How well do you know your neighbors? I have lived in the house I live in now for 39 years and have known all my neighbors, the ones that were living here when we moved in and the new ones since. We have been very lucky, over the years the new neighbors have been good neighbors, exchange friendly greetings, often, sitting outside on a nice day with a cold drink and talk. We are there for each other, and we watch out for each other and our properties when someone is away. It is a quiet neighborhood on a side street, with respectful traffic. We have had young children over the years, those families have either moved or their children are now adults. Our topics of conversation range from; “How are the kids?” to “How’s your mother/father?”
Religion, politics, health, the weather, when we moved in our neighbors on one side were retired teachers, my son Ben and I often cut their front lawn or in the winter shoveled the snow from their sidewalks. When they passed on a new neighbor moved in, soon he married and they had two sons. One day, after my sons had moved out, I put on my gloves and went out to shovel the snow on our walks where I found my neighbor had already cleaned the snow off. I went in and in answer to my wife’s query “What’s wrong?” I replied “When did I become the old man on the block?” Don’t get me wrong I was happy to not have to shovel snow, my wife was happy to not worry about me having a heart attack shoveling. Soon I hired my neighbor’s son to cut our lawns and shovel our walks. For the most part our street has not changed that much, recently a young couple moved in, very nice, hard working, and friendly.
The other night I had cause to knock on their door, actually I never got to knock their dog announced me and then wanted to come out and play, as I spoke with them we somehow got on the subject of drinking and I mentioned my night at “Bachelors 3” and meeting Joe Namath, here’s the painful part, this hard working young man who reminds me of me when I was his age, looked at me and said “Who?” I thought “surely he must be kidding me.” I repeated my statement of drinking with Joe Namath now adding Broadway Joe, receiving the same blank stare as he flatly stated “Never heard of him.” Sometimes thoughts of realization come to you like some power saving light bulbs that come on slowly and suddenly are bright. I’m speaking of “before his time.” Yes my favorite quarterback, someone who was loved by the lady’s, watched by the entire football world; an actor who was a favorite on the late night talk show circuit was completely unknown to my new young friend. I went home to my wife who again queried “What’s wrong?” I related my tale to her, she looked at me sympathetically and said “who’s the quarterback for the Eagles this year?” I nodded my head and went out to my Bear Cave to watch an old movie; C.C. and Company starring Joe Namath as CC Ryder.