taste better. No matter what mix was used with, it still tasted terrible. Mixed it with Coke and for a year had to drink Pepsi. Mixed it with orange juice and could not stand orange juice for several months. Mixed it with grapefruit juice and improved the grapefruit flavor. Black Draught was not the best in the world, but anything beat castor oil. The medical information has nothing to do with the story I had in mind, but I had a flashback the turned my stomach and believe me that is a tough job to do.
Oh yeah, I remember we were discussing the times when we knew everything. Then in the nineteen sixties and seventies, a lot of you Young Swingers taught me a lot while I was doing the Preston T. Show. To be perfectly honest I learned more from you than you ever learned from me. Later on, I had many teachers at every stage of life. As I journey into my later years upon this old earth, I realize how little I do know. I know the Good Lord has been overly kind to me and forgiven me for many of the stupid mistakes that seemed to follow me and jump on my back when I could least afford it or could deal with it. Satin is waiting in the wings to burden us with all kinds of nonsense. Just tell him to get behind you and turn all your burdens over to the high shoulders of Jesus and then leave them alone he will give you the strength to deal with any matter and the wisdom and courage to work it out. Put all your faith and trust in the Trion Godhead, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. I could have dealt with a lot easier had I learned this bit of knowledge many years ago. Thank God, it was acquired before it was too late; however, it could have, and should have learned many years ago and then the later time in life that we all have to go thru would have and should have been a passel less trouble than we forced on ourselves.
Preston T. Duckett Monday, September 4, 2017
BE NICE


Life is too short not to be nice, besides it is more comfortable and less stressful than being mean and nasty. I do not mind mean or nasty individually. However, as a group, it is quite tricky to handle them. Courtesy is contagious so let us start an epidemic. I have seen an increase of courtesy since having to use a walker or my cane. People have been standing and holding a door open for this old slowpoke. When I mention to them that I am slow, they usually respond, “There is no hurry.”
I wrote about a flat tire on one Sunday morning, and two carloads of young men stopped and put my spare on and refused any payment. It was all so fast that I still made it to Church on time. Help someone without expecting any return favor and the blessings seem to flow in on you. So open up and help someone that can not give you a return favor. Help someone without expecting anything in return is a chance for God to pour blessings down on you. When you do the support for someone, you are planning a return from him or her. The benefits do not occur with this type of aid.
A smile will brighten the day for those around you, but you will also feel a great deal of satisfaction at the return of laughs generated by yours.
“Smile and the whole world smiles with you, weep, and you just mess up your makeup.” I used this several times on my radio shows. There are times when someone is “down in the mouth” and thinking the worst. Sometimes if it is a minor type of down in the doldrums will approach them with something like “cheer up things could get worse.” The response for me to mind my own business has very seldom happened; a smile is usually the result.
The Word teaches us to donate in private. Donations made in public, for public attention that is your reward. However, if you give in private, your Father in Heaven Who sees in private will reward you openly. It is not a verbatim quote, but the thought and the idea are the same.
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Some who go like this, “Do it to others before they get a chance to do it to you,” abuse this golden rule. This warped attitude may work for you on occasions, but for the long haul, the golden rule idea is always your best approach. Looking for the best in people will be rewarded more often than when you search for the worst in them. How you approach others is usually the return you get from them either right or wrong.
Preston T. Duckett Psalm 19:14 Wednesday, May 17, 2017


 HOMELESS SIXTEEN YEAR OLD TEEN ACCUSED OF MURDER


A little Red Headed baby boy was born in the Hills of North Georgia around 1915 to a Lady who had lost her Husband just a few weeks before when a Mule kicked and killed him. The family, as most people in that area, in those days, were sharecroppers. She and the older children salvaged what they could out of the harvest.
Times were not right then, especially for a Lady with children to support. They told me she mostly worked and worried her self to death, just four years after the end of her Husband. The older children did what they could to survive and help raise a four-year-old sibling; This young boy shifted from one brother or sister to another. This shifting and abuse from his older children lasted until he was around thirteen years of age.
At this point, he ran away and was entirely alone, his sleeping wherever he could find shelter. Mostly in barns or sometimes under the boulders that protruded out of the hillsides in that part of the country. Food was what small animals trapped or killed with a homemade slingshot. Made from a tree branch that was Y shaped ed and strong enough to support the pull of the rubber bands he had cut out of old inter-tubes, and in those days they were made of real rubber.
When he was not able to have rabbits or squirrels, he would have to slip into hen houses and steal either chickens or eggs to have something to eat. This lifestyle went on until he was sixteen years of age when the Pickens County Sheriff arrested, and, put him in Jail in Jasper, Georgia. It seems that a man had been murdered a couple of days before, in the area of where the Sherriff and witnesses said they had seen a red-headed man running from the scene of where the killing occurred.
I try to think back and walk in these youngsters shoes, and I know that I would be scared stiff being handcuffed and thrown into Jail. He knew he was innocent, but could he prove it. Fortunately, the witness took one look at him and told the Sheriff that he was not the man because the one they saw running away was much older and more massive than him.
Two years later he met a young girl from a nearby farm and started to court her as they said in those days. He made friends with her parents, and the young couple was married six months later, and that was the end of his brushes with the law. Knowledge of this came to me through knowing this man for sixty-two years. I do not tell you his name, because all I ever called him was Daddy or the abbreviated version Dad.
In Memory John S. Duckett, 1915-1977.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, October 27, 2015.


MAN AM I EVER STUCK


Have been in ditches, mud holes, sand pits, two wheels hanging over a deep ditch, missed driveway went hood first into a ditch and a few other times that will come back into my memory after finishing this bit. Yesterday was one of the most embarrassing. Before getting into that, let's talk about the earlier times. Most of the times when getting stuck it was just a matter of getting a little help and I usually was the one pushing from behind and generally behind the spinning wheel and the one with mud all over him. I learned that friendships could be hampered by asking someone to push from behind where all the dirt was being thrown out in chunks. The sand pits usually were no significant problem often rocking back and forth a few times, and you could ease out if you didn't accelerate too fast and make the wheels spin then it would sink and go deeper. I learned to maneuver sand after we moved to Alabama. A friend explained to me, "don't spin the wheels, pull the emergency brake about half way up to reduce the possibility of spinning out." Back in Georgia, on the clay roads, we would try to get something substantial in front of the rear wheels so we could have traction to get out of our mess. Now driving in snow and ice is an entirely different creature. Did it a few times in Anchorage Alaska but I usually wound up in a snow bank and wait for someone to come by and pull me out. The time above that I mentioned was on my Dad's new forty-nine Chevrolet. My first time was driving it, and my date and I parked in one of our favorite places to do little cuddling and maybe stole a kiss or two. A car came up from behind me and knowing we were not supposed to be there. I grabbed the steering wheel and started getting out of there. In the excitement, I could not find the light switch and came to a bumpy stop with the two wheels on the driver's side hanging over a gulley. Still, no lights on as I opened the door and stepped down, and down, and down. I landed at the bottom of the gulley with water running through my clothes and shoes. Had to walk about two or three miles to a farmhouse and woke a farmer and asked him to please pull me out. He did so very reluctantly, and I very slowly gave him the last five dollars I had to my name. We did not report this to her folks but had to try and explain it to my Dad. I did not get to drive his car for a long time after that. The most recent time was maneuvering the rugged terrain near my cottage. It is not easy to walk out there with a walker; therefore, when I go to get the mail or to feed the goat, I use a power chair. One wheel went down a hole and would not go forward or backward. Only one way to take. Got out of the chair and holding on to keep from falling, braced me, and picked the chair up and out of the hole. My ten-pound dog was not a bit of help. He just sat there, laughing at my stupidity.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, Saturday, June 10, 2017.


LOVING GOD, AND LOVING EACH OTHER


I hate to admit the following, but for me loving God is one of the hardest things I have ever tried to do. Is it because He already knows everything, and we feel inadequate to approach Him? Could it be that our upbringing could have distorted the meaning of Love? There are several other ways we could explain it, but it is essential. To have a relationship with God, we must Love Him. It was not that I ever did not Love God; it was that I did not understand how to love Him.
This is where a lot of us trip up and fail to love God adequately.
God knows our thoughts and our wishes, we ask it, and this makes us nervous as well. My words are not taken from the Bible verbatim, but I think it is in there within the overall concept. Why not approach God and ask him to let the Holy Spirit show you how to love God and each other, then be quiet and listen for his answer, and it may come in different ways. It may come in the Pastors sermons, your reading of the Bible, or everyday conversations with others. It may also as it did with me, about this thought or subject. I heard a Christian song by a group of singers, “Loving God - Loving Each Other.” But when you receive it, you will know it is from God, and give him the thanks and praise for it. If you have trouble with this subject or any other, you may start by asking your Pastor for help. He has forgotten more scripture than I even know. There are other scriptures helps, but it is best, to begin with, someone that can understand what you are asking and can help you or at least can point you in the right direction to find the help you need. Remember, let us keep “Loving God and Loving Each Other.”

Never cease to love your fellow Christians ..... Heb: 13-1

God Himself dwells in us if we love one another............1 John 4-12.

We love because He loved us first.....1 John 4-19

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, Monday, June 8, 2015.



