Old Friends and the Fart Club

In the early part of 2014, I received an unexpected email from a friend from the past. I worked with Marshall in the early to mid-80s at IRS in Washington, DC. The entire team I worked with was relatively young (late 20s to mid-30s except for a few old farts) and we all did a lot of things together … played softball, basketball (I kept score for the team), had parties, went to happy hours, drank … you know, the normal stuff. It was a terrific time in my life. I loved DC and Virginia, and the East Coast in general. I had lots of friends I was always doing something and there was always someone to do things with. And then I got a wild hair and moved. Across country. And I have been away from DC and Virginia for almost 25 years.

Because I left IRS in ’85 and didn’t quite keep in touch with that group as much as I should have once I started work at Amtrak, tt’s been almost 30 years since I last saw Marshall. But, wonder of wonders, he is now living in the Phoenix area and we had lunch together yesterday. It was so great catching up with each other’s lives. Trying to remember names (both of us), putting faces with those names (mostly me, I think), remembering fun times, and promising to have lunch together again soon. It was a terrific 2 plus hours on a rare rainy day in Arizona reminiscing with an excellent old friend. I can’t wait to do it again.

Yes, I still miss Virginia. Yes, I still have terrific friends there. In fact, I went to visit this past April for a couple of weeks. So many changes – I had an almost impossible time finding my old townhouses and many other things. Strangely enough I had absolutely no problem finding my friend Donna’s house, but had a heck of a time finding Linda’s. But lots of memories are still there, some outstanding and some sad. Would I go back now? I don’t think so. I can visit my friends easily and talk to them even easier. But everything, including me, has changed so much. I think if I went back to live I would simply be trying to hold on to the past and I don’t want to do that. There is too much ahead of me.

Oh, about that Fart Club … there were four of us on the team at IRS who formed that club – Marshall, Cathy, Frank, and me. Any time a member was caught by another member farting or belching, the offender had to put a quarter in the jar. Once the jar was filled, we all went to a nice restaurant for lunch (we rotated who picked the location). Most of those quarters were donated by Marshall and Frank, although Cathy and I added our fair share usually with the more lady-like belches, but we were able to afford a lunch a quarter (pun intended :)) I don’t remember who came up with the idea for the club, but it doesn’t really matter. It was great fun with terrific friends and provides for even better memories! Here’s to the Fart Club!!

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