Saturday, November 6, 2010

To my favorite Newton, who's not just fruit and cake

Once upon a time my little brother, Garen, and I had a paper route.  It wasn't your typical 'we're kids so we deliver papers on our bicycles after school' route. No. It was a 'we're in high school and junior high and we don't have enough on our plates, so we'll work a middle of the night auto route that keeps us out of the house from 11pm to 4am 6 days a week' kind of route. It was horrible and awesome all at the same time. We filled many of the Seattle Post Intelligencer (The P.I.) paper machines in Silverdale, WA and then delivered to about 125 houses/apartments in neighborhoods along Silverdale Way and Ridgetop. Here are some of the best parts about having this paper route.

  • We got paid pretty well.
  • We often got to eat a middle of the night meal with our brother, Ryan, who was the night auditor at Silverdale on the Bay Hotel.
  • We listened to the radio as loud as we wanted in the car.
  • We could talk about anything and everything.
  • It was a time in our life when we were working like adults (that have peaked by getting their own paper route) and being carefree like children.
  • I don't know of any other time when Garen and I were so close.
Often times I would say things to him and my ending comment would be, 'got it cookie?' After a short time he got clever and his reply would be, 'I'm not a cookie. I'm a newton...fruit and cake.' Now. If we weren't kids and didn't have the naivety that came along with being kids, I probably would have made fun of him for announcing that he was fruit and cake, but was a simpler time and I was uncorrupt. 

Since those days, 15 years ago (!) I have often thought about them with great memories. Some of the BIG memories that stick out to me that will probably mean nothing to you, but would put Garen and I back in our Dad's Buick Somerset Regal (best. car. ever) delivering the P.I. are:

  • Hearing 'Sold' by John Michael Montgomery
  • Hearing 'What Mattered Most' by Ty Herndon
Her eyes are blue, her hair is long

In '64 she was born in Baton Rouge
Her favorite song is "In My Life"
I memorized her every move
I knew her books, her car, her cloths
But I paid no attention to what mattered most
  • Hearing 'Angels Among Us' by Alabama --they had remixed this song to had commentary about the Oklahoma City Bombing that had just happened.
  • I worked at Silverdale on the Bay for about eight months, but when I see that hotel, I think of all time we spent in the foyer with Ryan and Dale, watching movies and eating free restaurant food at 2 in the morning.
  • When I drive through Old Town Silverdale and pass the bar by the Arco. I can still see that old lady with long dirty blonde hair we met onthe paper route. Our interactions were - hi - here you go - have a good night - be safe out there - but I liked them.
  • Malcolm, the old guy that distributed the papers, was really nice to Garen and me because we were kids. He had minty breath. (probably to hide cigarette and alcohol smells)
  • There was a crazy gas attendant that worked at the Chevron on Kitsap Way.
  • Many nights we would get home about 90 minutes before I had to be to seminary, so we would buy stuff to cook breakfast when we got home. The first time I ever smelled burnt bacon was when Garen cooked it...maybe I was helping. hahaha
Garen and I don't talk very often on the telephone. We both have our own lives and they are busy. But, everytime I drove through Newton, KS I called or texted. When I beat my Dad at Othello, he needed to know. I guess what I'm trying to say is that we call when it's important, and I'm glad.

I bet you're wondering why I'm telling you all of this.


That's right people, he's an old man. In honor of his 30th birthday, I have found 2 photos for your viewing pleasure.

Happy birthday Newton!
When Garen joined the Coast Guard his wife was pregnant. We soon found out they were having a boy. I had been watching the movie 'Melody Time' a lot with my kids during this time and I love the cartoon Little Toot. It was while watching this movie that I decided since Garen was a coasty, I would need to call his son Little Toot. Sadly, I've only met Hayden a handful of times, so the nickname couldn't stick, but here's a picture of Little Toot.


  1. love this post, thanks for sharing :) Brothers are the best! I don't see my brothers nearly enough. OH and I LOVE fig newtons... you got me hooked... I thought the post was about your love of fig newtons as well, but this post was much better!

  2. As adults, it is amazing how many additional stories both of you are willing to share with your parents. I really am glad that I didn't know at the time. Love you. DAD

  3. I hopped on your blog from Amy's. My grandma lived in Silverdale (on Chico Way) until she died, 8 years ago. What ward were you in? Did you know Afton May? Had to ask....