High Finance

Throughout most of my life, I have been unable to accumulate huge amounts of money. In fact, keeping the wolf from our door has been an ongoing struggle for my child bride and me. Thick payment books usually followed the purchase of any and all major purchases. The first few days of each month found us agonizing over which payment could be skipped in order to satisfy another that was past due.

Eventually, by curtailing unnecessary spending to the point that we were able to save a portion of our meager income, we began a savings account with our bank. They rewarded us for our frugality by changing the designation of our checking account from “Standard – Tin” to “Excellent – Platinum.” Over the years, we managed to accrue enough in the savings account to buy what we hoped would be our retirement home.

We transferred enough of our funds from our savings account into our checking account and wrote a check for the property. Little did we know that doing so would void our “Excellent – Platinum” rating and out checking account would revert to the original “Standard – Tin” designation.

This change was brought to our attention only when we received our monthly statement. Buried deep within the explanations for all the transactions, was a service charge of $30.00 designated as “Maintenance Fee.”

Needless to say, I immediately demanded enlightenment from a lady at the bank, and was told that; “You withdrew a substantial amount from your savings account.”

“My God, lady, are you telling me that I have to pay you a fee to use my own money?” Her answer was, “Yes; withdrawing this money from savings disqualified you for the “Excellent – Platinum” rating.”

By this time, my blood pressure was probably off the chart. I asked what qualifies one for all the free “stuff,” (toasters,coffee makers, etc); that they hype in all their advertisements; as an attempt to entice new depositors. I received no answer.

The lady continued: “Most importantly; you must have all your income direct deposited into our bank. Bring us the deed to your home, your endorsed life insurance policies, your eldest son, the titles for all vehicles, any spare change in the sugar dish and assignment of your pension checks. Then, you will be able to write one check each quarter if less than $15.00. Doesn’t that sound nice, Mr. Demijon?” she grinned.

Dejected, I asked, “I suppose that it’s out of the question to ask you for a loan of a quarter for the parking meter beside your office?”

“We compensate for one parking citation per year; and I see from your Computer records that you used this privilege last month: Is there anything else, Mr. Demijon?”

I glanced out the window and spotted a billboard across the street advertising; – “POPPA JOE’S BANK & TRUST:” “I. R. GREEDY; President.”

“NO;” “I said in a quivering voice:” “Enough is enough; and I’ve had quite an abundance: Thank You very much.”


My first encounter with airplanes came about when, as a young soldier, I decided that the uniform of a paratrooper was the sharpest thing going. Glistening jump boots, tailored shirts and jackets adorned with jump wings, and a soft hat with the distinctive hat-patch was “IT”. The offer of an extra $50.00 per month sealed the deal.

Little did I realize that along with this dazzling look came weeks of push-ups, five mile runs, hours of hanging in a harness, (suspended agony), and constantly being told that I would not “make it.” In addition, I was actually expected to leap from an aircraft in fright; (excuse me), FLIGHT.

After discovering all of this, there was little to do but to endure this punishment short of quitting and this was considered a fate worse than death by my fellow would-be troopers.

All of the rigorous training did nothing to squelch my desire to be able to sport this snazzy uniform; and I suffered, along with my peers, the humiliation that was inflicted upon us by the jump school cadre.

Finally the day came when we were marshaled onto the tarmac beside a waiting aircraft and ordered to strap on Parachutes. When we had succeeded in getting the harness attached to our quaking bodies to their satisfaction, we were told to load up.

We climbed up the steep ladder into the open doors of the aircraft. With the extra weight of the very uncomfortable parachute, along with our being extremely nervous, I am certain that, instead of the Army’s Elite Fighting Forces, we left the impression of the Army’s most frightened men.

Small canvas seats were installed on each side of the plane, one of which we each were assigned. We were told that the men on each side of the plane were called a stick. We also were told that both sticks would jump at the same time from each of the open doors. After the jump-master rehearsed the jump commands for us, the pilot started the engines, and we began to roll to the airstrip.

