Strike a Match

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Sixty-three years ago, I bought my first new bicycle from Workman’s Bicycle Shop. It was black with chrome fenders. I was taking on a paper delivery route that covered a two-mile area, so I needed a good bike. The Workmans were friends of my family, so it was good to get one from them. It wasn’t actually brand new but felt new to me. The Workmans collected old bike and frames and refurbished them. New chrome fenders made them look brand new. 

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Matchbooks strike memories

Chrome fenders and Newspapers

John Workman’s Bike Shop

I found these matchbooks in my garage, and it took me back to the age of twelve. Most of them were collected since then. In a day when many people smoked, matchbook covers were a good way to advertise their businesses. Some of these came from Habitat Restore where I volunteer.

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Food, Family, Intimacy

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In the winter of 2019, we celebrated our fiftieth wedding anniversary. It was a great time of food, fun, and most of all family. This was just before the covid pandemic, so all of our children and grandchildren were able to come from near and far.

We shared a great meal at our local O’Charley’s restaurant and enjoyed great conversations. It is so much more rewarding to go out to eat when joined by family. I guess this is where the term breaking bread together comes from. Back when everyone broke pieces off of a large loaf of bread and used it to eat their food, eating was an intimate connection.

Breaking bread

Intimate expressions shared

Family connections

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Photos: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Merril remembers her father who would be 103 if he were still living. She shared his love for celebrating with his family at his favorite restaurants. She asked us to write about a favorite restaurant and why it is important to us.

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Three of my windows were getting streaked and foggy in between the glass. Since they were new when we moved into our house, the life-time warranty was still in effect. I contacted the manufacturer and sent them pictures of the three windows. They agreed to send me three replacement double glass panes, but I had to pay $40 each for shipping.

I sent them a check and a couple of weeks later three large cartons arrived on my doorstep. When I picked them up to take them inside, one of the boxes had a rattling sound inside. I knew that meant the window paned was broken.  Examining the box, I could see there was a definite crease in the middle that looked like something heavy had dropped on it. I contacted the company again and explained the situation. They are going to send me a replacement.

Double-pane/pain window

Shattered with broken pieces

Glass, Handle with Care

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Photo: Dwight l. Roth

Breathing or Choked

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When this came through the Habitat Restore where I volunteer, I recognized it to be the air/choke intake for a two-barrel carburetor. If you were born after 1980 you probably don’t know what it is or how it works. I believe it mounts on top of a two-barrel carburetor that feeds the air and gas to the car engine with a steady misty spray. The gas is drawn into the engine by the pistons going up and down, sucking the gas through. The little flaps lying open in the center of each tube close if more gas is needed and open when the engine warms up. Perhaps some of you car enthusiasts can give us more information.

Larger V-8 engines had four-barrel carburetors which doubled the amount of gas flow to the engine, therefore increasing the power. They were also used on race cars to increase power and speed.

Newer technology made carburetors obsolete, with the development of electronic fuel injection which perfectly controls the flow of fuel for every condition. That is why cars today start of the first or second turn of the engine.

New technology

Makes car engines run smoothly

Carburetors gone


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Father’s Stories

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My father had a heart attack in 1975, when he was 65 years old. He recovered and lived for five more years. After he recovered, I realized if I wanted to find out about his life, I needed to ask him now. I took my cassette recorder and sat down with him asking him to tell me about his childhood. The tape ran for almost an hour as we talked back and forth. I took the tape home and put it in my file drawer. I did not know when I would get it out and listen to it again.

Forty years later, I decided to write a biographical fiction book about my grandfather who came to this country when he was six years old. He was a most interesting man who was a concrete mason in Central Pennsylvania. One of his hobbies was catching and breeding skunks! He operated on them and took out their stink glands, selling them as pets and also selling the hides. It was during my writing of his story that I remembered my father’s interview tape. It was most helpful in adding depth to the story.

Most young folks are too preoccupied to think about asking parents or grandparents to tell them their stories. Sadly, most of the stories die with them when they are gone. I urge you to ask your questions while you can. Your fathers and mothers will not always be around.

Father’s Day stories

Lifetime of memories shared

Ask them while you can


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

You can read my grandfather’s biographical fiction here:

Unwanted Treasures

Walnut table

I believe meaning and purpose often dies with us. Emotions are very hard to pass on …except through genetic predispositions. So much is gone when one dies. A lifetime of memories and stories are left untold, while a few cherished moments and trauma live on …sometimes for generations.

I see it happening, when I volunteer at the Habitat Restore. Parents die leaving a houseful of keepsakes. A handful are saved, and our box truck brings us the rest. Stuff often loses meaning when passed from generation to generation. Young folks have their life, their own stuff; So, unwanted treasures from the past go to be sold to someone who will cherish them, and then perhaps they too will be passed on, resold, or discarded.

Our cherished treasures

full of memories long past

Help build new houses



Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Note: Habitat for Humanity Restore is a place that takes donations of many kinds that are resold. The money is used to build new low-income houses for families who otherwise would not be able to afford one. In the past our store alone has taken in enough in one year to build ten new houses.

For more information:

Feeling Connected

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Feeling Connected

Someone asked me this week what I meant when I said I needed to feel connected. I am not sure I gave a very good answer at the time, so I went to the dictionary and looked up definitions of three related words connection, acknowledge, and valued. These three seems to go together when it comes to understanding connection.

1. Connected is to be brought together or into contact so that a real or notional link is established.

           Connection is a relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked or associated with      something else.

2. Acknowledge is to be recognized as being good or important: accepted as valid or legitimate.

3. Valued is to be considered to be important or beneficial: cherished as a valued friend.

The best example of all three shows up in our blogging community. We connect with each other. sharing our poetry, ideas, and opinions. We put it out there for the world to see and respond to. In doing so we hope to be acknowledged with likes and sometimes comments. In return we respond, building connection that is very meaningful. It is in this way that we realize the significance of our connection. We feel valued, and in some cases become cherished friends with people from all over the world and look forward to our ongoing connection. On the other hand, when there is an attempt at connection with no reciprocating response, the feeling of being valid or legitimate in their eyes is missing and the connection is lost.

Personal connection

Acknowledged and valued

Meaningful friendships


Thank you, my friends, for being there and sharing your thoughts and life with me!

A Senryu Poem

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

~bing definitions~


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There was a time when things held value, were retained and cherished. As I think of our fast-paced digital world, I wonder what is gained and what is lost.

Once we had hymnbooks that contained a collection of cherished meaningful songs to be sung over and over. Now we continually crank out new songs, flashed up on a screen, before we have learned to appreciate the current ones.

Being a blogger is stimulating and interesting, but the volume of material that flows through the blog leaves me only minutes or seconds to contemplate it before moving on to the next new thing. Will what we write today have any meaning for tomorrow like poets and writers of the past?

The music industry lives for the bottom line and rides success like and eight-minute rodeo ride. Creativity is often put aside for the next successful million selling song, just like the one before.

So again, I ask, what have we gained in our lightning fast virtual, digital world? What do you value and hold dear? What do you put on your virtual shelf to read or listen to over and over? Is anything held in your hands and cherished anymore? Does anything move you or stir your soul? Or are you numb with overload!

Give me a second.”

Hold new meaning in our world

No time for thinking


Painting of some of my favorite things: Dwight L. Roth

Sand… or Gold?

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Truth will set you free…

Sales-pitches creates blinders

Like panning for gold

One must wash away the sand

To find small nuggets of Truth


Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Lillian gave us several proverbs and adages to choose from to write a poem. I chose “The truth will set you free… from John 8:32.

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