Monday, March 31, 2014


Baseball is back!
Today is the official Opening Day in Major League Baseball. Reigning World Series Champions, the Boston Red Sox open the year visiting the Baltimore Orioles at their beautiful park, Camden Yards. The Portland Seadogs, residents of Hadlock Field, pictured here, are on the road to begin the year too, later this week.
There's something about that phrase, 'hope springs eternal', that rings so true for baseball. This morning, with most teams looking at 162 games ahead, all 30 major league franchises believe in their hearts that they have a chance to win it all and hoist the trophy in October. To me, that signals an exciting summer ahead. At this time the Seadogs have had 10 current Red Sox who have worn the 'Dogs' logo. For a relatively small city like Portland, that's a pretty cool thing. To see Clay Buchholz, Jon Lester, Will Middlebrooks, Dustin Pedroia, Junichi Tazawa and many others on the way to the bigs and before they were big stars for about $5 a ticket is amazing. 
Well, for baseball fanatic like me it is.
So it all begins today.
Who will win it all?
Cards? Yanks? Rays? Nationals? Tigers? Dodgers? Angels?
Can the Sox go back to back?
Time will tell.
Play Ball!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Fendered Bike

This bike looked a little lost the other night in the gentle rain. I'm not lost in the rain. At times, I welcome it. You see, it all comes down to the 'hair thing'. A light, showering rainfall complements my curly, brown hair, whereas it's the enemy of Elenka's hair. At least that's what she tells me. I guess you could say my hairstyle is haphazard at best.
On first seeing it, you might say, "Hey, take a chance and run a brush or comb through it." You might even wonder it I attend it at all, or do I just roll out of bed and head off to 'conquer my world'. 
Now to say I'm meticulous with it would bring laughter so I won't go there, but honestly, I do occupy a mirror with it in the morning. And I must say I do apply some 'product' to sooth the somewhat 'violent nature' of it.
The unruliness of it---
I guess you could say, it's one of the crosses I bear.
To tell the truth, I like it. It's me. Kinda crazy. Kinda unique.
Right about now, you're wondering. Will we get a look? Come on, enough with the teasing.
A photo will have to wait.
Got to shower now and get IT ready to meet my day.
So you see, light rain, I like it.
Sort of a natural spritzer, without the wine. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014


"Wooden Ships"
"Doctor My Eyes"
"Sweet Melissa"
"Stormy Monday"
These were just a few of the cuts on the setlist of of Mick and Jay and friends at BLUE last evening. BLUE is a intimate, live music venue in the West End of the city on Congress Street, that often features Irish music and Jazz nights. Mick is a friend I work with and have been meaning to take in one of his shows. While enjoying the music, I settled on a couple of Laqunitas Pale Ales and Elenka  a glass of merlot. The food menu is very limited, so after the show we dropped  into Boda, advertised as a 'very Thai kitchen', across the street for dinner.
Great tunes.
Fine beverages.
Delicious food.
Can't beat that for a night out.
Hey, and Blue is my favorite color!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Train Time

"It Takes A Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train To Cry" has got to be my favorite all time Dylan title. I bought Highway 61 and played it over and over. I'm so surprised the needle never made its way through the vinyl. Trains never kept me up at night, but I always heard their whistles sounding as they raced across the Morrill's Corner tracks. It was probably about that time winter nights, that I sadly realized  the hot-water bottle that had kept me comfortable and cozy earlier was now solid cold. But the bed was warm, and I just rolled over. Once, apparently, I did not secure the stopper at the top and the water leaked out. I woke with everything soaking wet, PJs, sheets, blankets-- everything. I think it was a night of tears. Of course, my first reaction was that I had had an 'accident'. I had heard about bed wetters and I was a scared. Then I remembered the 'bottle'. Mom came to the rescue that night.
Hey, I just read that hot-water bottles were called just 'hotties' by some.
Wait a minute!
I slept with a 'hottie' when I was an early teen?
If I only knew.