MORE OF THE '30s & '40s IN MEMORIUM ALEX CAIN


My Uncle, Mother's youngest brother, caused me several times to receive punishment; He was only about four years older than I was and seemed more like a brother than an Uncle. One time when Mom and Dad were going back to our home, I had stayed a week at my Grand Parents and did not want to go home with them. My Uncle had just the right remedy; his advice was "pick up a couple of these rocks and throw them at your Dad, and he will be afraid of you, then run and he will let you stay with us." The wrong Dad was not afraid that he was a lot faster than I thought, I had only taken about three steps at a run when I felt a firm hand grip my arm and haul me off the ground. While I was dangling there, in mid-air, his other hand grabbed his belt and either undid it or snatched the buckle off. Then I felt severe pain around my buttocks, but I do not think the whipping was as wicked as the laughter from my Uncle as he rolled on the ground with glee. Dad whipped me three times in my life. The first whipping Dad ever gave me, but I will never forget the other two either. I enjoyed one punishment he gave though because he picked my laughing Uncle up off the ground and set him on fire across his backside as well. I never again tried to make my Dad do anything. I discovered it is better to ask someone to do something rather than tell anyone to do anything.
XOX
Many years later, this same Uncle was in the Army during World War II. The War was over, and after his discharge, he moved back to the farm. Grandmother had a flock of gunnies that made an awful racket when someone came in the driveway. My Uncle eventually killed every one of them. He would run out in the fields or in the yard to run them over. His explanation was one night while overseas during the War a flock of them had flown over making a high noise and scared the daylights out of him. He said he hated this foul and would kill everyone he could. My older Uncle was also overseas, and when he came home, he brought back a crate of Camel cigarettes.
My younger Uncle cut a hole in the rear of the container, slipping out packages of cigarettes for him and me. He had taught me to roll my own before he left for the Army. Last time I saw him alive, he still had the curly hair and eyes that seemed to dance with mischief. We lost him last year; we miss you Unk.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, May 5, 2015.



FATHER-SON TALKS


Most fathers get somewhat queasy when talking with their sons about the delicate subject of the oncoming siege of hormones. God planned marriage to include both mother and father so mother would not have to teach the son and dad would not have to talk with a daughter. The mothers have an even harder time of discussion about the “birds and the bees.”
I know when my time came to talk with my son; he seemed to sense my frustration and hesitancy to broach the subject. You know we never jump into the middle of a problem without some small talk first. So we went through the “how is school, are you playing football again this year and at what position, and so on and so on. We touched all the bases, and I was turning third base and running for home.
I approached with something along this line. Son, you are getting older, and there are some things I need to discuss with you. Do you feel that you want to hang out with the girls lately any more than usual? No was the answer. Have the girls got to look any better to you than usual? No again he replied. Have you found your body responding in any new way when you are with the girls? His response was Dad; what direction is this talk headed? Well, Son I just felt as if it were time for us to get any of our thoughts or fears about the opposite sex out in the open. Do you think we should have this talk? I know there are a lot of questions that need answering in a straight forward manner? Oh, he said as I stood there blushing and not knowing how far I should go with my explanations. Ok I see what you mean, he said, and yes I do think you are right, and yes I believe that it is a good thing to know all you can about the questions that need an explanation and without any embarrassment. I think this is a fantastic idea Dad, and now that you have broached the subject. Therefore, let us get right on board, and no holds barred. This is too important to avoid any of the answers. So come on out with it Dad what part of sex do you want to me to explain to you?

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
September 1, 2017. PrestonTNT.com



Swimming in Talking Rock Creek in the ’30s and ’40s


It seems the water was always cold even in the “Dog Days” of summer, but you could survive it if the outside air were warm enough. It was deep enough in the woods and far enough from the road that we did not bother with bathing suits or swim trunks because it was always just us guys no girls allowed.
We had a rope on a limb we would use to swing out to about the middle of the creek turn loose and drop in. The center part was deep enough to accommodate a dive or cannonball or just a “foot first drop.” Had to be careful because you had to swing far enough out, but not too far, or you could get hurt because it wasn’t very deep around either edge.
There were a lot of huge rocks that were under the water, and you had to make sure you had cleared them before turning loose of the rope. And the same problem existed if one went too far before you turned loose.
We smaller boys, usually stayed in the water until our lips turned blue and then we would get onto the bank. Find a big rock the sun had warmed and soak up the sunshine, dry out, and get warm before jumping back into the cold water. Now you ladies are going to have to ask your husbands about the next statement because I can not express it in words without going across a line that drawn in my head, and mind that I dare not cross. The bigger boys would strip down, but they would not get in the water. At the time, I thought they did not know how to swim, but later I found out the real reasons. We called them “Bank Walkers” they would make fun of us younger boys and strut up and down the bank showing off their suntans, muscles, and physical posture. So we would jump back into the water to get away from their jeers.
I won’t mention the names of the older boys because some of their family might resent my intentions, besides later, as we grew up to be the big boys, we would repeat the ritual. You think we would have known better, but after all, it had helped us to mature and not take any ribbing too seriously, and I guess we owed it to the younger generation to let them experience things that would assist them to survive in the big world they were to face in the very near future. I guess you could say we were just good citizens, doing our civic duty giving back to our community and delighted to be able to accomplish it.
I never heard of a Bank Walker drowning, but I did hear that some of them did get mugged by a bunch of young kids. with bathing suits or swim trunks because it was always just us guys no girls allowed.

YOU CAN NOT BUY LOVE OR FRIENDSHIP


The above is a very accurate statement; you can not buy Love, it goes deeper than just the surface; it includes respect, admiration, loyalty, and the enjoyment of just being with each other. You can not rent it either and what you are buying or renting is Lust, not Love. Love and friendship can be earned, but only with diligence, patience, and giving in to someone else a lot of the time. Some people will not or cannot open themselves to Love or friendship. With these people try to be friends and show them kindness, but help them even when they don't ask for it. A lot of people feel they have many friends, but in reality, most of us have many people that are on a friendly basis with us. However, we can count all our real friends on the one hand. (This bit will have to wait for another time.) To have a friend, you have to be a friend, one that will go when needed and not expects anything in return. But "being used" is what you have to be careful of as you travel along this road. There are those that will try to have a one-sided friendship, and this will not work. As in Love, a bond must be a two-way street. When the good Lord has given you that good friend or that fantastic Love, you will find it was all worth the effort. Then the time comes again to Thank and Praise God for all His blessings and this newfound fortunate turn of events.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
July 11, 2015.


ROYAL BARRON ADVENTURES


For all you folks that are not familiar with my reason for living with Preston T. Three years ago, I retired from the Undercover activity of the Canine Armed Brigade. Do not be too surprised if you have never heard of it because it is so Secret that even the Secret Service has never heard of it.
This Brigade works underground and undercover to investigate and punish those that mistreat any animals. My last capper was in North Carolina and had to do with crooks in the chicken business.
Well the Fan Club for Preston T. hired me to protect the life because of threats he received from the left because of his speaking out for President Trump while he was still candidate Trump.
You would think that someone who had been around so long would know how to protect themselves. Not so with this naïve, trusting soul that believes everyone is trustworthy and friends.
I have started referring to Preston T. as Mr. Smarty Pants because he thinks I am just a dog and never takes me seriously. He is not bi-lingual, has no concept of the animal language and only understands me when I bark long, and one short bark and it is a Grand-pa yell, and he understands that either someone is at the door or else he had better let me out, or I will mess things up. The grandpa bark usually gets him to take his head out of the computer and let me out.
There is some good news, Ms. Foxy Fox lives within walking distance of me, and when she calls I respond with a great deal of anticipation. She told me yesterday that she was with child. Have submitted a DNA test to make sure of their parenthood. Foxy is upset about any doubts I have, but after all, a man cannot be too careful.
Smarty Pants is up to his regular tactics of pretending to give me a ride on his power chair with him, and then sneaking in medication, haircut, bath, or a trip to the Vet. Always has been devious with me along this line and so I have learned not to get up in his lap for a ride on the power chair and have learned to outrun it.
That is about all the information I can provide you with for now because I do not have time to testify before the liberal house and Senate. Working on a new adventure and as soon as it is safe, I will inform you of its outcome. Until next time, I would like to leave you with this thought. No matter how good you are, there is always somebody gooder, and no matter how bad you may be, there is still someone a little badder.

Written by Royal Barron, Esquire, Pomeranian Extraordinaire.
Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
Friday, June 14, 2019.


            WE ARE WHAT WE THINK


Our conversations are salt and peppered with our thoughts. Soon eighty-six years of age if the Lord allows me to live till August 1, 2019. I pretty much accept the fact that most will forgive me if we do not remember saying whatever accused of saying.
However, at this age, we still have to keep our thoughts corralled and never let them out of the fence. When things seem to be going contrary, making us feel down, and if dwelled on we will be down. Always try to look on the lighted side of everything, even mishaps or accidents.
Thank God in all things, good and bad. Sometimes we may be working too hard, and it is detrimental to our health. We may have stopped by something we think is not proper. However, God has it planned out ahead of time knowing about it before it happens. It usually is for our good, in the long run, but seems devastating at the time.
Positive talking and positive thinking add sweetness to our lives. Like the song “A little bit of sugar, makes the medicine go down.” On the other hand, negative talking and thinking have a very sour approach to feelings and attitude. Friends had rather talk when we are feeling good and are in a jovial mood and tend to stay from us when we complain and gripe about everything and can not "see any way out of this particular the light at the end of the tunnel."
We tend to enjoy life much better when we approach problems with the attitude of looking for the best way to solve it or make it better. Some when a problem arises go into panic mode, thereby giving up on a problem rather than attempting a change or correction.
Many have faced life, and it’s problems with both approaches. At different times and those with a positive attitude seem to come out much better for the wear and tear.
Lives are more palatable when faced with Heavenly help from the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. All things are possible when we align ourselves with the Holy Trinity. A great way to do this is following the Biblical example for Salvation. Believe in Jesus, the Son of God. He hung on a cross, crucified, died, was buried, and left his burial chambers on the third day. Believe in Him, ask for forgiveness, and repent. Giving us the assurance that He will never leave or forsake us.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
Friday, July 26, 2019.




