Enjoy up to 55% Off! Code: JOLLY Ends: 12/5 Details
Apply
  1. Help

The Art of Moustache Pulling and other Stories from the Life of Merlin J. McCarthy, PhD.

Hello, you either have JavaScript turned off or an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.

The Art of Moustache Pulling and other Stories from the Life of Merlin J. McCarthy, PhD. - Page Text Content

S: The Art of Moustache Pulling: Stories from the Life and Times of Merlin J. McCarthy, PhD.

BC: Merlin Joseph McCarthy July 21st, 1923 - June 2nd, 2011 | The truth about stories is that's all we are. -Thomas King

FC: The Art of Moustache Pulling Stories from the Life and Times of Merlin J. McCarthy, PhD. | Vol. I

1: edicated to the greatest storyteller we know; the man who started it all, we love you. The words in this book are rooted in truth, humour, and, of course, love, which, combined with a little dressing up, are the ingredients for a perfect tale. You have taught us not only how to share your stories, but how to be a family. To the man whose formal education went no further than grade three, but who still managed to get his PhD: We honour you. | Cover photo: Merlin on Louis Gorey's boat, 1947 | D

2: A Tiny Story Paul McCarthy..........................................................................................4 Snow Birds, Westerns Anne Marie Gillespie.............................................................5 TV Blues, Aunt Jemima's, Dress It Up a Little Anna Bryson...............................6 Bank of Merlin Keith McCarthy....................................................................................7 Broken Axle Basil McCarthy..........................................................................................7 We Need Ya Over Here! Mary Ashton........................................................................8 Chef Merlin, Tear to Yer Eye Mary Ashton...............................................................9 The Style Icon Claire Ashton.......................................................................................10 Returns, The Bubblegum Man Claire Ashton.........................................................11 The Young Drivers of Grand Falls Claire Ashton..................................................12 The Border Dinah Bryson............................................................................................14 The Hunt for McDonald's Laura Douglas................................................................15 Life is Like a Pool Table Allan Paradis.....................................................................15 Lost & Found Cheryl McCarthy...................................................................................16 The Hat John Harney....................................................................................................17 Golf Games, Wedding Day Maggie Bryson..............................................................18 The Baby Whisperer Maggie Bryson.........................................................................19 Lessons in Smuggling John Ostapyk........................................................................19 Golfing Tales, Carport Chase Mary McCarthy.......................................................20 The Pearls, Never Rough the Low Man Gwen McCarthy.....................................21 Never Take No for an Answer Curtis McCarthy.....................................................22 Post Meal Nap Noah McCarthy.. ................................................................................23 Sleeping Races with Merlin Mike Bryson...............................................................23 Thistles Keith McCarthy..........................................................................................24-25 People Do Some Funny Things Tim McCarthy......................................................26 WWGD Kelly McCarthy................................................................................................27 Young Farmer Karen Sexton......................................................................................28 A Few Mints Scott Crossman...................................................................................... 28 Joe Don Robinson..........................................................................................................29 Want or Need? Kevin McCarthy.................................................................................29 Prize Trophy Moose on the Tobique Pat McCarthy........................................30-31 Car Rodeo Basil McCarthy...........................................................................................31 Rollin, Grampy Wires his Grandchildren Terri Lynn McCarthy.......................32 The Hunter Tim McCarthy..........................................................................................33 The Legend of Rosaire Laura Douglas.....................................................................34 Golfing Days Gordie Douglas..................................................................................... 35 Don’t Stop for a Lunch Mike Ashton........................................................................35 Learning How (Not) to Drive Emily Ashton...........................................................36 Words of Wisdom...................................................................................................... 37 The Real Rosaire Curtis McCarthy.............................................................................38 Rosaire or Merlaire? Meg McCarthy........................................................................40 Feeling Festive in Florida Meg McCarthy...........................................................41-42 The Law of Probability Meg McCarthy.....................................................................42 A Shameful Confession Meg McCarthy................................................................... 42 Must Be the Press Meg McCarthy..............................................................................43 The Green Cardigan, Haircut Hassles Meg McCarthy.........................................44 Berry Picking Jessica Bryson......................................................................................45 Rose, Rose, Rose Fred Savoy.....................................................................................46 | Table of Contents