The plane took off and climbed to an altitude of one thousand feet, the prescribed height for training jumps, and headed for the drop zone. The jump-master stood with his head out of the door and searched for the panels on the ground that marked the designated area where we were to land after leaving the plane.

When he was certain that everything was as it should be, he turned and gave the command to, “Stand Up.” Mixed emotions ran through the minds of all of us upon hearing this command. They were something between being deeply concerned and terrified. I suppose that the feeling of being “scared sh*tless” was the most likely definition.

The next commands of HOOK UP; CHECK EQUIPMENT; SOUND OFF FOR EQUIPMENT CHECK; were followed as though we were a bunch of robots. Then the final command of STAND IN THE DOOR was shouted over the roar of the engines. As one, both sticks began a shuffle to the rear of the plane and to the open door on each side of the clam-shells.

When the first troopers had reached and exercised their pivots into the doors, the green jump-light on the twin tail-booms of the plane blinked, and the jump-master slapped them on the hips and shouted “GO.” Everyone followed the first two men into empty space with only a static line as a link to the real world.

Miraculously, the parachutes opened and we floated to the ground with a feeling that we had just conquered the world.

After four more jumps we were paraded in front of the big brass. Our Parachutists Wings were pinned above the left pocket of our blouses, and each one of us felt that we had conquered our fear, We were now Paratroopers and “WE OWNED THE WORLD.”


Anxiety had raised its ugly head as we sat huddled into the uncomfortable, canvas seats of an Aircraft that was NOT SUPPOSED TO FLY; (a “C-82” flying Boxcar). However, it was quickly dispelled when we gathered in the beer hall at the P.X. that evening.

A ‘Trooper considers a jump successful; if he walks away. Dj.
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Don’t you just hate it when you enter an Eating Establishment and find that the menus are printed entirely in an unknown language? To those of us who are not “worldly,” this presents a problem.

Searching the entire menu offers no explanation as to what either the “Ranguinia-de-Alfredio” or the “Scalipio-el-Persofried” consist of and does not even indicate that they are edible.

It would seem that they would include a translation somewhere, for those of us who know nothing of the exotic terms used by famous chefs. It need not be elaborate: Just tell us what we would be eating when we point to an item and say, “I’ll have that.”

It does not stop here. Small print below the selections of entrees, suggests the “Vegetable of the Day.” What is this? Can they not spell “mashed potatoes,” or “green beans”? Another thing; do they really cook the “Home-Fried Potatoes” in a different location; and then bring them to the restaurant?

Also, it would seem that the longer the name, the larger the price: I have tried to figure out just what the going rate per letter in their “SPECIAL OF THE DAY;” but to no avail. This too, is a closely guarded secret. To call a Potato by any other name, should not increase the price by more than one/half.

Many of us enter a Restaurant for only one reason. ‘WE ARE HUNGRY.’ We do not care if the food is called “CUISINE” or simply “VITTLES.” It also does not matter to us if the items are served with an “EXOTIC SAUCE,” or just plain “RED-EYE GRAVY.” If the food is tasty and the Establishment is clean; we will ‘beat a path to your door.’ A sample of what we are looking for-is???

Ham and Tater-Salad with Okra and Squash… $1.69.

Steak and Black-Eyed Peas with Turnips and Mashed-Taters… $2.45,

Meat Loaf with Rice & Gravy; served with Collards and Pinto Beans… $1.89.

Fried CatFish with Fried Squash and Fried ‘Taters… $2.22.

Beef/Stew with Stewed/‘Maters’ and Hominy/Grits… $2.16.

All of the above served with “Biscuits, Corn Bread, Tea and/or Coffee.” A Large Slice of Apple Pie is included.


Take heed, all of you Restaurant owners. This could mean the difference in success and failure. There are thousands of us who want nothing more than a good, “TASTY MEAL,” It’s up to you. Will you succeed or fail?

Another distortion by Restaurant Owners: Most of you have set aside a section in your Establishment for smokers and non-smokers. Those of us who keep your ‘cash-flow’ “FLOWING”; feel that this is discriminatory.