SMARTY PANTS AFTER ACCIDENT



Most of you know, Smarty Pants, is the man with whom I share my house. His real name is Preston T. Duckett, and he is somewhat fun to be around when nothing is wrong. If someone in your family has an accident, my advice is to let them stay in the hospital or rehab or somewhere but don’t let them come home.
Mr. Smarty Pants, was all black and blue, with bandages all over that I had to get off of him after they put him in the bed and told me to take care of him. first thing I give him some Ibuprofen and a sleeping pill. Had to let him be asleep when I ripped the bandages off him. He still moaned and groaned all the time I was doing it. The next thing was to bath him. The only bath clothes I could reach were in the laundry basket. And the only water I could find was in the bathroom. I could not turn any faucets on so I dipped them in the commode and bathed him as best as I could.
Preston kept complaining of being hot, so I found another bath cloth and dipped it in the commode and laid it across his forehead. Had to repeat this for two weeks before he was able to take a shower.
The routine soon became so I could get Smarty Pants up by eleven o’clock or so, and he would use his walker to get to the power chair and go outside and talk to himself for a few minutes, transfer back to the walker and shower until all the hot water was gone. He then slipped on some walking shorts and a slipover shirt. Then he seated himself in front of the computer and fall asleep for another hour or so.
Smarty Pants is afraid of bad weather, and when the thunder comes, and lightning threatens, he picks me up in his lap so I can give him protection. It never fails that during any thunderstorm he starts rounding me up to sit in his lap to calm his nerves.
On one of the few breaks I have had for the last month, I was able to slip out for a quick visit with Ms. Foxy Fox. She invited me to share her den for a few days, but just as we were getting cozy, Smarty Pants was yelling for help. His power chair stuck in a mud hole, and I had to pull him out am placing an ad for a large helper like maybe a Labrador or a St. Barnard.



Author Royal Barron, Esquire, Pomeranian Extraordinaire.
Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
Thursday, July 25, 2019.




AFTER-HOURS



Several years ago while returning from a client Dinner meeting, passing my Office, I noticed a light on that was unusual as I was the last person to leave that evening and I knew all had been turned off. I made a u-turn killing my lights as I was pulling into the drive. There was a car in the spot reserved for the Boss. Sensing something amiss I switched off the ignition and coasted into a parking place next to his.
For the life of me, I could not figure out why he was here this time of night. Upon entering the front door, very quietly turning the deadbolt, proceeded toward the sound of a piano. There was a very thick atmosphere of dread while carefully checking out the room walking toward the noise of a sad tune coming from the Piano. The music was beautiful but creepy at the same time, along with the line of a funeral march.
I stood in the doorway, placing every memory of the room in my mind's eye, trying to think of a way of not startling the man at the Piano. There was enough light for me to recognize one of the new people in the office. As he finished that song and before he could start another, I said that was fantastic calling his name.
He paused and looking over the Piano invited me in. As I pulled a chair in position, I noticed a fifth of Jack Daniels sitting on the left end of the bench with a drink on the left side of the keyboard beside a small bottle of medication. Letting my eyes, drift to the other end of the keyboard, a small snub-nose revolver came into view, making me very glad that he recognized me when I called his name.
The chill that was in the room slowly began to disappear, and his rigid back structure began to ease a little. We made small talk about nothing in particular, he asked about the dinner meeting and if I closed out the contract. I told him not entirely, but we had a meeting in his office tomorrow at ten o'clock to work out the details.
We then talked about his children and dogs, or it could have been that we talked about his dogs and then about the children. While we were talking, he played softly on the Piano as if he was coming to some decision. Also, as if he had made that decision, he stopped the song he was playing and hit a few "chop-stick" notes and stood as if to leave.
I urged him to go ahead, and I would close the office behind him. He sipped the last of the Daniels and swiftly began clearing the Piano of the medication and the revolver, placing them in his briefcase.
Until this day, I have the uneasy feeling that I was there that night, not by chance but for the particular reason of stopping a suicide. We never again mentioned it to each other, and this is the first time I have talked about it.



Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, Psalm 19:14
Saturday, July 1, 2017.



THE TWO UNCLES NAMED ALEX



The younger one was only a few years older than I was. The older one was a few years older than his brother, my Grandpa. Memory reminds me of the pranks both of them would pull on you at the drop of a hat. Grandpa’s son was my Mothers brother and Grandpas brother was my Great Uncle so that made him sound as if he were more important because of the Great, which he would rub in to uncle Alex from time to time.
Great uncle Alex was always upbeat and positive about everything that happened. In spite of the fact he was wheelchair-bound and had been for some thirty or forty years. The best I can remember he was in a coal mine accident which paralyzed him from the waist down. He would keep us kids intrigued by some of the stunts he would pull. The one that seemed most awesome to me was the fact he could touch the end of his nose with the tip of his tongue.
The tongue to the nose trick was attempted by all of the youngsters including his namesake, uncle Alex. Of course none of us were able to accomplish it. It stayed a mystery until I turned and saw him removing his upper teeth which he would slip into an outside pocket. I let him think he had all of us going but soon the others caught on as well.
His hands were gnarled and twisted which was from the accident we assumed but found out latter that he had a very severe case of arthritis,
With all the good breakfast food that Grandma always put on the table, Great Uncle touched very little of it but had a bowl of raisin bran cereal which I thought was cool at that time because none of us could have any because it was too expensive.
Great uncle Alex, presumably had no children as the accident had happened to him while he was a single young man. Each year he would pay a visit to his brother and sisters from two weeks to a couple of months. He shifted from one family member to the other. Never heard a complaint from him on the subject and never heard of any of his family that wasn’t willing to take him into their homes.



Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett.
Saturday, August 10, 2019.





TALKING ROCK SCHOOL IN  THE 30s & 40s



I attempted to sign up for the first grade in Whitfield County Georgia, and when they heard about my first year completed they told my parents there was no reason for me to go into the first grade because I had completed the first year on Jones Mountain.
Upon completion of the Second grade as was my custom, helped Grandpa thru the summer and stayed on to finish School in Talking Rock. My next year was in the third grade, and my Instructor was Miss. Brown. Who at that time, had to be the most beautiful woman I had ever seen.
I had my first crush on a Teacher (but not my last). The females I knew worked in the fields, or as homemakers dressing for that type of work. Miss Brown wore skirts and jackets that matched. Beautiful scarves, blouses, and high heel shoes. This stylish dress was something new for me, but I always did adapt and learned relatively fast for a country boy.
In memory, I can visualize that classroom and remember the sights and smells of the cloakroom. I also noticed girls were beginning to look better, and I guess for that reason, from this time forward, things started looking up. The rest of my time at school was pretty much uneventful except for the usual things that happened at a small country school.
Because of your age, some of you may not remember this. Students are getting free tablets in a lot of schools these days. We were ahead of the game; we had free tablets, pencils, rulers and a few of us had pencil sharpeners, and the lucky ones had Blue Horse notebook binders. They were flexible and could be rolled to fit in a hip pocket. (Of course, they recommended you buy Blue Horse notebook paper.
The free tablets and other items I mentioned above suggested you buy Coca-Cola. However, it was hard to think good thoughts about Coca-Cola when the Teacher had your hand bent back and was busy whipping it with a Coca-Cola ruler.)
I didn’t get too many hand spankings because I wasn’t into pain, so I weaseled my way into being the Teachers Pet. Yeah, I was wimpy like that. Found out early in my School career that girls had sympathy for boys that got injured playing sports. Got hit in the eye while playing baseball and wore that bandage on my eye for two weeks after it had healed.



Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, August 5, 2015.



ORPHANAGE OFF TROY CAMPUS



As a freshman in college, the young people from our Church had a visitation program to visit with the orphans at a local orphanage. There was one young boy that seemed to search me out each time we visited. The youngster was very polite and somewhat shy and restrained for the first few visits but came out of his shell after that and we seemed to bond more and more at each visit.
The heartbreak for him and me came when he asked me to adopt him and carry him home with me. I tried to explain to him this would be impossible because I was not married and too young to be accepted by the State or the Orphanage. However, we would still get together whenever possible. We will call him Billy, not his real name. Billy would be excited when I visited with him but would always cry when I had to go back to the dorm. The abundance of seeing me and pitfall when we parted was very devastating on both of us. The last time I went to visit with Billy was gone, adopted by a beautiful family,
Shamefully I never revisited the Orphanage after Billy’s departure. I know it was not fair to the other orphans that needed some outside influence. However, I was too much a coward to go thru the same type of heartbreak again. My only excuse is that I was a mere child myself. At the time of this occurrence, my ripe old age was sixteen.
By the grace of God, I had skipped two grades in school, the first year and the eleventh grade. None of these grade skips was for brilliance, but only by fortunate conditions. My earliest year in School was because the one-room School in the mountains had to have one more student to be able to stay open that year.
As there was no other availability, I was chosen even though being underage. The Teacher drove me to school every morning and brought me home every afternoon in her horse-drawn buggy. The reason for skipping the eleventh grade was the fact that Georgia only had eleven grades at that time and to keep me from going to live with my Grandparents and finish High School the Principal agreed for me to move on to the twelfth grade.
I have never been brilliant, but by the grace of God, I have always seemed to have good fortune. And now many years later, at the age of eighty-six, I can announce that good fortune is still mine by the Grace of Jesus Christ, my Lord, and Savior.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, August 26, 2016.



DALTON GEORGIA AROUND 1930s-40s Transition from Talking Rock.


