Category: Memory Lane

Continuing with posts on actors who portrait bad guys on tv or in movies.
James Christopher Read was born on July 31, 1953, in Buffalo, New York.
james read
“Read has spent a few weeks at Patrick Swayze’s ranch, where Swayze taught him to ride a horse. During his first month on “North and South” (1985) set, Read met Wendy Kilbourne. They started dating, got married soon thereafter, and are still together to this day.”
I was a clerk at a service station for 1 year after I left school and when I realised that they were not going to keep their promise of extending my duties to include computer work I decided to resign and look for other work before I got stuck with a filing job for the rest of my life.
I saw an advert in the newspaper for a pharmacist’s assistant. I did not have any experience but they knew a member of my family and gladly gave me the job.
I was so excited at first but my enthusiasm soon fizzled. I had to work with a pharmacist who was over 70 years old and a bit absent minded. He would use snuff and then hide the little tin on top of the shelves containing the medicines and then he would forget where he left it.
Most of my time was spent on answering the telephone, taking orders for delivery, finding his snuff, finding his spectacles and cleaning snuff from the counter. Apart from that we did not interact much and I did not mind working with him when it did not cause problems for me.
I became quite good at reading doctors’ handwriting and soon knew what all the abbreviations stood for, unfortunately I have forgotten most of it as time has passed.
When a customer came in with a prescription I would count out the tablets and put labels on all the containers. The pharmacist would print the prescription and I would make the customer sign it for medical aid claims and either charge it to their account or get cash payment.
Simple enough but at the end of the first month the Jewish lady who owned the pharmacy gave me a hard time regarding prescriptions listed on her medical aid report printed from our computer which were not filed and she accused me of being slack. Actually I felt that she was accusing me of fraud. I was young and not as tough as I am now and I went home very upset.
At the end of the second month we had a similar conversation as the previous month and when I asked to see her report I realised what was causing the problem when I recognised the names of the customers.
A customer would come in and request a reprint of a script for medical aid claims because they have lost their original copy. The pharmacist would then recall the script on the computer and then because he was absentminded and bored with his surroundings he would click on the button for new script where he was suppose to click on reprint script instead.
After that I would make a note of the customer’s name and reprint date and place it in the file and at the end of the month she could match everything up because I could not get him out of the routine of clicking on new script and she kept on blaming me for the error.
A few weeks before I started doing this to cover myself I had to get some eyedrops on a shelf which was close to the accounts lady’s office and I heard the Jewish lady talking about me and saying “I can’t take it anymore”.
Every time the pharmacist served a customer I would double check and fix whatever he bungled and to hear that she was discussing me with another employee was the last straw.
job crybag
I was not allowed to sit at all, I had to stand behind the counter even when there weren’t any customers and in those days we wore court shoes to work and it was not as casual as we have it now. I worked until 6pm in the evenings.
I eventually resigned and she was shocked “Oh, no please don’t leave she said, everything is working out nicely”.
Yes, everything was running smoothly by then but I felt I had been treated like a thief and I was embarrassed that she had discussed me with other staff instead of discussing our differences with me first.
job now hiring
When I saw this picture (above) I was reminde of this episode in my life and decided to write this post.
Shortly before I left, the pharmacist told the accounts lady to put a add in the paper it should read, he said “Pharmacy assistant, must be bright …”.
I couldn’t help but wonder was I a dull assistant?
Continuing with the bad guys actors of Hollywood.
vic morrow
Victor Harry “Vic” Morrow (February 14, 1929 – July 23, 1982) was an American actor born in the Bronx, (New York) to a middle class Jewish family.
In the early morning hours of July 23, 1982, Morrow and two children, died in an accident while filming. A helicopter was hovering at about 25 feet above them when pyrotechnic explosions damaged it and caused it to crash on top of them, killing all three instantly.
I am starting a series of posts on the bad guys of old America tv shows. You know the face but do you know the name?
We are seeing several re-runs of really old American tv series on our local tv stations. Some have stood the test of time, others have dated badly. The quality of some are surprisingly good after all these years whereas others have degraded sound tracks.
My favourite thing to do (especially if the story isn’t very good) is to try and remember the name of the actor who plays the bad guy. Take for instance the actor below did you ever know his name or have you forgotten it over the years?
monte markham
Monte Markham born June 21, 1935. In the 1980s, he played Clint Ogden in the prime-time serial Dallas (1981), Captain Don Thorpe in Baywatch and Mr. Parker in Melrose Place?
I hope you enjoyed this post and that you will look out for the other posts on bad guys which I plan to do.
I remember that as a teenager it was my job to help our mother wrap presents. Our mother did all the measuring and cutting of the paper and it was basically my job to prepare and cut the strips of sellotape. While she masterfully wrapped all shapes and sizes I basically fixed everything in place.
When the schools started each year it was basically the same routine except that we would wrap the school books. First they were covered in plain brown paper and then with a thick smooth plastic cover. I was chatting to some moms recently when they commented on how their children are looked down upon if their childrens’ books are not covered with fancy paper. When we were at school, no pictures or fancy stickers were allowed on the books.
Things have changed so much over the years. It is almost impossible anymore for me to find a suitable Christmas gift for our mom mainly because she thinks that she is not worthy of gifts and the first thing she usually says is “you shouldn’t have spent so much money on me dear”.
Our mom has an important birthday coming up in the beginning of January and I am truly stumped, I have no idea how I can make it special for someone who does not want to receive flowers or chocolates.
Getting back to the topic of wrapping Christmas gifts, I always find it exciting wrapping Christmas gifts but wrapping gifts for the company suppliers and customers has always been something I really detested doing. When I was working for the skunk (ex boss) a few years ago, he decided to elect me to wrap several hundred really cheap bottles of whiskey.
Wrapping a bottle of any kind is a hard task but imagine doing it for 4 days in a row. To make matters worse, every time one of the reps came in they made a comment about how I was wasting my time wrapping such cheap liquor because they were not going to degrade themselves by handing out such bad quality rubbish. Anyway I wrapped several hundred bottles and the boss personally handed them out to a select few.
The following year I escaped that task and he ordered WA (who had fallen out of favour) to wrap the company gifts. Her daughter came in and helped her wrap several large gift sets he had bought. That Christmas he had decided not to buy any liquor. They used silver paper from a large roll which had been at the company for several years and the gifts looked smartly wrapped.
The year after that which was Dec 2011 there was none of the silver paper left so he took a roll of brown masking paper which although it is several meters wide is extremely thin. WA was again elected to wrap the gifts but this time her daughter could not come in to assist. There wasn’t a table large enough to work on and she rolled the huge roll of masking paper out on the floor and started measuring and cutting but soon she showed me that the paper was much too thin and transparent to use as gift wrapping paper. I knew that the skunk would be too stingy to buy proper paper so I told her to use the paper double. The brown paper was so ugly!
After wrapping a couple of gifts she went outside for a smoke break and the boss came and inspected her progress. He instructed me to tell her to use less paper, when I explained the problem to him he went silent turned on his heels and disappeared into his office.
How did your gift wrapping go this year or did you get someone else to do it for you?
Jack Klugman (90) and Charles Durning (89) have passed away.
Jack Klugman knew how to captivate an audience. I remember how entranced I would be when watching Quincy.
Charles Durning was such a playful character and what a great dancer.

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