I wanted to buy a poppy on my way to work today, but the stoplight turned green so quickly I didn't have time to grab some money and thrust it out the window at the veteran working the busy corner. And I felt such a tug of sadness when I saw this man - old, arthritic, obviously a WWI veteran, just like the men I would see in the Memorial and 4th of July parades. This man couldn't have been a a WWII vet. WWII vets run next to your bike while you are learning to ride, they march in the parades while the old soldiers sit in the back of a convertible lent by the local car dealer, they hang out into the night on the 4th of July to make sure the kids don't get into trouble with firecrackers and sparklers. WWII vets proudly let their young grandchildren help sell poppies for Memorial Day, even when keeping them in line is something of a military maneuver in itself.
WWII vets are...well, I guess I have to come to grips with the fact that time marches on. In the words of my favorite WWII vet, who would have turned 88 this year, "tempus fugit." No kidding, Dad.
A helping hand, ca. 1910s
3 hours ago