Back when AGMA was a young 20 something, I worked for the C M Paula company in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The company name may not sound familiar to you, but I KNOW all of you of a certain age will be familiar with what they made back in the day.


They were called Whatchamacallits!  Remember those?

I was a 23 year old newlywed and worked in the office doing some sort of administrative work.  Along with some women my age, I worked with Rose and Vera who were in their 60’s at the time.

They were a hoot!

Rose was snarky and funny.  I think AGMA now is a lot like Rose was back then!

And some 42 years later, I still remember that Vera’s husband was named Howard.  I don’t think I ever met Howard, but Vera entertained us with stories of Howard’s exploits which were always entertaining.

They had been married for over 40 years and she still adored Howard.  But Vera would say that she felt like she was born married and we all laughed.

AGMA’s not laughing anymore.

Hubs and I celebrated 42 years of marriage last month.

Hubs was never one to celebrate things like birthdays or anniversaries, so over the years AGMA has virtually eliminated any expectations of any type of celebration for either.  To the point that now the thought of making a big deal out of a birthday or anniversary makes me uncomfortable.

Exchange cards and let the day pass with a minimum of fuss is sort of my mantra for surviving the day.

So for our 42nd, we exchanged cards, went out to dinner at one of our “regular” places and then came back home and watched a movie.

But we paid $5.99 to rent it…

I know – we’re a wild crew.

But AGMA can’t quit talking about this movie!

The name of it is Yesterday and it’s such a clever, original premise.

The story centers around a struggling singer/songwriter who is about to give up on his career.  A 12 second blackout occurs all over the world.  He’s on his bicycle when the blackout happens and gets hit by a bus.

When he gets home from the hospital, his friends give him a guitar because his guitar was obliterated in the crash.  They ask him to sing a song so he starts singing Yesterday by The Beatles.  His friends are mesmerized.

When he’s finished, they ask in wonder when he wrote that song.  He’s confused and upset because he thinks they are playing a practical joke on him.

Slowly he comes to discover, in the world after the 12 second blip, The Beatles never existed.  He is the only one who remembers them and their songs.  Or is he?

Fascinating right?

And it just gets better from there.  Lily James is his sort of love interest/best friend, and musician Ed Sheeran and comdeian Kate McKinnon are also in the movie.

It’s a highly enjoyable, light RomCom.

But it touched AGMA a bit deeper that a normal movie of this sort.   It had distant echos of It’s A Wonderful Life.  Sort of a “what would life be like if…”

An appropriate movie to celebrate a 46 year relationship and a 42 year marriage that has not always been smooth or easy.

I sometimes wonder what my life would be like had I turned around and walked out of that college cafeteria in 1973 as was my first impulse.  The line was long and I was hungry (some things never change!)  I turned around to leave, then thought about it, turned back and got in line.  Hubs was in front of me in line.  I thought he was cute. We struck up a conversation, when on a date that night and the rest is history.

What if AGMA had not turned back and just walked out?  It was a huge state university so the odds of me coming across Hubs again would have been very remote.

Where would I be living?  What would my career have been?  Would I have gotten married?  Would I have had more children or none at all?  Would I be happy?

Something inside me told me to turn around and get in that cafeteria line.  Was it fate?  Divine guidance?  AGMA won’t know in this life.

This past weekend, we visited TMWGITW (the most wonderful grandchildren in the world) for V’s 3rd birthday party.  My younger son came up from Atlanta for the party as well.  It was a wild and wonderful weekend!  AGMA’s still exhausted…

As I recall watching and enjoying  my children and grandchildren, I know, in hindsight, that this is the only life I would have ever wanted.  Or been happy living.  Despite the struggle.  And that AGMA wouldn’t be who I am today (and am pretty content with) without the struggle.

Sweet and wise Vera, I know you are no long on this earthly plane, but where ever you are now, I get it!!

P.S.  See Yesterday!  It’s a really lovely movie!







23 thoughts on “Yesterday

  1. I had a store on eBay several years ago where I sold stuff my daughter and I gleaned from thrift stores, estate sales, etc. I sold a number of those Paula “Whatchamacallits” that I had found. You never know what people are looking for (and willing to buy) when it comes to nostalgic items.

    My husband and I were never ones to make a big fuss about our anniversaries either. (Unlike my first husband who was big into gifts that reflected the glory back onto him. Hmmph.) Cards were our speed and he kept many of mine because I would do a funny drawing of us and our pets in them. He died last year a week before our 42nd anniversary so there were no cards that time. When I went through his desk after he died, I found he’d kept the very first card I gave him for our “happy two week anniversary” of when we started seeing each other.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a lovely post, AGMA. It is “interesting” to every once in a while pause and consider the seemingly arbitrary way in which the most important aspects of our lives come together. I am very fortunate that, like you, I know that no other arbitrary path could have given me a fuller or better life. It’s a good feeling!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a similar story. I applied for a job in with a publisher that would have had me based in upstate NY. When I didn’t get it, I inquired about other openings and was hired for a job based in Ohio, where I met my husband of 43 years. I often think how lucky I was that I didn’t get that first job, AND that I was assertive enough to ask about other opportunities. Great post! We will have to watch the movie.

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m familiar with the statue, and also with those moments of what if. For nearly a year my mother kept her apartment in a senior citizen building after she entered a nursing home. Just in case she was able to return, which she did not. But for those months when I would fly up to visit I stayed at her apartment and found myself driving around my home town by myself, and I’d ask myself what my life would have been if I hadn’t been so hell bent on getting away when I was young. What house might I have lived in, is what I asked myself as I drove through the still-lovely parts of town, choosing to ignore the general decay taking place elsewhere in town. Who might I have married? When I ordered pizza from THE place for pizza (some things never change) I’d order using my maiden name. Because it just seems to ‘fit’. Fit me, and fit the place. Soon enough I’d remember that it’s not a choice between the road you did take vs some fairy tale version of the life you might have had. There is no happily ever after, a conclusion that it took me way too long to figure out. And my kids. Wouldn’t trade them for the world. But ‘what if’ still crosses my mind from time to time…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for sharing your lovely story with us. I totally get it… It’s not that you regret the road you took, but, like me, you wonder where the road not taken may have led. And I love the you used your maiden name to order from THE pizza place! Thanks again!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. A lovely story, AGMA. We are surrounded constantly by serendipity, aren’t we? Your stomach was calling the shots there!

    We saw “Yesterday” and loved it. Well, I loved it, and I told my wife that she did too at the time. But she was under some strong medication from oral surgery the day before, and she now claims she doesn’t recall even seeing the movie. Oops. Yes, very similar to “It’s a Wonderful Life.” I hadn’t thought of that comparison! – Marty

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Marty! And I’m glad for affirmation of Yesterday. I hope your wife gets to see it in an unmedicated state! I had a very similar situation once or twice on airplanes, but I was under the influence of adult beverages… Ha! I’ll really have to try to see Hacksaw Ridge again. I understand that it’s a good movie!

      Liked by 1 person

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