Occurrences from around 1937 to 1948 mostly in Dalton, Georgia. I did attend the second grade in a County School in Whitfield County just outside Dalton, close enough to say I was from Dalton when anyone asks. After finishing the second grade, I went back to Talking Rock to help Grandma and Grandpa on the farm. It was WW II, two of my younger Uncles answered the draft call into the military, and that left Grandpa short on the farm. That left the duties on Grandpa and two of my younger Aunts, and Grandma; therefore, I was drafted to help. We did not fill the shoes of the two Uncles, but we did walk in their footsteps behind Old Red and Old Blue, Grandpa’s two mules. I have told you about them before. Zoom ahead now the war is over, and soon the Uncles will be able to help, and my brother and I go to Dalton where he started the second grade, and I advanced to Dalton High. Mom and Dad had moved from out in the County and bought a house at 1116 Dozier Street. It was an earlier version of a sub-division without gated communities except where a few people did keep a cow and sometimes horses and goats. It was at that time a graveled red clay road. I remember it well because of bicycle spills at top speed down a hill and trying to maneuver a turn into another graveled road where Dozier Street dead-ended, and I still carry the scars some seventy-one years later. We had milkmen and icemen delivering to the house. The Iceman had what I considered a heavy-duty one or two-ton truck that had a bed full of Ice that was one large piece with freeze marks for each twenty-five pounds. An ice pick was used to chip along these freeze lines for the amount chosen. These blocks handled with a pair of ice tongs digging into the side of the Ice, and designed in such a way Ice could be carried by one hand using only one handle of the tong. The Iceman would bring it into the house and put it in the icebox. The Ice Company had furnished us with a four-color plaque, and it had a different color in a triangle design for the various amounts of Ice. Twenty-five, fifty, seventy-five, and one hundred pounds. The plaque to order Ice hung on the front porch with the number you wanted in the top position so the Ice Man could see it from the road and would not have to make two trips to the house. As I recall our Ice Box would not hold over fifty pounds, but I think we usually got twenty-five pounds thru the week but fifty on the weekend. There were street vendors that came by on bicycles that had a sizeable insulated box in place of a basket in front of a three-wheel bike. One sold Ice Cream and had dry Ice in his box that would smoke when he opened it. The other one sold what you would call an icy today we called them snow cones because it was beautiful shaved Ice with the consistency of snow. It was shaved Ice, using a metal shaving head that fits on a cone-shaped paper cup, which he would turn upside down and slide back and forth over a fifty-pound block of Ice until the bowl was full of finely shaved Ice. Then he would pour whatever flavor you wanted over the Ice turning it that color, and it tasted so good on those hot Georgia summer days. There was a bare bulb street light just below our house, and all the neighborhood kids would gang up under it and play different games until we got summoned home by a loud voice from one or more of our parents. It only took one summons, and all of us would drift toward home, yelling over our shoulder, goodnight and see you tomorrow. {To Be Continued}



Published and Copyrighted by Preston T, Duckett, May 7, 2016.




LIFE ON JONES MOUNTAIN --- THE EARLY YEARS.

The death of Old Jack was my first great traumatic experience. Losing a pet may seem a trivial matter to many folks, but to a young child, it can look like the end of everything.
The incident happened back around 1936 or 1937. Jack was either a Sheppard or Police dog or a mixture of some sort, at any rate, he was a big type dog and an excellent companion for a little boy with no brothers or sisters. Jack had gone off with Dad and an Uncle down the mountain, and somewhere in the process, Jack was injured either by being hit by a car or attacked by some wild animal. Never did know for sure just what, but he was damaged so severely that Dad had to “put him out of his misery.”
I forgave my Father, but only after a long while, for what I saw as an unnecessary death. The damage to Jack was so severe he was unable to recover on his own; there were no services in that area, at that time, for taking care of pets, and no money to do so even if a veterinarian were available.
Dad decided to do what was best for Jack and me even if I didn’t think so at that time. Dad tried to explain to me the reason for his actions, and I believe he was distressed as much or more than I was. Dad was sad, unable to console his little boy, who did not even want to be around him, at this point. I now understand the problem Dad had in making the decision he was facing with my dog. He knew what was best, but I could not see past the hurt, unable to comprehend.
This same scenario has been faced in our adult lives many times. With the loss of something or someone dear to us, we have blamed our Heavenly Father and sometimes cried out in anger against Him. Else withdrawn into ourselves and closed God out of our lives, because we could not see what He saw in the future. Had we been able to know what God knew we may have felt differently.


Published  and Copyrighted by Preston   T. Duckett, 

  January  21, 2016.






Swimming in Talking Rock Creek in the ’30s and ’40s


It seems the water was always cold even in the “Dog Days” of summer, but you could survive it if the outside air were warm enough. It was deep enough in the woods and far enough from the road that we did not bother with bathing suits or swim trunks because it was always just us guys no girls allowed.
We had a rope on a limb we would use to swing out to about the middle of the creek turn loose and drop in. The center part was deep enough to accommodate a dive or cannonball or just a “foot first drop.” Had to be careful because you had to swing far enough out, but not too far, or you could get hurt because it wasn’t very deep around either edge.
There were a lot of huge rocks that were under the water, and you had to make sure you had cleared them before turning loose of the rope. And the same problem existed if one went too far before you turned loose.
We smaller boys, usually stayed in the water until our lips turned blue and then we would get onto the bank. Find a big rock the sun had warmed and soak up the sunshine, dry out, and get warm before jumping back into the cold water. Now you ladies are going to have to ask your husbands about the next statement because I can not express it in words without going across a line that drawn in my head, and mind that I dare not cross. The bigger boys would strip down, but they would not get in the water. At the time, I thought they did not know how to swim, but later I found out the real reasons. We called them “Bank Walkers” they would make fun of us younger boys and strut up and down the bank showing off their suntans, muscles, and physical posture. So we would jump back into the water to get away from their jeers.
I won’t mention the names of the older boys because some of their family might resent my intentions, besides later, as we grew up to be the big boys, we would repeat the ritual. You think we would have known better, but after all, it had helped us to mature and not take any ribbing too seriously, and I guess we owed it to the younger generation to let them experience things that would assist them to survive in the big world they were to face in the very near future. I guess you could say we were just good citizens, doing our civic duty giving back to our community and delighted to be able to accomplish it.
I never heard of a Bank Walker drowning, but I did hear that some of them did get mugged by a bunch of young kids.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
October 16, 2015.





1116 DOZIER STREET 1030s-1940s


Robert Loveman was a poet, from Dalton, Georgia and the Public Library was named after him. I was interested in whom and what he was; I started reading some of his poems. My favorite was, “It is not raining rain to me it’s raining Roses down.” Reading Robert Loveman is what first spurred my interest in dabbling in verse writing. Other poets also interested me, and this seemed to be a good way to get thoughts down on paper and relieve tension at the same time. I still think that way. At Dalton High School, I encountered the first cafeteria; none of the Schools I went to in Talking Rock, Georgia had lunchrooms. Found many different foods, some good some bad, but one food I encountered still is good to me even today. A lot of cheese and macaroni is better than some other cheese and macaroni, but I find it all is good. As best as I can remember, it was .15 cents per day to eat in the lunchroom. Some days we would walk downtown, and a Café there featured fresh French fries, and you got a big platter, toast, and drink for 15 cents. Another small hamburger stand served burgers. They were on a little square bun, and looked, and tasted like Crystal Burgers. They were a nickel each and I never could be filled up eating them. I still eat too many of them when I stop by the drive in window. (It was a walk in window in Dalton.) This old country boy from Talking Rock was thrown into the Big City life. At that time, Dalton was a small town, but compared to where I came from it was a Big City. Learned to walk a lot in going to School, and yes I know you are going to ask, it was five miles, uphill both ways. It was both up and down but on the opposite side of Dalton from where we lived, but I know it five miles and seemed more.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
May 10, 2016.









BORN IN A LOG CABIN IN 1933


From the memory of 86 years old brain comes the story of my life. I was born during the great depression, around 10:00 AM, August 1, 1933, and maybe that is why it is sometimes hard for me to get up and greet the Sun. I do not remember the beginning, but a reliable source, my Mother, informed me of the event. The birth happened in Pickens County Georgia, in the Talking Rock area.
A rather small cabin where one room acted as a living, bedroom, and kitchen. Hard packed dirt was the floor of this one room. The exterior was made entirely of logs except for a shingle roof. It did have running water; well, you had to run out to the spring to get it.
I was told by my parents most of what I know about the cabin. When I was old enough, I asked Dad to carry me back to see where I was born. He informed me it had burned, and that is why we were now living on Jones Mountain. I always wondered if it burned because I was born there or if it was just an accident. My parents informed me that when I was very young, Mother accidentally dropped me on my head from a buggy. Now, this was not a baby buggy but a full-sized mule-drawn vehicle. Don’t know if this explains my warped thinking or not, but Dad said it was a good thing I landed on my hard head rather than an arm or leg. A recent MRI did discover growth in the back of my brain. The Doctors reported that it appeared ancient and could explain why my balance was never excellent, and the reason for my inability in sports.
We had been on Jones Mountain for a few years and some of the relatives would come for a visit the kids usually wanted to see the overshot water wheel located on the creek behind our house.
The water wheel powered the stones that were used to grind cornmeal. During the summer we would close the channel that carried the water over the wheel and detoured it to one side making a small waterfall under which we played. We also used this as a shower for bathing as well.
When we got tired of playing in the water, usually after our skin became swiveled and we all had blue lips. We would all run over to the Sawmill, which was close to the Waterwheel, and bask in the sun until somebody started throwing sawdust at someone and a free-for-all would break out.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, July 28, 2017.