3: Laying the Seeds Doreen McCarthy...........................................................................46 Grand Falls Golf Tournament Fred Savoy..............................................................47 Advice and Peculiarities, or Peculiar Advice Fred Gillespie...............................47 Bank Negotiations and a Young Farmer’s Education Keith McCarthy............48 First Grandchild Contest Linda Savoy......................................................................49 The ‘Fast’ Checkout, VIP Parking Anna Bryson.....................................................50 The Four of Spades Laura Douglas.............................................................................51 Merlin the Lawyer Cheryl McCarthy...........................................................................51 Initiation Linda Savoy...................................................................................................52 Grampy’s Special Treats Martha Savoy....................................................................52 Grampy the Scampy Allie McCarthy..........................................................................53 Five Minutes! Kathleen Morris....................................................................................53 A Family Treasure Mary Crossman............................................................................54 Musical Abilities Jan Robinson...................................................................................54 A Man for all Reasons Guy Gillespie..........................................................................55 Paper Bag Lunch Lisa Douglas....................................................................................56 His Hands Marguerite McCormick...............................................................................57 Jack Rabbit, Rabbit Hunt Lisa Douglas.....................................................................57 Tell Tale Sign of a Businessman Sarah Savoy-Amir................................................58 A Useful Man Mansoor Amir........................................................................................58 Merlin and Mass Ben Bryson.......................................................................................59 Charlie Van Horne Keith McCarthy............................................................................60 The Joys of Public Transit Dinah Bryson..................................................................61 Potato House Pete Mulherin.........................................................................................61 Coke Cola Jacob Moore.................................................................................................62 Hole in One Jan Robinson............................................................................................63 From the Top, Down Mike MacDonald......................................................................63 Rain Check Mike Bryson...............................................................................................64 Golf vs. Digging Mike Bryson.......................................................................................65 Hole-in-One Mike Bryson.............................................................................................66 Six Steaks Mike Bryson..................................................................................................67 The Garburator Mike Bryson.......................................................................................68 Double Armed Fist Pump Emily Ashton...................................................................69 The Gambler Revamped Meg McCarthy....................................................................70 The Secrets to Survival................................................................................................71 Grampy Non Sequiturs Ben Bryson..........................................................................72 Bootlegger Claire Ashton...............................................................................................73 Heart Strings, Where’s Jan? Jan Robinson..............................................................74 Lent, Potato Picking, and Other Treats Jan Robinson...........................................74 The Optimist, The Gift Jan Robinson..........................................................................75 When Grampy Met Grammy Ryan Patton............................................................... 76 Behind Every Good Man Claire Ashton......................................................................76 My Grampy Mike Moore.................................................................................................77 Turkeys Pete Mulherin....................................................................................................77 English Language Dictionary...............................................................................78-79 The Legend of a Storyteller Ryan Patton...................................................................80 The Woman Behind the Legend Elsie McCarthy......................................................82

4: A Tiny Story by Paul McCarthy As most of our family experienced, Dad would often take us with him to town or wherever else he had to go. Some of us preferred to wait in the pickup so we wouldn't be forgotten and others, who were a little more adventurous, chose to go into the store or business with Dad. This story is about the last day that Dad gave me that option. It was a rainy day in the spring of 1973 and I was four years old. Dad had some business to attend to at Pitou's Garage on Portage Road and I considered myself lucky to have been chosen to tag along (I didn't realize it was because I was the biggest pain in the butt and Mom had had enough of me). | Dad wasn't quite sure whether to leave me in the truck or to take me in the garage with him. He eventually decided that I would be less of a pain in the truck than underfoot in the garage. Boy, was he wrong! A long "five minutes" later, when Dad returned to the truck, he was surprised to see that I had my window down in the rain, and he asked me to roll it up. I told him I couldn't, as it had disappeared. After asking a couple more times and then checking it out for himself, he discovered that the window was gone. | It didn't take much more questioning until it came out that my imaginary friend, Tiny, had checked the window's reflexes with a hammer with disastrous results. I'm not really sure if I learned a lesson that day, but I do know that Dad didn't leave me in the truck by myself again for a long time after that. | Paul, 1975 | Paul, 1973 | 4

