On Tuesday, the 13th of October, the Old Men of the Mountain trucked on over to Middleburgh again to partake of the breakfast dished out by Patty, and her mom at Mrs. K’s Restaurant in the heart of town. What is the heart of town? Where is the heart of Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Schoharie, Cobleskill, Knox, Berne, or South Berne even? Most towns are not boxes, or circles, or rectangles, or polygons where it is possible to locate the center, but they are more like an amoeba with tentacles going every which way…some long…some short. The OMOTM say wherever we are though, is the heart of town no matter what it is shaped like.

Now that it is post-season in baseball, the first topic was baseball. We cover this topic quite often at the breakfasts and what the OF’s would like to see is the Yankees and the Dodgers in the series, however, it is not the Brooklyn Dodgers it is the LA Dodgers, and not just because they are the Dodgers, but many would like to see Joe Torre back at Yankee Stadium, and whomp the Yankees in four.

The OF’s (as we have said before) say for themselves much of the bloom has been taken off professional sports. With the high salaries, and the steroids it now seems to be a game of freaks. We look at the size of some of the baseball players, basketball players, and especially football players and to the OF’s they do not look normal, or even human.

One OF asked, “What is normal now?” Look at many of these guys, and then look at the women with their false eyelashes, collagen lips, nips and tucks, fanny packs, boob adjustments, and all done on perfectly normal people. Another OF said he could understand all this for men or women, who were badly deformed at birth, or scarred in a fire, or broken up in an accident, or for women with breast cancer, the strides made here are tremendous. Plastic surgery, dental reconstruction, and all the reconstructions and implants really add to their quality of life, but for normal people (to the OF’s thinking) vanity has gone a bit too far. Pretty soon the plastic surgeons will be able to take a broomstick and transform it into a person. The OF’s thought it would be ironic if a psychopathic no-neck athlete on steroids, married a girl with fake eyelashes, collagen lips, fake finger nails, fake butt and boobs, with a tummy tuck, but really what she needed was a brain transplant, what kind of kids would they have? The kids would be throwbacks to their parents original selves, and everyone would think they were adopted. Then again one OF said we may be jealous. We go around now with our bodies sagging and our faces like Halloween masks. Plastic surgeons where are you?

The OG’s drifted into another area that has been the topic of discussions, but most of the time in passing. This conversation was a little more involved and it was on square dancing. It came to light that most of the OF’s when they were young-uns squared danced, and some continued with the activity for quite some time. We discussed some of places where we danced, and what band and caller we danced to. The Gallupville house was one place mentioned because as a dance hall it had poles holding up the second floor in the middle of the dance floor. (It still does). When we were dancing (when we were young) we did what was called Eastern Style which is rather wild and woolly. Swinging was swinging, and legs flew, and quite often swinging bodies met stationary pole. The pole always won. When this scribe was dancing and there was this contact between moving body meets stationary object the caller never missed a beat, even though the music was interrupted with a resounding whaaaaang of the pole vibrating.

The other fun activity was roller skating. The OF’s traveled all over to skate. The reader should notice that many of the OF’s would do chores in the morning and evening, go to school, some participated in sports, and for fun would go swimming, square dancing, or roller skating. Not one of these activities involved sitting on our butts. This is another reason we are OF’s. Those who skate today, or square dance, or line dance know how much physical effort is needed to do any of these things, and they are clean, family fun. The square dances in bar rooms could, shall we say, get a little rowdy and the occasional fight would break out, and sometimes that was more fun than the dance.

For the most part fights were different then. Once the fight was over and everyone went home quite often the participants would get on the party line and see how people were, and the next week the supposed adversaries would be at another square dance and in the same square having a ball.

This Tuesday in Middleburgh one carload of OF’s was getting ready to pull out of Railroad Ave. just as another carload of OF’s was coming down Main Street, so the carload coming from Railroad Ave. had to wait for the carload coming down Main

Street and there just happened to be a parking spot open right in front of the restaurant. This meant the car coming down Main Street beat out the car from Railroad Ave. The Railroad Ave. carload of OF’s had to discharge its passengers to the sidewalk and the driver had to drive around to find a spot to park. See where courtesy gets you, the driver from Railroad Ave., should have cut right in front of the Main Street carload of OF’s.

The breakfast at Mrs. K’s Restaurant in Middleburgh, the village is done up beautifully this time of year, and the scruffy OF’s which didn’t add to the beauty but did attend the breakfast were: Robie Osterman, Charlie Keller, Miner Stevens, Mace Porter, Paul Paulsen, Geo Washburn, Arnold Geraldsen, John Rossmann, Dave Williams, Bill Bartholomew, Carl Walls, Walt Hill, Ted Pelkey, Frank Pauli, Harold Guest, Harold Grippen, Skip Skinner, Carl Slater, Wally Quay Sr., Willard Osterhout, Duane Wagenbaugh, Rich Donnelly, Ted Willsey, Mike Willsey, Jim Watson, Gerry Chartier, Gary Porter, and me.