Neighbor Lady offers posthumous aphorisms

Neighbor Lady offers posthumous aphorisms
Last week I wrote about the unforgettable Wynn Speece – the Neighbor Lady – who died in October at the age of 90 after a lifetime at radio broadcasting. I didn't write enough!

The Drake University graduate – who once read the funny papers over the same station where another "great communicator" named Ronald "Dutch" Reagan got his start – brought joy to many thousands of lonely housewives with her friendly voice.

She truly was their "neighbor," though she was many miles away!


I told of her many recipes which countless cooks meticulously copied and tried in their own kitchens and of her generous bon mots which she interspersed in her broadcast to brighten her listeners' day.

It was not good of me NOT to include some of the quips and quotes – some of them hers and the rest she "borrowed" from the bags full of mail she received from her listeners. I'm going to make up for it now. Here, then, is just a sampling of the Neighbor Lady's wisdom:

Cooking is a lot like stringing beads on a string with no knot on the end.

A balanced meal for a young boy is a hamburger in each hand.

Friends must be cultivated, not plowed under.

Promises, like babies crying in church, should be carried out promptly.

Too many people cast stale bread crusts upon the waters and expect a seven-course meal in return.

A man's most prized possession is a sympathetic wife.

A woman's fondest wish is to be weighed and found wanting.

Even the darkest hour has only 60 minutes.

Pray for peace and good will, which is a good thing, but don't forget the potatoes.

Consider the teakettle: always up to her neck in hot water, but she can still sing!

Every small boy should have a pair of rubbers so he can go out without them or come home with wet feet anyway.

A grandmother is a babysitter who doesn't hang around the refrigerator.

Always put off until tomorrow what you shouldn't do at all!

Why can't all the problems of life hit us at 17 when we know everything?

Housework is love in action!

The woman who drives from the back seat of a car is no worse than a man who cooks from the dining table.

Lord, fill my mouth with good stuff and nudge me when I've had enough.

I'll take the Neighbor Lady's advice. I feel a nudge coming on. So, I'll just say: "Goodbye, Wynn, till we meet again!"

© 2007 Robert F. Karolevitz

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