5: Snow Birds by Anne Marie Gillespie Dedicated to Merlin - a one of a kind, prince of a man. Your friendship and love have left a mark on my soul. So many of my memories of our time together with Elsie and Merlin are in The Villages in Florida. It was an escape from winter weather that we looked forward to for many years. Of course, card playing was a daily event: morning event, afternoon event, evening event, and just-before-ending-the-day event. Usually, I was Merlin's partner and when we lost he would console me by saying, "We're all about the same." During the course of the day, whenever I was in the kitchen, Merlin would call out, "Anne, is there anything I need?" I would respond, "No Merlin, you have everything." It was a little game, but in the end, Merlin got his tea and whatever delicacy that Elsie had whipped up. When Merlin no longer wanted to play 18 holes, he and I would scoot out on the golf cart to the local course. At that stage, for Merlin, it was all about having a few laughs and just having a good time. We were early one day so we went to the putting green. Whenever I placed the ball very close to the hole, and sometimes right in the hole, Merlin would call out, "Good one, Anne!" Well, after a few calls from my cheering section, suddenly the putting green was empty and it was just Merlin and me...where did everyone go!? We tried to take Elsie and Merlin out to dinner for special occasions and whenever we asked to take him to his favourite restaurant, he would just tap on the dining room table and say, "Right here." However, we would manage to have him vacate his place at the head of the table every now and again. | Westerns by Anne Marie Gillespie I don't know anyone who enjoys all those cowboy stories more than Merlin. If I looked as though I wasn't busy even for a minute, Merlin would call out for me to hurry and watch the shoot-out. He would say, "You haven't seen this one before." He showed as much enthusiasm as a first-time viewer, and surely he had seen all those movies hundreds of times. What a fan! | Merlin, Guy & Anne Marie, Lady Lake, Florida, October 2002 | 5

6: TV Blues by Anna Bryson A few tales for my Grampy, who taught me the importance of love, hard work & laughter. During university, it wasn't unusual to get phone calls at any hour of the day from Grampy. He would need regular assistance with his remote for the VCR, TV, cable, DVD player, etc. I had written him detailed instructions several times, complete with a labeled diagram of each remote control, and although it wasn't too complicated he couldn't seem to figure it out. For some reason, more often than not, he would be whispering into the phone, "I'll be right over to get you!" He would hang up before I had a chance to explain that I had classes to attend. Once I got in the car, he would let me know, "If your Grammy asks, say you called me and wanted to come for a visit." Strange thing was, once I turned on the TV, he never even watched a program. Usually we went straight to the table for a game of Spades! | Aunt Jemima's by Anna Bryson One evening, I stopped by Grammy and Grampy's for a meal. Asking Grampy what was for dinner, he replied, "She told me Aunt Jemima's! I dont know, figure it must be pancakes!" Turns out it was enchiladas. | Dress it Up a Little! by Anna Bryson One day as Grampy and I arrived at his apartment, he hollered at me to wait a minute. Bringing me to the trunk of his car, he handed me a bag (not the hidden bag of dulse, another one). "Now, you give this to me in front of your grandmother like it's a present you got me. She won't let me have any more shirts from Frenchy's, but I figure if it's a gift from you she can't throw it out. Now, be sure you gift it in front | Anna & Grampy, 1985 | Elsie & Merlin, 25th wedding anniversary, 1975 | 6 | of Grammy, dress it up a little, you know." Five minutes later, I presented Grampy with his present and he was thrilled! Grammy immediately cut off the tag, reluctantly threw the old shirt in the wash, and proceeded to wash the scissors that cut the tag. | *Editor's Note: Grammy's addition to this story: "Hmph, she thought I didn't know, eh?"

