Thursday, September 30, 2021

An October without my mom...

By Stephen Mezo

When my Mom passed away in January there were a lot of holidays ahead of me. And my wife was concerned that they may would be hard for me having one first right after another. But a lot of them were ones we were big on outside of a special lunch (She was diabetic, so doctor appointments and holidays were "Off Days" where she could have something that she couldn't have all the time.

The only holiday that kind of hit was Easter becuse that is opening day of the Keansburg Boardwalk and our first helping of Boardwalk Fries, a Sausage Peppers and Onions from Nickerson's, two slices from Pizza V and a Hot Dog from The Heidelberg. But I'll bet next week's paycheck that Woody and his wife Marie still have a counter with a grill loaded with hotdogs going in mom's new neighborhood in the hereafter. 

Mother's Day wasn't an emotional hit either because that was one of our special lunch days. And even her birthday was another where we missed a lunch date. And we had so many together when neither one of us should have been in existence to begin with that it really made me appreciate all of the ones we had. 

But this first October is a real hit to the feels because it was our month and she was the one that introduced me to monsters and got me to absolutely love them and Halloween. 

It still strikes me funny that even when I turned fifty she still had me picking out a 'Halloween Present" from any Drugstore's or Target's Halloween department. 

Then we would see whatever Horror or Monster movie was out that month. And I would make sure to buy her a bag of BRACH's Candy Corn and a bag of Reese's Pumpkins in her freezer that she would have for the month. 

One of my favorite memories was of her being known as "The Potato Chip Lady" in Union Beach (she would get two cases of them from a vendor at the nursing home she worked at) and these were the deli lunch size bags of WISE not the tiny variety pack ones. 
Then when it was my wife's and my turn to take the Trick or Treaters happy we would give Bendy Skeletons instead to keep the kids safe from peanut allergies. And everyone of any age loved them, even the parents 
would get one of their own. 

And her all time favorite printed cardboard Halloween decoration by artist Peter Hawley would be hanging in our front picture window. This is the image on it but it was on a orange background with "Put on a Happy Face!" across the top. 

I was surprised that I even found the artwork of the decoration on Pintrest, so I guess it's mom's way of telling me she's still going to be with me for our month. And come to think of it Halloween is supposed be the day when everyone's supposed to be able to visit from the great beyond anyway. 

Love You Mom!

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

In memory of sculptor and model maker John Harding


John Harding 
1956 - 2021

I never had the chance to meet John in person but the friendship we shared on Facebook was a great one. John lived with his wife Gaynor in Worcester, Worcstershire England. I told John his town name always made me think of my favorite Daffy Duck character "The Shropshire Slasher" which gave us both a laugh. And we would enjoy messaging each other back and forth about model kits we were working on and everyday aggravations that most people would cause us. 

Then one day John messaged me that he was making AURORA monster model kits. And I told him to definitely put me down for one.

He made one for me as soon as I got the payment out to him and I was not disappointed when I had opened the box here in The Storage Unit of Terror. 

Quite a few people had purchased John's creations and painted them in their own style. Everyone had their own influences and memories put into their paints. And I had mine as well.

A lot of us were introduced to AURORA model company through the classic monster and or car kits and I love both. I became hooked on weathering vehicles and did the AURORA logo in that style, did the monsters and tomb stones in my current style and the bottom lettering in Frightening Lightning style because I love the Glow in The Dark versions too.   

John had literally worked on these up to the time of his passing in July and I will always be thankful that I was able to get one of my favorite art pieces from an artist I'm able to call a friend. 

Keep an eye on my table spot till we meet up at that
 Great Monster Convention in The Sky