A view of “The Little House” from the foothill of Hook Mountain. In this photo, you can see the nearby Old Mabey Homestead.
Shining New Red Porsche Trumps Dented Old Ford Falcon, Every Time!
By Richard Mabey Jr.
At 62, I think a man looks back at his life. He hears the clock ticking. He sees that he is ripping the pages of the calendar, much more rapidly than he would like. He reflects upon his life. He contemplates upon the question, “what if?”
Today, I worked the morning shift at one of the meanest Gate Houses in all of Happy Land Gated Community. One out of five of the old geezers cursed me out, for no reason at all. Nice people.
I then attended the evening service at my church. It was then that I prayed and prayed and prayed for my comic book auctions to do well, when they go on the auction block. They’re scheduled to go up for auction very soon. I prayed that they sell at a high price.
I know this may sound superficial. I know that there are people starving in the world. I know that there are people who are sick and suffering. But you see, I’m banking on my comic book collection to do well at the auction to provide me with the dough to self publish my novel.
I thought a lot about my old girlfriend, Penny, today. Yesterday, I thought it would be good to change her first name to Kathleen, when I write about her in my novel. But then I thought that maybe it really wouldn’t be paying tribute to her, by changing her first name. So, in my novel, I’ve decided to keep her first name as Penny. I’ll keep the last name Appleton, as the choice of the fictional last name.
If I get sued, I will have a disclaimer in the beginning of my book that states that the book is fiction and that any similarity to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental. So, the bases are covered.
When I was 18, I had three dreams. First, to finish college. Second, to write for the old Lincoln Park Herald. And of course, third, to marry Penny.
Penny was a very talented photographer. Our plan was to marry. Then save every penny we could and buy out the Lincoln Park Herald, when Mr. M. was ready to retire. I would be the editor and reporter and Penny would be the photographer. Our plan was to live in the little house that stood adjacent to the old Mabey Homestead.
The little house was this cute two bedroom bungalow that stood on the corner of Route 202 and Mabey Lane in Old Beavertown. Penny was so very enthused about our precious plan. Her daddy wasn’t too crazy about our plan.
The front yard of the old Mabey Homestead would fill with little purple flowers. It was incredibly beautiful. Penny always found it incredibly inspirational. She often talked about how, when we got married, that she could just walk out of the side door of the little house and see the beauty of all those little flowers scattered all about the big front yard.
But you see, here’s the painful bottom line: a shining new red Porsche trumps an old nicked up Ford Falcon, every time! And, sadly just when Penny and I were getting close once again, through letters to each other, the rich kid made his move. Penny was a freshman at Rutgers, I was a sophomore at County College. We wrote faithfully to each other.
We had had a rough summer, before Penny went to Rutgers. Then things were looking groovy, when Penny and I began writing each other while she was at Rutgers. Then the rich kid came along. And the poor, working class kid lost out.
I don’t want you to think that Penny was the only girl in my life. Far from it. I don’t want to sound like a womanizer. But, I was blessed to have several women in my life. The bottom line, none came even close to making forget about the girl who believed in me, more than I ever believed in myself.
I was an extremely shy, sensitive kid in high school when I first met Penny. Penny was outrageously beautiful and incredibly intelligent. She pushed me, stretched me, challenged me to grow as a writer and as a young man.
I wonder if other men go through this painful process of self analysis at 62.
Last night, I had this dream that my novel did get published. And, that it was successful.
I do hope that my comic book collection commands a lot of green backs at auction time.