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In Memoriam: Frank 'Grandpa' Schober
HR Red Slash

Frank William Schober - 10/3/1923 - 4/13/2014


    Alabama, often referred to by its nickname, The Heart of Dixie, has inspired dozens of well-known melodies, one of which made a deep impression on the world of popular music in 1934. Without a doubt the most famous of Frank Perkins' compositions, "Stars Fell on Alabama" came out at the same time as Carl Carmer's popular novel of the same title, although there was no connection between the two works. Mitchell Parish, lyricist for a long list of songwriting greats, wrote the words.

Words by Mitchell Parish; Music by Frank Perkins

We lived our little drama;
We kissed in a field of white,
And stars fell on Alabama last night.

I can't forget the glamor;
Your eyes held a tender light,
And stars fell on Alabama last night.

I never planned in my imagination
A situation so heavenly,
A fairyland where no one else could enter,
And in the center just you and me, dear.
My heart beat like a hammer;
My arms wound around you tight,
And stars fell on Alabama last night.


Today's Current Thoughts:

...I remember buying car batteries from a man whose business was "Triple A Battery Co" who taught me a lot about batteries. Each cell of a battery regardless of size is 1 1/2 volts. He had a bank of batteries wired to create 220 volts DC that were used by hospitals as backup for operating rooms during power failure. I'm betting few people know about this battery backup power for hospitals. I have a quality surge protector with battery backup for all my computer equipment that safely shuts down my computer during power failure. The cost of such equipment is money well spent. An old man once told me that if you listen to others, you become smarter that them because then you'll know what they know and what you know than makes you smarter so now you my friend are smarter than me since I've educated you on batteries.
Now I wish you a good day with God's blessings. Your friend, Frank

11:40 10/2/2008

Yesterday was a memorial day to remember for our Schober family here. It's been traditional for the family to have a big birthday party for a family member's 50th birthday. My daughter Doris 50th was last October but things were so helter skelter so her 51st has been in the making for two years. Bernadette made the plans in secrecy with family members for yesterday with about thirty guest present and it was a total surprise to her as intended. I told the group that trying to surprise Doris like this was like trying to put out a forest fire by peeing on it. She travels all over the states doing her job and usually boards a plane at the airport after attending mass on Sunday mornings. Plans were made with her boss to demand that she stay home yesterday so he could confer with her on business matters. This irritated her because she has planned to leave town as usual but the ruse threw her totally off guard and the party was a huge success. Bernadette is the family organizer and really went all out for Doris. I am blessed with my children. Donnie drove me to the party at Doris home and brought me back home.

I wish you a good day with God's blessings. Your friend, Frank.

11:33 10/2/2006

Christianity and Religion:

...a good Lenten, Friday meal yesterday. I soaked dried blackeyed peas overnight and cooked them yesterday for dinner. Also macaroni and cheese and salmon croquets. I baked cornbread and brownies. Church rules have changed regarding abstaining from meat on Fridays during Lent but old customs can be hard to break since the abstaining is volunteer now. It seems difficult for non Catholics to understand or accept the traditions of the Catholic church and many misunderstandings and outright lies are spread by a segment of society full of hate.

None of us are free from sin and abstaining from meat (the basic staple of a meal), especially voluntarily is a form of penance remembering the suffering Christ did for all of us. Government flies flags at half mast in honor of fallen service people and the death of those of high stature like a president. A day is set aside each year to remember and honor people of importance. Christmas in recognizing and honoring the birth of Christ.

Good Friday is remembering and honoring his death on the cross for us and Easter is the day we remember and honor his glorious resurrection from the dead. Easter is the most important day in Christianity. Anyone can be born as Christ did on the day we celebrate as Christmas but only God can be resurrected from death.

There are also false assumptions that Catholics worship the Blessed virgin Mary. This is totally false, we do not worship her but we do "HONOR" her as the mother of Christ. What worth or value is a mother to anyone, especially the mother of God? We are all ignorant of things we don't understand and make no attempt to learn about.

