Posts filed under ‘a Cow -elle opinion’

July 3rd- NO LIMITS- Chapter 6 – Chris Ritchey

No Limits- The book

Forward: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

Chapter One :https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/feb-3rd-no-limits-chapter-1-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Two:https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/03/03/march-3rd-no-limits-

Chapter Three: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/03/april-3rd-no-limits-chapt-3-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Four: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/05/03/no-limits-chapter-4-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Five: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/06/03/june-3rd-no-limits-chapter-5-chris-ritchey/

If the night before at the Rehearsal Dinner was hot , the day  of the wedding dawned  humid and hotter. I  don’t handle heat and no  sleep at the best of times, and this definitely  wasn’t a good time. For the sake of my  children  and family  I  tried so  hard  to  act cheerful and excited, all the while with  this great lump  of concrete in my gut and a  dread of things to come. I can only  liken this feeling to  having the overwhelming feeling /intuition by  getting on to  a plane and knowing it will crash.  I knew the prognosis for Chris form of cancer Hodgkin’s Lymphoma was excellent, 95 percent cure rate, ” if  you  had to  have cancer this is the one you  would want” a few rounds of chemo  and a couple of treatments of radiation and you  will be fine.

BUT then why  did everything in my  mind scream at me there is a  world of hurt coming  our way ……?

artwork Chris Ritchey

THE WEDDING

I knew that Chris would be putting on a brave face, he had a round of chemo on the Thursday  and it usually  caught up  with  him by  the Saturday, and here he was having to  go  through  a horrendously  busy  morning, afternoon and evening. I knew he would not let on how he was dealing and feeling with  all the poisons  coursing through  his body.  He was so  particular when it came to  Nikki’s wedding  in regard to  his tuxedo, having to  make a special trip  to the tailor to  have it adjusted  the day  before.  Nana and Chris at Nikki’s Wedding

Chris had lost weight with  the cancer and chemo  and his tux was too big, but he didn’t seem to  care, not at all like Chris, but then he had more on his plate to  worry  about.

The wedding at St. Mary’s  Catholic Church  officiated by  Father Daniel Divis , Chris had refused the usual Catholic protocol  to  get married in the church  , and he was allowed to  do  so   probably  due to  the cancer diagnosis and the  Father Divis “relationship” he had with  the Lombardis.

I  sat in that church  , not being very  enamored with  organized religion  as a bit of a hypocrite, but it was  Chris and Angela’s day , it was her faith  and she was very  in touch  with  her faith.   My  husband and mother  and I  sat there  “together but alone”  .

The ceremony  over , and I  couldn’t hear a word, but then Angela always made me feel like I was deaf, so soft spoken was she. I had spent the morning putting together a small  cooler bag  for Chris  and  the wedding party  ( mainly  for Chris)   to  take in the limo. It had  cold water ,  some snacks he could eat after chemo , and some cool cloths  as his body  temps rose after chemo  set in.

Wedding over I  came home  showered and cried until it was time to  put on the “face” again for the reception. No  matter how I  tried I  just  could not get out of this terrible feeling  like some darkness was going to  envelop me.

Oh !  this happy  day  could only  get worse heat wise when the air-conditioning at the Holiday  Inn  failed. However, as bad as that was as I  went to  the gifts table to  put our check in for the Bride and Groom  , not a “wishing well” or a cute little decorated  box but a “casket ” with  flowers on the top courtesy  of Sue Lombardi ‘WHAT WAS THE WOMAN THINKING – WAS THIS APPROPRIATE”  Was I  being overly  sensitive?  although  the comments from my  friends they  too were shocked and my  mother was furious.

” I knew as soon as I  saw that  coffin on the table it would hurt you  Loraine”

 

The  wedding although  apparently  enjoyed by  others left me flat especially  when Father Divis  reacted to  the best man’s speech, I wrote about it afterward , (at the time I  did not mention his name BUT  of course now in that blog post he is mentioned )as I  was shocked , although  this man of God would shock me later after the death  of my  son   to  my  core  !

“This was brought home over the weekend ( and I can take a joke better that a lot of people) . A speech that bordered on not only the insulting ( for me )cultural racism  by a priest  (Daniel O. Divis – Office of the Secretariat)who insulted every English person and non catholic at a function. He spoke of Ulster and Northern Ireland in a way that for those of us who lived through the bombings and were directly effected by the IRA and the terrorism  THEY inflicted upon a population both Irish and English , that was  financed  primarily   from this side of the Atlantic  was akin to making jokes about 911. Would you tolerate jokes about 911?

 

So what makes it OK for a pseudo “Irish” priest of Lorain to make the jokes and insult a group of people because they are “English”? A fellow diner said it is just ignorance of the situation– I beg to differ any Catholic Priest who claims Irish lineage KNEW exactly what he was saying, which to me makes it all the more disgraceful – am I wrong??????

You tell me when is it ok for terrorism to be lauded and applauded and when is it abhorred – is it OK to make derogatory remarks as long as it is based on culture and then only one certain segment of the population’s culture – Is it Ok to do this based on culture and not colour???

Although I did have a “word” with the man- I am sure it fell on deaf ears…… So when is it OK – tell me???? because I find this grey area very confusing ?

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2008/06/08/when-is-it-ok/

AND THIS SPEECH  WAS AT A “wedding” 

We got through  the wedding and reception,. The Mother/ Son dance was one of the toughest things  I  knew I had very  little control left  and as  we danced ( and I  told Chris  ( who  was always my  confidant)   I may  need Nikki and his dad to  help  me through. He understood , he knew me so  well and we were always upfront with  one another. So  when I was becoming “emotionally  incontinent”  halfway through  the dance he signaled to  Nikki  and his dad to  join us on the floor  as a group. ( that did not go  down too well with  the Lombardi  clan)  .

My  husband , mother and I   left at a reasonable time  just after the first guests were leaving. I  told Chris Nana was tired but he knew and he by  this time was physically  showing the effects of a very  long day  and the poisonous chemo. I wanted to  gather my  child  up  and  make him  well , but all this was now out of my  hands , he was a married man now!

The next day  was “come over ( to  the Lombardis) and look at the presents” day , we had company  so  I stayed with  them . The next thing I  remember was Chris coming round the corner with  the casket under his arm with  his Best Man. I  said

what are you  doing here?

He said:

Sue Lombardi  and her mother were anxious to  open up  the “box” to  see how much  money  they  received

and he said

No! he and Angela would do  that later ..  I  don’t want them knowing our business and who  gave what so  I  have brought it here  to  stop  their prying . . Turns out there was no  check from the Lombardis in that casket,

Angela said : ” they  paid for the wedding”

HA! thanks to  their “bar arrangements”  we paid more to  the Holiday Inn for the drinks etc. than they  paid for the wedding, and I  know that how ? The wedding planner lady  was so   frustrated with them and their way  of ordering her about  she  told me and actually  gave me a  discount on the total bar bill. 

And so  the next  weeks  came and went all too quickly.

To  be continued …..

 

 

July 3, 2020 at 12:41 pm 5 comments

June 3rd- No Limits- Chapter 5- Chris Ritchey

No Limits- The book

Forward: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

Chapter One :https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/feb-3rd-no-limits-chapter-1-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Two:https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/03/03/march-3rd-no-limits-

Chapter Three: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/03/april-3rd-no-limits-chapt-3-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Four: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/05/03/no-limits-chapter-4-chris-ritchey/

The wedding plans went on. I  excused myself from most  of them by feigning migraines leaving my  mother, daughter and husband to  do  the duty.

I was stretched thin on patience and discretion and retreat was for the me the better part of valor.  I  know my  limits  and I knew I  could not  deal  with  the Lombardi  women (  at least not quietly).

The kick off  came re the bridesmaid dresses , the drama- because my  daughter (  who  was, in my  opinion, added to  the group because of Chris’ insistence) DARED to  have her dress altered to  better fit. The phone call from the irate Sue Lombardi after they  saw Nikki’s dress hanging at the seamstress ( without their permission) . I  was curious as to  WHY they  apparently  were at that same  seamstress with  their garments  was never explained.

It was then after the ensuing  chastising phone call from Sue,   Chris who  was irate, as he listened, as I  dealt with  his future mother in law , not angry   with  me but with  Angela and Sue and the upset such  a pettiness caused  – I  decided to politely    back  away  from all things concerning the wedding, apart from paying. Truth  be known they  really  didn’t want my  input and obviously  Chris was becoming caught in the middle of the women of his life at the same time as dealing with  cancer.

 

We managed to  get through  the wedding shower all smiles and  faking  for the guests.

There was no  way  I  could go  to  the “hen night”, aptly  named in my opinion, so  the dreaded migraine reappeared although  I  know I didn’t fool Chris , but he understood, he understood me better than anyone.That duty was left to  Nikki  and my  mother .

My  mother , bless her, got a bit inebriated   ( thanks to  Nikki) and since they  were not made the most welcome by  the “clan”, barely  speaking to  them I  am told. My  mother joined people at another table , after a few of the beverages my  daughter ordered for her  became the  hit of the night with  the other tables.

A dear friend, Mark, was eating at the same venue , he took some photos  called me  and said

” Your mum is such  a character, she is entertaining the whole restaurant  by  grabbing a blow up  man from another  hen night group and dancing around the place, cheered on by  the onlookers.

Not bad for a 90  year old woman.

