Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Down the Line

"I'm going down the cellar to get some soda."

There's something wrong with that sentence, and in spite of priding myself on my generally correct use of grammar and obnoxious habit of daring to correct others for theirs when it's incorrect, I'd spoken of trips to the basement that way all my life until recently when it was pointed out to me that it's as wrong as, "He lives back the road," by the person whom I was correcting for saying that.

It was my choice of "Down the Line" as the title of this post that led me to write that preface. Going down the line here in the valley would refer to traveling south on one of the back roads, through various small and nondescript municipalities lined up like a row of ducks.

On Saturday I rode south in somewhat of a miserable mood. Somebody dear to me was having a rough time and I tend to empathize to such a degree that I start to share in another's misery myself. I rode, but I didn't much enjoy the ride.

My first stop was in Warrior Run, home of the long deceased "Lefty," the famous (in local circles) accordionist, and Ron who was the drummer in our polka band back in college. I stopped beside a small pavilion with a lone picnic table where I took a sip of soda. (That soda that I got down the cellar. " Pop" if you're down the cellar west of Pennsylvania.)

If you look behind me and to the left, you'll see a dialog balloon over the doorway of the building. It reads...

...but I wasn't feeling very nice.

I got as far as the Hanover Section of Nanticoke (Home of the famous John Stanky the accordionist.*) when I decided that I'd had enough. I rolled down Middle Road to Prospect Street and then into Nanticoke proper where I turned onto Ridge Street and passed by this fine establishment the name of which has always cracked me up.

Sanitary Bakery? Would that be as opposed to the filthy bakery that has roaches crawling all over the place and mouse crap in the flour? From D. B. Echo, author of A Blog of Nanticoke: "Its name comes from a long-ago time when the word 'Sanitary' indicated a level of quality and cleanliness beyond that of run-of-the-mill bakeries." Thanks, D. B.! I'd always wondered about that!

On the way back to the house I passed by this poor little fellow who in his rather sorry state summed up the mood I was in.

Oddly, he didn't stink. I guess he had been of the sanitary variety of skunks!

On Sunday my mood was greatly improved and I ran the same basic ride to make up for the lousy time I'd had on Saturday. It's amazing how everything looks different when one's perspective is adjusted!

*Apparently when one plays the accordion, one marks his travels relative to the domiciles of other accordionists. I didn't realize that until now.

Note to self: You need a picture of yourself with your accordion, on the scooter! You won't look like a dork at all! It'll be way cool!


Susan said...

Yup! That's what I think of when I hear "accordian and scooter" in the same sentence. Way cool!

Joe said...

Susan, you're lucky that I love you!

cpa3485 said...

Used to have an acquantence that played the hell out of an accordian. I really didn't appreciate them very much until I heard him play. Accordians and scooters are an excellent combination in my opinion.

Baron's Life said...

not easy playing the accordian...a friend of mine does...it sounds great and beautiful but requires talent and dexterity... was that a skunk or a racoon?

Joe said...

I dunno, Baron. Playing the accordion came easy to me; maybe all those years of nose picking before I started taking lessons?

That was a two dimensional skunk on the road. I passed by him again yesterday and he was in much worse shape than in my picture.


bobskoot said...


I wished that I could play an instrument, but something that you could carry on a scoot, NOT a piano. Now an accordian may be okay if you have a lot of storage. I suppose you could wear a Tuba as you scooted to the concert. I'm thinking Harmonica . . . small, put in your pocket, easy to carry but you need a lot of hot air

bobskoot: wet coast scootin

Joe said...

That's too funny, Bob - I played the tuba in high school and college too!


linda said...

All this has given me an idea, you could be one man band on a bike!! travelling boy biker band...harmonica like bob said, drum attached to your back,the list could be endless, just think how famous you would become :)

Joe said...

Linda! That's perfect! I could attend biker rallies too, set up a tent, and sell my CD's like Biker Billy does with his cookbooks! You're a genius.

It's kind of ironic that I wrote about Nanticoke in this post and that's where our polka band was based back in the glorious 70's when my accordion was still new and shiny.

Incidentally, I don't think any of the comments here with the word "accordion" in them have the name of the instrument spelled correctly. It's "iOn" - not "iAn!"

Conchscooter said...

I feel as though this post were written in serbo-croat for I understood not one word grammatical or otherwise.

Lance said...

Joe, sorry to read you're in a funk, and I hope it gets better soon for you. Here's to many more trips to sanitary bakeries!

irondad said...

For whatever it's worth, here's some virtual cheer! As well as warm wishes for peace for that someone close to you.

All you have to do is tell us you named your stairway "Cellar". Then you can go down the cellar to get a soda!