Citizenship and Politics:

I have never missed voting in any election since I was eligible to vote because it is the greatest privilege we have in our country and the most abused by lack of interest and participation. Anybody who doesn't vote doesn't have an iota of reason to complain about anything the government doing to us. History shows that many elections have been won by a single vote so EVERY SINGLE VOTE COUNTS! I may not vote for the best candidate, but I am privileged to vote for the one I think best in my opinion and those who do nothing but sling mud against an opponent will never get my vote. Nobody is perfect but in my opinion most politicians will do whatever they think will get them votes. Our State supreme court judge, Roy Moore put a large stone monument of the ten commandments in his courthouse. He has had the ACLU challenge him in court but so far he has won the battle. [Kunnel Komment: It shows that a little intestinal fortitude and faith will defeat the politically correct.] [June 5, 2002]

I'm 78 years old but if I lived to 1,000 I don't think I would ever understand politics. I think you would gain great support if you started a drive to outlaw the ACLU. Their goal is Communism and destruction of our country and our court system is helping them do it. [June 30, 2002]

I will go to the polls as soon as it opens this morning to vote and this is one year that I'm glad all the politic garbage on TV will be over with until another election. I would like to see contributions to politicians illegal so each candidate rich or poor can run on their merits but this will never happen. It has been said that "Money is the root of all evil" and I think this is double true with politics. [November 5, 2002]

And we don't have "good ole honest country boys" in politics anymore like Abe Lincoln. I doubt that there is even one congress or senate member that is not a millionaire and the more wealth they have equals more political power to get anything they want. We once had what was known as "Statesmen" in public office that did everything in their power to make life better for everyone. Now it seems that those in office have no interest other than feathering their own nest. Yesterday's local news here is former County Commissioners ordered to pay back as much as $500,000.00 for mis-spent funds which I doubt the county will ever get. [February 5, 2003]

Our state is in financial trouble because of years go "Good ole boy" politics and the new governor's 1.2 billion dollar tax package has been approved by congress and senate and will be voted on by the citizens this fall. If all is approved by the voters it will result in more taxes on everything. I think that at least half our income is spent for tax and government spends their time thinking up more ways to tax us. [June 10, 2003]

I was expecting my daughter Catherine and her daughter Jennifer to visit sometime after noon and at one point I sat on the front porch listening to a radio talk show waiting for them. They didn't arrive until 5:00PM but this is typical for them as they never visit at a set time. We had a nice long visit and discussed politics among other things. Jennifer has finished two years of college at the University of Iowa and I cwould tell that she has been exposed to Ultra liberal thinking but I tried to reason with her and hopefully in time she will make wise decisions and judgment. [July 28, 2003]

Family and Genealogy:

"I had gotten this URL, 'www.ellisisland.org' proclaiming that October was "Family month" so I spent quite some time doing family research and found my grandpa Schober's arrival. the name of the ship and the list of immigrants names who came over with him. I printed a few copies of all this information out including the name and picture of the ship. Then I found all this information about my grandma Schober who came over with my daddy, his sister and a brother a year later on a different ship and printed all this information. I also found this information about my Annie's daddy, Peter Majerik and printed it out but her mother's name, Maria Spanik was listed several times and I wasn't sure which one was hers. I called my brother-in-law Steve to ask for information but his phone was disconnected, then I remembered he was out of state for awhile. I also searched for my great grandpa, my mama's mother's daddy, William Tate but WOW!, several of them too and I know he was in the group but I have no idea which one. Anyway it was fun and interesting researching. I became a member quite awhile ago and typed in my member name and password so if not a member you would type in a name and password to be able to get all this information. European names can change after arriving here. My grandma Cecilia was listed Cacilia and my daddy Frank was listed as Franz and uncle Rudy was listed as Rudolph.