Thursday, March 27, 2014


Ok, I'm not a neat-nick.
For those who know me well, I'll wait for the laughter and guffaws to subside. I tend to exist around clutter. I'm comfortable here. However, I know it's not right, and I really do try to organize every once in awhile. Growing up, I kept my room clutter free. Ya, Cub Scout merit badges helped out, but I learned fast that 'bad things' would happen, if I didn't clean up after myself. This is Congress Square, a prime slab of real estate in the city. To me it is not only prime but an iconic piece of Portland with a long history. My beef? Sheesh! Just take a look. It's been like this going on five years now. I don't even know what all that sidewalk crap is all about. What's up with the painted windows? Is it better than graffiti? The jury's still out on that one. Lots of promises. Little action. The latest test balloon floated out there was that a VERY upscale restaurant was taking down the plywood, putting up lots of glass and pulling in the masses.
Excuse me, if I'm not holding my breath on this one.
This is an embarrassment to the city.
My plea... please get 'er done.
Do something!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


These days I actually try to stay out of trouble and do what I'm suppose to do. But there are times... Most signs, I find helpful, but this is one I put in the confusing category. Is it pointing across the street? Perhaps, proceeding forward for awhile is the way to go. Yes, there is 'free' parking ahead, across the tracks about 50 yards or so on the grounds of the old Union Station, a building the city fathers HAD to knock down in the early 60's to create parking and ugliness of a strip mall. But I digress. How about this. Paint a large nose here, replace 'park' with the word PICK and leave it at that.
Each time I travel this way, I smile, and wish I had a can of white paint and some art talent.
Otorhinolaryngolist on duty here! 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


I always wonder about gates and fences. Are they there to keep people in or out. This one is found on Cumberland Avenue, just up from Maria's Restaurant. Given the local, I'm thinking it's there to keep the unwanted out. As a matter of fact, there are quite a few iron gates in this area, and they've been around awhile too. I know at the restaurant, you need to be buzzed in to enter the eating establishment. That's not a good sign to me. 
I think Frost had it right in "Mending Wall" though, "Good fences make good neighbors."

Monday, March 24, 2014


Blistering sun, ice and snow and sometime in a driving rain, we played  either in our driveway or at the Morrill School's outdoor court. Sometimes, on Saturdays we'd sneak into the Stevens Avenue Armory and play in our stocking feet till the janitors threw us out. We even had fun at the Nelsons' seven foot basket, showing off that even little white guys could dunk.
I think, it's still 'king' in the state, with high school football fast-approaching. Back aways, the NIT  (National Invitational Tournament) played at Madison Square Garden was big too. Maybe as big as the NCAA's. In the early Sixties, Providence College had quite a run, reaching the finals 3 out of 4 years, as I remember. They won it in '61 and again in '63. Dad went to PC for two years, so those games were always on our TV. 
But I digress. How are your brackets doing after 48 games?
I'm a pretty sorry 31-17, but my Final Four is still intact.
Elenka? She's in my rearview mirror at 21-27.
So much for Mad Science!

Sunday, March 23, 2014


Growing up, I waited every Sunday to get home from delivering papers to spread the colored funnies across the livingroom rug. I had them, and I was not to be disturbed. I laughed and rolled along the carpet. Where do I get chuckles these days. Try the cover of a recent Men's Health. J subscribes; I smile. Here are the headlines streaking across a recent cover--
Get BIG Fast!
The NEW 300 Workout: Build Muscle, Shed Pounds, Chisel Abs. 
SHE Wants You to Watch!
WIN Free Steak for a Year!
Strength Secrets!
Your #1 Health Threat... Beat it!
Inside: They polled their readers about humor.
Here are a few tidbits: 
39% of men think sarcasm is the funniest of all humor.
77% The number of men wish they could land just "one good joke".
56% of men would rather hear a woman say, "You're hilarious" than "You're hot".
58% of men think they are funnier after a few drinks (3).
1 in 3 have played an April Fools' prank at work.
Pretty interesting huh?
Then I dug deeper and came across a Rolling Stone cover with the Pope smiling.
An icon of rock 'n roll information featuring the Pope?
Be still my heart.
I'll tell you one thing. He ain't my kind of rockstar!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Lil' Bit

Little bit of everything this morning. Yes, there's still snow, but a March rain and the color green, coming through this screened window, keeps me believing. Took this shot out a back window at work yesterday. I'm looking into a Shakespearean garden with crab apple trees, scattered birdhouses and loads of flowering plants come June. I'll miss this little respite, when I pack it in. When the papers are piling up, the meetings are running me ragged and the hum of the building has me seeking 'an island', it's nice to be able to break through and enter this 'little world' for 20 minutes or so. The smells of June and birds swirling around me building nests make for fine company away from the craziness. Soon it's back to reality, but those idle moments seem to rejuvenate the spirit.
Can I ask for anything more?