Chris, who  turned up  with  his friends to  drive people home, laughed and said

Mum , Nana is just wonderful

I don’t think  she went down too well with  the Lombardi’s though.

 a smile from Sue would have cracked her face in two

said Chris.

 

The Friday, of the rehearsal dinner on the 6th  dawned so very hot and airless, totally out of keeping for early June. The wedding date  was based on Angela wanting 06.07.08  numerical sequence. The dinner was planned at a facility overlooking Lake Erie in Lakeview Park. I had booked the place before it was even finished being built.

There was (of course)  issues as to  my  choice of  menu, I had decided on heavy, hot and cold  hors d’oeuvres. I  worked with  a local  caterer, who  actually  had been a family  friend, well respected for his establishment and catering abilities. He told me that when the Lombardi  women  came to his establishment to  check out its viability  for the reception, they  left him feeling insulted  by  their attitude . He was quite annoyed, and went above and beyond in  all I  asked from him.

The menu  included  mini  Beef Wellingtons, meatballs, pasta, mini  quiches,   a carvery ( turkey, beef  and ham)  for sandwiches, salads of all kinds, crab claws  and shrimp in ice, underneath an ice vase sculpture topped with  flowers. Beer and wine (  no hard liquor  allowed at that time) . cakes , cookies and deserts, strawberries and fresh  fruit.  The table fared groaned with  food. However, when Angela  was shown the menu, prior to the  dinner ( as a courtesy  I  might add) , she went into  the den with  Chris and sent him out  and he said to  me….

Angela feels this needs to  be adjusted , people will be coming in from out of town ( the event was set of 50) they  will be hungry  and she doesn’t think hors d’oeuvres will be appropriate  , she suggests chicken , red skin  potatoes ,  green beans and cheese and macaroni.

I said:

NO! Chris –  this is my  contribution to your wedding .  I  have put a great deal of thought, along with  Nikki, and Nana  on this  from entertainment  , decor  and giving you  something from me!

I realized Angela had not been at any  of my  “party  planning” previously but I  looked at Chris and said

when have I  ever not had enough  food at anything I  have planned?

I called my  caterer and told him what had been said  and I  asked him to   add something  along the line of chicken wings  and a macaroni dish. He sighed and said  “Typical”

The morning of the rehersal  dinner  I drove to  Lakeview Park  to  check on final arrangement the food, tables ,  decorations etc. I looked out as I got into my car over to the lighthouse where Chris and Angela had become engaged.

Lorain Lighthouse – Lorain 365 ( L. Miller)

Nikki and I had helped Chris plan that July day of engagement, 11 months prior, the “asking Angela to marry me “place”. Christopher saying:

“You helped Jim to make Nikki’s engagement special you have to help me make this special too mum!

And Nikki and I did help- organizing champagne, roses, a table holding silver goblets and a boat trip to the Lorain Lighthouse on a beautiful day. Anticipating celebration Nikki and I, dad and others sat on the patio of the Jacalope restaurant looking out at the lighthouse happy for the young couple on this very special day.

So why, as I sat in the car looking out at the same scene- the same lighthouse shimmering in the heat of the day the afternoon before the wedding, albeit from a different perspective – why did, I feel such panic and the “knowing” this wedding should not take place?

I looked out on a shining blue lake, sunshine kissing the waves and argued with myself:

“What the hell is wrong with you, why aren’t you happy you should be happy –
Yes, Chris has been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s but the prognosis is good, why aren’t you wanting to celebrate?

Angela has stood by him through this diagnosis, she has helped him – she has stuck by him- this has to be such a difficult time for her – (I admired her and was grateful to her for that)

He is getting married, starting a life so what is it with you? Why are you sitting here at Lakeview looking out at the lighthouse and feeling such a dreadful feeling?

I went home in a mood so dark, I couldn’t shake the feeling this wedding should not take place. My husband called my daughter I was in such a foul temper!

“you  had better come talk to  your mother she is having a melt down”

It was as if every fiber of my being was pulling at me NO! this wedding must not happen it will bring pain and sorrow to those I love. What was making me think this way? I  have always trusted my  “gut feelings” and this time I  couldn’t and wouldn’t.

My daughter duly arrived and told me off in such a fashion as to make my own guilt and selfishness of feeling take place of the dreadful fear or premonition I was experiencing – Nikki did not hold back  in her telling me like it was:

This is Chris’ wedding- the happiest day of his life- You have to stop this you have to think of Chris, he will be fine he will come out the other side of this, you can’t let him see you like this.

Of course , I thought she is right, once again I  was being selfish, Chris has to come first and so you have to suck it up.

The rehearsal  dinner for which  I  was responsible was lovely   and everything  went well I  thought. I put on a brave face and tried to  be a good hostess , but that feeling of dread  did not leave – it was there with  every  smile every  word uttered.

Chapter 6 the Wedding…….

 

June 3, 2020 at 11:19 am 1 comment

No LIMITS – Chapter 4- Chris Ritchey

No Limits- The book

Forward: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

Chapter One :https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/feb-3rd-no-limits-chapter-1-chris-ritchey/

Chapter Two:https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/03/03/march-3rd-no-limits-

Chapter  Three: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/03/april-3rd-no-limits-chapt-3-chris-ritchey/

I watched out the window as my son’s car drew up outside and he walked slowly to the house. He no longer had that bounce of youth, he walked like an old man with the weight of the world crashing down on him. He had started out that day on a journey of hope, love and a wedding and returned with a diagnosis of obscenity.

He just reached the living room when Nikki flew in the door, her face full of confusion and pain, mirroring her brothers. Jim, her husband standing there not knowing what to say or do, my husband sitting in the chair in shock. Chris trying to reassure us that it could be wrong

“they said his blood counts were all in the normal range so maybe it wasn’t as bad as we were told- they were going to have to do more tests”.

 

Angela was on her way to the house. I put my faith in the fact she was a going to be a doctor, maybe she could make sense out of what we were being told. Maybe she could find out more than we could.

Angela and Chris went into the den, not to discuss a bright wedding and future but “cancer”. I sat on the couch Nikki and my husband looking to me to sort this out” because that is what I do – I fix things , I have a plan, I see a way through only this time my brain was numb , I was at a loss. Chris came out of the den and sat on the bottom landing of the stairs, Angela beside him. No one said anything, no way forward, no plans just this terrible pall that enveloped us.

Then some small talk which ensued about Chris’ dog, Misty, those that loved Chris trying to erase the obscenity with normalcy. I just couldn’t be “brave” any longer pretending this was just another afternoon sitting there in this surreal world. I knew I would crumble and I had to leave the living room and escape from the “living” room of horror it had become.

I lay on my bed, the silence from below deafening, trying to sort through all the fear, the uncertainty , trying to figure out what I needed to do. Nothing was penetrating except the word CANCER in my brain. Cancer became my world in that moment, it threw up its own walls around me. Then , Chris was there – he put his hand on my shoulder and said

“Mum it will be OK”

I remember saying Oh Chris I am so scared. As soon as I said it I realized I was being selfish. This was not about me , this was about my beautiful son, who just had the worst news in the world and he was , as he had done so many times before, putting his family before himself. I

felt guilty because whatever I was feeling he was the one who would have to fight this obscenity. I must put aside and cover my own terror , to be there no matter what for my son, he needed to be first and foremost , I couldn’t do anything about what treatments were needed and what he would have to go through but I would do whatever was needed to see he got whatever it was he needed to survive. I could be his mother and put my son first. I felt relief, his bride- to- be seemed as if she would be supportive and with her knowledge of the medical options. He had his sister, who would move heaven and earth for him, he would have a support group of love to see him through. I would wait for the results of the tests and once more my brain started to function.

The tests, the diagnosis, doctors’ visits and the treatment began as did the days of hope and horror as the “curable cancer Hodgkin’s Lymphoma invaded my son’s body and our world. Initially the obscenity was treated as “Oh if you have to have cancer this is the one you want” 4 to 6 chemo treatment spot radiation and you will be fine – 95% cure rate. The prognosis was excellent, just a small bump in the road of life.

I walked into the “chemo “ room that first day- March 13th 2008 , I had driven Chris and Angela to South Pointe Hospital ( an hour’s drive from home) to start his treatment after meeting with Dr.Abraksia who was chosen by his bride- to -be , Angela.

The decision made sense at the time, Angela would be doing her residency at South Pointe, and the hospital was in the Cleveland Clinic System. When Chis and Angela married in a couple of months’ time they would be living in the vicinity. I convinced myself this was a good idea. I, at the time, admired this young woman, Angela, she would be supportive and seemed to take the diagnosis in stride, she seemed calm and cool whereas I was being consumed by fear, panic and doubt. Perhaps it was her faith, as well as her medical knowledge, that enabled her to be so cool. I know that was one of things my son admired in her was her “coolness” and quiet voice.

Close up of Intravenous drip

As I crossed the room, where half a dozen “elderly people” were hooked up to IV’s ,I saw my son- poison’s flowing into his body to kill the invader. I wanted to pull the needles from him, gather him up and run away from this place, he shouldn’t be here my mind screamed at me. Instead I sat with him for a little time. The first chemo was going to take all afternoon, I couldn’t bear watching the slow drip of poisons, so I drove the hour home, had Angela call me when they were about an hour from finishing and drove back to pick them up to drive home again. I had to do something I just couldn’t sit by watching destruction being pumped into my son, for chemo destroys the bad and the good.