Up until such time as you designate an area for “Loud-Talkers”, “Chewers”, “Snuff-Dippers”, and “Cussers”; We will search elsewhere for a place to reserve our “Winners Banquet”: after we defeat; “Jed Whistlebottom,” in the Race for MAGISTRATE.

Your prompt attention to these issues will be appreciated. “Nipping these oversights in the bud,” could possibly forestall prolonged litigation.


The Meaning of~ “Keeping a Grade-A-Rating;” is as simple as “wiping lipstick off Coffee-Cups before setting them on a table.”

“Man the Lifeboats,” folks. “It’s getting deep.” Dj.

Hit’s been fixed.

Hit’s done an’ been ’bout ten yeres ago, when Susie Mae; she were a-takin’ on ‘bout sumpin’ a-growin’ on my leff eyeball lid. She sed to me, she sez; “Jay Henry, honey, why’ont you’uns go to the ole eye doctor an’ see ‘bout hit.” She purely gits upsot when she figur’s ‘theys sumpin a-messin’ up my good looks.

Well’sr, I maid me a ‘pintment an’ went. When’st I maid th’ ‘pintment, they done tole me to brang somebody wiff me, whot cud drive my log truck back home; ‘cause they wuz a-gonna wrop up my eyeball wiff duck tape ‘til hit got well. I axed Rocky Phil iffen he wud go wiff me an’ drive th’ truck fer me an’ ‘Bless-Pat;’ he got so ‘cited, he jus’ ‘bout swallered his’uns ‘baccer.’

B’then I had axed him, I knowed he were jus a-waitin’ fer a chanch to; “Sot in th’ truck an’ go “BUDDIN-BUDDIN.” He mought be all growed up; but he still be’s jus’ a youngun at heart. He jus’ drapped me off at that eye doctor’in’ place an’ he took off to go git him a ‘dope an’ some square cheese crackers, ‘til them folks got done wiff me.

I went in an’ rid that thare ellavator upstairs to they docton’in room an this hear Nuss-Lady, she takem me back in a little tee-winey room an axed me to reed some numbers an’ letters whot were put on th’ wall. Pore thang; she cuddn’t read an’ she wonted me to ‘splain thangs to her jus’ lack Susie Mae do; “Me bein’ so edjecated, an’ all.”

Atter I sot thare a while, the ole eye doc, he come in a’stroppin his’ns pocket knife an’ I knowed, right then, that he were a’gonna ‘commence a’cuttin’ on me.’ I looked him right strait in th’ eyeballs an’ “I went an’tolt him that iffen he hurt me, I’se a’gonna fly in to cussin.”

AN’ “I tolt him that iff’en he ever seed a 387 pound womern, a’riddin’ a Harley Davison motocicle wiff a axehandle in th’ saddle bag; he better hunt th’ back door ‘cause hit wud be Susie Mae a-lookin’ fer ‘vengence on anybodie whot had done went an’ messed wiff her man”.

Well’sr, that doc, he popped a needle ‘bout th’ size uv a 2 by 4 in my eyeball lid an commenced a’cuttin’ that thare thang off. When’st he had done got hit off, he wropped a bunch uv duck tape all over th’ leff side uv my face an’ tole me that he were done.

When’st I had done come outten that tee winey room; Rocky Phil were s-settin’ back a-lookin’ at a funnie book an’ he sez to me; “Ma’s a-gonna have her a HISSIE when’st we’uns gits home an’ she see’s all that thare duck tape all over your’ns face.”

Howsomever, Susie Mae, she did wate till I pulled all that thare tape off, and she fount out that they ‘didn’t ruin my pertyness.’

They’s jus so much whot she can stan;’ an whens’t she gits her a ‘Nough, she has got her th’ damnest ‘Nough’ a fellers ever seed.

Jay Henry


Old Sayings should not be dismissed as so much malarkey.

As most of you are aware; If a certain Ground Hog sees his shadow during the month of February; it is entirely possible that we will be inundated with 2 to 4 inches of powdered snow, only a couple of days later.

This could add credence to the ability of this particular Woodchuck to predict our weather. For those who are skeptical; this Ground Hog; by observing his shadow; simply means that we must endure six more weeks of winter weather.

