First Of All…

…I can’t believe that show’s still on, and secondly, “Who cares?”

R.I.P McDreamy…

McDreamy

…now, if they’d only pull the plug on the show!

Worth Repeating…

Mary Doyle Keefe, known for modeling as “Rosie the Riveter” in the famed Norman Rockwell painting that came to symbolize women factory workers during World War II, has died, according to an obituary published by a local mortuary. She was 92.

The Original Roise

In light of that, I’m re-posting a blog post from a couple of years back.

Rosie the Riveter inspired millions of women in the US to go to work and support the war effort at the onset of WW II.

Here’s a tribute to two of them.

World War II started for the United States on 12/7/1941 when the Imperial Japanese Army’s Air Corps bombed Pearl Harbor, Hawai’i.

The war effort started long before.

My father was drafted when my brother, Charlie was about 6 months old.  He went to boot camp, then shipped out overseas and was in The Philipines and Korea.   Daddy spent 219 continuous days in combat. He was a sniper in the infantry, and was never the same afterwards.

Bill Steinmetz was in the Airborne, and during his stay in Germany was able to recover a Nazi Flag from the top of Goebels’ Castle.

The flag, which the Steinmetz family still has, can be seen at the Veterans’ Museum in Germantown.  For those of you who don’t know, it is located at the Old Masonic Hall on Cherry Street.  You should check it out, there are wonderful displays regarding the sacrifices many from the area have made for our Country.

Prior to that, Daddy worked on C Line at the Hercules Powder Plant in Blacksburg, VA.

They, like thousands of other G.I.s left brides at home while they were at war.

We hear of “Rosie the Riveter” often, and we see her picture.

She symbolizes the hard work and dedication of hundreds of thousands of American women who kept the country working while the men were off defending it.

Rosie The Riveter

We rarely, if ever put a real face with the name.

But, there were real women working.  Real women sacrificing, and real women keeping the country going as well as keeping the home-fires burning.

Bill was stationed at Ft. Myers, VA.  Louise, a pretty West Virginia girl, was serving cookies at a USO function in Arlington Farms, VA when she met Bill.  He was playing volley ball, and asked her to join the game.  Three days later, they were married.  They stayed married for almost 50 years before Bill passed away.

Bill and Louise Steinmetz Wedding

The pretty bride was a secretary for the State Department in Washington, D.C.   As a matter of fact, she worked for Cordell Hull, the Secretary of State under FDR, and was Mr. Hull’s personal secretary.   She graduated from high school at 16, and went to work immediately.

Bill went to Germany, Louise stayed home, worked, and provided exemplary service to the State Department in a time when doing a good job was more than critical.

Louise kept the home-fires burning as well.  After her job ended, she moved to Dayton, Ohio, and moved in with her in-laws, whom she had never met!  When Bill came home, it was on the QE II, he got home in six days.  He was anxious to see his bride!

Over the years, Bill and Louise would have six children, three boys and three girls.

Like I said, my Dad went to the Pacific Theater. Daddy took his physical the day my brother, Charlie, was born, 09-17-1944.   When Daddy was drafted, they were living in Radford, Virginia.  Mother was working at the same Hercules Powder Plant in Blacksburg, VA, where she stayed for three years.

MOTHER AND DADDY MACON, GA WWII

Mother and Daddy had two kids, Judy and Charlie, when Daddy went off to war.  My grandmother Brads came and stayed two weeks with mom and the kids while Mother worked.  Grandpa needed Grandma back at home in Glasgow, VA, and Grandma was on the hunt for a capable sitter to watch her grandkids.

Enter Mrs. Sumner.  I’ve no idea what her first name was, but she moved in with Mother, cooked, cleaned, took care of the kids, and did every thing except iron.

She did not iron – AT ALL.  Mom said, when telling me her war time story that, “…every thing had to be ironed back then.”  Apparently, no one was fond of it.

Mom worked in the nitro-cotton lab and weighed, tested, and produced gun-powder.  It was a labor of love as she knew that Daddy might be using it shooting “The Japs”.   It was ok to say that then, we were at war.

C-Line Hercules Powder Plant 1944

[The dress code for the ladies was a coverall and matching turban. In the lab the employees measured the strength and texture of the powder. They also made the nitro glycerin that tested the powder and they tested the viscosity of the nitro glycerin.]