"I had lots of other family history, my Mama's parents and all her brothers and sisters, date of birth, date of marriage and date of death etc so I took a copy of each to my sister Elizabeth who lives only a couple of blocks from me and she was thrilled to receive it. I also took her a CD I had made for her and later called me to tell me how much she enjoyed the visit and information. Before my daddy died he gave each of us an album of family pictures and she showed me hers that includes a picture on my mama's parents that I don't have so sometimes I will make a copy of it. I think I have enough pictures here to cover every wall in the house with some left over. I also have movies I made of family at holiday gatherings."      My grand daughter Jennifer is home from college for the Christmas holiday and had called me a couple of days ago to ask me when a good time would be for her to visit so I suggested Sunday afternoon. I was a bit surprised when she showed up soon after noon because I expected her later. She stayed over three hours and we had a nice visit. She is studying to be a writer and asked me hundreds of questions about my daddy since she never knew him because he died before she was born. She asked me questions that I have wished many times that I had asked my grand parents. Her mother, my daughter Catherine had told her stories about family as she remembered them, some accurate and others half true or figments of her imagination so I related things as they actually happened. My daddy always wore a hat and it seemed funny to me that Jennifer asked so many questions about the hat so Catherine evidently had a vivid memory of the hat and had told Jennifer about it. She really got excited when I told her I still had the hat so she wanted to see it. I got it out of my clothes closet and put it on my head, then she wanted to take a picture of me with the hat on. It's still funny to me in how much interest she had in the hat. Then she wondered what my daddy looked like so I showed her many pictures of him including his youth, as a soldier, when he married my mama and in his senior years. She is my only blood related grand daughter, the rest are male and she is truly a grandpa's girl. All my grand children are very intelligent and I believe she told me her brother Bert had gotten a scholarship with Duke University. Jennifer got a presidential scholarship and I'm keeping the heavy gold metal she was presented from President Bush in Washington. So I'm a proud as a tick grandpa.

Health and Medicine:

"After I came home from the polls ... I had a doctor appointment shortly after lunch. I got there well ahead of my appointment time and was really pleasantly surprised when I was called in exactly on time despite others in the waiting room that were there when I arrived. They evidently didn't have an appointment and was worked in as time permitted. For a time patients were taken in order of time registered in but somebody with an appointment who had a long wait may have complained and got appointments back on schedule. [Kunnel Komment: I have been in this same situation. Someone once said that s/he waited for their appointment then got up and left. Evidently, their time was as valuable to them as the Doctor's. (grin)]"

Household Chores and Cooking:

When I mowed the grass and weeds in the garden area Monday I noticed that the parsley was really growing; so yesterday I decided to harvest some of it. I got a market basket full and it was beautiful. Parsley is very healthy and especially good in soups.

As I have done in the past, I washed it then pulverized it in the food processor along with water then filled three old ice trays to put in the freezer. This preserves it in as close to fresh as you can get and I store the cubes in ziploc bags. When I make any kind of soup I simply add a cube to the soup and it's so convenient and handy. Ordinarily only the fresh leaves are used but by pulverizing it in the food processor the stems as well as the leaves are used. I once dried the leaves but the flavor was not as good so the method I use now works out great and is much better, (gooder).

10:24 4/13/2005

"I think I'll launder my bed linens today for lack of something better to do and maybe vacuum the house. House keeping is not my favorite sport but is necessary and to keep putting it off just creates a bigger job. It's like an unwanted plant growing in a flower bed that could be pulled up easily. If it's not done in time it will grow into a tree that will consume much more energy to get rid on. What is the old wise adage? A stitch in time, saves nine."

"...I always look for easier ways to do a job and several years ago I got tired of silking corn with a brush since I had so much to do. I've had an air compressor in my garage for many years so I got the bright idea of blowing the silks off with compressed air and it works like a charm with a air nozzle that restricts the air to a fine blast...."