FARM BOY EARLY 1930'S AND THE 1940'S


Cane Syrup Making Grandpa Cain Style


As a youngster, I used to help (mostly watched) Grandpa make Syrup. Now, this is not the sugar cane syrup that most of you in Alabama, Florida and other states where sugar cane grows. Some of you folks further North, especially in North Georgia, will know it at sorghum cane syrup. They look similar but is only about one-quarter to one-half as big around. Instead of peeling it down to chew the cane as in sugar cane, to get the juice out of the rod you would put the stalk in your mouth, twist it and suck on it at the same time to get the liquid fluid. You had to be careful, or when you spun it, your tongue would get in the way and get cut by the sharp edges of the cane stalk. There a lot of bleeding tongues in that part of the country during the cane season.
Now back to the subject with which we started. Grandpa had the reputation of being one of the best syrup makers in that part of the country. People came from all around to bring their cane, or the ones that were not farmers would come to buy Syrup from him. We put most of it up either in gallon buckets or gallon jugs, never any little bottles or jars. When we sopped Syrup in that part of the country, we would not stop with a small amount of the butter. We mixed up a batch because it along with the eggs and am would have to keep us supplied for hard work until lunchtime.
We would start early grinding the cane by hitching a mule to the cane mill, and as she walked around and around, it would turn the rollers that mashed the juice out of the cane. Transferring this cane juice into a large copper bottom cooker that was about 3 or 4 feet wide and 6 or 8 feet long and around 10 to 12 inches deep, as the juice went from one compartment into another it would slowly cook and become sorghum. There was always a fire going on under the copper bottom cooker. We would all think it was time to drain the Syrup, but Grandpa would say not yet, and when it reached the color and thickness he desired, then he would let it be drained off.
There was always a white foam substance that had to be skimmed off the top of the cooking cane juice and discarded which we threw on top of the cane stalks that had been through the mill rollers.
Grandpa's cane mill was next to the cow pasture and thru the years erosion caused by a Branch that ran through the field. The source of the Branch was an underground spring on the hillside above. As it ran down past the cane mill, this constant flow of water plus the flooding from heavy rains over many years had washed a deep gulley the entire length of the pasture.
This eroded area is where we would carry the processed cane stalks with all the juice mashed out of them. On top of the discarded stems, we would throw the cane skimming that came off the cooking syrup that I mentioned earlier.
Over a period this began to ferment and smelled of the same. The cows were eating the skimming and cane stalks, and we noticed the animals walking peculiarly and staggering. The cows were drunk from eating the fermented cane stalks and skimming. We eventually got them led into the barn and their stalls. Have you ever tried to milk a drunken cow? I could not tell if she wanted to slap me off the stool with her tail, (that was full of burrows which hurt when it hit you in the face,) or lick me to death as she would turn around try to slap my face with that long sandpaper tongue.
My aunt had trained one of the cats to sit in the doorway, and my aunt would squeeze a teat and squirt milk toward her, and she would open her mouth and gobble it down. Today the cat sat there for about five minutes drinking this fermented dairy from this drunken cow then fell off the door jamb and lay there drunk and asleep until the next morning.
We milked about two gallons of milk that evening. This amount would last a couple of days before Grandma put it in a churn to make butter and buttermilk. We all raided the kitchen more often than usual until the milk was gone. However, we all felt no pain for a couple of days.
After moving to South Alabama, we would go back each year and get a gallon or two of Grandpa's Sorghum Syrup, and I have never found any other syrup that had that taste and thickness since Grandpa went to his reward, to that large cane mill in the sky.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
August 28, 2015,









Playtime at Talking RockSchool when Closed in 1930s & 1948s


When School was closed, especially on weekends, we used the school playgrounds because we could play on the baseball field. That was when we could get enough people together, but most of the time it was just two or three of us, and we would use the outdoor basketball court for a little one on one or to dribble and shoot.
The hillside at the School was rather steep, and I had mentioned the wooded area of Georgia Pines where we collected fallen limbs for the School's pot belly heater. Well, we found another good use for the pine needles that were very abundant all over the hillside.
We had put together several types of devices to work in the place of a sled, and the pine needles were thick enough and slick enough to accommodate us on a trip to the bottom if we could guide it and not wrap around a tree.
Some had homemade wood runner sleds, and others had a flat wood board that was sanded smooth for sliding; Some had Coca Cola signs; some had RC Cola metal signs. Now the metal back then was excellent and thick not like the flimsy metal of today. I found an old Dr. Pepper sign behind the little store, and they said they were not going to use it again, so mine was about 12 inches wide and 30 inches long. I borrowed Grandpas tools and rolled one end up about 4 or 5 inches just enough for it not to dig in the ground as we came down the hillside.
My friend Gene Landers lived at the bottom of the hill, and we would wind up in his back yard close to the barn. It was a lot of fun coming down, but the climb back up was slick and slippery, so we usually went up the driveway to the School and then on up the hillside past the girl's outhouse because it was not near as slick that way.
One year we had snow and decided to try it with snow on the ground. It was a lot faster and slicker than just the pine needles so on the first run about halfway down the hill I clipped a tree and spun out. Gene Landers made it to the bottom, so we went back up for one more ride and this time Gene didn't make it to the base he glanced off one pine tree and hit another one in the center. I was looking at Gene's problem, and misguided my Dr, Pepper sled and hit a pine tree "dead center" and saw stars at 10 - 2- & 4.
I lay there for a while in the snow, and then Gene came over to help me up. Gene said to get back on your horse and let's try again. My Dr. Pepper sign was bent so severely that It would not sit level, so I decided it was time to leave this rodeo and let it be my last run at snow sliding.
Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett. April 30, 2015.

Jones Mountain Country living around 1937
First-year at a one-room School House and
Later at Talking Rock Grammar School


1937 the depression was in full bloom. Money was almost nonexistent. I was an only child; my baby brother was not due to appear for a couple of more years. We lived in a little shotgun type house up on Jones Mountain in North Georgia, around the Talking Rock community.
Dad was making fifty cents a day snaking logs off the Mountain with a pair of oxen. The sawmill was located behind our house and was owned and operated by one of Mom’s Uncles. As weird as it sounds, Dad was able to purchase even with that small amount, what he had to from the little store near us. Somehow he managed to bring me a nickel’s worth of candy, which believe it or not was a large brown bag full and I would savor it and make it last for the whole week.
Needless to say that I had very few toys to play with, but I did have time on my side and had the chance to play outside a great deal. Part of that game time was in working for an engineering degree of building roads in the high banks alongside the unpaved clay road. I dug those roads into the side of the bank with a little pocket knife that someone had given me and a sizeable rusty tablespoon that I had found.
With these two tools and developing skill of digging, allowed me to build a long and complicated roadway that had a vague resemblance to the roads that were dug in the mountainside as they would wrap around the hill country of that area. a
I then drove a half-pint whiskey bottle, that I had found somewhere, over my newly built roadways, and at the last time I serviced it, the odometer was close to a million miles. These were miles I had driven on my knees over the road I had dug in the bank. Every time the road grader came down our way, they would wipe out about seventy-five to eighty percent of my roadway so I would have to get my tools back out and reroute the roads and dig my way back to the nearest settlement.
I must have had a broad imagination even as a four-year-old. Then I had to take time off from my work to attend School. This School was one room that housed all grades. It was about two miles from the house, and the Teacher would come by our home and pick me up every morning driving her horse and buggy. The Teacher called it pre-primer before they had any kindergarten. They had to have a certain number of students or close the School; they made an exception to my age, so they would have enough to keep the School open.
The Teacher was kind to pick me up, but she lived further up the Mountain than we did so she had to pass our house every day, to be sweet and to keep her job, she drove me to school.
Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, June l7, 2017.


FIRST LOVE IN JASPER (IN THE 30s & 40s  TALKING ROCK


My youngest Aunt, Dorothy Cain Green, was in High School in Jasper. At that time, I was in grammar school in Talking Rock. Dorothy surprised me with a Train trip, to Jasper to attend Saturday, Cowboy pictures, newsreels, continued pictures, (cliff hangers), a bag of popcorn and Coca-Cola.
In the times of today, I know the above does not sound very exciting, but for a Farm Boy in the thirty’s, and forties this was some pretty neat doings. However, the topping of the day was after the movies had finished Dorothy (she hated for me to call her aunt.) took me by the hand and said come on I want to show you something.
I do not remember exactly how far we walked, but we entered a building that was full of tables. These tables had matching tablecloths, all checkered and neat, and there were only one of two people sitting at any of then, Dorothy pointed to an empty one and told me to sit down. I did as she asked me to do, and she moved in beside me.
A lady came over to us and asked if we would like to see a menu? Dorothy told her no, we would have grilled cheese and glass of milk each.
Now here is where the Love part started. When the sandwich, which smelled of the best of all aromas, tasted even better, it was so delicious that I wanted to savor the taste and smell of that room forever.
Being my first trip to a Café and starting a lifelong love affair with grilled cheese, toasted cheese, and cheese in general.
There have been many times of ordering cheese sandwiches but never have found any as tempting and delicious as that first one. However, now at eighty-six years of age, I still enjoy a tasty lunch with cheese.
Several first’s for this old boy, my first time for a ride on a train, first time watching a movie, which was so enjoyable we watched it twice. And the first time a Lady invited me out to a Café.
Some of you old-timers might remember the name and location of that restaurant from around 1941 or thereabouts. You current residents now have one of the reasons I love your homeland, of Jasper, Talking Rock and Ellijay and that entire area of North Georgia.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
Tuesday, July 30, 2019.


ACCIDENT CAUSES A DELAY IN THE TRIP


Doubt and fear hovered over the Hospital Emergency Room as Preston wrestled with the Idea of how and what to tell Rose. They had planned a visit for well over three months, and now another unexpected delay. Life had dealt with worse scenarios for each of them. However, Jesus had carried both of them in previous disorders and would see them thru this one as well.
Preston said to his Grand-daughter, well honey, it looks like your old Grandpa, stepped into this one with both feet. Preston told her there was no need for her to stay with him; “besides, she needed to get back to work.” “She replied, I am not going anywhere, and when they release you, I will drive you home.” Preston’s Pastor came into the room, and jokingly said, “some people will do anything to get out going to Church.” They bantered back and forth as was their almost daily routine. The give and take continued as they wheeled Preston to the x-ray room, once again offering him a ride home.
The x-ray confirmed the fact there were no broken bones. Only massive burses and scrapes. One more was a brain scan, to which Preston replied: “you will not find anything there except muddy water.” Waiting again in his room for the attendant to push him to the MRI.
Preston asked his Grand-daughter to call Rose for him, which she did and handed him the phone, leaving the room to allow them some privacy. “Rose, I am alright, so don’t worry. I was in a wreck, and they are checking me out in the ER.” The phone conversation continued with Preston saying, “no Honey, I would rather you not come until we get completely over this thing.” Rose, responded that she needed to be by his side, to which he assured her he would keep her informed of his progress daily. Rose’s panic subsided at the reassurance from Preston that The Good Lord, had allowed him to walk away from two other accidents that destroyed the total automobiles, and this made number three.
Stephanie, the Grand-Daughter, posted the accident on Facebook and the phone started full blast with offers of rides and help from everyone and when Preston eventually arrived at home his Grand-Son, Bryan and Wife Heather, had loaded his freezer, along with all kinds of bread and, a significant supply of natural to cook foods as well.
When Preston arrived home he placed another call to Rose, and after many reasons why she should not come down and take care of him, Preston, persuaded her to postpone the trip to visit for a few more weeks and let the dust settle, and make a large amount of healing take place in the meantime.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
Sunday, July 7, 2019.