That night, as I worried about my son, listening for his every move as he tried to sleep in the room across the landing from me. I remembered how many nights I had spent when he was a baby, getting up three or four times just to make sure he was breathing , alert even in sleep to hear the faint whimper or cry of your new born. Yet not daring to disturb him, I had had to be a positive for his sake. Finally sleep came.

Angela , Sue and Tim Lombardi

I did not know Angela’s family well, although Chris and Angela had dated for a few years, both were in college, and living away from home. We, as families, did not have much of an occasion to socialize. However, at the engagement celebration I realized the mother, Sue Lombardi , was not a person that I would embrace and that my son would have a “mother in law” who controlled and was self-promoting . Well his problem I thought, little did I know she would end up my problem.

I awoke in the early morning hours of that first night after chemo, shaking, gasping for breath. I had a dream; it was so real.

I was in a room, in the middle of the room was an open casket in which lay my son and around this casket was Angela, her mother and father and family. I was drenched in sweat and tears, the realization it was a nightmare slowly came to the front of my mind.

I crept, as quietly as I could, into my son’s room to check on him – he was awake.

“You alright mum?”

I said:

yes just wondering if I can get you anything?

Some cold water would be nice, this stuff is warm

a smile and the beginning of a pretense way of dealing- I would check on his “water needs” I would be reassured he was alright and the game of pretending began, both of us knowing “ I was awake – do you need some water/ juice?” was not the real reason for my “checking in”.

The next day , I opened up my terror to my good friend Barb, I broke down when she called to check on how we were, Christopher was her godson I tried the small talk but blurted out

“ Barb I am going to watch my son die”
A very definite Barbara firmly stated:

Pull yourself together, the prognosis is great, don’t be silly, you have to put those thoughts from you for Chris’s sake – he will be fine.

And so I tried, all through those weeks of chemo, to push aside the negative thoughts that would creep into my head; but still the dream came back to haunt of Angela and her family standing around the casket.

E. Munch- 1895

The wedding plans continued and I tried to be normal, but the doubt and dream tore at m. I wear my heart on my sleeve, always have done, I am not good at hiding my emotions and thoughts…..

To be continued

May 3, 2020 at 5:00 pm 2 comments

Morning Journal- Punishing Press-Part 4

Chris Ritchey

 

Part One : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/13/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press/

Part Two : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/14/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press-part-two/

Part Three: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/15/morning-journal-the-punishing-press-part-3/

Part Three cont. https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/16/morning-journal-the-punishing-press-pt-3-cont/

I have spent hours going through  old writings and blogs. Unfortunately, as I  have said a lot of the links are missing and in fact blogs have disappeared from the WWW. I can only go  by  the hard copy  I have. I can only  assure you  the reader  the information is true and I  have those documents in hard copy or in my  files electronically.

Here were go:

Front Page News .. a tale of a super woman, well maybe not 😉

WoM Logo by Scott Baklar

Jon Veard & word of mouth scott bakalar on 22 Nov 2006

SO  SAYETH  THE NAYSAYERS:

““I’m going to extricate myself from downtown Lorain,” Veard said.
[…]
“I don’t have to do business in Lorain, especially if I’m not wanted,” he said. Veard, 65, who has run his United Properties development company in downtown Lorain for the last 44 years, said it will be “easier to do business elsewhere.”
Why?
“Admittedly, council has taken Jon to task a few times, but council has approved projects with him involved, such as the restoration of the Duane Building,” Foltin said.
Veard said he hasn’t faced opposition only from council, but criticism from citizen activists, such as downtown resident Loraine Ritchie. Veard said Ritchie has been a critic of his developments.

NOTE: THE ONLY  CRITICISM I  GAVE was his plans to  build condos in the historic park”

What is she attacking me for?” Veard said. “Let her develop downtown Lorain.”
Ritchie declined to speak to The Morning Journal.
But Veard said he’s tired of the criticism.
“I lost money on the Duane Building. I lost money on the Antlers Building. I haven’t made a dime yet on City Center. … Let them throw darts at someone else.”

The  quote came from the article in the Morning Journal- Kate Giammarise November 2006

HOWEVER A DAY  LATER… Mr. Veard  stated to  Joe Medici of the Chronicle

“Despite having three buildings up for sale downtown, local developer Jon Veard said Tuesday he has no intention of leaving the city…..“My roots are here. All my business and banking relationships are here. It would be a nightmare to move all that,” Veard said. “These people know me and when I ask for something it’s a done deal because they trust me.”
“I’m not selling because I’m mad about the park. Maybe (City Council) did me a favor when they shot it down. Building condos in downtown Lorain is risky business,” Veard said.

Which  publication printed the correct information? Remember media moguls you  are only  as good as your sources ( biased or not)? This knee jerk reaction maybe to  Cole and Co caused  Cole to  jump  once more into  the Editorial mode and chastise me  a “history  bonehead.. sorry  can’t link  to  it  BUT here is my  response :

As I  decided to  BOYCOTT the Morning Journal…. You  can find that WoM post here TUDOR Boycott

Who got it wrong John Cole? I think I know – tch tch tch – how much egg is on the face of your publication on this one? And poor Mr. Veard – he came across in your article as a whiney, sorry, pouting, juvenile, it seems I have more respect for Mr. Veard than his ”friends”. You did him no favor – believe me – in your portrayal of this Lorain Developer. What my international readers (and I have a “barrelful”) must think of this community, I shudder to imagine.
NOTE – Oh! and one more thing, it has been remarked that Mr. Veard is upset that he didn’t get the chance to show City Council his “plans” for our park  ( that other editorial  chastising Lorain City  Council….before they voted No! the first time. Check the minutes, I think you will find that Mayor Craig Foltin ”called for the vote” that night – that is right Mayor Craig Foltin.

And then YOUR “Love letter to Veard” Oh! come on now – hearts and flowers begging him – Don’t go-Please stay – when he apparently had NO intention of leaving. I ask you who is the “blow-hard and crank and short sighted” individual whose “long winded” piece sent the negative message of Lorain’s developer diva -great publicity for Lorain? Shoe fits – wear it JC!

But all is not lost – Cole and Company you can – by a change in editorial policy, adhering to unbiased news reporting and an apology to all who ”dare to suffer the editorial wrath” by stepping up to the plate and to those “long winded politicians” who do the best they can to represent THEIR constituents on City Council stop this ”Old-Boy Cott” Up to YOU!!!!!!!!

2007  was the Lorain Bicentennial  we had a city  wide celebration focused in on the little park. Now don’t go  looking for coverage- John Cole  denied any  coverage , that is until  so  many  organizations involved  took issue there was a small blurb in the Saturday section.

Link to  a number of photos of the event :

https://www.flickr.com/photos/12219598@N06/with/1249174028/

However, the opening ceremonies were taped and one participant  berated the Morning Journal  for their stance and lack of coverage for the event. Problem was it was ME who  was spearheading the whole shebang.. Oh  well happened without him or the Morning Journal….

.

Tom Skoch

John Cole retired in February  2008 and a new editor Tom Skoch took over the editorial seat. Mr. Skoch reached out to  me and we came to  a friendly  truce. He was really  kind and instrumental in getting Charleston Village  projects publicity  etc. for the Admiral King Tribute Space, Eric Barnes Heroes Walk and Settlers’ Watch . He may  not have been overly  fond of yours truly  but  he could see past the tree to  the forest.

Although  I  have been known to  come out fingers flying  when I felt the Morning Journal and others   and its staff needed a different perspective : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/media-as-the-word-turns-or-rolls-lorain/

 

You see at the same time all this bruhaha was going on  with  me  the news media were all over Councilman Dan Given and others with  the Community  Reinvestment Areas. This too had its birthing in politics and the blame game ensued.

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/03/15/sigh-cra-p-p-stands-for-politics/

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/11/10/here-it-comes-crappppp/

Before I get pilloried once more let me tell you  I  was involved in the CRA situation before any  of the media.I  did my  homework and I  have files two  inches thick, Courts, the players and their agendas, articles  comments  and documentation up  the ying yang.   Anyone wants to  see them -only  too  willing… Oh  and the politics  are mind boggling.

However Dan Given became the scapegoat  even though  the Plain dealer article OCTOBER 2007  used  in the court case had 11 inaccuracies  (  I wrote to  the Editor pointing out the journalists biased leanings  – no  reply) 

 NOTE: Article is no  longer on line but I  have the hard copy. There was a  friendly  relationship  between  the county’s attorney  and the journalist….. I  have the article

Later on I  took Tom and the MJ to  task  over an article in 2009I  had just 6 days earlier lost my  son to  cancer – but it was still important to  me that truth  and the whole truth  should be explored.

Dan Given was also pilloried in the article of December 10th 2009 but the readership of the Morning Journal has been denied the “rest of the story ” and denied so far as they  would not print Mr. Given’s rebuttal  leading their readership and those of the community in a direction that is less than accurate.  I  published his letter to  the MJ because they  wouldn’t- I  would suggest a read of that letter found in the link  below: 

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/13/two-sides-one-published-one-denied/

When you  go  to  the comments of that post  you  will find Mr. Skoch  had his say .. but since the claim by  the editors stated they  had reached out to  Mr. Given originally they  apparently  missed the part in all the bru haha that the Law Director had told Council members ( because of litigation they  couldn’t comment ) although  at least two  did …

Does ANY of this matter NOW? You  tell me as  recently  as March  12th  2020 Dan Given was accused of public corruption in a letter chastising    now Mayor Bradley  from the Lorain FOP for  supporting a political candidate they  have issues with. Click on jpg for a clearer picture.

