As a former reporter and editor at the Tribune, Diana French carries on sharing her ideas through her weekly column. Monica Lamb-Yorksi photo

French Connection: Fondly remembering Fibber McGee and Molly

When I was growing up, home entertainment was left to a family’s ingenuity, and radio

This year is the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

There will be no big gatherings, and with less publicity it may slip by unnoticed. That’s a pity. The need to protect nature hasn’t disappeared because of the coronavirus pandemic.

•••

When I was growing up, home entertainment was left to a family’s ingenuity, and radio. There were many radio programs. My mother listened to classical music Saturday afternoons, dad listened to the news whenever he could, and we all listened to evening programs. One program we never missed was Fibber McGee and Molly, a comedy featuring an Irish couple. It ran from 1935 to 1959. A schtick on the program was their cluttered hall closet, a catchall for everything. Whoever opened the closet door was attacked by strange objects from within.

Read More: Contemplating COVID-19

I have a McGee closet. Mine has always been a refuge for homeless odds and sods along with its permanent occupants, but this isolation thing has made harder than usual to dispose of some items. Usual was bad enough, but now the closet is home to empty glass containers, two unused walking canes, extra supplies because of limited shopping — you get the picture.

My brooms and mops always did consider it their duty to pounce out and try to conk whoever opened the door, but the canes are excessively aggressive. Closet oldtimers have always jumped off shelves and secretly re-arranged themselves, but now the items I need are finding really clever hidey-holes behind the things I don’t need. This wasn’t an issue I expected from the coronavirus pandemic.

•••

Question. What is most important priority for our governments, finding out who started the pandemic in order to blame them, or concentrating on ending it and finding ways to cope with the aftermath?

Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is the former editor of the Williams Lake Tribune, former teacher, historian and book author.



news@wltribune.com

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