Monday, December 7, 2009
I was eight years old, when we lived off Temple and
Edgeware Road. My father had just died from a heart
attack. He was 42 years of age. As my brother and sister
were both married, it was just my mother and myself at
My mother was a very strong and demanding
woman. As a special treat, every Saturday afternoon,
my mother would take me to a movie at the R.K.O or
Warner Brothers. After the treat, we’d go to Newberry,
or Kreiss’ Five and Ten Cent Store, where I would get a
bacon and tomato sandwich. Then, my mother would give
me ten cents and I would go crazy looking at all the toys.
This particular afternoon, as my mother went to
pay the lunch bill, I saw a red fire engine on top of the
register, and my eyes opened up like grapefruits. I asked
her if I could have the fire engine.
She asked the clerk how much it was. The clerk said
it was six dollars. My mother said it was way too much.
She went on to ask if I wanted something else that was
I said, “If I can’t have that, I want nothing.”
She said, in a very strong tonality, “Then you get
The moral to this story is, we should be more
concerned with what comes out of our mouths than what
goes in, or, “Think very carefully before you speak.”
Written by Joe Jelikowsky
Joe Jelikowsky is a poet and life story writer from Los Angeles, Ca. He is a valued member of “Tea and Tales” a life-story and personal recollections class through North Hollywood Community Adult School, LAUSD, Programs for Older Adults.