According to the Old Folks; another old saying is that; “If snow stays on the ground for three days, it is waiting for more.” Note: There may be bits of snow visible in spots as we speak; Beware!

During my childhood years, I learned many of these Sayings while sitting at the feet of the elderly whose throne was a bench under the shelter of a filling station. This group was known locally as THE SONS OF REST.

Many of their predictions in regard to weather were proven to have a measure of truth in the days before Doppler Radar and Satellite Imagery. Others were spoken merely as humorous antecedents; simply to have something to say.

Below is a sampling of Sayings from those learned individuals.

“The crescent of the Moon shows that it is holding its water and indicates no rain is anticipated.”

“Early to bed; Early to rise: Fish all day and tell big lies.”

“A ring around the moon is a sure sign of an impending drought.”

“He who laughs last: LASTS.”

“It’s not so bad to grow older, if one stays young while doing it.”

“Be nice to your kids: They will pick your Nursing Home.”

“Rain before seven: Fine by eleven.”

“My wife allows me to have all the liquor I can hide.”

“Work is for people, who don’t know how to fish.”

“My schooling has never interfered with my education.”

“If you’re constantly in hot water, at least your clothes will be clean.”

“Flies will swarm: Before a storm.”

“Clear Moon: Frost Soon.”

Enjoy; Demijon.

The Staff at Demijon, Inc. sincerely hopes that you have learned something.

“Why do we wash Bath Towels? Aren’t we clean when we dry-off with them?” Dj.

Thirty cent Cotton

It is little wonder that some of us experience an acute case of “I can’t believe it” when we are required by necessity to shop for some needed item. For example, we enter a Shoe Emporium that sells nothing but shoes instead of just a few pairs nestled among the groceries, hardware and animal feed, which constituted the sundry merchandise offered by “The Store.”

Remembering an era when we could purchase a pair of tennis shoes with cloth uppers and vulcanized bottoms for something like .98 cents; we approach a series of shelves on which are stacked hundreds of similar shoes. Finding a pair that looks suitable, we search for the price tag. “$199.95!” we shout as everyone momentarily interrupts their shopping to stare in astonishment at our outburst.

The price of the shoes is a definite cause for concern when we think back to a time when ‘Cotton sold for thirty cents per pound; and a bale of this fruit of our year long labor would bring around $150.00. The fact that the average small farm could produce only three or four bales of this cash crop would mean that a family of four could not even purchase their shoes with the entire net from their season’s efforts.

The market for Cotton has improved somewhat since that time, in that; I heard a market report just the other day, when as announcer stated that Cotton was selling for a whopping sixty cents per pound, $300.00 per bale. At least one member of the family could have new shoes.

Farmers today have no alternative except to diversify in order to survive. No family can depend entirely on Cotton as their staple source of income. The facts are; in addition to all the other cash crops, many farmers also hold down full-time jobs in factories as do many other members of the family.

Although the economy is better today than in the days when most people depended on thirty cent Cotton for their subsistence; I vividly remember those times and they are conducive to my refusal to pay $200.00 for a pair of shoes. In order for the manufacturer to entice me to purchase them, he would have to include a written guarantee that the shoes would last for at least four years or four bales of cotton, whichever comes first.

Conservative to say the least.


I have put some chores off as long as I can. There seemed to be no appropriate time for these minor tasks when other more important duties took precedence.

For instance; it was not my fault that the grass grew during the continuing race for the championship being broadcast on the NASCAR network. If I missed one installment, how could I; in good faith, approve the selection of a driver for the title? Besides; renting a Bush-Hog does not seem to be a bad idea.

Then there is the matter of raking the leaves. This Chore; alone, appears futile to my simple mind. Highly trained Organic Scientists, have proven that decayed leaves are among the best fertilizers obtainable. Why then, should I rake, pile, compost, and then scatter them over the yard? If left alone, they will accomplish this without my help. Surely; there is more efficient usage for my time, than to interrupt the natural order of things.