Although  letters  and legal stating  no  wrongdoing 15 YEARS LATER DAN GIVEN IS STILL BEING ACCUSED. 10 YEARS  cleared of any  wrongdoing AND YET STILL IN 2020  THE FOP  ACCUSATION OF public corruption..

MAYBE THEY MISSED THE ARTICLE FROM 10 YEARS AGO!!!!!

GIVEN CLEARED – CHRONICLE – BRAD DICKEN  DECEMBER 10TH  2010

Given Cleared 2010

 

WHY ? If anyone had really  done ALL the homework and evidence complied and not just dwelled on the surface of the CRA situation  the story  would be  different, believe me I  looked at that CRA situation until I  was sick of it and the ones that should be held responsible  weren’t.

AND NOW!!! We have Mary  Springowski feeling the wrath  of imho  of a up-jumped egotistical  32 year old reporter  Kevin Martin / Morning Journal  trying the name and shame game  because Mary , in order to  reach out and provide information  to  her constituents with  information and participation. by  pasting  an article  on her facebook page ! Horrors she apparently  single handedly  has brought down the print media local by  publishing the article

Facebook post by  Mary :

THE REST OF THE STORY!!!!

( Mary) “What is happening with this money? Who should benefit from this? Who CAN benefit from this? There must be some regulations. If this is CDBG then it is geared towards low to moderate income areas. What are your thoughts? Remember, if you want them to be part of the permanent record, post your comments and thoughts on the city’s official Facebook page! https://www.facebook.com/CityofLorainOH/

( Morning Journal)Lorain, Elyria to get stimulus money in coronavirus response By Richard Payerchin rpayerchin@morningjournal.com @MJ_JournalRick on Twitter Apr 1, 2020

The cities of Lorain and Elyria will receive money from the first allocations in the federal government’s economic stimulus bill due to the novel coronavirus.

The city of Lorain will receive $725,720, while Elyria will receive $439,110 in Community Development Block Grant money, according to an announcement from Sen. Sherrod Brown.……..

Innocent enough  one would have thought HOWEVER Mr. Martin thought otherwise  and  through  Twitter started on April 9th  to chastise Mary  for an  article written NOT by  Mr Martin but by  Rick Payerchin……..although  Martin  states he is speaking for himself ( that didn’t last long ) Click on the jpg for a clearer picture

 

 

Has Mr. Payerchin , the journalist  and writer  of the piece,  contacted Mary  with  his displeasure? NO!  according to  Mary.  Has Daryl Tucker the Editor  contacted Mary?  No! apparently  not BUT 13 days after Mary  posted the article on face book Kevin Martin  of Muck Rack  fame  and membership https://muckrack.com/ complained to  the Facebook Police for copy  right infringement –

APRIL 13th

If you believe that this content should not have been removed from Facebook, you can contact the complaining party directly to resolve your issue:

Report #: 253706562467430
Rights Owner: MediaNews Group Inc.
Email: kmartin@morningjournal.com
Copyrighted Work: Other 

NOTE Martin does not use a personal email account in filing his complaint  but that of the Morning Journal .

This should never have  gone this far…. I  wouldn’t have had to spend five days  writing and reliving the punishing press… and maybe  “raking the muck” because I  was angry at the “punishment not fitting the crime”

All it would’ve taken was a phone call to  Mary  to  take down the post, explain why  there was a concern but No  the crusading journalist  jumped on his high  horse and banner of punishing the politician of the people……

WHY? what is his agenda …. when obviously  the writer  of the offending piece and the Editor didn’t complain…..  but because of Mr. Martin  -Mrs. Springowski  will no longer share , be interviewed  or subscribe to  the Morning Journal, and Mary  is always newsworthy  so  who  suffers by  this petulant posturing? NOT Mary ..  maybe Martin should be taught the old adage :

“Cutting off the nose to spite the face” is an expression to describe a needlessly self-destructive over-reaction to a problem: “Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face” is a warning against acting out of pique, or against pursuing revenge in a way that would damage oneself more than the object of one’s anger

 

THE END then again maybe NOT!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 17, 2020 at 12:22 pm Leave a comment

Morning Journal – The Punishing Press- Pt.3 cont.

Part One : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/13/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press/

Part Two : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/14/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press-part-two/

Part Three: https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/15/morning-journal-the-punishing-press-part-3/

 

Regugitating( in more ways than one) this week has woken up  this poor old brain.  I started out wanting to  show that this particular  local paper the Morning Journal had indeed used tactics in the past in order to retaliate and by  all accounts a journalist working for them today ( Kevin Martin)  had  seemingly no  compunction about going to  the “over the top” reaction when    reporting   one of Lorain’s “popular with the people”  councilwoman. Mary  Springowski.  You  see, my  belief, knowing  Mary –  had  Martin or his boss Tucker  contacted Mary  personally and requested  she take down their article from facebook  and refrain from sharing in depth  again – Mrs. Springowki  would have acquiesced.

That “would have been the smart move” in my  opinion but that is not what happened . Instead a ” I was reminded of the quote in Maxwell Anderson’s play  ” Mary  of Scotland”

 

 

“We must look to  it….. has a woman’s  face( and principles 😉 stirred such  a confluence of air and waters to  beat against the bastions….”

 

Other thoughts have also  been running amok as I go cross- eyed reading the files, news article and editorials and I am thinking my  hindsight is telling me  there was more going on in that period from 2004- 2007.

Whilst I and others,  were in middle of the waters swirling around us  and we were fighting for our very  homes , way  of life and yes opinions  we were  fighting on more than one front. I can’t believe all these “plans were not part of a bigger picture” but I  suppose now I  will never know for sure

Shawnee( John Cole, Foltin and secrecy- selling off of lakefront land to   the tribe.. being lambasted…. as greedy  gobblers saw visions of casino  chips dancing in their eyes. Why  did it take  a small group to  point out the folly  of  having a reservation on the lakefront and the problems that would occur. Did Foltin , Cole Prudoff etc really  believe that was going to  happen as they  spent our money? Thousands upon thousands for what ????? ( as seat at the table with  the big boys?? https://clevelandmagazine.com/in-the-cle/the-read/articles/cashing-in . We , and me mainly , certainly  incurred the wrath when speaking out, but you  see this was going to be “here” in our neighborhood, all the plans swirling around and the bandwagons rolling … COLE and Foltin were NOT happy  with  me !!!!

Blight –  Before we in this Lorain’s oldest  neighborhood  could even get a handle on the Shawnee  during those same weeks and months another plan quietly  slipped into  place .

The Administration paying yet MORE thousands upon thousands  to  go  through  the process of blighting the whole neighborhood on the lakefront  where a casino entranceway, bus parking you  name it would go  .( for private development) .. can you  say  land banking??? And once again we were thrust into  those swirling waters and coming up against  media, politics. We were being stretched very  thin. Land banking  was what it looked like to  me BUT FOR WHAT PURPOSE

From my  testimony  re Blight  maybe ( in hindsight) I  wasn’t too far from the mark.…”Eminent Lorain V

“Interestingly enough the land banking- that I believe is going on – happens to correspond to the entranceways to that same lake front property. Our City officials in planning, administration and that same newspaper editor making the decision the sell the 200 year old green space that was the birthplace of this community without informing the public or even our representatives on City Council. City council and myself were politely told to keep our place until the decision and plans were made for that park

Veterans Park ..AND THEN  at the other end of the neighborhood  “planned  Blight of a historic little park .. Oh the wheeling and dealing pitting “history  boneheads ” ( Coles words not mine ) against  developers, and the administration – Foltin , Cole and Prudoff .. The proposed senior citizens condos in the Park.. we had to  take on the Veterans who  at one point had received hundreds of thousands for improvement for that park..”WHO TURNED NEARLY $500,000 DOLLARS INTO A BOONDOGGLE, BAD NEWS AND DEAD PARK?https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/08/01/veterans-memorial-park-thanks-for-the-memories/

Oh! we were taking a beating by  Cole and Co. Letters sent to  Veterans groups and meeting berating the history  boneheads, ridicule and downright untruths and nastiness followed us who  tried to  save  a tangible and imho  important part of Lorain’s history  from the earliest times..

http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2006/02/22/opinion/16173705.txt
Lorain’s City Council shouldn’t be so quick to reject downtown condos (John Cole)

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2006
But how can city leaders trumpet the need to save the park, when they have stood by and let it become such a vandalized dump? Lorain’s veterans barely use it anymore because it’s so seedy and because all the ceremonial action in Lorain these days is at Black River Landing.

You  see  the plans ( although NOT shared with  anyone in City  Council or even employees of Community  Development   came to  light  over a lunch… and I made some phone calls

You  can read the entire situation here  

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/08/02/veterans-memorial-park-fini/

and  an except of a letter sent to  the city administration and in particular  Prudoff….  and there they  are  again

Cole,

Foltin

Prudoff

( if I  was a betting person I  would say  there was  some sort of collusion)  BUT that would only  be my  cynical  “OPINION” ( lawyers take NOTE!!!) 