*on the 'March Madness' front--- the world has stopped spinning recklessly. It's reality, baby. Young Elenka tumbled to 5-11 for her second day. Making her two day numbers read 16-16. My science went 10-6, for a combined 22-11. Not great, but it'll get me some braggin' rights today.
I hope!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Wet Walk

Not a lot of tears yet!
Day One of March Madness is over!
My scorecard shows a respectable 12 wins and only 4 losses. Pretty good for a guy who followed the NCAA Basketball season just on the peripheral this past winter. However, the other evening as I was studying my choices and trying to determine the possible winner between THE Ohio State University and little University of Dayton, Elenka, who's lucky if she can determine the difference between a basketball and lacrosse stick, grabbed a bracket and vigorously filled in the blanks. I studied the wins and losses, a team's RPI and conference wins and losses and made my logical choices. As I said above, I'm happy with my opening 12-4 results. Well, until I saw Elenka's brackets. She selected teams on whether she had ever visited the city or state, and whether she enjoyed her visit. After the first 16 games, she's at 11-5, just one game off my pace.
Favorite cities?
Where's the scientific research here?
Maybe I should be crying.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Back Deck

I'd like to say that I'm going to throw some burgers on the grill for us, but the deck just isn't quite ready for the grill and deck furniture. There is no trick photography here. This is how the first day of spring breaks here. Well, no not exactly. You better add a couple more inches of fresh stuff that fell last night. A little rain and then later the sun will hit to rid us of the new snowfall; however, this pile is still weeks away from vacating the deck.
So, the burgers and potato salad will be delayed.
Happy first day of Spring!
So sorry.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

New Wave

My new rock band is ready to hit the road, but we really need a new name. Lowell has even added a few of his catchy numbers to our set list.
Here are a few of our band names, but we have not settled on one. We need some more choices to add to these:
Kittens Amuck
Tiled Dreams
Steeples Cutting Sky
My Secret Shoes
Nightmares Moving
Blind Puppies
Driving Insight
Unleashed Babble
Sensitive Daughter
Overheated Rooms
Blue Fragments
Table of Contents

Please send yours along as soon as you can. No suggestion too lame. As you might gather from the above.
Rock on!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Pigeon Social

Ten pigeons sunning on a fence (ya, there's one just off the photo), with a bunch crap in the background, doesn't make for any enticing photographic opportunities for me, but I took it anyway. They were just 'sitting on a fence' probably hoping that someone might buy them a Guinness at RiRa's next door. We stopped there Saturday late morning after a Mass that celebrated the passing of my cousin Paul. We raised some Guinness, Smithwicks, Powers and a few Tullamore Dews and remembered a gentle man.  Any Irish bar that has an advertisement that reads: RIVERDANCE My Arse! can't be all bad.
Bet these pigeons would agree.

Monday, March 17, 2014


Yesterday, at our St. Patrick's Day parade, I caught these three walking the route. I'm not really up on my dog breeds, but I think this looks to be an Irish Wolfhound.
I can be intimidated by large dogs. I trace it all back to that early morning run in with a huge German Shepard while delivering papers. He got his teeth into me good! A few years back, I was introduced to my friend Gary's shepard up country. That dog came tearing down a dirt driveway at me, spiting up all kinds of dirt and rocks. For a split second, I didn't know, if he was just glad to see me or if he envisioned me as his evening meal. Luckily, other than his hot, barking breath on my fingers all was for naught. This wolfhound, yesterday, looked friendly enough, and if I had any issues I'm sure this little gal, decked out in her greenery, would have come to the rescue. 
As you can see too.
I was a rather brisk March day.
Happy St. Paddy's Day to all!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Silver Bus

