Special to the Mirror by Charles Landis
It is important to always be optimistic, positive, hope for the best of luck, and keep a sense of humor. I have had 4 cancers and, separately, 3 close encounters with my maker. At 85,with the Corona Virus lurking, I look forward to another 30 years in contented retirement.
Born in middle of the Great Depression and within the year got Scarlet Fever. My father, being an optimist, had 4 children during the Depression. Then his company failed and he went from being a millionaire to losing everything. With optimism and luck by 1938 all turned around. Then, I fell out of third story window at 3 and broke arms, legs, ribs, and 5 in. skull fracture. Year plus in hospital (no insurance). At age 5 all good. Lucky me.
At 6, Pearl Harbor, For 4 years family gathered around the radio, listened to news of the War, fireside chats of FDR and heard Kate Smith sing God Bless America. Watched sky filled with B-2 bombers ….headed for re-stage in England. Bundles for kin in Britain, ration stamps for food and wood wheels for car. Blackouts and subs off coast of Long Island. Everyone engaged in war effort and patriotic. Parents always optimistic. Lucky me.
Orphan at age 15. At 18 worked in steel mill and lived in closet sized room overlooking blast furnace on seventh floor (walk up) at YMCA. Graduated university with debt and then called to active duty in US Air Force. Lucky no wars. Recession in 1987 (S &L crisis), Dow dropped 24%, and lost job 40 hours short of eligible for early retirement with 2 children in college. Worked out separation package. 401K with company stock dropped from $33 to $13. Associates lost nest eggs but I had moved to other investment that secured principal (GIC). Dow at 7500 in1990 rose to 29,000 in 2019 then down to 20,000 and today 23,000 plus. Lucky me.
In 1956, while on training mission in F-86D over Gulf of Mexico, plane went into uncontrolled spin. Instructor talked me out. Lucky learning curve. In 1960 picked up rare virus in Casablanca, Morocco, carried to Geneva and left to die, lucky. In 1976 food poisoned at restaurant in Washington. Rushed to hospital and all vital signs going south and showed possible death. Lucky.
In 1978, at 43, hit by motorcycle doing 85 mph in 35 zone. Lucky hit broadside at rear door of large station wagon. He dead me some broken bones. Lucky. In 2003 arrived in Beijing day China confessed SARS was epidemic. They said flu like so travelled about for a month. Lucky me.
Today, all is good… lucky me and my pony.(Note. If you see a large pile of horse manure, start digging and if lucky will find your pony).