7: One spring day, sometime in the mid 1970s, a carload of people in a sputtering station wagon made their way into the yard. The familiar old jalopy chugged to a stop in front of the garage. The McQuaids were here from 'outback,' likely picking up a pay cheque. It was the McQuaid clan. Paul, a.k.a. Hoppy, as he had one leg that was quite a bit shorter than the other, was the father of a local family who came straight from the movie Deliverance. He worked for Dad on and off; off whenever Paul's weakness for the bottle took over. Eventually, Paul poured himself out of the car and limped his way to the door, asking to speak with "Merl." Dad brought him into the office to talk, so that Paul's loud, colourful language didn't spill throughout the entire house. I was fortunate that Mom wasn't around to shoo me away, so I leaned against the fridge and nonchalantly | eavesdropped on the conversation. Paul had a request of Dad that was all too common, "Merl, I was wondering if you could lend me some money. You could take it off next week's pay, but I really need some cash." Dad's big heart had led him to give into Paul's requests many times, but his patience could also run pretty thin as he knew that Paul wouldn't show up for work if he had any money in his pocket for a bottle. This was one of those times. Dad didn't say anything for a few anxious moments, figuring | out the best way to deal with the issue. After gathering his thoughts, his only reaction was to say "Paul, come with me. I've got something to show you." They made their way out to the yard and as they did I sneaked into the office so I could eavesdrop on the conclusion through the open window. How was Dad going to deal with this one? Right in front of the garage Dad turned and looked up over the house; he raised his arm, pointed, and said, "Paul, look up there. Do you see any sign that says BANK?" Paul's face dropped in shock. He didn't know what to say. After a few tense moments, all he could do was rhyme off a string of profanity at Dad and shuffle back to his car with his tail between his legs. He didn't seem to find any humour in Dad's prank. Many months passed before Hoppy could muster the courage to ask for any more loans at the Bank of Merlin. | Bank of Merlin by Keith McCarthy | 7 | Merlin at Long Lake | I once broke the drive shaft on Merlin's truck while I was doing the potato spraying in the summer months. I tried to back up in the water supply truck and hit an elevated part of the field, locking the truck's rear axle on a vertical part of the field so that the drive shaft snapped. I was scared and afraid that Moo would be mad, but he didn't say a word. He got the truck repaired as soon as possible so that I could get back to spraying the potato plants. He was a fun kind of guy and put fun and people first. | Broken Axle by Basil McCarthy

8: We Need Ya Over Here! by Mary Ashton Throughout my university years, I lived with a few different groups of friends and fellow students. Now, everyone knows that when Grampy is hankering for a game of Spades, but is lacking that crucial fourth player, McCarthy phones around Fredericton are ringing off the hook. When the landline days were in full force, Grampy was never shy to dial up whatever house at which I was currently residing, particularly on these card playing occasions. Much to the chagrin of my roommates, Grampy would often forget which grandchild's digits he had struck on that telephone dial pad, and regardless of who answered his call, would proceed to string off a list of local grandkids: "Laura? Meg? We need ya! Mary? Anna? Emily? We need ya over here!" Eventually, every roommate became accustomed to passing the phone along to either me or, when living together, Meg, when "that strange, old man" was rambling on the line. | When cellphones began to override the need for a house phone, sure enough Grampy had his list of card players' mobile numbers securely taped to the pull-out wooden tray beneath his phone, conveniently located just beside his plush, reclining, green throne. Well, needless to say, one is not always able to answer a phone call (particularly one of a card playing nature) at a mere moment's notice. In this event, Grampy never failed to leave a prolonged, yet often indiscernible, voicemail message. "Hello? mumble mumble Mary Louuu? Where are youuuu? mumble mumble. We need ya Mary Lou! We need ya over here!" Meg and I, or Anna and I, often replayed these messages roaring with laughter. While the guilt of potentially preventing a Spades game was definite torture, the laughs almost made it worth it. Having said that, guilt (combined with the desire to bring some Unbeatable action to G & G!) usually won out, and before long we were cruising over to the condo for a full night of Spades, as one game surely would never suffice. Even as the nights wound down and the hours ticked by, "Okay, start it at 250!" was a popular holler from Grampy, paired with the famous pointed-index-finger-air-jab, especially if he had lost the last game. We all know it's that last game that everyone remembers: the grand, grand champion! And nobody likes to wash the dishes... | Mary, unimpressed by one of Grampy's plays during a Spades game, 2010 | Grampy tends not to brag or boast when he and his partner are in the lead. Grampy, Mary, Meg, and Grammy, 2010 | 8