Enjoy winter sports?
Well, if you are an aficionado of ice fishing, downhill or cross country skiing or snowmobiling, there's room at the inn. Come on up to Maine! Otherwise, if I were you I'd follow the plan of most of our relatives. Wait until summer. You're thinking spring? Well, again you might be disappointed. You see really, there is no spring in our state. There's mud-season, but really winter usually ends sometime in early May... weather-wise. I can never recall measurable snow in May, but I wouldn't bet on it. Ever!
Foreigner, braved a blizzard, and came to Maine in February. This is their bus on Spring Street. 
"I Want to Know What Love Is"
"Waiting for a Girl Like You"
"Juke Box Hero"
"Double Vision"
"Say You Will"
"Feels Like the First Time"
"Hot Blooded"
"Blue Morning, Blue Day"
and of course, just for Maine... "Cold As Ice"
Hey, but like my relatives... they're back in the state on July 5th.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Hanging Ice

I used to be intrigued by icicles.
Not anymore.
 I think I've mentioned this fact on other occasions. I can remember heading off into the neighborhood with my rake and offering to rid neighbors' homes of large monstrosities of frozen water. The melting and refreezing of water back then was fun to witness. Back on Stevens Avenue, the rear entryway, that led to the kitchen, was usually a 'goldmine' of frozen, layered ice this time of year. It led me to fun mornings. As a homeowner these days, most times evidence of ice piled up like this can only signal trouble ahead. 
Sheets of hanging ice, ice damns, ice forming, ice jams, melting and refreezing...
Just headaches.
Spring comes this week, right?

Friday, March 14, 2014

Pole 8

Lots of homes throughout our state loss power yesterday. We're a pretty rural state with plenty of power poles. I don't really know what they are called today. We used to call them just plain telephone poles. Whatever they are called they cover the landscape here, city streets and country roads. Someday these poles should be a thing of the past, like the word telephone. Going, going, gone. You see I know cell and phone, but I haven't heard the word telephone in years. When these power poles disappear, oh happy day. Will loss of power during a storm be a thing of the past? Probably not, but I'll tell you one thing the landscape will be a lot less ugly to look at around here.
They'll be more trees too.
Now, that'll be a good thing.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Bayside Trees

Here are some Bayside trees struggling in our new snow. I used to love snow days in my school years, but if truth be told, once my baseball glove was 'out of the closet' I wanted to get to school, so before school and during recesses I could give it a good workout. Usually, the parking lot at the Casco Bank at the corner was our first ball field of the spring. We didn't use bats or sticks. Believe it or not, in those early games, we used our fists as bats. Not perfect, but hey, it was baseball.  Some afternoon we moved to the front yard of Morrills Elementary School. The 'field' was bigger, and that allowed us to use bats. It even had an outfield fence for homeruns.
Spring was baseball for me.
Hey, I even slept with a ball in my glove, under my pillow.
This technique, along with a little of my Dad's Neatsfoot Oil, made for a nice pocket.
Back then, I believed anything.
In lots of ways, I still do.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Red looks good in snow, but I've had enough of photographing it this winter. We're getting more today and tomorrow, but even the weather guys are confused by this one. Parking bans all over. Cancellations already. Schools are closing early. Tune in any local radio or TV station this morning and get ready to hear estimations of snowfall, over the next couple of days, all over the place. I'm hearing possible snow and ice anywheres from 2-3 inches, up to an amazing 16-18 inches along the coast here. Good luck planning your day!
Life in southern Maine in March.
Dontcha love it!
If you let it, weather will drive you crazy around here.
It too will pass.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


"Even with permanent obstacles, one can find a road to success." Rohan Murphy 

I had the privilege of hearing the inspiring, paralympian wrestler, Rohan Murphy, speak to a group of teenagers Friday. He has quite an amazing story to tell.
No Excuses!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Sunday Bagels

Lots of days I find Elenka adrift on the sea called Pinterest. I don't understand this site most days; however, somedays it works for me. I don't think I ever sampled a bagel until we traveled to Boston, mid 70's somewhere. Soon after, Mr. Bagel opened on Forest Avenue and the rest... well you know the rest. I like them, the doughier the better. Throw in some cinnamon and raisins, and I'm a happy man. Elenka found a bagel site on Pinterest. I've sampled them many times. I'll never complain about her trolling on the big P- again. This recipe is delicious!
You can check out this recipe on her blog here: Downeast Doing Stuff.