 

….[Veard}  mention to two representatives of Charleston Village Executive Board on Jan 6th his “plan” as we were eating lunch in a very public place. There was no mention of the need for discretion, if anything the impression given was one of the plans for the park being a “done deal” and that all obstacles such as the Gilmore family restriction was and I quote “not a problem, I have been assured that isn’t an issue any more”.
I believe he was truly shocked when his plan did not meet with favor in our eyes. According to Mr. Veard, “you are the first ones that don’t like it” we were then informed, during that conversation, that other public officials, and non profits had been made aware of the plan to put condos in the “Veterans Park”, such as some members of the Lorain Port Authority, “ the veterans are on board”, the city, including Mayor Foltin and yourself (Sandy Prudoff), as well as the editor of the Morning Journal, John Cole.

At the same time Compass House was setting up  as an independent housing and bringing in 10 Registered Sex Offenders a night  .. and kicking them out into  the neighborhoods a so  many  days  –  worrying since the city  no  longer had a jail and the funding for the Shawnee bond was apparently  rolled over into  that bond which  went on ”

Jail–  Lorain City  Councilwoman Anne Molnar ( deceased) started to  look into the funding and where the money  had gone earmarked for a new Jail . Anne wrote to  Wom and we put up  the minutes of the meeting for her . Anne bless her “fighting for Lorain” heart  wrote to  WoM  at the time

Dear Loraine,
Thank you for posting the minutes of the police and fire committee meeting on WOM. You can sure work miracles on the computer, did a great job posting it on WOM. I believe when most people read them, they can easily see how the Mayor has twisted his words and lied .
There is a lot more to be told, that I found out later regarding the jail, and it is all to late now. Money wasted and spend, many lies told, and not all from the Mayor.[Foltin}  Anne

NOTE:  The minutes of that meeting and the unbelievable amount of money and spin here   Minutes of Feb 2003 No Jail

It seems you  couldn’t pick up  a paper without my  name being “used” . I  did seem to  be on some vicious treadmill…..me against the media and city  government.

Why? Yes I  was involved but a free press believes in free speech , at least I  always  thought so . Initially  I  was confused by  Coles’ comment in his editorials (problem is I  can no  longer link  to  them)  and then I  got angry.  I  started answering back.

 

The Shawnee  excitement came down to  earth  with  a bang when finally  City  Council  etc after receiving much  detailed information decided not to  renew the option for the land at Black  River .  I testified at length before members of city  council  and with  a plethora of documentation for the record. ( Was not well received by  the Foltin Administration)

Phot by Dan Brady

It was the selling of the little park that really  upset Cole and the Morning Journal – you  see  we along with  our sister organization of (Charleston Village Society) Black  River Historical Society  and Anne Molnar  and various residents  fought for that park to  remain a park.  We were gathering our arguments together when Frank  Sipkovsky, President of the then Black  River Historical Society  walked over to  City  Hall and put in each  councilpersons mail box a letter  detailing their concerns as to  what was going on with the park.   Councilman Dan Given  called for a vote  then and there  that evening to  settle this situation : and King Cole really  went off on them….

March 3rd, 2006:  Editorial by  John Cole in response to  Lorain City Council’s unanimous vote NOT to  sell the historic little Park…..

“You can’t make us believe that some council members didn’t cook up Monday’s vote in an illegal backroom meeting. That kind of government stinks as bad as those flooded basements. The state attorney general’s office should give these guys a wake-up call. Their vote could be invalid.

Every one of these zeros is up for re-election next year. Remember how they embarrassed you and your city with their rude and juvenile no-show act………
 ………

Lorain has too many short-sighted, long-winded politicians, cranks and blowhards and not enough people who can look past all that and push forward with positive accomplishments that can make Lorain strong and attractive again.”

 

To be continued …

April 16, 2020 at 12:56 pm 1 comment

Morning Journal- The Punishing Press- Part 3

Part One : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/13/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press/

Part Two : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/14/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press-part-two/

 

ED NOTE As I  revisit the situations in the early  part of this century  I  am amazed at the amount of time, energy  and money  wasted. The 2004- through  2007  wheeling and dealing. Most of it centered around this old neighborhood, which  of course is why  I  became involved and why  I  came up  against the press and politics. Naïve is the word I would describe myself.  Reading the harsh  words today  as I  went through  articles  and posts  of an Editor and a Mayor of that time.

I couldn’t help  but think  today

  “ I  was not a politician, I  did not hold a job of work with  the city  or county  or with  anyone else.”

 

I  suppose I  was visible in the public eye due to  all the volunteer situations and events from producing Lorain Community  Music Theatre productions of Brigadoon and King and I , saving the Palace – Palace Players, one of the founders of Charleston Village Society  and a great many  other hats all of which  did not bring me in a penny and cost me personally. Looking back  and with  hindsight I  should have walked away  years ago.

However, I  was pilloried in the press and  by local government administration  as a “VOLUNTEER”- if this can happen to  me it can happen and probably  did  to others.  This is the reason I believe  this  regurgitating of “old news” is warranted.

Winston Churchill said,

“The further back you can look, the farther forward you can see…”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apart from selling us ( Lorain’s oldest neighborhood) down the river – or on it  by  Foltin , Cole and the Shawnee , the gathering storm  of the Foltin Follies hit  Lorain Portside  with   not one but two  blight studies and to  hell with  this old neighborhood and its people .

( Planned Blight ) was also  on the agenda for the dismantling of the oldest greenspace in the county – now known as Veterans Park. Once again Cole , Foltin and Prudoff gathered together in the tower of power to  make this happen for the developer Jon Veard.  The paper calling that little slice of Lorain’s tangible history  a “piss park”

 

Unfortunately  I  cannot link directly  to  those editorials they  have disappeared , as has most of the Wom Blog articles at the time . I did however, manage to  save  some although  the links embedded originally are “broken” through  accident or design. A lot of revisionist history  happens in Lorain.

Let us start with Blight. As a founding member and co  chair of Charleston Village Society  ( 1986 to  present and a 501C3. )

http://www.loraincounty.com/charlestonlorai/feature.shtml?f=375llage

I received phone calls from the neighbors over on the Portside section of our neighborhood

A Mr. Gould would be coming into  their homes to  start a blight study.”

This was also  around  the time Eminent Domain for  private  development was  being used  see Kelo case https://ij.org/issues/private-property/eminent-domain/

We (CVSI)  did some research  and informed the neighbors NOT to  let Mr. Gould onto  or into  their property  and homes.  We fought with  what little resources we had and travelled to  Washington D.C to  meet with  the Institute of Justice , became  “friends of court for the Norwood Case” .

The Norwood, Ohio Eminent Domain Trial

 

With  the help of the Institute of Justice  – Gould and Associates could not meet the required percentage  to  “blight the neighborhood”- the first step  in eminent domain .

On April 10th 2006 I  testified before the State Task Force on Eminent Domain ( Ex  Lorain Mayor Joseph Kozuira was a member of that Task Force.  part of the testimony was as follows:

We believe the citizens and taxpayers are the last to know. In the Portside case it is the taxpayer that is paying the $125,000 for the study- $50,000 from our Utilities Dept -$25,000 from the Lorain Port Authority and $50,000 from the city- ALL dependent upon the tax payer and yet we were not informed of the ordinance or the fact that our money would be used. Every time a toilet is flushed in Portside they are paying for their homes to be under the tool of eminent domain. This evening (April 10th) they are asking the City to remove them from the study.

The designation of Blight in Lorain gives the following options to the city: the tool of Eminent Domain, TIF funding, and zoning changes and readies the area “in case a casino” or another concept comes across the board. Blight designation HAS worked well in Lorain with Harbor Walk but that development was different in the fact that the city and the developer (who owned the property) took a disused shipyard and turned it into housing and a marina. It is a wonderful asset. The difference being that there was financing in place, architectural drawings and “real plan” not concepts or visions. The community was aware of the project, it was no secret.

The city of Lorain has contributed to the housing infrastructure problems; the city of Lorain has NOT enforced building codes,

brokehomes

therefore contributing to the deterioration of our homes and infrastructure and NOW say-“oh the area should blighted!!”

ED NOTE:You  can access the whole testimony  here Eminent Lorain V

Are you  adding up  these costs to  the taxpayer for the Shawnee, the Blight ? can you  see why  I  was an irritant in the underwear of Foltin and Cole.  Who  the hell was I  to  point out the “waste” and meddle in their plans?

And then came the Park TAKE OVER-  Lorain’s Oldest continuing green space from which  the City  of Lorain was platted and born :

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/05/08/the-history-park-1812-201-hundred-years-a-recorded-city-park-veterans-park-lorain-ohio/

“In the closing months of 2005 the Foltin Administration along with Community Development Director Sandy Prudoff, Jon Veard and Morning Journal editor – John Cole, in their infinite wisdom, decided the historic park should be condos. Foltin and Co started the wheels in motion to make this little park unworthy of its heritage .
Mayor Foltin quietly stopped work and maintenance on the park so that after a period of months the park and its infrastructure started to rapidly deteriorate. The fountain no longer was turned on, said to have major problems ( which turned out later to be a false statement)- graffiti wasn’t removed – only the grass was cut – the vagrants were allowed to use it as John Cole’s editorial stated as a “piss park”. In truth Craig Miller the Safety Service Director told me the park would be “blighted”. Events happened when Jon Veard let the plans out of the bag prematurely and I, along with others, started fighting to stop this fiasco of finance.