9: Chef Merlin by Mary Ashton One would be a fool to claim that Grammy is not the master of the kitchen, but some may be surprised to hear that Grampy also dipped his hand into that domestic domain on more than one occasion. One calm, cool Grand Falls night, sometime in the early 1930s, little Merlin strolled home on the Portage Road and was surprised to see his usually busy household was seemingly vacant. Hmm, thought little Merlin, I could really go for a treat. How hard could this baking thing be? he wondered. With mother out of sight, Merlin got right to work. He measured, mixed, and made what was supposed to be a vanilla sponge cake. Now, those old, wooden stoves were not for amateurs, and required very particular and precise action which young Merlin was not prepared for. As we may have predicted, what Merlin ended up with was more of a rock-hard, charcoal-encrusted brick than any edible dessert. | Tear to Yer Eye by Mary Ashton We are all aware of Grampy's love of old Western films, but there is another, less publicised, genre for which Grampy has a soft spot. This is what one might call, Animal Drama. Grampy enjoys ragging on his children and grandchildren for going to the movie theatres ("What would ya go all the way up there for!? Gee hovers!"), but he himself has cruised up to the Regent Mall a time or two if there happened to be a new movie involving some animal's heart-warming adventure of beating all odds. This is quite a surprise for a man who does not have the time of day for any household pet. But, it is true; Grampy has | Nearly 70 years later, Grampy finally worked up the courage to venture into that kitchen territory once again. One afternoon while Grammy was out doing errands, Grampy had a craving for some "squares." (Rice Krispie Squares to be precise, though Grampy is never too big on accuracy when it comes to proper names). Grampy grabbed that cereal box and got right to work. Unfortunately, we will never know whether or not his attempt was a flop. Grammy returned home shortly after he began. "Merlin! What are you doing in here!?" She grabbed the margine from one hand and the wooden spoon from the other and quickly shooed him out of the kitchen. | Grampy, equipped with his trademark heating pad and green mug, enjoying a film in his beloved Lazy Boy, 2010 | Grampy must have lost a game! More likely, he just stopped briefly by a sink full of dirty dishes to to pose for a photo. Grammy's 80th birthday party, Keith & Mary's house, 2009 | raved and raved about these animal flicks. Most recently to catch his attention is Secretariat, the story of Grand Falls' native Ron Turcotte and his horse, Secretariat, once Triple Crown winners of the horse derby, before Ron was paralyzed during an accident in a 1978 race. A few years back, Grampy had no shortage of praise for Eight Below, the story of a team of dogsledders braving the harsh northern elements. "Bring a tear to yer eye," he'd tell me, "right there to yer eye. Gee hovers, what a story!" | 9

10: Grampy, The Style Icon by Claire Ashton You might think that my reputation as a trend setter was primarily influenced by my Nanny, Cicely, or our perfectly coordinated Grammy, or perhaps even my mother, who saved all her pennies while at nursing school in Saint John for this jacket or that dress, described in painstaking detail in letters to Linda. But, in fact, it is our Grampy to whom I primarily attribute my keen fashion sense. Of course, you all know that Grampy and I pioneered the ridges, more commonly known as the "steps" hairstyle in the early '90s, when I first began my career as Grampy's Barber (there were others- Meg, Kelly, and they were fine, but utterly creative?). When retelling this story, Grampy loves to include the detail of Jan entering the room and falling down in laughter when she saw his new look- she just wasn't ready for the ridges! Grampy also provided the staples for my junior high school hippie-grunge-chic style: my favourite pair of Gus bell-bottom jeans, his old sweater (the perfect Kurt Cobain cardigan), and his work overalls, which I wore with slouchy teen angst with my maroon hair and heavy eyeliner. Over the years, I have taken tremendous pleasure in bartering and bargaining for goods, having learned from the best style-on-a-budget guide along the way. Grampy always seems concerned with my style, whether it's in asking me the exact location and for what price I acquired my outfit, hipping me to new places to shop like Jinglers, or giving me permission to re-wear my ridiculous Christmas Eve shoes to his "funeral." More recently, it's been me dressing Grampy in layers of wool-blend cardigans from Value Village, but since the very beginning he was dressing me too, from his undershirts to his overalls, and I must say: we both look pretty sharp! Postscript:When I was saving up money to go to Africa, one of my jobs was to care for a wonderful old gentleman, George Murray. One day, much to Grampy's delight, I told George that I cut my grandfather's hair. So, instead of wheeling/driving George to the Barber every 2 weeks, I started to trim his hair at home (I might add here that he flinched and jumped a whole lot less than Grampy). A few months later, when George died, his daughter and son gave me a couple thousand dollars towards my trip, as a really lovely thank you for sticking around. Grampy loved to hear that story about the Hair Dresser's tip he could never beat. | Grampy & Claire having a time! | 10

