Sealed for freshness:
You don't know Fredric Baur, but you love him. He's the former organic chemist and "food storage technician" who in the mid-1960s designed the tubular Pringles potato chip can. Did you read the Associated Press report last week about his will's request — which was granted when he died May 4 at age 89 — that a portion of his ashes be buried "in one of the iconic cans?" His children buried in his grave both that can and an urn containing the rest of his cremated remains. (Thank goodness he chose to be cremated; otherwise, we're talking tight fit.) And a few of his ashes were placed in another urn and given to a grandson. I wonder if the guy who invented the envelope or the glove compartment or Tupperware had the same idea...
Chips that rock:
Pringles has the best packaging (Thank you Mr. Baur) but are not the best chip. Those would be Cheetos Crunchy, which used to be called "Quick Fried" in an era not as health conscious. Why anyone bothers with a Cheetos "Puff," I don't know; they fizz up if you drink something with them, and they stick to your teeth. Fritos makes the second best chip; the large or regular size works, depending on your mood. Chili Cheese flavor are tops. What's a summer without a Frito Pie? Finally, a strong third place, if you've got some chili or some good pimiento cheese, is Tostidos Scoops. So sure, all those chips taste good, but unlike the case with Pringles, it's impractical to really bury anybody in any of their packaging...
Got those ol' recycling blues:
Our block got city-issued blue recycling containers this week and we are very excited, trying to learn (and remember) what to put in and leave out. I wonder if the containers are made out of heavy-duty recycled plastic? And my neighbor wonders if, when his container gets old, can he put it in my container to be recycled? We are not a smart neighborhood but we try...
What? No 'self flush?':
Under "Cool Inventions" in National Geographic Kids Magazine under the title "Souped Up John" is a toilet that's been "pimped up": TV, TiVo, DVD, XBox, laptop, even an icebox and iPod dock. And the traditional toilet paper holder. But if you need all that to take care of your business when you're taking care of your business, you're too busy...
To absent friends:
We've endured a tough stretch of "celebrity" losses this month.
Dottie Rambo, 74, died when her tour bus crashed on the morning of Mothers Day. The Southern Gospel songwriter and singer had tunes recorded by hundreds, including Dolly Parton, Whitney Houston and Elvis. My favorite: "He Looked Beyond My Fault And Saw My Need."
Earle Hagen, 89, wrote one of our favorite songs ever, "The Fishing Hole," which is the theme to "The Andy Griffith Show" — Hagen did the whistling and his 11-year-old son did the finger-snapping. Our local Andy Griffith Rerun Watchers Club is called "Hagen's Heroes," which we began using, with his permission, more than a decade ago.
Harvey Korman, 81, is unforgettable in "Blazing Saddles" and much missed from television, which I used to watch when shows like "The Carol Burnett Show" aired.
Eddy Arnold, 89, would have heard mostly himself, Roger Miller, Jim Reeves and Ray Charles if he'd have been anywhere near my mother's record player when I was a boy.
And Jim McKay, who died Saturday at 86, made the non-football, basketball and baseball Saturdays bearable for us back then in Three-Channel Land with "ABC's Wide Wide World of Sports." Funny how the voices you grow up with, you know you'll never forget.