And John Cole really  had a field day  with  me and his editorials :  However, I  do  have to  thank  him because it was “HE”  who  gave me the moniker “that woman” hence the name of this blog ….. Of course I  was also  named a crank, blowhard and history bonehead…..Nice

To  be continued………

 

 

April 15, 2020 at 12:18 pm 1 comment

Morning Journal Lorain, The Punishing Press- Part two

Part One : https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/04/13/morning-journal-lorain-the-punishing-press/

This series stems from the fact a reporter from the Morning Journal, Lorain Ohio  in my  opinion got his knickers in a twist because  Council Woman at Large Mary  Springowski  shared a full article on facebook ( but  with  the who  what and where it was published) . Happens all the time but Kevin Martin took issue .. went to  twitter etc  ( operative word here TWIT) and one thing led to  another. We will get back  to  Kevin Martin at the end of this series. He has not been alone in the pseudo  bullying behavior over the years by the Morning Journal  publication from the publishers to  the editors.

However, I  bet a lot of people from Lorain have no  idea just what the meddling in Lorain has cost in dollars and cents.

 

ED NOTE : after the expenses were heading upwards of $100,000 dollars the monies were rolled over into a bond (see below) but before that happened I had started to make public records requests and here is the spread sheet from the City of Lorain Auditor at the time for the initial expenses incurred:

Casino Expenses

Hang on the ride continues. Since John Cole, former Editor,  is now deceased he can not rebut my  post but he had that opportunity  more than once when he was alive and  certainly took advantage of his position to  make my  life “interesting” . I will at the end of this series of course give the Morning Journal their unedited say on this blog!

2004

John Cole , Editor of the Morning Journal and then Mayor Craig Foltin put on a great dog and pony  show, dangling the casino  carrot to  the desperate population of Lorain. It was touted as a cure all for all our economic troubles. My  standing up  to  Cole re the Shawnee fiasco  didn’t do  me any favors and I was in danger along with  Anne Molnar  ( Lorain City  Councilwoman. now deceased , the only  city  council person who  took issue with  the Shawnee ) of being “squashed “.

The following is from the article Condos for Cole which  we will explore tomorrow!! Unfortunately  the links imbedded in these articles  have disappeared as has the original WoM Blog .

 

“It seems this town has a lot to thank Mr. Cole for in recent months. August 1st 2004 the editorial which pointed Lorain in the direction of the Eastern Shawnee. Starting off a firestorm of wheeling, dealing, controversy and spending of taxpayer’s money. The fact that National Capital One (in whose direction we were pointed) and Terry Casey, spokesperson for National Capital One who had a less than a sterling reputation was never mentioned in the editorial.

In fact although Dayton, Cleveland newspapers carried the story of Casey’s “faux paux” I could never find mention of that fact in any of Cole’s Editorials. The fact that National Capital One has pleaded guilty to securities fraud has not had any mention in any editorial I have seen since. And oh yes! the very person to whom Cole’s ability to “squash” was touted was that same Terry Casey in the infamous e-mail from Mayor Foltin: Also  Terry  Casey:

http://www.casinocitytimes.com/news/article/ohio-group-responds-to-tribal-casino-plans-148588

Plain Dealer 2005:

Repeatedly, Casey stressed that the Lorain plans had to remain secret. Foltin agreed but urged Casey to consider adding one person to the inner circle: John Cole, longtime editor of the local newspaper  [Morning Journal]

ED NOTE: This article is no  longer on line BUT you  can access it here as I  saved it : This article was in the Plain Dealer

Lorain mayor’s gamble paid off with casino deal

Talks with tribe kept secret from city officials, voters

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Molly Kavanaugh and Tom Breckenridge

Foltin Cole and Casino

 

Re: John Cole, longtime editor of the local newspaper. “I feel he should be briefed early (even in the next week or two) with the understanding that we are in very early stages and he will be the first to know if anything happens and when it becomes public,” Foltin wrote Oct. 11 in an e-mail to Casey. “He can personally squash any nay-saying and ensure broad community support.” – Plain Dealer  3/5/05

Now in 2007  I  archived after another series of Cole’s decision making for Lorain for my  records.   The  Shawnee fiasco  the hundred  thousand of dollars wasted   and my  take on Mr. Cole . Needless to  say  he wasn’t happy  with  me . And the  citizens of Lorain shouldn’t have been happy  with  him, we were led down a very  expensive garden path and I  for one didn’t not like being threatened with  being “squashed ” by  him….

https://thbarchive.wordpress.com/2009/07/31/october-15th-2007-cole-and-foltin/

COLE-fuc-*-us say :
Apologies to Confucius

Since they don’t put the comics on line TP ( or That Paper) I always get a bit of laugh reading Mr. Cole’s take on life and so since we know that on August 1st 2004 Johnny Boy’s editorial sent Foltin charging off to the Shawnee and Terry Casey – his latest writings -especially this paragraph caused the bile to move up and out of the stomach and nearly choke THAT Woman!

The second throw of the dice for Lorain was Craig Foltin’s pillow talk with the Eastern Shawnee Indians. Predicated on dubious legal claims and if-you-say-so financial, planning and managerial expertise, the treaty was signed, the chief and the mayor blew a lot of smoke in the air and, before you knew it, Lorainites woke up one morning blood brothers to Tecumseh. It was a lot of fun if nothing else. John Cole 

OH Johnny Boy! here I go again “nay saying” waiting to incur the wrath of the mighty King Cole! NO FUN for the tax payer -over $100,000 wasted by my calculations thanks to you supplying the bed for the pillow talk. And after a great deal of reasoning why we should jump in bed with your “slot sluts” you end up saying:

It’s time again for Lorain to jump into the casino game.

For your FUN peoples lives were disrupted and bunch of lemmings got on the casino tour bus 

following General Foltin to the Battle of the Little Big Bucks – A town divided , people in other parts of Ohio having their property compromised. I could go on – YOU SIR ! HAVE A PECULIAR IDEA OF FUN?

It seems a lot of the FEES were apparently rolled over into “a Bond” What Bond would that be I wonder? Could it be the Bond for the Jail?

The legal bill from Anthony Calabrese and the law firm of Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease was rolled into a bond sale .

ED NOTE Anthony  Calabrese  was jailed for his part in another scheme according to  the FBI press release:

Anthony O. Calabrese, III was sentenced to nine years in prison and ordered to pay more than $200,000 for his role in a series of bribery schemes involving Jimmy Dimora, Frank Russo, J. Kevin Kelley, and others uncovered as part of the Cuyahoga County corruption investigation, federal law enforcement officials said.

Remember the “Jail that never was Bond“ Johnny Boy ? The Plain Dealer had an editorial on that subject .

Lorain, the largest city in Lorain County, has no jail. Its police send their criminal suspects to the county’s lockup. Some critics say the city of 68,000 people lacks a jail because Mayor Craig Foltin and Safety Director Craig Miller diverted available money that could have been used to replace the antiquated facility that was closed last year.

They say it was spent on City Hall improvements, downtown lighting, landscaping and the like.
So Johnny Boy the next time you decided to get us in bed together for some pillow talk – cause you good Ole Boys “just wanna have fun” – YOU FOOT THE BILL!!!

ED NOTE: This article among others as I  had felt the ire of the editor in his editorials  and on his  front page did nothing to  calm the savage breast… but no-one was going to  threaten and squash  me not whilst I  could write!!!!!

Continued  Part three 2005-2007

April 14, 2020 at 11:24 am 8 comments

April 3rd- NO LIMITS -Chapt 3- Chris Ritchey

No Limits- The book 

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/feb-3rd-no-limits-chapter-1-chris-ritchey/

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/03/03/march-3rd-no-limits-chapt-3-chris-ritchey/

After the engagement announcement and the resulting kerfuffle with  the in laws to  be, I decided I would only  do  what I  was asked , no  suggestions or real involvement with  this wedding. I  could tell it would be walking on egg shells time.

A few days after the ring fiasco  Chris called and said Angela wanted us to  go  to  Beechwood where she had made an appointment to try  on wedding gowns.  It was rather short notice but Nikki  and I,  for the sake of fence mending, agreed to  share in  what should have been a delightful afternoon. In fact it was  except the mother of the bride was not there, aunts and grandmother etc but no  Sue Lombardi.  Angela duly  tried on various gowns and she did look lovely. I suggested that I would purchase the  wedding veil  of her choice.

 

Since I  had to  get back to  a meeting – already planned- Nikki  and I  left. I found out later Sue eventually showed up  as she didn’t want to  take the time off work. Chris called and said Sue was  very upset and

“What would I  have done- would I  have taken the time off? “ 

” Chris you  aren’t pulling me into  that  situation”.. and I  kept quiet. 

 

Chris had  still not recovered his usual good humour , although  he was speaking to  his sister once again. I couldn’t figure out what we had done wrong now. Finally , Nikki told me : Apparently  Chris was beside himself  worrying as to  how he was going to  pay  for the wedding items that Sue and Angela had said  were his obligation. The rehearsal dinner, cars, flowers , liquor for the reception, gifts, photographer, honeymoon  etc. He had spent his savings on that ring and had just been offered a position with Wyse Advertising. Since  his family  had paid for all his college – 5 years at Cleveland Institute of Art he did not have any  student loans and he was trying to  get a loan for this wedding.

I thought to  myself some of those  of those expenses should have been covered by  the Lombardi  family and they  should have realized what a wedding list of over 200 would cost this young man.  but as I  said

I  was going to  keep  my  mouth  shut .

Chris came home from work and I asked him what exactly  was worrying him  and he told me. I told him his father and I  would pay  for all he needed to  pay  for and not to  worry. He balked at the idea  and I  said:

OK let us pay  for it , rather than you  taking out a loan  and you  can pay  it  back to  us over time.