11: Returns by Claire Ashton One of the most embarrassing purchase returns Grampy ever had me make was an old, plastic patio chair. This old green chair, faded in places to a powdery white because of the winter weather, had been on our back deck on Ballpark Avenue for at least a year. There was no receipt for the chair, and a leg had broken off (possibly because Grampy had one of us teetering on it while instructing how to Rosaire the clothesline, a tile on the shed roof, the patio door, or any number of things). I told Grampy flat-out, "I do not want to return that chair," but I found myself in Canadian Tire nonetheless, chasing after my poor, old Grampy, who seemed to be struggling with the light seat, dropping part of it in the aisle. "Oh there she is," he said to the customer service rep as I approached, "Claire broke the chair and she wants to know if she can return it!" | There are some classic sites that enveloped the house on 4th Ave, and made it an even better place to spend time: the slip-n-slide back-yard hill, the corner thrill-ride sliding hill, the A&W scooter in the shed, the Dairy Delight and its polar bear, Granny Lilly's treasure trove basement, the store up by the playground that rented videos, the man-made fish ponds, and there is another more shaded memory I have that cousins my age or older might share: The Bubblegum Man. I think his name was Leon Rideout, and he had one or more of those old fashioned glass bowl gum ball dispensers. I don't think any of us really enjoyed visiting him too much (except that it was a standard in the list of outings and adventures with Grampy)...a forced visit for a mere gumball when treats were always so abundant in Grammy's kitchen? The Bubble Gum Man was a strange, quiet, very old man, always sitting in the exact same spot. Grampy would pinch us and prod us forward, making sure we said hello and thanked him for the gum, Grampy proudly telling him who we all were. When I began volunteering with seniors living in isolation, in Montreal, Grampy would always marvel in disbelief at the fact that these “poor, poor old fellas” had no family coming around to see them. Even though Grampy has been spoiled with more family love and attention than you could shake a stick at, he always appreciated it in his own way, and realized how lucky he is, and now I know that our trips to the Bubblegum Man were not about a chew, they were about sharing a small piece of that family love and attention. | Grampy, PEI Summer 2008 | The house on Fourth Avenue (above), Merlin & Elsie's grandchildren slip-n-sliding in the backyard (right) | 11 | The Bubblegum Man by Claire Ashton

12: The Young Drivers of Grand Falls by Claire Ashton In my experience, if Grampy has one rule for his conduct behind the wheel, it's "Don't jackrabbit!" Otherwise, he's been known to be pretty loose about the driving stuff. An early memory of this was me standing up on the floor in the middle of the front seat of Grampy's truck, asking if he didn't think we deserved a special treat after all of our hard work berry picking. Of course he agreed- you can't say G & G ever pulled the push-away on treats for their grandchildren. I also recall my stomach full of butterflies back in the old bowling alley parking lot in Grand Falls; the only qualification for being allowed to run cautious laps around the lot was to be able to reach the wheel and the break. I think I was about 11 when I first started driver's education (come to think of it, it's about time Noah got some lessons in, and on that note, Jacob must be ready for his golf cart introduction). Accident free 15 years later- thanks Grampy! | A couple Rosaires | Grampy, Maggie, Jess, Lisa, Ben, & Anna, 1990 | Mary & Meg as Elsie & Merlin Halloween in Grand Sault 2009 | 12 | Grammy & her next level grandchildren, Christmas 2010

13: From bottom left, clockwise: Meg, Ben, Grampy, Mary & Claire at Maggie & John's wedding, 2010; a letter from Merlin to Janice & Mike Ashton, 1975; Merlin, Christmas, 2010; Merlin & Linda; Gerard McCluskey & Merlin on their way to St. Leonard to visit some girls, 1945 | 13 | Above "Make sure you get lots of stuff; it will make you happy."

