True stories with a twist!

Posts tagged ‘world war 11’


images-5She seemed uncomfortable about the interview. Yet she had volunteered to do it. I tried to be gentle, ask open ended questions and listen carefully to her answers without interrupting.

“It was during world War 11. I was one of six children living on the farm with our parents. Times were harsh. The people of Italy were poor and struggled to survive through those times of food rationing, gas rationing, and life rationing.

I was the youngest child and was taken out of school after second grade because my parents needed me to help work the farm. I was the one to fetch groceries from town. That meant walking two hours into the village to buy bread for the family. I had to fetch water from the stream and carry it back to the house. We had no electricity and no running water.”

Calabria was a destitute farming town located on Italy’s southern “tip of the boot”.

As Nella described her deprived childhood during the war years on a farm in Italy, I had to think about how strange life is and how strange we humans are.

Now that we no longer have to walk two hours to fetch bread in the village we have invented gyms so we can walk on treadmills and simulate Nella’s experience of her childhood chores. Now that we no longer have to carry heavy buckets of water from the stream to the house we lift weights at the gym to build those same muscles she was forced to develop. We no longer have to hang clothes on clothes lines or carry rugs outside to beat them clean, so we invented machines to perpetuate those motions and practice them dutifully at the gym.

We had the fortune to have more schooling than she, but the dumbing down of society has limited our brain power to gossiping about the goings on of pretend people on TV shows.

It seemed so strange to me to listen to her story and recognize how we have carefully imitated the jobs she had to do. We do them in a more modern, but unproductive manner.

We may work out and exercise but we have no bread to bring home after the work out at the gym.


The Helicopter Mom, hovering over her toddler, controlling as many aspects of his life that are possibly controllable, was nervous about what he might learn by watching TV.

She (to Nanny): “Glenda, while I’m at work it’s alright for Jaden to watch one hour of television. But there are certain shows I do not approve of. Please do not allow him to watch “Sponge Bob” or “Tom and Jerry.” Those cartoons are far too violent for a young child.

Glenda agreed to police the shows and to be certain that Jaden would never watch those forbidden, soul destructive, mind blowing programs.

Helicopter Mom (hereafter referred to as “HM”) returned to work, feeling happy and secure about the new TV restrictions she had put in to effect. She was protecting his innocence and felt comfortable in the knowledge that Jaden would no longer be subject to violent cartoons.

One day the entire family was gathered and his grandparents were engaging Jaden in conversation.

Out of the blue and without warning he started talking about “B17 Bombers” and “M1 Rifles.” HM was shocked.

“Glenda, where on earth is Jaden getting that vocabulary and those ideas from?”

“I obeyed your instructions about not allowing him to watch “Sponge Bob” and “Tom and Jerry” cartoons because they’re too violent. And I know how you like him to learn from educational programs.

So I turned on the Public television program “The History Channel.” It was all about World War 11 and he learned lots of history. I knew you’d be pleased.”

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