Tuesday, January 18, 2011

does my butt look big in this?

Tailgate Party



We are clearly
my distant cousins in bustles
Hattie Blanche Hanna and Ida Ellen Hanna
Carroll County, Indiana
circa 1880s
at a disadvantage
without them;
parts of our personage
set loose in butt-sprung
spandex. Nothing disguises
our plussed derrieres.

Our foremothers
wore add-on cabooses,
cushions well served
in the art of subterfuge,
not to mention
ice skate protection,
and padded tushes
for stumblebum trippers.

Why not rustle them
back with a few snaps
and zippers? A great way
to hide a large rump,
don’t you think, since all
will attribute its shape
to the bustle.



Tess Kincaid
January, 2011



my great aunt Winnie Hanna with friends and skates (right)
Ervin Township, Howard County, Indiana, 1905


Would you like me to read this poem to you?




111 comments:

  1. Wonderful photographs (and words) Tess. Why not add it to this weeks' Sepia Saturday link list.

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  2. Love the poem - and the sentiment - but I couldn't stand to be strapped into those tightly laced corsets!

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  3. Butterfly, yeah, the corsets are another story!

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  4. Delightful! Wonderful photos.

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  5. They are such lovely ladies. You look so much like Ida in that top picture. You definetly have her eyes. Here's to the Hanna women : )

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  6. I like this! I remember those vintage pics, too.

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  7. LadyCat, I saw myself in Ida's face, too! Spooky, huh?

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  8. Such great fun. I love good verse that also has humor and truth all wrapped in one. A real joy to start the morning.

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  9. tess now that's funny! i never looked at those dresses that way! steven

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  10. This was a fun read, thank god we get to see the real shapes of the plus derrieres.. oh how nice it looks lol

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  11. This one is a lot of fun Tess! I agree with butterfly, a comeback of the corset would be horrible. The old family photos are wonderful. Saw several family photos discarded at an antique store this past weekend and just thought it so sad.

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  12. I'm totally on board! Ha, this was another funny one. It's so great that you have all these old photos and know who the people are, we only have a handful in our family. Can you imagine skating in that outfit?

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  13. What a wonderful photograph! I so enjoy looking at photos from long ago, but love hearing the stories behind them!

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  14. Bustles- and probably corsets- hard to move, breath, think! thanks.

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  15. Good poem illustrated wonderfully too!

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  16. Oh dear, my dear!
    I just called your great aunts witches!

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  17. Ha! I love the pics and of course I love the poem. Interesting to imagine wearing clothes that exaggerate the bum. Wow.

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  18. Nino, all is fair in Magpie Tales! :)

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  19. clever poem. I will say no, however, to wearing a bustle and as someone mentioned a corset.

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  20. I think a bustle would be kinda fun, to bounce around in, but corset? Ouch! Too tight for these boobs.

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  21. In those days the question was 'Does my butt look big enough in this?'

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  22. I wish I had a bustle to wear for the next few weeks until the holiday weight goes away :-)

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  23. Love the old photos. I can't even imagine all the constraints women used to have in their clothing. This past long weekend, I went each day for 4.5 mile walks, and I could feel the muscles all over responding--felt great! If I could just do that every day and not go to work, I wouldn't need any restraints or bustles, now, would I!

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  24. Lovely words and photos Tess. I participated in a fashion show years ago of 'turn of the century clothing' and wore a wedding gown for it. This, to this day, is my favorite photo of myself.

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  25. Ah, for the days when I could just cover up my rump with a bit more fluff...

    I'd get used to the corsets, especially if that meant I could wear those wonderful dresses!

    And the hats! Don't get me started...

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  26. I was endowed with the Pullen extremities myself. I always eat two of each thing; one for each cheek! Have a fun butt-loving day, dear niece. Great poem and I continute to love to here you read your creative poetry! xo
    :) Unks

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  27. Oh but would you just look at those waists!!!!!!!

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  28. Don't know why, but I always wondered about fitting into the out house...or worse the potty chair???

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  29. Delightful!
    Any poem with the words derriere, caboose and rump, surely has to be.