There, I'm done today.
Gotta go stuff my face.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Fruit Trees

Here are some apple trees just off Route 25 that I pass heading towards Portland. Nature's quite amazing, really. These trees are encased in snow and ice in March, but by the end of September I'll be stopping by the Randall's apple stand for a peck of Cortlands, one of my favorite types. With four kids in the back of the station wagon, each trip to the Terrison's Orchards in Cumberland with Mom and Dad meant a bushel wooden box would accompany us back home. Things have changed since back then. Change happens in families and in orchards.
It always does.
I can live with that.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Place Setting

Went to GRACE last night...
"Bless me Father for I have sinned
She had big brown eyes and silky  skin
Bless me Father, I couldn't resist
Oh Father, you have no idea what you missed."
"Bless Me Father" by the Saw Doctors
We stopped by GRACE, the restaurant formally a grand church, last evening after taking in the ArtWalk. We didn't have dinner, just a glass of wine and a couple of teasers off their bar menu. This place setting nearby caught my eye. It's Restaurant Week around the city, and tonight we'll be meeting Paulie and Bon at the Top of the East, then on to David's for dinner and some catching up since Christmas.
We've never been David's but always hear great reviews.
Looking forward to great food and better friends!

Sending out Birthday wishes to my sis in Lakeland today. We share great memories. Locked away with her Nancy Drews is one I'll always keep close.
Happy Birthday, Connie!

Friday, March 7, 2014


Did you think that Springsteen was the only one that got himself a Jersey Girl?

I've let my guard down a bit this morning. I guess you could say I'm having a weak moment. Back in the summer of '76, Elenka and I packed our van and headed out on our own version of 'on the road'. We left in June, headed south to visit my aunt in Raleigh, North Carolna, on to see an ex-roommate in Greenville, and then back to Jersey for Judith's wedding. After that great day, we turned left and began a meandering, ever-changing path to the West coast. Every day was truly different.We never really knew where or when our day would end. We loved it! Without a doubt, it was one of our BEST summers EVER! 
This portrait was taken a day or two after our return to our apartment on South Street.
Just a couple of the 'beautiful people'.
Enjoy a little of me and HER.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Black Umbrella

"Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in."
That was Al Pacino in Godfather 3. There's probably a more appropriate line somewhere in Shakespeare, but it escapes me right now. The line also appears in the Sopranos, as the guys are sitting around 'practicing' it humorously. Pretty funny, but yesterday wasn't. In my latest post, I was praising, with tongue tucked firmly in cheek, the fact that I had seen evidence of melting snow. Then suddenly... Whack! You wouldn't think a 1/4 inch of snow would wreak havoc, but it did, including a fatality nearby. My short traverse to work proved to be the the trickiest of the entire winter. After the plows took to the roads early, it was like attempting to make your way across a frozen lake. And wouldn't you know it, when I started down the huge hill on Rt. 35 I was facing both a large, reckless plow and a 18-wheeler heading my way.
"Bless me Father..."
It was hairy, but I got to the bottom safely.
I'm thinking positive here.
In the 40s this weekend...

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Strange Sighting

Holy Crap, Batman.
I saw something yesterday that shocked the daylights out of me. 
I'm still breathing heavy.
My hands are shaken'.
No, I didn't inherit 1 million dollars.
Nope, didn't see Bigfoot in the backyard.
Nada, a UFO didn't land on my roof.
A winning MegaBucks ticket didn't appear on my kitchen table.
No such luck... Heidi didn't show.
Elenka didn't let me have a doggie.
No sir, I didn't turn vegan overnight.
Uh Uh, this ex-Catholic didn't return to the flock.
The Loch Ness monster didn't show up in Sebago Lake.
The 'fountain of youth' still escapes me.
In all this snow, the Yeti didn't knock at my door.
I wasn't abducted by aliens at midnight.
Are you sitting down?
I saw...
Gawwwd, I don't know if I can get this out.
I'm so giddy!
I saw...
Are you ready for this?
If you are pregnant or have heart condition, please leave this blog at this time.
All set?
I SAW some melting snow on the pavement coming home yesterday.
Yes, wetness.
Spring lives!

