Sun Lakes Writers’ Group

Happiness Is …

Dorothy Long


Getting bigger

Getting new teeth

New shoes

A new toy

Not taking a nap

Not wetting your pants

The first snowfall

Presenting mom a dandelion


Running and climbing

A new pet

An ice cream cone

Holidays and gifts

Siblings most of the time

A new friend

A big cardboard box

Birthday party with friends

Playing Hide and Seek

Learning the ABCs

Going to Disneyland

The first airplane trip

A few coins in the pocket

Bedtime stories

Staying up till 9 p.m.

Getting out of bed each morning


Not getting bigger

Keeping old teeth

Finding shoes that fit

Remembering an old favorite toy

Taking a nap

Not wetting your pants

The final snowfall

Having dandelions under control

Pest control

Not falling

Time with an old pet

A spoonful from the carton

Family visits on holidays

Still having siblings

Not losing old friends

A letter in the mailbox

Enough friends left to have a party

Searching for a misplaced item

Remembering the spelling of a word

Enjoying a Disney movie

Making it to destination with your luggage

Few coins left after paying all the bills

A good book

Being in bed by 9 p.m.

Getting out of bed each morning

Blessings to You

Barbara Schwartz

Have you ever noticed that on St. Patrick’s Day, everyone is Irish?

Is there anything wrong with committing to being Irish—even if you are not?

I have looked up several Irish blessings on the ubiquitous Internet and I discovered a small fraction of Irish blessings.

* May your troubles be less and your blessings be more and nothing but Happiness comes through your door.

Okay, I will buy this one. I am 100% in to have troubles be less!

* May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live.

Again, I am all in on this one. If I could live the rest of my life not wanting anything that I truly need, happiness would abound.

* May the saddest day of your future be no worse than the happiest day of your past.

I am not too sure about this one: Having had the saddest and worst days of life recently I can clearly attest that they did not meet the happiest days of my past.

I want to be able to be “Irish” and kiss the Blarney Stone. I want to be able to be “Irish” and follow the rainbow to the pot of gold. But, since I am not genetically Irish I wish all of you the following:

May the road rise up to meet you.

May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face and the rains fall soft on your fields.

And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Conversation About Vacation, in Semi-Rhyme

Sue Donovan

Last week, dear college friends came for dinner, spent the night, and snagged a ride to the airport on their way to sunny Cabo San Lucas for 10 days. Like us, they are snowbirds, spending May-September on the lake in Northern Michigan and October-April in Green Valley near Tucson. Well, come on! We both spend our ENTIRE YEAR in blissfully beautiful weather, on lakefront property, RETIRED. You could say we are on a permanent vacation. So I asked my buddies, a vacation from what?

They replied,

#1 The resort in Mexico is famous for their gourmet meals.

But I said,

We now live where the fruit is free

And you don’t have to bother even climbing a tree.

What could be tastier or easier to make

Than grilling a plump juicy Bashas steak?

#2 We always learn something new when we travel abroad.

And I replied,

If you find yourself yearning to learn a new skill

Just visit your clubhouse and you’ll get your fill

Of euchre and softball or playing the zither.

Your calendar will fill and your energy wither.

#3 You meet so many people from other cultures.


There’s none more diverse than the Arizona geezers.

From cranky and crabby to the real people pleasers.

Austin to Pittsburgh, LA to BC

You bask in a personality potpourri.

#4 We enjoy the scuba diving.

Consider this:

You live on Lake Michigan for half of the year

With pontoons and jet skis and fishing gear.

From collecting shells to all water sports

There’s plenty of chances to get sand in your shorts

They then conceded the point

Well I guess you’re right. Our life’s pretty full.

Our trip to Cabo now sounds kind of dull.

We’ll return to Green Valley for our recreation.

Oh, and thanks for ruining our Mexican vacation!

The Blanton Bowling Team

Lee Murray

Four men who worked the day shift at Blanton Steel Co. in Gary, Ind., were looking for a way to blow off steam after putting in their grueling shifts at the steel mill, a hot, backbreaking job where they toiled a difficult 40 to 50 hours a week, sometimes more with overtime.

They decided to join a Wednesday night league at the local bowling alley near where they worked and called their team the Four Stooges, one that more than lived up to its name.

While many bowling teams have winning games as their objective, the Four Stooges cared only about horsing around and making complete fools of themselves. Knocking down pins was an afterthought.

None of the team members were any good at bowling, not that they cared. They just wanted to have fun, mainly at each other’s expense. The Stooges were always playing practical jokes on each other including pulling out chairs, hand buzzers, shock pens, fake insects and snakes in a jar.

As the Stooges drained numerous pitchers of beer, the merriment got louder, the jokes got more off color and the bowling got crummier. One of the tricks the fellas loved to play was to sneak up behind a teammate just as they were ready to throw the ball down the alley and holler out, almost guaranteeing a gutter ball. One time a bowler named Curly got so distracted by a combination of loud noise and untold glasses of beer, he fell face first on the approach leaving a huge knot on his forehead. He was so hammered he could hardly feel the damage to his face. Later that night he had to creatively explain to his wife Shirley how he got the contusion above his right eye.

The other teams in the league hated to bowl against the Four Stooges because it was very difficult to concentrate while these idiots were hooting and hollering, carrying on like drunken frat boys.

The only ones in the bowling alley that actually appreciated the Four Stooges were the waitresses who made more money serving beer to this bunch of yahoos than the other teams in the league combined. The tips were good and the waitresses appreciated the business, no matter how boisterous the bowlers got or how many times they got pranked.

At the beginning of the season, the steel mill owner, Richard Blanton agreed to sponsor the Stooges and provide each team member with oversized bowling shirts that had Blanton Steel stenciled on the back. Had the owner any idea how poorly his employees would represent the mill, he never would have agreed to the sponsorship. At the end of the season, he requested the league standings that showed out of 105 games bowled, Blanton Steel’s team won a grand total of five games, losing 100, leaving the Four Stooges mired deeply into last place.

Furious and humiliated that he’d lent his company’s name to such a horrendous public display, the owner immediately rescinded any future sponsorships and demanded each team member turn in their bowling shirts.

And that was the end of the Blanton Steel Co. bowling team.