There are also times when my incredible sense of humor causes severe stress to my roommate of Sixty-+-Years. I awakened one morning to find a note on my side of the table which read, “Check Light In Bathroom.” Calling on my vast store of come-backs, I wrote my own note and placed it on her side, to-wit; “LIGHT IN BATHROOM;” “CHECK.” After two months of stumbling around in the dark: Why she suddenly needed a light was a mystery to me. Also, her lack of jocularity, upon reading my memorandum, denoted her stodgy temperament.

Very few people really understand just what makes person’s of my caliber tick. The mere fact that we are content with letting well enough alone; is one of the major causes for this misinterpretation. Our motto of; “If it ain’t broke; Don’t fix it!” is acknowledged as LAW in many circles. Some even inject the term, Slack-Ass: But this does not alter the fact that we place importance on the finer things in life.

Knee-high grass growing through a six inch carpet of leaves does not interfere with cable reception: And after a reasonable time of being in the dark, one memorizes the placement of things; therefore, lights are an unnecessary feature. Perhaps, if we wait long enough, the Champion will be crowned and we can resume life in some other semblance of order. However, for now, we must put important things first; and assume that the rest will take care of itself.

Eventually, these chores must be completed; although priorities will still have to be kept in the proper perspective; Realistically; I should not be expected to waste my time on trivial matters when some well-known Lady is experiencing a traumatic affair with her hair dresser; on Channel 12.

To anyone who disagrees with this philosophy, I will not hesitate to say; “If the grass and leaves bothers you? Both the Mower and the Rake are in the shed.” “Now, BE QUIET; or else turn the volume up.”


Th’ Partie

Alonzo had grown tired of the hustle-bustle of New York and his duties as a City Police Officer. As soon as he was eligible, he retired and built a log cabin in the wilds of Alaska. Here, he could enjoy the peace and quiet of having no one around him for miles.

During the first brief summer months, he stayed busy preparing for the harsh winter that he knew would more or less confine him to the tiny cabin for days on end. He spent the days gathering firewood and hunting to stock his larder with enough food to sustain him.

As expected, winter settled in with weeks of heavy snow. He was hard pressed to keep paths cleared to his out-house and his food cache as well as his lean-to for replenishing the wood for his fireplace.

He began to have second thoughts about leaving civilization as the Christmas season approached. He found that he missed the gala decorations and the multitudes of shoppers that were so abundant in the city. He had no reason to dream of a white Christmas. He already had a DOOZY.

One evening, he sat before a roaring fire in the fireplace when he heard a loud knock on the door. He opened it to fine a huge snow covered Mountain Man wearing doe-skin boots and trousers. His long, gray hair hung to below his shoulders and a scraggly beard covered his leather Mackinaw. The man spoke in a gruff voice.

“Hi; I’m your neighbor from about 20 miles on the other side of the mountains. I just came over here to invite you to a Christmas party at my place next Friday night.”

Alonzo replied: “I would be delighted to come if you’ll give me directions to your home.”

“Just follow the frozen creek bed until you reach the mountain peak and then go through the woods until you get to clearing. My cabin is just over other ridge. You can’t miss it.”

He turned to go and suddenly said, “I ought to warn you. There will be a little drinking going on.”

“I’ve enjoyed a taste or two of the demon rum before,” Alonzo said.

Again the Mountain Man spoke; “There will probably be a little fighting also.”

“No problem,” said Alonzo; “I spent thirty years as a New York Police Officer, I was trained to handle myself during an altercation.”

The man turned to leave and as an afterthought said, “I feel sure that there will be some wild sex going on also.”

“Look:” said Alonzo, “I have been up here for almost a year without seeing another human so I think I would enjoy a little Hanky-Panky. By the way; What should I wear?

A snuggled-toothed grin appeared in the long beard when the Mountain Man again spoke. “Wear anything you want to;”


Guest Blogger


“I’se been atter Jay Henry, honey; fer th’ longist time to run some juice up to th’ loft so’s I can put me some candles in them winders. Miss Mazie, she tolt me that some uv them hi-fo-luten Town Folks puts them little tee-winey ‘lectric candles in they winders ’cause they looks so homely an’ all.”