*Happy Birthday to my brother Marchin today! Hopefully, my luck holds out, and we'll travel  to Ireland together someday. That would be very cool!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


These three windows are always an inviting draw heading up the Hill in the city. Inviting to look at; however, I have never set foot inside the Blue Spoon. I'm thinking architecture and food this morning. I watched Anthony Bourdain's show Parts Unknown Detroit for the second time the other night. He's an interesting guy. Watching his show, usually sends me checking out the refrigerator, that is as long as he's not sampling frog brains and such, as he sometimes does traveling the world eating the strange cuisines of cultures far and wide. His Detroit look sampled both the once stunning buildings of the city's manufacturing center and food found off the mainstream. The images of the once vibrant city were certainly hard to take at times, but the food was enough of a distraction to take your mind to another place for a couple of hours.
I think, I'm going to have to check this Spoon place out.
I'm getting hungry.

Monday, March 3, 2014


I found this recent issue of Interview magazine at a local coffee shop on a recent visit. I thought for sure it was long dead. Paulie always had them hanging around his place along with the latest copy of The Village Voice. Always thought it so funny that this radical rag found its way to rural Maine. 
Anyone out there keep a diary or journal?
I kept a diary once. Well, not really. To get a Cub Scout merit badge one summer, I had to write a daily account of the comings and goings of eleven year boy for 60 days. I wrote not much more than a few words per day with pathetic stuff like: 'made my bed, played baseball, ate fish sticks'. Quite ridiculous really, but I got the badge and eventually threw the diary away. From time to time I've kept a journal, but it was basically for some course I was taking towards my college or  masters degree. As a frustrated writer, I've always thought it would be a good thing to do.
To tell you the truth, this really is my journal.
The blog started as a place to display images I've taken, but it's evolved.
These days it's a place to write a bit.
To Vent.
To Laugh.
To Explain.
To Remember.

Sunday, March 2, 2014


"Hi Neighbor. Have a 'Gansett."
Well, Marchin, Annie's Mom and I took in the Class "A" Championship Basketball Game at the Cumberland County Civic Center last evening. It was sure to be a game for the ages as they say. You had the clash of the unbeatens. Both the Portland High School Bulldogs and the Hampden Academy Broncos entered the game with identical 21-0 records, with the Broncos on a run of 43 wins in a row, but after the 'dogs ran off 17 unanswered points mid-first quarter, it was all but settled. At the end, the scoreboard told the tale 54-40. The Bulldogs hoisted the Gold Ball and brought the curtain down on the high school basketball season. Before the game, Marchin and I took a rush down memory lane and raised a couple of Narragansett Lager beers. The brew has been away for many, many years, but now it has returned. Way back when I was just a tyke, my Dad would do yard work and the Red Sox were always blaring on the radio, advertised by this stalwart of New England. 'Brewed in Narragansett Bay, off the coast of Rhode Island' so the lady said, there were always a few of these cans in the frig at our place on Stevens Avenue. I remember a couple of times I'd crawl up on Dad's lap, and beg for a sip or two. Just a couple of the guys sharing a beer and me learning the nuances of a great game, as the radio cried...
"Hi Neighbor. Have a 'Gansett."
"Play Ball!"

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Theme Day: People on the Street

Today, March 1, 2014, is Theme Day across the CityDailyPhoto (citydailyphotoblog) community.

When I was a kid, early mornings on snowy weekends I was often out and about. There was no pressure of waiting patiently by the radio to hear Portland school called off. Long before most of my pals were stirring, you could find me at the corner either at Deering Drug or Howard's Variety sitting on a counter stool sipping a hot chocolate and thumbing through one of the latest teen magazines, Sports Illustrated or a copy of True Detective. Mrs. Sloan, Bud and his brother were always so obliging or at least they didn't seem to care. I usually was there an hour or so, and they were good places to hear the most updated comings and goings of the 'regulars'. There were a couple of times that Bud asked me to man the shovel and clear off the sidewalk for the early comers.
He always threw me a couple of bucks.
He was no fool.
He knew they'd be coming back his way soon.
Man, I drank a lot of vanilla Cokes at that counter.