Pat Shingleton: "Icy Steps and The Thump..."
Northern Pennsylvania and Western New York are experiencing blizzard conditions today. Here's a little story concerning our brother Mike that noted the effects of weather and the disciplinary actions of our Dad. After Mass at St. Agatha’s Church in Ellwood City, PA, Dad would routinely purchase either the Youngstown Vindicator or the Pittsburgh Press at curbside. This particular Sunday was snowy as sheets of ice coated the sidewalks and church steps. Standing outside the church, visiting with friends, a robust lady proceeded down the steps, lost her balance, slipped on the ice and went airborne. Spinning and swirling across the icy sidewalk in the midst of ohhhhs and ahhhs she landed at Mike's feet with me standing next to him. For every action there’s an equal and opposite reaction…Our Dad was a butcher and had huge hands. Whenever a disciplinary action was initiated a curled middle finger protruding from the fist created the“thump;” directed at the back of the head. So, as the lady slid to our feet, I imitated an umpire and yelled, “Safe!” Thinking Mike made fun of the sliding lady, Dad gave him the “thump” while I got the laugh.