It was decided and life pretty  much  went on, people being young and planning. Although   it wasn’t  all plain sailing as  the bridesmaids and groomsmen were picked and Nikki , Chris’s sister was left out of the plans.  Chris asked her why  she wasn’t going to  look at the bridesmaids dresses  and she informed him

” I  wasn’t asked , I  don’t believe I  am part of the wedding party” ( although  her husband was)

Chris immediately  got on the phone to  Angela

“Nikki  is one of the wedding party  right? ( the reply  of yes if she wants to  be) rather a backhanded invitation ….

Looking back these things faded into  the realm of  really  didn’t matter they  were inconsequential  in the grand scheme of life. Summer passed , autumn and Christmas and then in February  a trip  to  the Doctors for Chris, whom we thought  was not getting over bronchitus and swollen glands .

Our world was suddenly  turned  upside down inside out and  the silent screaming started : I wrote about the phone call   10  days  later:

All it takes is a phone call to  start you screaming

Hello!
It was a phone call that sent an icy cold that permeated through my very core and has not left me yet, my brain not wanting to “compute” what my ears were hearing, mouth dry, eyes welling with tears , the incredulousness, the denial , the confusion, the sheer terror that runs through your frame, your mind screaming, a few seconds that changes your life forever- nothing will ever be the same.

A phone call that leaves you weeping with fear, that terror, whose tentacles reach through your very being, tearing at your insides, ripping to shreds happiness and laughter. One of the people you love more than life itself, one that you gave birth to, cuddled, bathed, fed and protected is on Route 2 and has answered another (cell) phone to be told that test results (for possible bronchitis) have come back with a life threatening disease.

face of a cancer cell

Someone please wake me from this nightmare……..what am I supposed to do, what do I say, how can I do anything- someone , anyone why????????????????
The look on your husband’s face as he tries to understand the picture of what is happening with this conversation………

The dread disease that sends a mother into the world of deal making ,

No please – not my child , let it be me, take me ,God how can I bear this?
How can I be brave and make it better when my heart is exploding with pain, every part of me screaming from the gauntlet of emotions that are coursing through my very essence?

You are removed from the world around you –

Nothing matters, not the politics, not the crime, not the state of the roads, not the weddings, the weather, blogs, the pettiness, media , CRA’s, pontificators, principles , presidents, arguments ….. .nothing…. your world has shrunk, your planet consists of no more than 8 people and the all consuming fire of fear that your child is going to be in a world of hurt and you are helpless.


You want to curl up in a dark place – trying not to feel, to escape but the pain and confusion drags you back to the surface of desperation, despair and the reality that is now your world.

Eventually the body decides, through sheer exhaustion, to sleep but the nightmare doesn’t stop, you wake, a pillow wet with tears, a coldness that remains in your very core reminding you there is no escape- you truly do

“wake from sleep exhausted”(Susette Kelo)

Family , friends try to be encouraging and for that you are grateful but in a mother’s heart there is really nothing that they can do or say , you want to wake up from the nightmare, make it go away.

Make it stop

You look for anything that will give you hope -that there is a mistake but somehow inside you know the truth – it will not go away – it is going to have to be dealt with.

No matter how old your child becomes they will always be your child. You see not the young man or daughter – you see the chubby 2 year old with soft plump arms, the eyes that never change

only mummy can’t- no soft butterfly kisses or a cookie is going to fix this – there is no magic bandaid with happy faces.

Your life and that of your loved ones is contingent upon a surgeon’s knife and upon a lab in California – a stranger making a decision that will decide whether there is happiness , hope or pain to come in your life and that of your child. You are just another lab report , a number with an insurance billing code- a job of work.

This nightmare of speculation and waiting for the next body blow , like some sort of insidious torture technique, rips at you and the very fabric of your family . Life goes on around you but you are removed you go through the motions but you aren’t really there and you only care about the turmoil that one phone call caused.

The tests, the scans, the trips to the hospital, the waiting rooms with color co-ordinated furnishings, a laugh echoing through a hallway, people talking about the weather, a child crying as life goes on -biopsies, more waiting – hoping- praying pleading with a greater power

“please let them have this wrong ” “please let it be a mistake”

Watching every movement,

“are they eating , are they paler today , the cough – is it better, worse,?”

Trying to smile, to put on the brave face and make life normal until the results are in, cooking food no one really wants to eat , but the strength has to be kept up.

Laying awake watching the clock tick away the hours of life and darkness, waiting for morning……things always look better in the daylight,
but that isn’t true- the mornings come and there is no sanctuary in the watery, wintery sun. Days run into one another, hours, the calendar and the marked events deemed important enough to make note of are no longer significant in their passing.

The darkness envelopes and you think of other mothers, how do they cope with news that threatens their babies, their teenagers, the mothers whose sons and daughters return from war missing limbs and with horrific injuries, how do they cope even having them in harms way- day after day ?

How does a mother bear the news that her child is gone- no longer to hold them, to feel a heartbeat , to gaze with love upon their face, the hear their laugh , to see their eyes no more ….the gut wrenching sadness the rises up. unasked, unwanted, and overflows with the releasing of tears without warning.

Then the results and you know, even before the Doctor opens his mouth – you see his eyes- what they are…. you hear the bad news tempered with good news and hope and another journey begins…………and you know that somewhere another mother shares your pain and fear and is trying to make a deal

take me, not my child………………..

To  be continued

April 3, 2020 at 2:03 pm 2 comments

March 3rd – NO LIMITS- Chapt 2 – Chris Ritchey

  NO LIMITS-The Book

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/02/03/feb-3rd-no-limits-chapter-1-chris-ritchey/

I find this rehashing of “life” and the connection with the Lombardi  family  and my  son’s choice of a life partner very  difficult to bring back to  light in my  life  and write. I wish I could file all those memories and people away  in some dark corner  never to  be thought of again. However, in order for those that read this “book” as it will be ( after it has been serialized here) to fully  understand the emotions, the relationships, the thought processes  and the connection to what happened and happens after my  son passed , the  connections  and especially those of Christopher have to  be explored. In some cases , with  hindsight and indeed some premonition I felt I should have seen a lot of the pain coming. 

THE ENGAGEMENT- CHAPTER 2

Although  I  must admit to  some “mother’s reservations” as to  the engagement of my son and Angela Lombardi , his sister and I wanted to  make this day  special.

Chris had said one evening , after he and Nikki  had gone to  a jeweler friend of Nikki’s husband to  design  “the ring” – which  cost him all of his savings $6,000.00 –

“Mum you  helped Jim (  Nikki’s husband) find a special place for him to  ask Nikki to  marry  him, you  have to  help  me  too”

Nikki  and I set about searching the internet, making suggestions, all of which  were not what Chris felt were right. Finally  I  said ….

“How about the top  of the Lorain Lighthouse”? I  am  not sure if I  can arrange that , but I  can try to  contact some of the people at the Lighthouse Foundation”

At that time the Lorain Lighthouse was still undergoing repairs and the top  of the Lighthouse was not open to  the public. But a few years earlier Chris had been asked to  paint the Lighthouse on a shed to  be put at the Marina to  be used to  hand out literature about Lorain. I thought that possibly  they  might be open to  the fact he would like some help  in what was supposed to  be a happy  occasion.

I duly  did the contacts and offered to  pay  for a day’s insurance policy  to  cover the the event of just the two  of them. After a lot of negotiating  and Ok’s by  the people involved it was a go. The date was set for July  12th. at 2:00 pm.  Lighthouse volunteers entered into  the excitement. It was arranged, I  would meet the little boat earlier in the morning, with  the champagne , a table, two  wine goblets, checkered red and white  table cloth  and roses and they  would be put at the top  of the Lighthouse.

My conspirators cunningly hid them on the far side so Angela wouldn’t see them as she ascended the lighthouse platform. Angela had wanted to go to the zoo that day and was a little annoyed ( I was told later) -my son had an errand to do for me first  or so she thought. Chris explained to her that first he had to take some photos for one of my “projects” he told her:

“You know how she is always roping me to do artwork and stuff for her projects- it won’t take long – mum needs some photos of the harbor for the Lorain Bicentennial she is planning next month”

I told Chris  that  we would meet him and Angela afterwards to  celebrate.

Naively  I  thought to  include the Lombardi  clan…. my  first interaction with  these people. I  had met them rarely  in the past  not more than a half dozen time , really  never having an in-depth  conversation with  them.  Since  we ( “Chris’s family”) had planned to  go  to  the Jacalope – a restaurant that over looks the Marina and the Lighthouse to celebrate after the event for some drinks and food, I thought it might be nice to  include the “family  of Angela”

I told Chris that we would be at the Jacalope and would watch with the binoculars for the wave of all was well and to have the boat drop them off there afterwards and we would celebrate.

 

I called the “in laws to be” on the Friday afternoon when it was all the arrangement were set – hoping that weather wouldn’t dampen the day- no it was Sue Lombardi that actually put a damper on the day

Photo Sue Lombardi .

 

I  must admit to  be more than a little taken aback when the “Mother of the Bride to  be” stated:

“Oh! we are building a new house and we are scheduled to have the electric done and some painting tomorrow – CAN”T Chris DO  THIS ANOTHER TIME!!!”

