Thanks, Mom!

Thanks, Mom!

Carol Kramer giving thumbs up to Athesia’s beautiful propaganda sign that surely contributed to Cruz’ failed fool’s errand 5/7/16

Today on Mother’s Day I give thanks and gratitude for all Carol Kramer, a.k.a Mom and Grandma, has given to me and us all — and even to the magazine!

In On the Marketview Heights neighborhood from Julie Everitt; 40 years later still optimistic, you saw Carol’s porch. For about 40 years, Carol has entertained a hungry circle of her fans — some sadly passing as others have joined — at her Sunday Dinner, feasting over 1900 times on her unerringly healthful and delicious meals.

julie on porch

Julie Everitt and David Kramer, Summer, 2015 [Photo: Lucian Waddell] from On the Marketview Heights neighborhood from Julie Everitt; 40 years later still optimistic

In The long vigil for peace on the corner of East and Goodman was a battered No Iraq War sign kept by my mother in the garage. I was never prouder when she and her friends held that sign more than ten years ago, twice at protest marches in Washington and once in New York.


Julie (left), Carol Kramer (right), Washington, D.C. 2003 from The long vigil for peace on the corner of East and Goodman

In The NY Times asks for help with a Jackie Robinson mystery. Well, Eugene Kramer was there. (Almost), Carol’s magnifying glass came in handy.


Eugene Kramer (first row, last, rear) Commodore Music Shop at 136 East 42 Street, NYC with Louis Armstrong (1947) from The NY Times asks for help with a Jackie Robinson mystery. Well, Eugene Kramer was there. (Almost)

In “In a clinic in Paiwas”— Thomas W. Harris (1925 – 1999) it was Carol who kept Tom’s poem on her wall all these years.


(l-r) Tom Harris, unknown UofR English prof, Jeanne Jackson, Lucian Waddell [Photo: Carol, date unknown] from ‘In a clinic in Paiwas’— Thomas W. Harris (1925 – 1999)

The “Clinic in Paiwas” picture is from one of her annual Christmas Eve soirées where Carol doles out gag gifts, games and toys bought from the Dollar Store. Guests are also asked to add their names and inscriptions to the Yule “Log.”

In Royals 4 – Mets 3. An opening day World Series rematch with Eugene Kramer, Carol took the picture of Nostradamus I and Nostradamus II in 1998.


Eugene Kramer, Notradamus I, and David Kramer, Nostradamus II, summer, 1998 [Photo: Carol] from Royals 4 – Mets. An opening day World Series rematch with Eugene Kramer

She took the picture of my sister Leslie and myself outside a Narragansett, Rhode Island beach house circa 1998 found in “A Phone Call to Manhattan”


David and Leslie, Narragansett, Rhode Island circa 1998 [Photo: Carol] from A Phone Call to Manhattan

And Carol appears as mother of the bride in Audrey’s excellent adventure in Rochester

Leslie and Justin’s wedding (L-R) David Kramer, Laura Nelson, Val Vojdik, Julie Everitt, Carol Kramer, Eugene Kramer, Leslie Kramer, Justin Boyce, Marian MacLennon, Tracy and Jackie Gayle, John Irwin. @21st century, Piedmont, California from Audrey’s excellent adventure in Rochester

She gamely went into The Rockpile to photograph a veteran of the Crab Apple Wars of the 70s for “Memories of the Crab Apple Battles” and the ground breaking of the Brickyard Trail in Brighton

Later, providing bandages when Audrey tended to the ghost of a fallen Yankee soldier at Gettysburg on the same spot in Visiting a Talker haunt: the brickyard trail with Leslie Frances and Audrey.

And more from her granddaughter Audrey and daughter Leslie in Audrey’s excellent adventure in Rochester.

audrey leslie

Leslie and Audrey, April, 2016 [Photo: David] from Audrey’s excellent adventure in Rochester

Before Talker interviewed by Channel 8. Knowledgeable Cruz supporters back his Gold Standard, she appropriately panned the makeshift sign I had begun. Now (featured pic) giving the thumbs up to Athesia’s propaganda that surely marked the beginning of Cruz’ descent.


Carol giving thumbs down to my nascent and moribund anti-Cruz propaganda sign. April, 2016

And a tease: Carol will appear in an upcoming article on the Strong Museum’s Monopoly Collection, including video from Audrey and I breaking the world’s record for the theoretically quickest Monopoly — using a German set no less!


Audrey and Grandma with die Deutsche Monopoly set 4/22/16 From Monopoly at the Strong Museum and the world’s shortest Monopoly game

From her porch, also donated some postcards brought home from the Necropoli at Tarquinia used in A natural history of sex magic from Dr. Eubie.

And the family portrait after Leslie solved the mystery of the ghosts on the Brickyard Trial.

[l-r] Eugene, Leslie (wearing her newly adopted “Gold Bug” outfit), Audrey Boyce, Carol [Photo: David] 4/20/16 from Visiting a Talker haunt: the brickyard trail with Leslie Frances and Audrey

Alas, Carol has never been enamored or amused by BG since BG’s first appearance in A Boy and his BG: a Love Story (visual poem). But BG loves MOM!


Heart Eugene gives to Carol [Mooch] on special occasions


Thanks, Dad!

About The Author

Welcome to Talker of the Town! My name is David Kramer. I have a Ph.D in English and teach at Keuka College. I am a former and still active Fellow at the Nazareth College Center for Public History and a Storyteller in Residence at the SmallMatters Institute. Over the years, I have taught at Monroe Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology and St. John Fisher College. I have published numerous Guest Essays, Letters, Book Reviews and Opinion pieces in The New York Times, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, the Buffalo News, the Rochester Patriot, the Providence Journal, the Providence Business News, the Brown Alumni Magazine, the New London Day, the Boston Herald, the Messenger Post Newspapers, the Wedge, the Empty Closet, the CITY, Lake Affect Magazine and Brighton Connections. My poetry appears in The Criterion: An International Journal in English and Rundenalia and my academic writing in War, Literature and the Arts and Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Starting in February 2013, I wrote for three Democratic and Chronicle  blogs, "Make City Schools Better," "Unite Rochester," and the "Editorial Board." When my tenure at the D & C  ended, I wanted to continue conversations first begun there. And start new ones.  So we created this new space, Talker of the Town, where all are invited to join. I don’t like to say these posts are “mine.” Very few of them are the sole product of my sometimes overheated imagination. Instead, I call them partnerships and collaborations. Or as they say in education, “peer group work.” Talker of the Town might better be Talkers of the Town. The blog won’t thrive without your leads, text, pictures, ideas, facebook shares, tweets, comments and criticisms.


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