14: The Border by Dinah Bryson There was a time when Canadian money was more valuable than American money, if you can imagine. Sounds like a fairytale I know, but it is true. Dad and Mom's farm backed onto a farm in Maine, with nothing separating the two farms, and the two countries, but a concrete marker which declared U.S.A. on one side and Canada on the other. Those were the days when terrorists were unheard of. Everyone loved their neighbours, even if they were American. Dad loved to shop "across the line." There were bargains galore over there and the bigger the bargain the more he loved it. Whether the bargain was needed or not was irrelevant. | As he approached the concrete marker there appeared before him a Maine State Trooper. Being as shy as Dad was, and still is, he was at a loss for words. He and the trooper talked for about 20 minutes about everything under the sun. Finally, the Trooper inquired as to why Dad kept glancing anxiously into the back of the pickup, knowing full well the back was loaded with contraband to be smuggled. "Well," Dad said, "I have just a few groceries back there for my family and I am afraid on this hot day, my children will be very upset because the ice cream is melting." The Trooper told dad that he had better hurry home then, before it melted. They said goodbye and Dad carried on across the border, laughing all the way home, just thinking of how he would be able to tell this story for many, many years, and in many, many different versions. | One blistering hot summer day (years before the golf-bug had taken hold and Dad still had to work, or at least look busy), Dad took a drive across the line. Many a trip was taken through those back roads into the U.S.A. Dad knew the farmer on that adjoining farm, and he had no problem with the traffic through his farmland. Dad drove around for a while, checking on the potatoes, rocks, weeds, and aphids. He got thirsty and decided to hit the A&P in Limestone before heading home. Well, there was cheaper chicken, vegetables, and many other groceries in there, including yummy American vanilla ice cream. Feeling very good about bringing home the bacon (and other groceries), he loaded up the back of the pickup truck and headed home to his beautiful wife, four beautiful daughters, and three bratty, spoiled sons (the good son had not yet been born). | Grampy walking his baby girl down the aisle, 1978 | 14

15: The Hunt for McDonald's by Laura Douglas It was an exciting time for all of us when Grammy and Grampy used to visit the Montreal and Ottawa crew every year! Not only did we get to spend quality time with our Grandparents, but each of them had some pretty valuable things to contribute to their visit. Grammy had her delicious baking and Grampy, without a doubt, would always take us to the world's largest chain of fast food restaurants: McDonald's. This was a VERY special treat because as popular as it was to the rest of the world, it was the least probable place our health conscious mother would ever dream of taking us! So when we asked our dear Grampy, "Will you please take us to McDonald's?," the answer was always an effortless, "Yes". What we didn't know was just how adventurous our journey would be that day to the Golden Arches. Grampy had a plan: this time we would experience not only the joys of munching on a hamburger but also the freedom of taking the Montreal autobus public transportation. The plan was simple and precise in my head, hop on the bus at the end of the street, go down the road, pass many stop signs and finally get off when you see the first set of lights. Grampy, on the other hand, did not need instructions for such a destination; he knew he would figure it out. Both Lisa and I hardly had any experience with the city bus, but felt the ease of it all, being there under the supervision and care of our grandfather. We all stepped on the bus, found a seat, and listened to one of our Grampy's many engaging stories. Some time passed on the bus; Lisa glanced outside only to see some unrecognizable streets and houses. She nudged me (while interrupting Grampy's story) to let me in on her discovery. Grampy was not concerned nor phased by our distress; he believed we were still fast approaching ol' Ronald's stomping grounds. Only after our one hour bus ride to a downtown Metro stop did Grampy begin to consider that perhaps we did indeed miss our exit. We never did make it to McDonald's that day. We got off the bus in downtown Montreal and waited to get back on the bus that would return us to 3 Place Legault. Grampy made the executive decision that we would simply practice the city bus today, and go out to eat another day of the week, this time of course in his own vehicle. We may not have achieved our ultimate goal that afternoon, but replaced it instead with a great story we would laugh about for years to come. I'd say it was more than a fair trade! | Ben, Martha & Curtis on a trip to McDonald's, 1986 | 15 | Life is Like a Pool Table by Allan Paradis I fondly remember Uncle Merlin's famous pool table where I put in many an hour and one day he said to me, "Treat life like a pool table, you may get a bad bounce but you have to keep trying." These words resonate with me to this day and I have passed that saying along to many I have met.

