Tuesday, August 24th, (Man-o-Man, the summer is just flying by) the Old Men of the Mountain met at the Hilltown Café in Rensselaerville.

The OF’s (which is a gathering of old guys etched with the wrinkles of time, and carved out faces with the character of the ages) were graced at the tables this morning by four lovely ladies. These ladies were from Chevy Chase, Maryland, and were Floy Behlmer, and Rosie Flint; from the country of Germany, were Olga Ferr, and Lucie Fröschle. Olga was visiting Gerry Chartier and was an exchange student who had stayed with the Chariter’s about four years ago. Lucie was a friend of Olga’s. Rosie and Floy are sisters of Mike and Ted Willsey. Why these guy hauled these ladies off to the OF’s breakfast is not known. If they wanted to show off the sights of the Hill Towns there are enough knurled, and bent over old trees along the side of the road for them to see, other than to see the same old things only walking around.

The OG’s were on their best behavior and the OF’s who brought their guests must have had enough confidence in the group that it would not embarrass them.

How often do all of us (including the OF’s) become engaged in conversation and do something automatic without thinking and many times it goes awry because what we thought we were doing turned out to be mistaken, or we grasped the wrong thing. A simple exchange of words in a few sentences at one of the tables pointed this out. An OF had the breakfast special — which was two pancakes, two eggs, toast, and coffee — for what the scribe thinks was three bucks, and another OF at the same table had the same thing. On the table were two containers of syrup, one in the original bottle and the other in a standard restaurant-fare syrup container.

The two OF’s were engrossed in conversation about Cod Liver Oil and how all the OF’s had to take this stuff when they were young. Not pleasant. One OF reached for the syrup in the regular syrup bottle and he continued to talk while pouring the syrup over his pancakes. Another OF was listening, and when the first OF finished speaking, he picked up the conversation and continued on, while at the same time picking up the syrup that was in the standard restaurant syrup container. The OF that had used the syrup from a regular syrup bottle noticed that this other OF had a look of being not too pleased with his pancakes. The OF looked up and said, “Where did you get that syrup from?” “Right here on the table,” the other OF said. Then a third OF said that the stuff in the regular bottle was sugar-free syrup, and it said so in big letters right on the bottle. “Ah… expletive…I thought these pancakes tasted awful,” said the OF. How often we do things without checking?…done all the time.

The OF’s talked about their bouquet of pills that many of them are required to take. On occasion this scribe reports about this problem, however, today we have a report on one of the OF’s who became very ill to the point of scaring everyone that this was “it.” One of the doctors who was in the process of caring for him said, “Why in the world are you taking all these pills?” To which the OF answered, “Because I was told to.” This doctor said, “Don’t take another pill.” The OF rebounded miraculously from being bed-bound to up and walking and now says he feels great and all his organ functions are normal. There is one great big hmmmmmm here.

The OF’s have mentioned at various times about how obnoxious the press is. One OF said they have to be — that is their job. To which another OF said at least they could be civil. If we teach by example they (the press) are making an awful example, and what are people supposed to learn from that? Another OF noticed how one TV station lauded how one reporter tried to chase down someone who was supposed to be part of a story. The OF said this guy should have turned around and told this reporter that he did not have to answer any of her questions, or any reporter’s questions, unless the reporter had a badge on and arrested him. The OF maintained that unless you are a court officer, or a police officer who has read you your rights, there is no reason to answer a reporter, but a couple other OF’s said that they found reporters to be nice people. To which the other OF answered but you were not part of a controversy either, based on the paper’s or television’s opinion of the good side or bad side.

Those attending the breakfast at the Hilltown Café in Rensselaerville and controlling their normal robust conversation were: Jim Watson, Harold Eck, Joe Lubier, Bob Benac, Jay Thomas, Duane Wagenbaugh, Art Frament, Rich Donnelly, Miner Stevens, Roger Chapman, Bob Dietz, Frank Pauli, Ted Pelkey, John Rossmann, Harold Guest, Robie Osterman, George Washburn, Gerd Remmers, Mace Porter, Gary Porter, Don Moser, Arnold Geraldsen, Harold Grippen, Ted Willsey, Mike Willsey (with Floy, and Rosie) and Gerry Chartier (with Olga, and Lucie) and me.