Having no car, she rode to work in a ‘car-pool’ with others.  No one used that term back then.

To get to work each week, she had to give the driver a gas stamp, and on some weeks, $1.00 for gas.  Gas, sugar, and other items were rationed, and ration stamps were like gold.

With gas at 21 cents a gallon, a buck was almost five gallons.  These days, with a dollar you can smell the hose!  Maybe!

Women did with out ‘nylons’, hair-pins, and other niceties.  Meat was rationed as well.  The boys over seas needed to be fed.

When the war ended, so did Mother’s job.  Daddy came home, she quit working, and Mrs. Sumner went back to her family.

Mother and Louise are just two of thousands of women who made America great.  Sacrifice, substance, sincerity:  all qualities that last.

Does your Mother or Grandmother have a war time story?  Ask, you just might find a whole new woman in the family you didn’t know existed!

And today, as we welcome soldiers home from another war, think of those who are serving now and the ones at home who are keeping home front strong.

And think of Rosie and her inspiration.

Embracing Change

Shortly after WW II, Coca-Cola’s market share for Coke was about 60%.  By 1983, it was down to 24%, mainly because Pepsi was outselling Coke in supermarkets.

Coke was still winning the vending machine battle as well as on the fast food restaurant front.

Research told the big cola makers that Baby Boomers were starting to worry about their weight and health, and were more likely to choose a diet drink.  If they were to reign supreme in the full-flavor-full-calorie market, they’d have to go for younger soda drinkers.

In 1983, Pepsi was the overwhelming winner!

I know, that was news to me as well!!!!

When Roberto Goizueta moved in as CEO of Coke, he made it pointedly clear that there were no sacred cows at Coca-Cola, and that included the secret formula for its flagship product.

40 years ago today, New Coke was foisted on introduced to the American Public.

New Coke

It was not a hit.

Well, maybe a little at first.  Sales were UP in some areas, but in the Southeast, where Coke was born, the backlash was epic.

Most people down South considered Coca-Cola or Coe-Cola as it’s pronounced in Georgia, a part of Southern Identity.  Changing it would be tantamount to Lee’s Surrender!

The backlash was so vocal, Coca-Cola issued a statement:  “To hear some tell it, April 23, 1985, was a day that will live in marketing infamy… spawning consumer angst the likes of which no business has ever seen.”

When New Coke was introduced, Pepsi-Cola Chairman, Roger Enrico, declared a company holiday and took out a full page ad in the New York Times declaring Pepsi had won the years long battle known as the Cola Wars.

On July 11, a mere three months later, ABC News’ Peter Jennings interrupted General Hospital to break the news that New Coke had been scrapped and Coca-Cola was bringing back the old formula as Coca-Cola Classic.

Classic Coke

When “old coke” came back, phone calls and letters to the company were as filled with joy as the ones from the introduction of New Coke were filled with hate.

People were elated!  One Coca-Cola executive said, “You’d have thought we’d cured cancer!”

In the late 1990s, Sergio Zyman, the man who marketed New Coke, summed up the New Coke experience this way”

Yes, it infuriated the public, cost a ton of money and lasted only 77 days before we reintroduced Coca-Cola Classic. Still, New Coke was a success because it revitalized the brand and reattached the public to Coke.

The guy from Pepsi referred to it as an Edsel!

And they say people don’t like change!

Happy Earth Day

Oh, why not?

Everyone else will be jumping on the band wagon, so I suppose I should.

Happy Earth Day.

Earth Day Cookies

I’ll admit I don’t buy into a lot of the global warming business, but I’ll admit to climate change.

That’s right, things are changing.  I’ve noticed.

But the difference here is, I don’t think we (as in the human race) have nearly as much to do with it as we’re being blamed for.

Some of it’s cyclical.

You know, nature taking its course.

Today is the 45th anniversary of Earth Day, and I’m not so sure we’re all that much better off.

Well, at least the river’s not on fire, I’ll grant you that.

But with more cars on the roads in China than there are people in the United States, just how much can we do to stop it.

I’m all for clean air and clean water and trees and plants.

But, I love my air-conditioning, my SUV, and my weed killer!

Happy Earth Day, anyway!