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  30. the one in the middle (in the stripes) looks like trouble. Trouble as in the fun kind.

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  31. Could do with a cushiony bustle some days! Not so keen on what they had to wear underneath! Loved the poem and the term butt-sprung spandax!

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  32. Those backsides are useful for landing upon when the skates go askew.

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  33. your take is of a surprise to me.
    witty title.
    excellent wriitng...

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  34. Couldn't help but laugh...the company I work for sells the 21st century version in a small plastic bag: Booty Pops. And I think they come in sizes.... :)

    Rick

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  35. Rick! Booty Pops? That is too funny. Modern day bustle for sure!

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  36. I always wondered what was up with those bustles. I get it now, ice skating protection. Or maybe just for sitting on hard chairs.

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  37. Great title, great poem and lovely photos. How did they wear all those garments?

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  38. Wonderful poem. I love the skating trio! My husband bought me a fur scarf (faux) for Christmas, just like the one girl on the end is wearing.

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  39. It's so surprising to me that bustles were as popular as they were. How in the world did anyone sit down!? A bit side-saddle I suppose. "Perching" as it was known. Perhaps these dresses were like Oprah's 10 minute shoes..standing and photo-op's only! I have so many vintage photos like these. How our ancestors suffered.

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  40. A fashion revolution!
    An excellent idea.
    I'll even wear the corset!

    Such a fun poem.

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  41. Enjoyed the poem, Willow! Do you ever think of trying to find out who designed those bustle and nipped waist fashions? So much fabric must have required! A haberdasher's dream! I always worry about how the ladies would clean those frocks - especially around the hems. Walking in mud or on a rainy day. Maybe another use of the bustle was for cushioning the fall from fainting away at the tightness of the corsets! How happy those flapper girls must have been in the Twenties with their liberated dress shapes!

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  42. Dear Willow, do you know JC? Sometimes she posts similar photos. Are you both one-in-the-same? And alter ego perhaps? I don't get it. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Cheers and with a lot of sleet here on Long Island, Lori at the Jarvis House.

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  43. A clever merging of period vanities with references and language perfectly balanced. Wry and a tad caustic - and entirely feminine!

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  44. I just love your photos! Yes, there was something to be said for the fashions of yesteryear - they certainly did hide so much.
    Wonderful poem, such fun.

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  45. stumblebum trippers...excellant pairing. But i think this piece might lend itself to a quicker, witty pace. haha...hilarious comments today

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  46. Haha, Tom, people keep telling me to slow down when I read, so I did. Now I get, "Quicker pace!" ;^)

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  47. Lori, check out Magpie Tales!

    http://www.magpietales.blogspot.com/

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  48. And, think of all the stuff you could stash back there!

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  49. I love this photograph.

    One way or the other, the truth will out. Best to wear any 'extras' with pride.

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  50. Love to get to know your ancestors..and this poem is priceless!!

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  51. what a great perspective... i never thought of this. great fun spunky poetry. i love it!

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  52. Hi! Willow...
    What a beautiful poem and header too!
    Willow, my interest in this thing called...Steampunk is growing...and my interesting in this writer Of the Victorian age name Gail Carriger, is really growing.

    Therefore, after viewing the beautiful sepia photograph Of your distant cousins Hattie Blanche Hanna and Ida Ellen Hanna...I immediately, thought Of sharing author Gail Carriger's paper doll with you...I hope that you, and your readers, have fun dressing the virtual paper doll.

    Layers Of clothing, I'am quite sure that your cousins and aunts, experienced...putting on the many layers of clothing too!

    [Postscript: Touch her (the paperdoll)face with your pointer.]
    Gail Carriger's Soulless Paperdoll


    Thanks, for sharing!
    DeeDee ;-D

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  53. I hope you don't mind that I poked fun at your aunts, Tess. Nothing personal, you understand.
    -- K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

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  54. Oh, not at all. Like I said earlier, all is fair in the art of the Magpie prompt! I think they would enjoy a bit of humor.

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  55. DeeDee, I thoroughly enjoyed dressing a virtual paper doll! It brought back fond memories from my childhood. Thanks for the link!

