Happy Flag Day!

Today, June 14, is Flag Day in the USA! This holiday commemorates the adoption of the Stars and Stripes by the Second Continental Congress in 1777. President Woodrow Wilson designated June 14 as Flag Day in 1916, and then the holiday was established by an act of Congress in 1949. It’s not a bank holiday nor an official federal holiday, but it’s a state holiday in Pennsylvania!

Our neighborhood has a flag program. For a small annual fee, you can get a flag stuck into your yard next to your mailbox out on the sidewalk on every flag-related holiday. All weekend they were working on this . . . volunteers from the HOA get into trucks and go plant the flags in the prepared flag-holes in people’s yards. Yesterday I was driving down one of our main streets and the flag truck was parked on the left side of the road. Running along the sidewalk on the right side of the road was an eight-year-old redhead with the flag streaming out behind him, followed by his dad with another flag. It was so cute and patriotic. Wish I could’ve taken a photo, but by the time I’d have turned around, they’d have been gone anyway.

Mama is simply irritated by the flags. Every time they go up, she complains, and this time was no exception. “It’s so dumb,” she moaned as we drove down our street to pick up her prescription. “It’s so fake.” Most everyone on our street, except three houses in a row on our side (including us), has the flag. We keep forgetting to send in the fee, or we’re broke when the coupon is sent around.

“I think it’s kind of neat.”

“It’s just a money-making thing! These fools. We three are the only sensible ones.”

“It’s not for the money. It’s to show a solidarity, that we’re all patriotic and we can pull together.” She has never understood anything like that–she never let me wear my Girl Scout uniform to school on Girl Scout meeting days or wear the school colors on game days. I had to sneak the stuff into my school bag and change in the girls’ restroom. She just thought it was the height of conformist stupidity. She has never been one to be part of a group, even worse than, um, moi.

“It is for the money! Add up $40 a year for all these houses, and no cost!”

“Buying and maintaining the flags was a cost. The truck is a cost.”

“The volunteers are free. I’m telling you, this is ridiculous. It’s like all the hypocrites who put out the flag after WWII.”

Then she got mad and sulked. There is no reasoning with an 80-yr-old about some things.

But anyhow, *I* think it’s really neat to drive through the neighborhood and see all the flags waving.

Here’s some flag food porn for you.

You can even bake a three-layer red, white, and blue cake.

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Author: shalanna

Shalanna: rhymes with "Madonna" and "I wanna," and is not a soundalike with "Hosanna" or "Sha-Na-Na." Aging hippie with long hair, husband, elderly mother, and yappy Pomeranian. I've been writing since I could hold a crayon. I started with fiction, which Mama said was "lying." “Don’t tell stories,” she would admonish, in Southern vernacular. “That's all in your imagination!” When grownups said this, they were not approving. So, shamed, I stopped telling stories for a few years--rather, I stopped letting anyone read them. I'm married to a fellow computer nerd who doesn't really like hearing about writing, but who reads sf/fantasy and understands the creative drive. I'm actually a nonconformist/hippie still wearing bluejeans and drop earrings and the Alice-in-Wonderland hair with headbands and sandals. Favorite flavor is chocolate/orange, favorite color is either Dreamsicle orange (cantaloupe) or bubble-gum pink, favorite musical is either Bye Bye Birdie, Rocky Horror, or The Producers . . . wait, I also love The Music Man. Is this getting way too specific and irrelevant yet? Obvious why I don't sell a ton of flash fiction, isn't it? To define oneself, I always say, it is good to make a list. How about a booklist? Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird Frank and Ernestine Gilbreth, Cheaper by the Dozen C.S.Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (all the Narnia books) J.R.R.Tolkien,The Hobbit/LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy Gail Godwin, The Odd Woman F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby J. D. Salinger, Catcher in the Rye (before dismissing it, actually read it) George Orwell, 1984 Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle Donna Tartt, The Secret History Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn James Allen, As A Man Thinketh Mark Winegardner, Elvis Presley Boulevard James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum Winnie-the-Pooh/House at Pooh Corner, A. A. Milne Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie The KJV and NIV Bible (each translation has its glories)

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