Archive for February 13th, 2008

My Favorite McNamee’s

Because my Baby’s Daddy is out gallavanting in the Southern Caribbean somewhere, I stayed home today cause Sumner County Schools were closed. I’m not so much complaining about that. I was going to take Friday off (one of those Mental Health Days they talk about) to make it a four day weekend.

I know one thing is fo sho…that Mr. Smiff best not come back from his journey to the islands saying how tired and worn out he is. I’ve been looking at daily updates from Rhonda Vincent’s website and it doesn’t look so treacherous to me.

So, I’m watching these hearings with Roger Clemens and his pal, Brian McNamee. This is the biggest bunch of ka ka I’ve ever seen. Nuts is what it is. I can’t believe they are spending all this money and time on this. Saying “Roger Clemens and every other baseball player use HGH’s” is something akin to saying water is wet. Sheesh.

They keep saying “McNamee” this and that and it makes me think of my neighbors we had in Brentwood when I was a kid, The McNamee’s.

They are the only McNamee’s I’ve ever heard tell of til now. Talk about some wonderful folks….those McNamee’s were and I’m sure still are, something else. I’d sure love to visit with them.

Mrs. McNamee was a school teacher. She taught at Oak Hill (she may still). She was just a darling little lady that always reminded me of Sally Field. They had four kids…Trish, Mike, one was a year older and one was a year younger than me and a set of twin girls that came along later.

When Mrs. McNamee was pregnant with the twins along about 1973-74 school year, she had a little preschool in her house. Me, Terri Leigh, Kent Thune was in it, and some kid named Bobby. (there were others but I can’t think of their names or faces right off).

Bobby got sent to the “Thinking Chair” cause he was acting up or something. The “Thinking Chair” was in the den, whilst we were in the living room. She had tape laid out in a square and we had to sit on the tape. Bobby, if memory serves, was a regular in the Thinking Chair.

One day, Bobby got sent to the Thinking Chair, yet again and while in the chair, he musta gotten the groove or something cause he started clapping. Mrs. McNamee hollered “Bobby! Are you thinking or are you clapping?”

Why I remember that moment, nearly 35 years later, just as vividly as if it happened last week and why it makes me laugh out loud, is a mystery.

I remember Mrs. McNamee’s School way better than I remember Kindergarten and First Grade and this was before that. I remember Mrs. McNamee sitting in her rocking chair, patting her very pregnant-with-twins belly.

I remember when those babies were born, running into Mr. McNamee and Trish and Mike at the old Brentwood Kroger (the building that CVS is in now but on the other side) and asking them what the babies names were and Trish saying “I forgot” and then asking her dad and announcing “Jenny and Julie.” (Trish was about 5 at the time)

I remember when the McNamee’s Irish Setter, Brandy, had puppies and going down there to see them early one summer morning. That was the first time I’d ever seen puppies just a few hours old.

When Tommy Sands came to visit the Collie’s about 1978, Mrs. McNamee could not believe her favorite teen idol of her youth was going to be at the house two doors down.

I will never forget my dad, upon seeing Peggy, in her rollers and bathing suit top, laying out in a chair with her eyes closed…he sent Tommy¬† down there and he went up behind her and said¬† “Excuse me, ma’m…can I borrow some sugar?” She about had a duck right there on her patio.

I can just see her, Dad and Tommy sitting at her patio table, drinking iced tea, chatting like old friends. I knew I was witnessing something extremely cool and wonderful, even though at that point, I didn’t realize who Tommy Sands was. It was unbeknownst to me at the time that Tommy was a former son in law of Frank Sinatra. I may have known that but didn’t care then.

We were sad when the McNamee’s moved to another neighborhood. Those kids and us were like brothers and sisters. My sister hung out with them a lot, especially. If I were to see them right now, I would have the biggest case of warm fuzzies ever.

The last time I saw them was at a wedding in about 1999, and them, the Derthick’s, and another neighbor kid, Chip Kerr and I shared a table and had the BEST time sharing memories and laughing like crazy. Chip has an even better memory than I have about details from when we were kids.

Hallbrook was a great place to grow up cause of people like the McNamee’s. I’d much rather ponder them than that smarmy, liar, liar, pants-on-fire McNamee.

Blizzard of 2008