The first time I saw this picture, I thought it was another one of those pictures where the people were acting for the camera, only the person in this one appeared to be giving first aid to someone who was injured. It had to be acting, because the person who was giving first aid was smiling, and tending to an injured person really isn’t a laughing matter…especially when the injured person appears to be unconscious…or was he?
Old black and white pictures fascinate me. You have to look carefully to see the whole picture sometimes. Upon closer scrutiny of this picture, it occurred to me that maybe this wasn’t exactly the picture I though it was. My eye caught something that didn’t look quite right, and when I zoomed in on it, I could se that the man lying in the dirt was actually getting…or supposed to be getting a shave, with a straight razor…in the dirt!!
I’m beginning to think that some of my early relatives were really comedians. If the man in the dirt was getting a real shave, why would he be lying in the dirt to get it? And if he was getting a real shave, why was the shaving cream all over his face…including above his eyebrows? If he was getting a shave, was he crazy to be letting this person give him that shave…with a straight razor? If you ask me, I would say that if this was a real shave, both of these men were crazy!!
My guess is that this was all another of those goofy scenes that seemed to be all the rage in those days. When I look at the pictures from the current day, I have to think that maybe we could learn a little bit about what is funny from these guys, because their shots are a whole lot funnier than ours are, in my opinion. I suppose it all depends on what you draw from. We have seen so much on television that there isn’t much left that hasn’t been done already, but they were taking the rough and wild daily lives of living in the old west, and adding a little humor to it to get a laugh that would last for years to come. While, I’m pretty convinced that this picture was another of those staged comic shots, it did depict the way people did things back them. We still shave today, of course, but I’m thankful that a straight razor in not what we have to use to get a close shave these days, because that could lead to the injury kind of close shave, when placed in the wrong hands.
I met Bob while I was a senior in high school, and we were married a little over a year after graduation. After the wedding, we took honeymoon trip to Estes Park and the Rocky Mountain National Park. Bob and I had a wonderful honeymoon, and while we were gone, my parents took care of our cat.
When we came home, we opened the front door to find that a few things had changed around our house. Our first clue was when we turned on the light and there was something on the switch…shaving cream. Stepping into the living room, we saw that there were torn newspapers all over the floor…and our cat had been having a great time shredding them. So we cleaned things up, laughing about the trick my parents had pulled off. Both our families are teasers and pranksters, so this was nothing new to us.
Then, I started to make dinner. We were going to have fried chicken…one of my favorite dishes, and as it cooked it smelled wonderful. As I was preparing the side dishes, a found that we had another surprise in store for us. All of the labels on our canned goods had been removed, so the side dishes were going to be a bit of a surprise too. In the end, we had fried chicken with mashed potatoes and gravy, and peaches. Now that doesn’t sound too bad, until you add that fact that I like salt, so I used a generous amount on the chicken, and as we bit into it, we discovered that the salt and sugar had been switched. Bob was such a good sport. He told me it wasn’t so bad, and ate at least two pieces of chicken. Thankfully we had used a packaged gravy, so it was good…of course the potatoes were a little sweet. All in all, it wasn’t too bad, and nothing went to waste. Again, we laughed about the whole thing.
The final prank was discovered when we went to bed that night. There was a cup of rice over our door, so my parents got to throw the final handful of rice to commemorate our marriage. They had also short sheeted the bed…which I’m sure you can figure out, and there were a few crackers in there that needed to be vacuumed out, but the funniest thing was the fact that there were a selection of bells, including a cow bell tied to the bed springs…so I’m sure you get the picture on that one. We were too tired to remove those until the next day, so it wasn’t a quiet night, but we did get…some sleep.
I suppose some people might think our homecoming was a mean trick, but we thought it was totally funny, and it has been a funny memory that we have had for the last 36 years. I wonder how many other people can tell you all of the details of that first day home from their honeymoon.