Uneven Numbers Competition

Posted in Love Letters | 4 comments

Frank only had a week off from his job at Torii Station to help me get settled into our new home.

We worked hard to get settled in, and we did it.

Frank worked 30 days straight of each shift, days, evenings then nights, with a couple of days off between the different changes.

The day shift was from the hours from 6:00 A.M. until 3:00 P.M., the evening shift was from 3:00 P.M. until 11:00 P.M., and the night shift was from 11:00 P.M. until 6:00 A.M.

Since Frank and I did not have yet have children, I adjusted my schedule to his schedule.  If Frank worked all night, I stayed up all night working on things around the house, and then I slept with him during the day.

Sometimes after I met some of the wives around me who were also without children, we would have “Wife All Night Parties” at different homes.  We would strip floors, make curtains, make fudge, and cook up meals to put in the freezers of our refrigerators.

Of course, the night shift was always the hardest for Frank because he was a genuine morning person.  He loved to get up before the sun came up, have coffee sitting outside, and watch the sunrise.

The next story is about the first afternoon after one of those thirty-day long night shifts.  Enjoy.

“Uneven Numbers.”

Frank finally had a couple of days off.  After getting home at 6:30 A.M., he asked me to make sure I got him up before 3:00 P.M. so that we could do something fun together that afternoon. When I woke Frank up, he was just a tad bit irritable, so I made him something to eat.  I asked what he would like to drink, but he just told me that he would get it himself.  Knowing that he was still tired, I just smiled at him and let him do what he wanted to do.

Frank got a  drinking glass out of the cabinet above the counter, opened the refrigerator, came out with a bottle of beer in his hand, opened a drawer in the bar, and got the “Church Key” bottle/can opener.  I just kind of stood in the doorway watching him wishing he had slept only a little longer.

If you do not know what a “Church Key” bottle/can opener is, it is a stainless steel flat object about five inches long and slightly bent on each end.  One end is very pointed for opening lids of cans, and the rounded end is for taking caps off of bottles. Frank tried to open the beer bottle, but the can/bottle opener kept slipping.

Church Key Can Opener

Church Key Can Opener

After about five times at trying to get the cap off of the beer bottle, Frank had lost all patience with the opener then he threw it at the sink across the room as hard as he could.  (Remember I told you he was a tad bit grouchy.) Karma was not on Frank’s side that day, as a matter of fact, karma was still asleep in our bed where Frank should have been sleeping too.

The “Church Key” opener missed the sink but hit the wall made of concrete behind the sink, bounced off the wall, then came shooting back at Frank and then that pointed end of the opener stuck him in the center of the forehead right above his eyebrows quickly falling to the floor.  A trickle of blood then came running down from Frank’s forehead, running down the middle of his nose then dripple-dropped to the floor.

While silently standing there watching this whole scenario, I was fighting back laughter, but the humor and awe of it all along with that drop of blood dripping to the floor overtook me, then I started laughing loudly.  Frank turned and looked at me with that of blood going down his nose with a tiny drip at the end then asked,  “Do you think that was funny, Nancy Lou?”

Laughing too hard to answer, I just shook my head up and down for “Yes” then Frank smiled at me as he picked up the drinking glass that he had set on the countertop into his hand then extended his arm and held the drinking glass out to his side away from me.

Still smiling with his big ole dimples, Frank quietly asked me,  “Do you think this is funny Nancy Lou?” then he dropped the drinking glass to the tiled floor, and it broke into pieces.

Oh, my goodness! Well now, Frank knew that I hated “Uneven Numbers” of things.  We had eight drinking glasses, eight of each kind of silverware, eight plates, eight cups, and on and on and on.  Odd numbers of things did not seem right to me but a little like a single spare tire.

With my best smile, I walked to the countertop, reached into the cabinet above it then pulled out another drinking glass. I held it in my hand, stepped back from the counter, extended my arm straight out, and dropped the drinking glass to the tile floor where it immediately shattered into pieces.

Looking at my smiling husband, I said, “Frank, now we have an “Even Number” of  six drinking glasses!”

Trying not to laugh, Frank opened the cabinet, took out another glass, then proceeded to repeat his first drinking glass “drop-on-the-floor-shatter-breaking-thangy”  with another glass and said,  “Nancy Lou now we have an “Odd Number” of five drinking glasses.”

I took another glass out of the cabinet, extended my arm, then dropped it onto the floor.  I smiled at my husband, who was watching me and laughing loudly as I told him,  ” Guess what, Frank?  Now we have an “Even Number” of four  drinking glasses!”

Frank and I broke all eight of our drinking glasses that day!  Not sure why we did, but we were laughing so hard at the end of the total demolition of the drinking glasses that we forgot we had to clean that broken glass mess up.

Nobody really won the competition because all of our drinking glasses were now broken.   Of course, we were both barefoot, so we had to climb up on the counter then crawl along the top to get to the laundry room where the broom and dustpan were located. We cleaned up the mess together, and I doctored Frank’s wound on his head, then we ate some supper.

Of course, we had to drink our beverages out of our coffee cups for months until we could afford to buy new drinking glasses.

When we did buy new drinking glasses, we decided we should get an “Even Number,” ten drinking glasses.  I wanted sixteen, so we could hide a set away in case of needing to have another competition, but Frank said we couldn’t do that again.

We spent the evening making up from a fight we didn’t have because making up was so much fun, and we looked for any reason to do the makeup “thangy.”

We were nineteen years old, we had been married for nearly a year, and we were definitely growing in maturity.  Can you tell?

Looking back, though, I really think there may have been a winner of the competition.  Isn’t zero and “Even Number”?

The next day Frank and I made a sack lunch and walked to the China Seawall, which was about a mile from our home.  We walked along the human-made beach, and since the tide was out, there were many pools of water in the coral reefs with beautiful small, brightly colored fish.

China Sea in Okinawa

China Sea in Okinawa from Top of a Cliff

Frank and I loved to walk along the China Sea beach, and we also climbed up to the tops cliffs made from the coral.  These cliffs were covered in huge vines of ivy and other tropical plant growth.

Okinawa is a gorgeous island with the white beaches of the Pacific Ocean on one side and the beautiful coral beaches of the China Sea on the opposite side.  At one point on the Island, these two bodies of water are only separated by two miles of land, and you can see both of them at the same time.

I will never forget the Beauty of Okinawa.


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  1. Oh… my… goodness… that was hysterical, Nancy Lou. Thanks for sharing that story. The YouTube song is beautiful. Hugs, darling woman.

    • Thank you, MaryRae. That is one of my favorite stories. We always had so much fun. Of course, we were foolish at times but we were young. Lol.
      God Bless You, MaryRae

  2. Hilarious! I’m glad you didn’t get your feet all cut up. I’m loving your stories as I am getting closer to being caught up with them.

    • Me too. We had so much fun just like to kids which we were playing games with each other. We couldn’t stay upset with each other. Lol!
      Thank you for reading. I am totally enjoying your comments.
      God Bless You Diane,

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