FARM BOY EARLY 1930'S AND THE 1940'S
Cane Syrup Making Grandpa Cain Style


As a youngster, I used to help (mostly watched) Grandpa make Syrup. Now, this is not the sugar cane syrup that most of you in Alabama, Florida and other states where sugar cane grows. Some of you folks further North, especially in North Georgia, will know it at sorghum cane syrup. They look similar but is only about one-quarter to one-half as big around. Instead of peeling it down to chew the cane as in sugar cane, to get the juice out of the rod you would put the stalk in your mouth, twist it and suck on it at the same time to get the juice. You had to be careful, or when you spun it, your tongue would get in the way and get cut by the sharp edges of the cane stalk. There was a lot of bleeding tongues in that part of the country during the cane season.
Now back to the subject with which we started. Grandpa had the reputation of being one of the best syrup makers in that part of the country. People came from all around to bring their cane, or the ones that were not farmers would come to buy syrup from him. We put most of it up either in gallon buckets or gallon jugs, never any little bottles or jars. When we sopped syrup in that part of the country, we would not stop with a small amount of the butter. We mixed up a batch because it along with the eggs and ham would have to keep us supplied for hard work until lunchtime.
We would start early grinding the cane by hitching a mule to the cane mill and as she walked around and around it would turn the rollers that mashed the juice out of the cane. Transferring this cane juice into a large copper bottom cooker that was about 3 or 4 feet wide and 6 or 8 feet long and around 10 to 12 inches deep, as the juice went from one compartment into another it would slowly cook and become sorghum. There was always a fire going on under the copper bottom cooker. We would all think it was time to drain the syrup, but Grandpa would say not yet, and when it reached the color and thickness he desired then he would let it be drained off.
There was always a white foam substance that had to be skimmed off the top of the cooking cane juice and discarded which we threw on top of the cane stalks that had been through the mill rollers.
Grandpa’s cane mill was next to the cow pasture and thru the years erosion caused by a Branch that ran through the field. The source of the Branch was an underground Spring on the hillside above. As it ran down past the cane mill, this constant flow of water plus the flooding from heavy rains over many years had washed a deep gulley the entire length of the pasture.
This eroded area is where we would carry the processed cane stalks with all the juice mashed out of them. On top of the discarded stems, we would throw the cane skimming that came off the cooking syrup that I mentioned earlier.
Over a period this began to ferment and smelled of the same. The cows were eating the skimming and cane stalks, and we noticed the animals walking peculiarly and staggering. The cows were drunk from eating the fermented cane stalks and skimming. We eventually got them led into the barn and their stalls. Have you ever tried to milk a drunken cow? I could not tell if she wanted to slap me off the stool with her tail, (that was full of burrows which hurt when it hit you in the face,) or lick me to death as she would turn around try to slap my face with that long sandpaper tongue.
My aunt had trained one of the cats to sit in the doorway, and my aunt would squeeze a teat and squirt milk toward her, and she would open her mouth and gobble it down. Today the cat sat there for about five minutes drinking this fermented dairy from this drunken cow then fell off the door jamb and lay there drunk and asleep until the next morning.
We milked about two gallons of milk that evening. This amount would last a couple of days before Grandma put it in a churn to make butter and buttermilk. We all raided the kitchen more often than usual until the milk was gone. However, we all felt no pain for a couple of days.
After moving to South Alabama, we would go back each year and get a gallon or two of Grandpa’s Sorghum Syrup, and I have never found any other syrup that had that taste and thickness since Grandpa went to his reward, to that large cane mill in the sky.


Preston T. Duckett August 28, 2015 prestontnt.com











MISTAKES NEVER FORGOTTEN OR REPEATED
A young farm boy in the 1930’s and the 1940’s


While on the farm with Grandparents in Talking Rock, Georgia it was part of our chores to furnish “stove wood” for Grandma’s cookstove. We were cutting down pine trees and “snaking” them to the woodpile for stove wood. (We used some in the fireplace, but we mostly tried to use hardwood there.) Two of my uncles were using the two men crosscut saw to cut them down and then double-bladed axes to trim the limbs. (Grandpa insisted on double-bladed axes. He called the other one's pole axes and did not like to use them, even splitting the wood.) Grandpa was ambidextrous and when he cut a tree down he used the ax and never moved around to the other side of the tree while cutting on it, like my uncles, and I had to do he would just switch hands stand in the same spot and keep chopping. My job was to take one of the mules and a chain wrapped around the butt (or big end of the log) and drags it down to the woodpile. Today I was using skinny Old Blue, (she was more gray than blue and had a dull coat.) The mule had to pull the tree down an embankment and then across the highway. Old Blue was doing fine until the butt of the log hit the edge of the pavement, which stopped the logs momentum as well as that of old blue, she fell to the pavement with her left legs going north and the right ones going south. She finally got her footing and tried again following the same pattern of failure. While praying to God to get her up and try again. I thought the world would end right then because Grandpa did not want any missed treatment of his mules. Old Blue scrambled to her legs and tried again, and fell again. I was about to try it again when I heard this billowing, yelling and even if being able to understand it is doubtful if it could be repeated. Grandpa grabbed the halter ropes from my hand. As Old Blue got up, this time, he made her come around to the right. Pulling the log to the right and down the side of the road until it smoothed almost level with the pavement. He slowly turned her to the East until she was able to angle across the highway. Without a great effort, Old Blue pulled the log across the road. After a lengthy and heated lecture, I was once again entrusted with the reins for Old Blue and thanked God, the rest of the way to the woodpile was a dirt road.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
May 17, 2016, PrestonTNT.com




LIFE AS REMEMBERED IN THE LIFE OF A
North Georgia farm boy in the late 1930’s early 1940’s

Back in those days money was in short supply, and you made do with what you had, and many of the tools used were what things farmers made. This Harrow was “homemade, ”It was approximately 8 feet wide and 4 feet long, with spikes driven thru a wood frame, with the sharp tips turned down into the earth, to level the soil that had been turned by a two mule-turning plow. The ground was turned, harrowed, and then planted. I was not large enough to use the turning plow or the guano distributor. I could, however, operate the planter because it had a full wheel in the back that helped balance it and one in the front to keep it level. I could also use the Harrow because you walked beside it or because I was not all that heavy I rode on top of it most of the times. This particular day I was using the Harrow, and I started around the edges of the field and worked myself toward the middle. Well, it looked so smooth and pretty I did not want to make a full turn as I reached the middle so I turned too sharp and the harrow flipped over on its back. I panicked and turned the mules back across the flipped over Harrow with the spikes now sticking up in the air with the animals walking on the top of them. Naturally, Grandpa saw it and screamed some of his usual utterances as I cringed and shook. He checked all four of the legs and hoofs of each mule and saw no damage to them, but he did very politely explain to me that mules were not designed to walk on spikes. Then he uttered something about the whole blame field to turn around in, and you had to flip the Harrow over so the mules could walk over the top of them. I tried something about the whole blame field to turn around in, and you had to flip the Harrow over so the mules could walk over the top of them. I tried through tears to explain how it messed up the looks of the perfectly harrowed land if you screwed up the design in the middle. My wording is not an exact quote but it was a long time ago, and I cannot remember everything. Grandpa’s exact lecture for that day is one of the things I had rather forget. At least he did not beat me with the trace chain, which was one of the threats that I seemed to remember. Grandpa cooled down after a length of time, and I was allowed to finish the Harrowing with a threat of bodily harm if I ever walked his mules across an overturned Harrow. Which, by the way, I never did again.


Preston T. Duckett April 20, 2016,  


North Georgia farm boy in the late 30’s and early 40’s
DAY THREE:


On the farm in the early 1940s, it was up before daylight and work in the fields until dark, especially during planting season. We would feed the mules and cows and then while they were eating and my aunt was milking the cow, my uncle, and I would start getting the equipment ready to go.
Also, since it was only a 20-acre farm, we would hitch the mules to the plows and pull it to whichever field we were starting that day. Usually, we were in guano distributor and lay off the rows. He often used old Red because she was a little harder to handle than Old Blue, so she usually fell to me for the seed planter. My uncle was four years older than I was and somewhat bigger and stronger and besides he could lay off a straight row. Mine looked more like I should have a DUI ticket, and as I told in another piece all I had to do was keep the seed planter in the row my uncle had laid off. Old Blue knew she was supposed to stay in that row so she would lower her head and start pulling and stayed with the same pace all day. As I stated before the planter had a full wheel in the back which made it easy to hold up and by keeping the front smaller wheel in the row all I had to do was lower my head and follow Old Blue. The full wheel in the back would act to not only plant the seeds but also to semi pack the dirt that the sweeps on each side had pulled over the seeds. My biggest trouble came at the end of each row. I would have to stop the seeds from coming out and let
Blue go a few feet past the end of the row so she would have enough room to turn and get back to the next row. When first starting, I had to tilt the planter over on one side and drag the handles around but then when I got older and stronger I could raise the handles lifting the back wheel off the ground and let Old Blue pull it around on the front wheel. Reaching the end of the row, I would mimic the older folks with a boisterous Gee or Haw. Most of you folks that are from the country and are old enough to remember back before everyone had tractors will know what I m talking about, and this went into this much detail for the younger folks and City folks. Now I did learn how to smoke, cuss and swear but I never did learn to dip or chew.