I thought to myself silly cow- doesn’t she realize this is her daughter’s engagement and getting this arranged has taken days and no little expense” ;

I said
Well surely you could take an hour off- maybe for lunch – we are meeting at the Jacalope to celebrate-
A big sigh from Sue  came down the phone :

Oh! this isn’t very convenient…… I will see what we can do

Well said I:

It is up to you but we will be there on the patio…..

and made a note to self – I would not get involved in “the brides mother’s wedding” plans – I could see that we are as different as chalk and cheese . I could tell from that very short conversation things had to be her way and her idea –
Oh Chris! you are in for a time I thought- little did I know it would be me bearing the brunt of the “Control Diva”.

The weather was indeed perfect, arrangements went like clockwork and even the in-laws and some of the family  of Angela duly  arrived on the patio. The happy  couple eventually  arrived  by  boat and Angela was flushed with  excitement. One of the aunts expressed a desire to  see the ring, and oohs and ahs duly  followed however from Sue Lombardi came the  concern

“Won’t that get caught up  and rip your  surgical gloves (  Angela  was going to  be a doctor)

As the afternoon progressed, I found out that I shouldn’t have relaxed  about it being a long engagement  they  were getting married  the next summer in June.  Oh dear I thought , must lose weight, how are they  going to  afford to  live Chris hadn’t been offered a position  with Wyse advertising , he was still a paid intern but my  thoughts soon were sent in another direction.

My  daughter, Nikki, who  actually  had never met Sue Lombardi  was cornered in another part of the restaurant by  Sue. I  should explain Nikki  and her husband had just been transferred back  to  Lorain from Toledo  and had just purchased a house. Nikki  had taken a break from employment to  get things together. Apparently  knowing this ( Angela, had lived with  my  daughter for over a month  in Toledo  so  she could do   one of her “rotations”) Sue requested  firmly  that Nikki  would to  go  with  Angela and drive to  Philidelphia , stay  overnight  so  Angela could take some  medical requirement. It was in a bad part of town apparently  and they  didn’t want her to  go  alone.

Nikki was upset, she didn’t want to  say  no  and upset Chris, but neither was she comfortable driving to  Philadelphia a distance of 451 miles, ,after talking to her husband , he definitely  wasn’t in favor either.

Why  doesn’t her mother or father take the day  off, they  have a large family  Why  you  Nikki? Two  women going to  a bad part of Philadelphia????

I waited until the Sunday  evening to  talk to  Chris , he didn’t want Angela to  driver alone  and no-one in her  family  were  prepared to  take her, so  he had to  take two  days off of work ( not only  unpaid but also he was still on probation at work , so  that didn’t bode well) .

( note  similar ring in design)

In the meantime on the Monday  Nikki  called me  she was in the middle of tiling a back splash in her new kitchen:

“Angela has called and is angry  and upset, apparently  one or two  of the aunts had  gone with  Angela to  local jewelers  to  get the  engagement ring appraised  and the one who  did give them an off the cuff appraisal  came in at $3,000.00 half of what it was supposed to  be worth. They  blamed Jim’s friend, Jim    and poor Chris had been cheated”

Nikki  was beside herself and dropped what she was doing and met Angela at another jewelers but they  would not do  an appraisal. Chris was furious  as Angela had been on the phone crying to  him at work.

I, for one, could not believe the crassness of this family  and  two days later were valuing the ring she had just received. I  thought of my own poor little speck of a diamond engagement ring , I didn’t care how much  it cost I  was so  happy.

To  solve the situation I  asked Chris to  bring me the ring . I  paid  $150.00 dollars for a proper evaluation  of the stone and setting . The paperwork came back a week later

Stone..its clarity  size etc. was valued at $8,000.00 and the setting designed by  Chris in white gold was  another $1,800.00 and was deemed to  be on the conservative side. 

I immediately  called Chris , but he still was in a mood , which  got darker by  the time he came home. He and I  had words, the ones you  shout. I criticized  how this whole situation had come about.  He then informed both his sister and I  that Nikki  had lied, Angela did not call her upset and blaming  anyone.   This was the first time that Angela tried to  come between  Chris and his family, in this case Nikki. Nikki said

are you calling me a liar?  Why  would I  lie about something like that….?

Nikki  left the house, and she and Chris did not speak for days . Finally,  I  had enough  and another dressing down to  my  son…..  who  had by  now  cooled down- thought about the situation  and went to  apologize to his sister…

 

So much  for love and happiness.

NOTE: All events and conversations were witnessed  and  although  these events etc are from my  perspective and opinions however  they  are the truth. Loraine Ritchey

 

 

March 3, 2020 at 1:11 pm 1 comment

Feb 3rd – NO LIMITS- Chapter 1. Chris Ritchey

NOTE: At one point in their relationship  Angela told me she had said to  Chris, ” Your  mother  ( Me) will write our love story and you  ( Chris) will do  the illustrations. Well not exactly  the story  anyone envisioned.. but the truth!

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2020/01/02/jan-3rd-no-limits-the-forward-chris-ritchey/

CHAPTER ONE…. 

I was married for 8 years before I felt the quickening of a baby beneath my heart, a baby girl whom I cherished and cherish. 3 years and 10 months later a little boy completed our small family. Like countless mothers before me, I would talk to my children as they grew within my body. The day they were born, the moment mother and child were left to one another after all the turmoil of birth, I too, promised them to always love them, protect them and never let anything happen to them. I wish I could put into words the feeling that grabs at your very innards as your child is put into your arms.

Some say that exquisite joy must be compensation for the pain of birth, others will tell you the bond is strengthened by the fact the child’s DNA having passed through the walls of the womb stays with the mother. Therefore, you are always part of your mother’s body. Months of sharing a body, heart and breath of life, there is nothing closer, the sound of a mother’s heartbeat- the lullaby of life. The very life essence that makes each one of individuals shared and a love that knows no limits. All I can tell you is that from that first fluttering of life I was consumed with a love for them that was greater than anything I had previously known.

The bond I shared with my son was different to the one I shared with my daughter. Nikki was so like her father, laid back, non-confrontational and even tempered. Chris, on the other hand, was volatile, passionate, definitely did not suffer fools and loved a good fight. He was more my child. I always knew what would set him off and we had the proverbial test of wills as he was growing up but underneath the clashes of wills he knew I would walk through fire for him and I knew he would do the same for us. The love shared was not on show, it was there and deep rooted.

My little girl and her baby brother soon left childhood days behind, life was normal, school, holidays, hobbies new friends , new loves and yet my daughter Nikki and her brother Chris retained a bond between them that was unbreakable. Nikki was always there for Chris and Chris was always there for Nikki. It wasn’t contrived or for show, they were each other’s sounding board, life line – it was them against the world, if need be.

I would watch them and knew whatever happened to me or their father they would always take care of each other no matter what.

 

 

 

 

Nikki married, moved out, life went on.

 

Chris was a student at Cleveland Institute of Art.

Other self by Chris Ritchey

Every weekend he came home and when I say home – he had two, this house where he was born and his sister’s. Nikki’s husband, Jim, became the brother Chris never had.

There was a lot of love and laughter in those years. I knew Nikki would always have Chris in time of need and Nikki would fly to his side no matter what. I relaxed in the notion they would always have each other.

He had been dating a young woman in his last year of High School- Angela Lombardi. She seemed a quiet little thing, I tried to make her welcome when she came for holiday dinners. I always got the feeling we were getting what my mother called the white glove test and that we didn’t measure up to her standards.

photo Angela by Chris Ritchey

Although my son broke up with her for a few weeks in the latter part of 2005 “as she was too clingy and didn’t give him room” they did get back together thanks in part to a conversation I had with him at 4 o’clock in the morning!

He had asked me:

mum what is love ? 

We explored, love, the flush of new love and sexual attraction, the role of family and caring. The conversation lasted many hours, a few weeks later Chris renewed the relationship with Angela.

I was happy at the time although the day in June when  he came through the door with his sister with “news” – I wasn’t so sure .

I saw the look on Chris and Nikki’s faces that June day- they sat guilty together , after asking their dad to join us in the living room my mind racing, something was up? Finally Nikki said to Chris-

you’d better tell them!

My first thought was Oh God Angela is pregnant- it was that sort of vibe – not such good news coming- I held my breath.

Then Chris said quietly-

Angela wants to get married –

I was stunned, not what I was expecting!  Not knowing what to say ‘relief I guess she wasn’t pregnant”

“ Well congratulations, I guess – how about YOU do you want to get married ?

Chris gave a little shrug :

I suppose so –

Worrying to me what he said and didn’t say – this was not the reaction of a young man who was getting engaged.

Chris had just been hired by Wyse Advertising, he had very little money to speak of and was just starting his career.

I said “well you’d better plan on living here to save up for married life.

My thoughts of this is not good timing – my  thoughts  to the “other mother in the equation” A person I  had barely  met more that a half a dozen times , and never really  had any  conversation with  her at all.  – I asked:

when was the date?

Chris didn’t know and I found myself thinking Sue Lombardi, the mother of Angela, I knew from mutual acquaintances  was a controlling individual when it came to Angela – she  would surely make it a long engagement .

How many times had Chris ordered flowers on my credit card  account to cheer Angela up when the mother, whom they called Mama Sue and Psycho Sue, had upset her for NOT living up to Sue’s standards of achievement? I thought, Sue will not be happy at this and therefore I needn’t worry………..

The engagement – to  be continued 

 

February 3, 2020 at 2:04 pm 5 comments

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