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  56. You caught me with the title...Love it! And love your work, I will be back to visit!
    Nathalie

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  57. Well put, Tess!

    There certainly are a few situations where a bit of puff could soften a fall, but I'd rather risk hitting bottom hard than having to put up with that dotty masquerade day in and day out!

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  58. I liked the poem, but has me wondering what I wonder a lot about when thinking about what women wear. I still don’t understand most of it… In a way, it’s always been this way…

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  59. Tess this poem is fantastic and I really love hearing you read it to me. :)

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  60. Tess -- like the descriptive words -- "add-on cabooses," and "butt sprung spandex." The 1880s photo of distant cousins is priceless. Great post. -- barbara

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  61. your Great Aunt Winnie could be skating w/one of MY relatives.. I have family from there also..

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  62. Wonder what it would be like to wear a bustle...hmmmm. It would cover a lot of sins. lol Or more like creat the illusion of more.

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  63. Janis, her skating friends in this photo are Ava Ellerman and Vella Hendrix. Any connections?

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  64. not exactly quick escape clothes!

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  65. One of those puzzling fashion statements like shoulder pads and leg warmers.

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  66. Oh what fun! Loved your reading,
    your wit, and your lovely glance
    backwards to lingerie of the past.
    Those sepia pics are just wonderful;
    a whole art form sadly missing in
    today's digital world. I love it that
    you have a great aunt Hattie, the
    heroine's name in TRUE GRIT.
    Those bustles were probably
    and officially the first fanny packs.
    I think they could be worn without
    strapping yourself into those wasp-
    waisted corsets. Remember the
    great scene in MEET ME IN ST.
    LOUIS where Judy Garland nearly
    passed out being laced into one
    for a party? Buxom women must have
    had a special kind of pain in those
    days; probably why they had such
    push up low bodice styles.
    The poem, your narration, and
    the pics are so much fun, and
    off in such a light place, I have
    no idea how to focus my muses
    to react to them.

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  67. A great poem and ruminition on those who came before us. This was one of my favorite prompts to date, and I enjoyed putting my spin on the image as well.

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  68. (sigh) Your usual excellence, Tess Kincaid...and some family history, tied together, poem and photos into a nice hustling, bustling blogging posting!
    PEACE!

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  69. I always think how truly uncomfortable the women of yesteryears must have been. I wonder what they would think of today's clothing for women?

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  70. O what a hoot! Adored the idea of a "caboose"! Priceless!

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  71. Wonderful, love the name Hattie...just love it...and I am afraid the width on my derrier with all that padding....great prompt ...bkm

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  72. That was a fun read! And ooh, I like the language! ;) Can't see myself wearing all those contraptions underneath my clothes, though.

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  73. I love the humour you wend into this one. I was looking at the photo trying to figure out what they had in their hands and thought they were skates, but wasn't certain. I am lucky (unlucky?) enough to have enough padding on the tush to not have to worry about too many bustles. They would work for those stumble bunnies though.

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  74. At the moment my ass is reaching for here to Glendale.

    Cheers!

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  75. This is all well and good, TK, but when are you going to tell us about your beloved Roseanne Roseannadanna Hanna with the big HAIR?

    Mr. Richard Fetter

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  76. Tess,
    do you know Billy Collins' poem "Taking Off Emily Dickinson's Clothes"? Here are the last lines:

    "So I could plainly hear her inhale
    when I undid the very top
    hook-and-eye fastener of her corset

    and I could hear her sigh when finally it was unloosed,
    the way some readers sigh when they realize
    that Hope has feathers,
    that reason is a plank,
    that life is a loaded gun
    that looks right at you with a yellow eye.
    "


    For the entire poem click here
    (it is well worth the click, indeed, very much so, in my humble opinion):

    Taking Off Emily Dickinson's Clothes by Billy Collins

    Enjoy! :-)

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  77. stumblebum trippers

    Glorious phrase!

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  78. Mr. Fetter, what are ya tryin' to do, make me sick?