Preston T. Duckett September 7, 2016 PrestonTNT.com


A FARM BOY IN THE 30’ S & The 40's


Corn pone cornbread baked in the old wood stove is very difficult to improve. However, in the wintertime, while the fireplace was going full blast. Grandma would take what she called a Dutch Oven, rake hot coals over to one side set the Dutch Oven on those coals. Having placed the cornmeal mixture for cornbread inside and the lid firmly on, then cover the whole thing with hot coals and hot ashes and let it cook. Of course, what came out was a big round cake of the best tasting Corn Bread I ever had up till that time or since. Take a glass of milk and a slice of cornbread, and I can make a meal, add some great northern beans (Grandma called them soup beans) a glass of buttermilk, onion and I will eat until I have to unbutton the top of my pants. Love them North Georgia Vittles; I had been to watch Mr. Silvers grind the corn into a meal before so I knew where to go. I hitched old Blue to a sled and put enough corn on there to make two bushels of cornmeal. Several members of the family that liked cornbread. Grandpa liked it so well that a lot of times he would use it to sop his syrup and butter instead of biscuits. I never did develop that taste, did try it a couple of occasions. Unless I have forgotten my measurements there are four pecks in a bushel, and the grist mill would get one peck, and you kept three, so I went back home with six peaks of cornmeal, and that was just the right amount. I did not want Old Blue to fall on the highway again, so I kept her off the road on the dirt surface. I mentioned to you before about making Saw Mill Gravy. Sawmill Gravy was made the same way as regular gravy except cornmeal was used instead of flour. I think the reason for the name was because the course meal simulated sawdust from a sawmill, but Grandpa said it was because if you worked at a mill, you had to make gravy with cornmeal because you couldn’t afford to buy flour. Until we moved to Alabama in 1949, I had never heard of fried cornbread and my wife, who was from Alabama, said the reason we had to bake the cornbread in Georgia was that we used grits instead of cornmeal. I found out rather quickly not to purchase the course cornmeal at the grocery in Alabama because I had to take it back to the store and exchange it for the excellent ground meal. Up until that time I thought cornmeal was cornmeal. My wife had never used milk to make gravy just water and when we moved into the apartment the day we got married she was going to surprise me and make me some gravy using milk. I know it boiled up and over the pan and over on the stove and some even ran down to the floor. To avoid further hysterics I cleaned up the mess while she sat at the table with her hands at her face and cried. She never tried using milk again, but I did learn to enjoy gravy made with water.
In addition to that the honeymoon had just started and there was no time set to let it be finished.

Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett
September 6, 2015.



MEMORIES OF A YOUNG FARM BOY in ’30s and ’40s
HOG KILLING NORTH GEORGIA 1930’s


I was quite young at this time, but I will try to remember as much as I can with as much accuracy as possible. I don’t know the exact month that hog-killing took place, but I know it had to be cold. Still, hear some of the old-timers saying “It’s cold enough to kill hogs.” Or something like “this is hog killing weather.” The animals slated to pulled off the slop feeding for a while before shooting and usually put on a dry feed diet of mostly corn, I don’t think they were ever fed Commercial Hog feed, not sure it was even available at that time at least most farmers could not afford it. Early in the animals slated for the morning, the neighbors would gather around e and someone would have the chore of shooting the pig or pig’s, depending it was usually more than one because that would be the pork supply for the rest of the year and until Hog killing time again next year. A 22 rifle was usually used to kill the hogs because they did not want to mess up any more of the meat than they had too and I don’t think anyone ever used a shotgun, but I have heard of some people that would slit the throat of the Hog and let them bleed to death. The dead pig would have a single tree, or at least I think that was the p. It sometimes said it was a single tree. It was the contraception used to hitch the mule to a plow or wagon with chains going up to the mule’s collar. The chain hooks were put thru the back leg and hooked to a muscle or tendon and dragged over to a tree that was close to a wash pot that was full of scalding water. The chain was then thrown over a big sturdy limb and again attached to a mule to pull the Hog up off the ground. (Some people used a chain hoist, but Grandpa didn’t have one.) With the Hog secured and hung in the tree. Then a bucket brigade was started from the wash pot with scalding water to pour on the hanging pig, and with big knives the would scrape all the hair off. With chore completed, a sharp butcher knife was used to cut down the underbelly area from top to bottom. This long incision was called gutting the animal. Large tubs were under the Hog to catch the intestines. Some point in time the head would be cut off and left in a big container while the butchering of the hams and other parts on a separate large table. Grandpa used the salt curing method since refrigeration was not available; it had to be sure enough cold, or it would spoil too fast. The neighbors that helped would get a portion of fresh meat for their help, and when Grandpa and my Uncles helped them kill their hogs, then the raw meat was returned to them. I do remember very well that Grandpa loved pig brains and scrambled eggs, now I like scrambled eggs but could not warm up to brains. The ladies usually took care of sausage grinding, rendering lard and making and souse meat from the hogshead, pigtails and pig feet and all that kind of good stuff. Was not wild about hog killing or the smell emitted from the scalding water poured over the animal. Good eating overrode the unpleasant aspect of the event.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett,
October 17, 2015.






























A FARM BOY IN THE 40’S
YOU CAN LEAD A HORSE TO WATER.


It was our duty to water and fed the animals after we left the fields each day and put them in their stalls and secure the barn doors. The way we usually went about this was to unhitch the mules, and we were supposed to lead them to the branch where the area was damned up enough to have space for the water to be deep enough to make it easy for them to drink. I would get my uncle to help boost me up on Old Red, and as Red would start, Old Blue would usually start before my uncle could get on her back. Alex was my uncle's name, and he would grab Old Blues tail and jump up on the back of her legs that were almost like knees turned backward, and he would ride to the watering hole often with his feet on the back of her legs and hold on to the tail. I don’t know how Grandpa missed this, but if he knew it, he never said anything. One of my cousins wanted to know what Grandpa looked like, and the closest one to him in looks would be like Uncle Doyle in size and Uncle Alex in looks. The hair was thick, and I do not remember seeing it any color but gray. It tried to curl in front kind of like Alex’s  hair did, and when he was lifting something substantial or thinking real hard or was looking for something to whip Alex with and me, he would squint his eyes, and he did this a lot. Being serious Grandpa never punished us a lot, but then he didn’t have too because he was so big and vigorous that just one or two loud shouts usually got the job done. Back to the watering of the mules when they were through drinking Alex would often lead Old Blue back to the barn because Grandpa was usually there waiting for us. My friend, Tommy Sabiston used to have a saying that went like this “you can lead a horse to water, but make him float on his back and then you’ve done something.” Another one was “Behind every dark cloud there is a stiff upper lip.”


Preston T. Duckett April 16, 2016 










LIFE OF A FARM BOY IN THE 30’ S & The 40's
ODDS AND ENDS FARM BOY--Grandpa and Our Shetland pony


Grandpa was a big man, not fat, but big, he could walk into a room and cover the entire doorway. He was big like Matt Dillon, and of course, to his two young grandsons, he was a Giant. He was strong, hard-working as most of the farmers were in that day. Mom and Dad had acquired a Shetland pony for Joe and me which we kept at our grandparents because we lived in town and could not keep animals of this nature there. If you have ever been around a Shetland you know, they are stubborn primarily if not worked often, and as kids, we were afraid of him when he got to acting up. We were having trouble putting his halter on in the pasture. Grandpa came out, grabbed him by the long hair on the back of his neck and pulled his head around to put on his halter. When he turned the pony loose, he spun around and kicked Grandpa in the stomach with both feet. Grandpa did not say anything but just a loud HUFF noise of air coming out of his lungs. He swirled around and hit the pony in the middle of his nose, and his knees buckled, and he went down on them. When he was able to get up, he stood there looking at Grandpa and never tried to kick him again, hereafter when Grandpa came into the pasture holding a halter the Shetland would trot up to him and hold his head out to receive the harness. For a long time after that, we had no trouble when we wanted to ride him or hitching him his cart. There is a moral there somewhere I’m not sure what it is, but we never kicked Grandpa either.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, August 29, 2015 .













