Tidbits - May 11, 2017

TIDBITS by RALPH SHEALY



NOT COMPLAINING?

  First, let me say this is not a complaint. I’m very happy my bank looks out for me.
  A couple of weeks ago, I was in a Columbia store on paper printing day and was buying an item. I used my debit card and it got declined.
  I knew I had plenty of money in the bank to cover the inexpensive item, so I had the clerk try again.
  Same thing happened. Fortunately, I had enough cash to pay for the item.
  I was not overly concerned.
  My next stop was Big Lots, where I make my weekly Little Debbie and Hostess, and whatever else they’ve stockpiled run.
  My bill came to $16, so I decided to try to card there.
  The same thing happened. Again, I paid cash, but this time I was worried.
  I began to panic that my meager bank account had been cleared out.
  I got to my van, and opened the bank app on my phone. I was thankful I had not been wiped out and had plenty of money to cover the two transactions that totaled $36.
  So, why was my card declined?
  When I got home, I went to my bank’s internet site and had a online chat with “Dave.” Dave told me the bank put a stop on my card for some suspicious activity. He gave me a number to call.
  I made the call and the gentlemen who answered informed me that my card had been stopped because of a $13 purchase, and asked me if I had authorized it. I told him I had.
  “You realize that purchase was to a foreign country?” he asked.
  I said  I knew it was.
  There is an app called “Wish,” that sells things below dirt cheap.
  The most expensive item I’ve ever bought cost $13, and it may have been the one that got my card blocked.
   I’m pretty sure “Wish” is headquartered in China, because the mailers all have some Chinese writing on them.
  Once I explained I authorized the purchase the block was taken off my card. I also supplied my cell number, so I could find out in advance if a block has been put on my card to avoid future embarrassments.
  Three days later, I got a text saying my card had been blocked for suspicious activity, and gave me a number to call.
  It was about the same purchase I had already okayed. My first caller and my second apparently had not connected.
  The lady said I was going be issued a new card over that $13 purchase, and turned me over to another lady to get some further information.
  She reminded me I would have to notify  websites that might have the old card number on file.
  Last Thursday, I got my new card and made the necessary changes on the web and ApplePay (which I have never used).
  The irony of this story is the three people I talked to were all foreign.
  So, did I call a foreign country because my card was blocked because I ordered something from a foreign country?

GOOD FOOD

  Saluda has plenty of good places to eat.
  There are six places that have opened, relocated or undergone a name change in the last few months.
  I’ve only had a chance to eat at three of them so far, but I am going to take them all in, because the reviews have been good.
  One the places had shepherd’s pie on the menu recently, and that brought back memories of eating in the Saluda lunchrooms in my youth.
  Shepherd’s pie was one of my favorites.
  I know terrible school lunches was the joke back in the day, but the food was always good in School District One. I don’t recall a single dish I didn’t like.
  Of course, we didn’t have the choices students today have.
  You ate what the lunchroom staff made.
  We could have any type of salad dressing, as long was it was French, the orange version.
  After 12 years of French dressing, I don’t think I’ve had French on my salads more than two or three times in the last 48 years.
  I still like it though - the orange, not the red.
  We had fried food, which is taboo now. Amazingly, with all that grease, and salt, etc., we didn’t have that many overweight kids at school.
  Fried chicken was a favorite. Every fifth person got a chicken breast. Some would count to see if they would be lucky. Unscrupulous, chicken breast counters would either break in line, or drop back to insure the prize.
  I was an “angel,” so I would never break in line, but was I known to drop back a few times, much to someone’s chagrin. Na, na, na, na, na, na!
  And we had desert everyday. Apple and cherry crisps were two of the favorites.
  Peanut butter balls were another staple.
  And who can forget my personal favorite, vegetable soup with a half pimento cheese and half PB&J sandwich. The soup had ground beef and cabbage in it.
  It’s a  different world today.
  Apparently, no one cared when I came along if our school lunches contributed to childhood obesity. I never heard it mentioned.
  I’m not criticizing.
  There is nothing wrong with eating healthy, and I know our school cafeterias today do a good job.

KEEPING UP

  My Daddy complained that he didn’t have any grandchildren, then he got seven  in four years.
  Daddy had passed away by the time the last two grandchildren, Kailyn and Gavin Shealy arrived.
  The first seven grandchildren grew up and married, and multiplied.
  We now have Deacon, Madden and Emoree Donlon; Skylar and Kassidy Coleman; Taylor Ann and Peyton Bowdler; Willow and Baylee Bowdler; and Hannah and Pierce Bowdler.
  How many is that? I think it’s 11.
  I say, “I think,” because the number has caused me to have several brain freezes.
  I thought there were 10 before Pierce came along last week, but twice, count ‘em, twice, I have miscounted when I bought Valentine’s and Easter prizes. I have been one item short both times.
  I made a mad dash to the store for Valentine’s and got the needed item.
  But, Easter is on Sunday and I didn’t realize I was one chocolate bunny short until I got to Mayson and Jason’s house for our Easter meal.
  I explained to Mayson, while handing her two of the three bunnies for her house, and she told me not to worry about it, because the last thing Emoree needed was some more candy!
  My traditional Facebook cover photo is Kailyn, Gavin and the greats, along with my work son, Ryan Metts, who will soon be 24.
  Since it is so hard to get them all together, I Photoshopped Ryan, Kailyn, Gavin, and the new additions of Kassidy and Baylee into the photo I took of the ones who were there for Thanksgiving.
  It was five different, cut and paste jobs, but I got them all in.
  Now, I am going to have to find a place for Pierce!
  That version should last me for awhile .... I guess!!!