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  79. Merisi, oh yes! White dress puddled at her feet... I adore this Billy Collins poem, and even considered posting it along with mine. Thanks for including the link for all to read!

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  80. Big? Yes! And definitely warm in cold, cold winter.

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  81. Ah, see! You had an advantage with the first photo. I only worked from the skater-gurlz!

    Loved the "plussed derrieres" and "stumblebum trippers".

    Kat

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  82. Beautiful women, all, and relatives to boot (not surprised, Tess, you are a beauty, too).

    PS: I love any poem with the word "derriers" in it. :)

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  83. You know, perhaps, that butt implants are now the rage. They take the skin from your stomach and implant it into the muscle of your butt (so it will get a good supply of blood) and voila, you have a fat ass.

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  84. Ah! checked out your profile..that photo is of your aunt ofcourse.Hope I made you like the magpie in my blog.
    I love poem and ofcourse the photo is fabulous ...

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  85. You had fun writing this...all about bustles, the rustle, snaps, and zippers...and I had fun visiting!

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  86. I wonder if that's why they were first invented - to hide big bums?

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  87. You're right, Paul, this one was SO much fun to write!

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  88. I've never had a well padded derriere so a bustle may have helped....................it did pain me to fall on the ice when skating, lol!!!!

    Great poem and I too enjoyed dressing the paper doll, such fun!

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  89. So very true....i love this Tess!
    :-) Your Aunt Winnie's picture is amazing! :-)

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  90. The oldness of details is timeless in this piece. I am learning a lot from your words. Crisp and rare.

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  91. Your butt look big? Only be design!

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  92. Dear Tess: "do the bustle" similar to "do the hustle" of the 70's except this bustle is preferred in the 1800's. Today it is usally tone and trim as per bouncing a coin and all, hey wait a minute, some do get butt implants but they're probably still quarter worthy! Style will come round my way again, cause i got a round tuit!and I'll get round tuit (gotta a round tuit...'round tuit...get it, no?yes?)would make a fun song like...My Dingaling or Dont Worry Be Happy!

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  93. Great poem and photos. I especially love the photo of the three women with the skates.

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  94. Solid, interesting (in a good way).

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  95. Willow,
    These 3 ladies, I suspect were seldom without male companionship.
    And as to bustles; it seems to me that women's attire, for the most part, through the eras were designed to attract male attention rather than for any practical purpose.
    rel

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  96. those two photos are wonderful pieces of history! Thanks for sharing them along with your words :)

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  97. Brilliant photographs and wonderful bustles.

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  98. Fabulous photos and a great poem. I think I am very grateful not to have to wear a bustle. In those times, a corset was also part of the underwear and that, perhaps, would have been worse than the bustle! Thanks for sharing your ancestors and your poetry with us.

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  99. A pleasant read.

    I could never cope with a summer in all these layers and laces - no matter how much it disguised my huge arse...!!

    The snap is fabulous.

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  100. As soon as I saw the photo I recalled the phrase "put a hustle in your bustle" which my father used to say to me when he wanted me to hurry up. Say that phrase to college age or younger and expect a blank stare. I imagine by the time our generation is gone the phrase too will be finally gone.

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  101. Oh yes bustles and corsets...one wonders how they endured--that might have been the reason for so many women experiencing the "vaports" at that time1 I am still working on my Magpie for the 3....

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  102. What goes around comes around! Never come across 'Butt Implants" before one of the comments here. So . . ladies these days want their derrieres to look bigger, the way film actresses want their mouths to look like the sides of kiddies paddling pools.

    Stop ranting, FTSE . . .
    it's a great prompt and a wonderfully worked poem.

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  103. Those are SKATES! Those are SKATES!?! It is so funny. I thought they were notebooks. LOL.

    Skates didn't even enter my MIND!

    Oh, how I love that! Wow, I need to write about that...

    And I love, love, love the words and the photos. Delight me, oh so much....

    THANK YOU!

    My Magpie Poem may be found here.

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  104. if they didn't accented the waist so much, the butt would have been proportionate. says a lot about what men liked back then...
    ;)~
    HUGZ

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Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)