A FARM BOY IN THE 30' S & 40'S GRANDMA'S GARDEN

Grandma had a special fenced-in space for her garden every year, located adjacent to the barn and corral. As best I remember it was about fifty feet long and around thirty feet wide. (It seemed more significant than that when you started hoeing it and raking down and smoothing off the onion bed.) This bed ran the length of the garden with a raised bed approximately six to eight inches higher than the row crops. This bed as I remember was used to plant onions, carrots, and at one end loose-leaf lettuce, (I never did know why but I guess it was not the heading type or either Grandma liked to pick it young & tender.) She only had one kind of dressing for the salad she made from the lettuce, and that was bacon grease, but it sure did taste good.
Grandma not only fed us thru the summer with her garden, but she also saved everything not used during the summer by canning it or drying it out and preserving it for the winter. She canned vegetables, made sauerkraut; she would hang green beans across the back porch stringing them with a needle and thread to dry and called them "leather britches," us kids would bring her all the apples we could find, including crab apples. She would set up a couple of sawhorses, put about a 10-foot piece of tin roofing across it with a clean bed sheet covering it and put the slices of apples on top of that and let the sun do the drying for her. These apples sure did make some tasty apple tarts when the cold winds of winter were blowing. I think Grandma's slogan was: "waste not, want not." A tiny amount was lost during those days, even though we did not have refrigerators or freezers. Grandpa would do the meat for the winter in his smokehouse. He used mostly salt curing, but it sure did taste good the next winter. Grandma and we young ones would gather the potatoes, and Grandpa would dig out an area about eight or ten feet wide and about twenty feet long put down some pine straw, and croaker sacks put sweet potatoes on one end and the Irish potatoes in the other end. Cover them all with croaker sacks and pine straw and then with dirt on top of that and most of them would be good all winter. I'm getting hungry sitting here thinking of one of our many breakfast treats of Grandpa's bacon or ham with red-eye gravy. Fresh butter and syrup or Milk gravy made with flour or Sawmill gravy made with cornmeal; all sopped up with some of Grandma's homemade biscuits and a couple of glasses of good fresh milk with the cream still on it. I just shot my diet for today, and I guess I just gained five pounds just thinking about it. I know it is said "you can't go home again," but I just did.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, April 23, 2016.
A FARM BOY IN THE 30' S & The 40's


FIRST TRIP TO COTTON GIN IN TALKING ROCK


We had the wagon loaded with loose cotton, had the sideboards on and cotton was heaped up in the middle of the cart. I found out later; this would make one finished bale of cotton. The ginning process took out the cottonseed and shredded the cloth into almost thread-like cotton strips. Then pressed together with Crocker sack type material over the top and bottom and partway around on each side, and was bailed. With four metal baling straps with a unique tool for binding the ends of the bailing straps together. But on the way to the Gin my Uncle, a big boy only four years my elder, said "we both have to stay on the wagon and use the vacuum pipe to pull the cotton up to the Gin. But we have to be careful because last year three little boys, about your age were sucked up into the Gin and killed, so whatever you do don't let that vacuum pipe get in your hair because then you'll be a goner." This pipe came down out of the rafters above where we drove the wagon and when Alex (my Uncle) started moving the tube around over the cotton it began to be sucked up into the Gin upstairs. When he got about halfway down in the wagon, and he would use the vacuum pipe on each side and each end and that way I would not get too close and be sucked up into the Gin. Alex moved around me about twice with the vacuum pipe telling me to be still and not move or get in the way of the tube. He worked his way around behind me and the next thing I knew the pipe was above my head and sucking my hair up in it and scaring the daylights out of me. After I had wet my pants, Alex started laughing and stuck his head in the pipe and let it suck his hair up. Then he handed me the tube and said you get the rest of the cotton out of the wagon so he could slip out behind the Gin and smoke a cigarette. I was moving the pipe around vacuuming the cotton up to the Gin. At this point I realized it could not suck a boy up the tube, so I started to play with it by putting my hand over it and feeling the pull and over my head again and let it pull my hair up. We made many more trips to the Cotton Gin after that first time. After that first voyage, it became my job to operate the vacuum, cotton out of the wagon. Alex had a blast teasing me about getting sucked up the pipe, and I learned something about how the
vacuum works that I didn't know before. Later Mr. Silvers carried me up to where the Gin was operating, and I got to watch it work. While watching it, I thought to myself that Mr. Eli Whitney must have been one smart man.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, September 5, 2015.



THE BUCK STOPS HERE OR STARTS HERE
A farm boy around 1930-1940


The first Automobile Garage I ever saw was in the late ’30s or early ’40s and even though I do not think Uncle Buck Tatum ever used either slogan in his Garage. He didn’t have a radio station or TV station to advertise in, or he might have used something like that. I do not remember if he had a Sign out front of the Garage or not or how long the shop was in business. I don’t know if I went with my Dad or one of my Uncles but whoever it was needed some particular work on an auto and Uncle Buck (I’m not sure whether he was my Uncle or Grand Uncle, but he was my Grandma’s Brother.)
I know I was very excited to see inside the Garage. Several things that were unusual about this Garage at least for this day and time but not back then. First of all the only light, they had in the building was a big door open in the front a few windows and a big door open in the back of the building. The building itself was, as best as I can remember about large enough for about three or four Cars at the same time, however, there were only two in there at that point. Both had the hood open, and Uncle Buck bending over the fender working on one of them, and I think the other one was getting the oil changed and a grease job. The second one was pulled up over an open pit, and someone was down there working on the bottom of the car. The thing unusual about this was because when Dad changed the oil in our car, he got down on the ground and slid up under the car. I recall every auto we had at that time would change the oil on its own all you had to do put a quart in ever so often and if it stopped smoking you had better pull the dip stick. But I digress, the other thing that was unusual about this Garage was there was no floor in it. It was just the natural clay floor, saturated with oil and grease. I can close my eyes now and almost see the building the floor and the pit the car was pulled up on and smell the peculiar odor of the grease and oil. Some of you may know the scent I mean mainly if you farmed with tractors that you had to grease and change oil. Was this the First Garage in Talking Rock Georgia?
Certain smells pertain to farming, and if you farmed with mules as we did you know that smell especially when you have to muck it out and broadcast it in the fields as fertilizer. That was one reason not to go to Tractors, but then for the muck haulers, they would gladly trade the mules for tractors. I don’t know how long Uncle Buck Tatum had the Garage. As I remember it was not a long time, and one reason for that most everyone then that had any type transportation did most of their work under a shade tree, and I guess that is where the term “shade tree mechanic” originated. There were very few people in those days that had automobiles, and those were mostly Model A’s and Model T’s.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, September 22, 2015.



GRANDMA AND WASHDAY


Never was able to help Grandma much with wash day but I did build a fire under the wash pot and fill it with water. Grandma would get her tubs out for rinsing, and I would fill two of them with cold water. The third washtub was used to hold the scrub board, and the dirtiest clothes placed in the boiling water of the pot then transferred to the rubboard. Grandma would use what she called a battling stick. It looked something like a thick boat paddle, use it to reach into the boiling water. With the paddle, she would retrieve one of the soiled garments that had been soaking. Sling it over to the first tub in the series of three that she had filled with water just about as hot as the hand could stand. She would then grab a bar of her homemade Lye soap rub it over the garment in the tub and vigorously scrub it up and down the rub board. Which as I recall was a corrugated metal mounted in a wood frame. The corrugated metal would help push the soap into the garment and also help remove the dirt. If you didn’t keep the material you were washing between you and the rub-board, your knuckles would be bleeding, and you did not want that to happen because the Lye soap would burn harder and longer than rubbing alcohol. I would push the garments up and down in the rinse water, but Grandma would have to wring them out and hang them on the line with clothespins that were solid wood with a groove in the bottom that when pushed down on the clothes would hold them in place. In later years they came out with clothespins that had a wire spring to hold them against the clothes and keep them on the line, but Grandma’s were all the old fashioned kind that she kept in a clothes-pin bag as she called it. Many years later the first electric washing machine came to the farm but we still had to fill up the three tubs with rinse water and the rollers would be moved from container to tub to mash the water out of the clothes and no longer had to twist it out by hand. We had to keep boiling the water and tote it to the washing machine because Grandma thought the hotter the water, the cleaner the clothes, and I do not remember if Grandma ever gave up her Lye soap. But I do remember after that it was a long time before we were able to switch from Octagon soap to the 99 and 44 one-hundredths percent pure it floats, and you did not have to chase it across the bottom of the bathtub.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett. October 16, 2015.


THE 1930’S AND 1940’S ON NORTH GEORGIA FARM.


I enjoyed a lot of the farm life in those early years; however, chopping cotton was not one of the things I enjoyed the most. Feeling proud of myself cotton in my row by myself and getting almost in a rhythm and thinking beautiful thoughts. My brilliant ideas were interpreted by a boisterous “what in the H--- are you doing boy, you just chopped up a good cotton plant.” To refresh your mind as to what brought this significant response, Grandpa, who was a right three rows over from where I was chopping and two hundred feet ahead of me was giving me his usual soft loving reprimand, which I was beginning to get used to when I screwed up or made a mistake. “You just cut down a perfectly good cotton plant and left a scrawny one, why in the world did you do that?” I tried my best to explain that I was trying to keep the rows straight. The first plant was a good two inches out of line; therefore, I removed from the row. With a few little words that I do not care to repeat or write down, he made his point. Hoeing cotton or any other type of chopping never let me fall back into the rhythm that had started before this explosion occurred. Grandma was not in the field with my uncles and aunts today. Therefore I decided to lick my wounds and whisper a few profanities myself. I explained to you before that Grandpa was ambidextrous and was chopping two rows at a time. The thing I was never able to figure out was how in the world could he see me cut down the wrong plant with his back to me and hoeing first to the left and then to the right and two hundred feet away. The only thing I could figure was that when I messed up, there must have been some odor escaped that his sense of smell got a whiff of, because whenever I screwed up, Grandpa was on top of it and me. There was a lot of “messing up” on my part, and when I would try to explain either he did not understand what I meant, or else he knew too well. Grandpa would say, “Boy if you don’t stop that whimpering I’ll give you something to whimper about.” Knowing that he was a man of his word, I quickly learned to let my complaining go no further than my thoughts. However, the complaining did go on in that small container that held my brain. All the time these thoughts ran through my mind, I kept my back to him because I swear to God he could read my mind. I always knew that Grandpa loved me, and during the time, I was on the farm with him; I found out what “Tuff Love” really meant.


Published and Copyrighted by Preston T. Duckett, August 2, 2016.


COTTON AND CORN


Chop that cotton, shuck that corn.
Shuck at night, chop at morn.
Work on the farm sees no end.
We never break, often bend.


Birth a calf, in middle of the night,
vision furnished by lantern light.
To bedclothes on chair hang,
From the barn, came a loud bang.


Find a mule kicking wall,
ropes tie her to the front of the stall.
Back to the house smelling bacon
and food for strength making.


With breakfast finished, keep hopping,
back to shucking, and chopping.
Work on the farm never done,
ever thing happens on the run.

Preston T. Duckett 12/18/15 prestontnt.com