“She sez that, iff’en we puts’um in our’n; whenst folks cross th’ foot log and see our’n shack, they’ll purely “ooh an’ ahh,” an’ thank we’s “done well.”

“Well’sr: One mornin;’ ’bout a couple weeks ago, me an’ th’ Bear wuz still asleep, and all uv a sudd’n, I ain’t never hyeard such a fuss as whot were a’coming frum up in th’ loft. That fuss; even woke Bear up; an’ he don’t usual “Come-To” fer nothin ‘cept th’ words “Ridey-Ridey.”

“That thare fuss were Jay Henry, honey; whot had done clumb th’ ladder an’ were up thare wiff his’ns claw hammer; jus’ a’bangin’ ’round, ta beat th’ band. Th’ fuss were so loud that I had to git outten th’ bed, an’ hit were way-a‘fore dinnertime.”

“Bout 12:35, he clumb down th’ ladder, an’ ses to me, he sez;” “Susie Mae. I’se done worked myseff to deff; and got all that thare wire strung on them rafters so you’ns can put them thare tee-winey lights in th’ winders an’ “run up th’ light bill.”

“I upped an’ tolt him; I sez, “Jay Henry, honey.” “Iffen yo’ check ain’t big a’nuff to pay th’ light bill; we’s allwase got my aig money.” “An’ ‘Sides that:’ We’uns can allwase pull hit outten th’ fruit jar, whot you done went an’ burried under th’ Smoke-House; They’s a-nuff thare to pay hit, an’ then sum.”

“Hit’ll be wurth hit whenst all them thare Town Folks come traipsin’ ‘cross th’ creek an’ looks at our’n shack an’ then they go’s, “LAW – LAW:” “Ain’t them folks th’ homeliest folks you’s ever seed?”

“Bye, now.”

Susie Mae


When we hear this term we usually apply it to one who allows saliva and/or food to dribble from the mouth. “Wipe the slobber from that baby’s chin.”

However, while conducting research for another article I happened upon a somewhat surprising definition of the word Slobber. “To speak, write, etc. in a mawkish or maudlin way.”

This discovery caused me immense concern, since much of my spare time is spent attempting to write a Pulitzer prize-winning novel. I have visions of autograph sessions in major bookstores and long lines, waiting the affixing of my signature to the latest best-seller.

Webster defines the word; #1. MAWKISH: as having a sweet; sickening, taste, Insipid, or nauseating; #2. MAUDLIN: foolish; and/or, Weeping; and TEARFULLY-SENTIMENTAL, as from too much liquor.

Perhaps the lack of these descriptive terms are the reasons for the huge stack of rejection slips which clutter my desk, on a daily basis.

Abstinence from anything stronger than coffee or tea while I am in the process of creating; is a must; since I have difficulty enough with a Computer Keyboard, when my faculties are at their best.

Realization dawned on me as I pondered my inability to become world famous as a writer. My style would have to be changed. Heretofore, I have written about things which pleased me. Lately, the reading public demands a different approach.

Contemplating a few of the most popular novels; I arrived at a sure-fire technique to appeal to the vast majority of readers. My efforts would have to contain the most sought-after elements of any publication, to be included in the acclaimed, New York ‘Best-Seller’ list. Okay: Here goes…

“Investigating A Crime.”

Detective Albano was in the process of investigating the murder, when his MAUDLIN (foolish), partner said to him, “This sandwich is MAWKISH (insipid).” Albano became TEARFULLY-SENTIMENTAL, as he recalled the beautiful Vicky making the sandwiches, while clad only in the ‘Top of his Pajamas’. She was somewhat MAWKISH (nauseating), since she had succumbed to MAUDLIN (too much liquor), last evening.

I think to myself: “Myself: You’ve really got a handle on this writing stuff!”

I am distracted from my creative mode by my lovely roommate, who inquires of me, “What in the hell are you doing in there?”

Undaunted, I reply….

“Nothing:” “Just SLOBBERING.”


I once asked a politician just exactly what his duties were. His answer was; “If I told you; I’d have to kill you.” Dj