"Now you'll agree that all recipes were concocted at one time by somebody. I think if these people can do it, why not me? Nothing ventured, nothing gained, right? So, I peeled a large eggplant and cubed it into small pieces, then peeled and cubed a small zucchini. I heated oil in a large cast iron skillet and added these ingredients adding salt and black pepper. Then I chopped up and added some onion. Then I peeled three or four small tomatoes from the garden and added to the skillet and cooked with a lid on, stirring occasionally. ... it was really good. You don't have to be a college graduate or genius to cook. All it takes is a little imagination and I rarely use a recipe."

There is a recipe for this dish, Frank. It is a ratatouille... But, I have to agree 'it is really good.' The French use olive oil to start it off and the eggplant and zucchini are not peeled but the vegetables are sliced very thin. Small difference since all cook into a really good dish that satisfies. Munch along some sourdough bread and you are in seventh heaven. -- Old Kunnel

"It's been awhile since I made barley soup so I bought a sliced cured picnic ham yesterday and will probably make some soup today. I really enjoy most any kind of soup for my supper. For supper last evening I boiled a couple of eggs, peeled and mashed one up with a fork, added a can of potted meat and a bit of sweet pickle relish. Put mayonnaise on bread and made two sandwiches with it. I really like this occasionally and it's quick and easy to make." 13:47 8/8/2002      I couldn't think of anything better to do for dinner yesterday so I splurged and let Captain D's cook for me. I had the shrimp dinner and really enjoyed it. It cost a bit more than the regular fish dinner and while the fish are delicious too, I like the shrimp better most of the time. Their fries used to be good if eaten hot but was soon leathery but now they use a coated french fry potatoes similar to Red Lobster that are good to the last bite. I once thought about Kentucky Fried Chicken but decided on the shrimp instead. For supper I had crisp celery with cheese dip, apple, orange and banana and slept like a baby last night.

Life and After Life:

... There are those who tell me that "you're lucky" but anything I have is blessings from God. There are many people who (what we Southerners refer to as) "living high on the hog. Regardless of their income they live from payday to payday and "live today and be merry for tomorrow may never come."

My parents had friends, the husband was my dad's supervisor in the coal mine. My parents canned vegetables from the garden and meats from chickens and hogs they raised. The wife of my dad's boss told my mother, "damned if I would slave doing all that work because I could die and some other woman benefit from all my work." I can't think like this because even the lowly insects and animals prepare for the winter time. God gives each of us knowledge and talents but it's our responsibility to develop and use them. I believe and repeat often, "We get from life in the amount that we give" and the more we give, the more we receive. We are masters of our destiny and it is our choice to succeed or fail. God gives us a free will to do as we please but he also gives us rules to follow if we want salvation and eternal life. Life is full of sacrifices we must make if we are to gain our security and comfort in our senior years. I worked hard all my life raising and educating a large family so now I can relax and enjoy my can of sardines for supper.

07:41 3/11/2005

In our youth we want and dream of that new car, nice vacation, nice home all paid for etc., but in our extended age these material things don't matter at all. We try to teach our kids to avoid the hard knocks in life that we experienced, but it seems that they don't heed the advice and must learn the hard way. Those who listen and heed the lessons from parents and other elderly are far ahead of the game. [July 7, 2002]

The youth of today won't live long enough to make all the mistakes I have made in life but we learn from mistakes. Anyone who has never made mistakes has never done anything.[January 20, 2003]

Youth has it's advantage with energy and express activity but the golden years also have different but advantages as well. I've had a good life and don't envy the youth enjoying the life that I once had. Life is what we make it to be and accepting our lot makes the difference in being happy.[February 6, 2003]

Much of today's youth never had to want for anything and were pampered. I think a degree of poverty would be beneficial to all youngsters growing up to instill a sense of values and appreciation for the everyday blessings we see. I think most of today's youth wouldn't know what it's like to be hungry or have to walk everywhere they went instead of owning a car. Having been a "Do-it-yourselfer" all my life it is unbelievable that some people hire someone to replace a light bulb. We can not accomplish anything unless we try; then discover how easy and simple it was to do.

MIDI Music:

"It is unreal how a tune will enter my head, some I haven't heard since a kid and I have to sit down at the keyboard and play it before it leaves me. Such was the case with one today "Nearer My God to Thee" and I don't know why I hadn't thought to play it before now. I can't read music and play by ear from 79 years of memories. I'm attaching the tune for your evaluation. [To hear the music Click Here!] "

Philosophy:

"If we expect much and it doesn't happen we are disappointed, but if we can be content with little and get more then it's a boon that makes us happy. Life is just not such that we can always have our druthers but if we can accept our lot we can be happy anyway."

The Changing Times:

"AT&T was around $60.00 two years ago and yesterday's close was $9.75. Until 1983 it was KING with little or no competition but our wonderful government decided it was too big for it's britches and broke it up into 10 smaller companies. Now each of the ten are far more valuable than the old parent. There is much competition in the phone industry and AT&T apparently has not kept up with technology. Everybody and his brother now offers CELL PHONE service which includes long distance at no extra charge that has left AT&T in the dark ages. Those who are afraid to try new technology especially communications and electronics will be left behind."


Stars Fell On Alabama

1220 02/11/2016
MIDI Music Arranged by:
Frank
Frank "Grandpa" Schober
Recent correspondence from Frank's family:
Dear Kunnel,
    I am Frank’s younger son, Donnie, and I just recently read your comments about his passing in his guest book. Pop was, in many ways, a unique and complex person. If you read his daily email you know what I mean by that. I am the apple that didn’t fall too far from the tree. He passed on to all seven of his children his conservative view on life in general and on financial matters in particular. He also instilled in all of us his love of music and sacrificed much to see that four of us received training on the organ. I still remember those Saturday morning trips to the Forbes Piano Co. in downtown Birmingham for an hour each with Mr. Kenneth Lampkin. I served as organist at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Adamsville for nine years. During this time I was also Chairman of the Maintenance Committee and working full time as a machinist at US Steel. As an interesting aside, I realized that I was “burning the candle from both ends” so I asked several members of the parish for their input as to which area to give up. The Lord had a plan for me. A week before Christmas (Dec. 17,1987) my house caught fire while I was in bed asleep. I was able to escape unharmed and thanks to the response from the fire department, my home was not a total loss. I was welcomed home by Mom and Pop and stayed with them until my home was repaired. Out of that dark cloud came the silver lining of a wonderful five months with my parents and a brand new home to return to.
    Some years ago at Christmas, Pop gave me the old Andrietti accordion which Grandpa bought for him in his childhood. A black and white 7X9 photo of Pop in his bib overalls and chambray shirt and barefooted was a permanent fixture on the end table in the great room. He was about nine years old and the instrument looked huge hanging on his lean frame. He made one stipulation before passing on the accordion. He made me promise that I would take instructions and learn to play it “... like you’re supposed to.” I did study the instrument with the only instructor in town who turned out to be the younger sister of the man who had tried to teach Pop many years ago. Over a two year period I learned the mechanics of the accordion. I have an eight hour video tape of two jamb sessions we had during that time. Pop always insisted that he could read music “...just not fast enough to play it.” I was blessed with a good ear too and we really had fun playing together. Pop never developed too much prowess with the bass buttons but I learned to play bass scales and all that stuff. When we played together his eyes were fixed on my left hand and the agility I had. Of course, he never mentioned to me how impressed he was lest I get “the big head”, but that was just him being Pop. Well, I supposed I have taken up enough of your time but I wanted you to know that I appreciate your sentiments about Pop and let you know that he really valued the friendships he made on the web.
    All the best to you and yours,
    Donnie Schober
1350 05/31/2016
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