16: Lost & Found by Cheryl McCarthy Merlin and Elsie's children were always well dressed. Mom's seasonal trips to JC Penny and Kiddie Corners in Caribou, Maine would ensure that the cedar chest was well stocked for the following season. We particularly loved dressing up in our Sunday best. The girls wore their colourful hats, white gloves, Sunday coats, and black patent leather shoes. The boys were equally well dressed. Dad had his own ideas about fashion. Mom continuously monitored Dad's look and some of his clothes didn't quite measure up. Not surprisingly, some of his things just seemed to disappear. Dad had a hat that he was particularly fond of, and Mom had a garage sale one summer. Bad combination! Dad lost his hat to some fashion conscious person who quickly snatched it up. Dad was heartbroken and fell into a deep depression that lasted many years. Years later, the hat was spotted at a garage sale in Drummond and was returned to the delight of its rightful owner. He guarded it closely and when I visited him at the hospital during Easter 2011, there was Dad sitting in his chair with his beloved hat crowning his head. By the way, has anyone seen his green sweater? The last time it was spotted was on a Merlin impersonator at Paul McCarthy's 2009 Halloween party. Oh well, garage sale time is upon us once again. Time to seek out old treasures! *Editor's note: The infamous green sweater met a similar fate; it was hidden in a bag of clothes donated to Community Living in 2010. Two of Merlin's granddaughters, Meg and Mary, attempted to trace the whereabouts of this beloved treasure. See Meg's story: The Green Cardigan | Merlin, Christmas 2010 | 16 | Merlin and his angelic girls: Cher, Lin, Jan, & Di | Grampy, Curt, Grammy, & Lisa

17: The Hat by John Harney While in PEI in the summer of 2010, Merlin and I were trading war stories about some of our skin problems and the various surgeries we experienced. We had such a great time comparing these war stories and in true Merlin fashion, and, not to be out done, he consistently one-upped me on the length and minute detail of the storytelling. There was out-telling: I was a novice squaring away with the consummate professional. In any case, one day he noticed that I was not wearing a hat. So he asked out of concern "Where is your hat, young man?" To which I replied "I haven't found one yet." So every day that passed he would ask me if I found a hat. Well this went on for several days until one day while I was visiting Elsie and him at the cottage; he winked conspiratorially at me as if I was a great friend to whom he was anxious to tell a story that no one else should hear. So he waved me over to tell me what he had to say. I bent down so that he could whisper in my ear and he said "Young man, I have just the hat for you." So I kind of got excited and asked him what type of hat he saw and where did he see it. He then whispered anew into my ear and said, "Bring your car along the side of the cottage and I'll meet you in ten minutes. I'll tell Elsie that I'm off for a walk." So I did as he asked and sure enough out comes Merlin in the promised time. I said "Where to?" to which he replied "Drive on and I'll tell once we get there." This sounded mysterious to me but I went along with it. Shortly after, he told me to turn into a parking lot where there were a number of stores. I saw that one of them was a men's clothing store, so once we got out of the car I headed that way. I found it peculiar that Merlin would go to such a store since, as I was told, he had a penchant for getting the best "deal." Meanwhile I'm thinking, "Wow, I can't believe that Merlin would go to such trouble to find me a hat." Merlin suddenly grabbed me by the arm and said "Where do you think you’re going? The hat isn't here. It's over there in the store next door." I looked | 17 | over and it dawned on me that he was bringing me to the Dollar Store. A Dollar Store? I wondered, What the heck kind of hat had he found? I'm thinking at this point that I really don't want to wear some old beanie or ghetto hat or some such type. He must have known what I was thinking, as he started giggling at what seemed to be his own private joke. I said to him "Merlin, I can't see any hats in this store. Are you sure this is the place for hats?" He waved me off and said in a mirthful retort: "Trust me. Just follow and you'll be really surprised." So I followed him all the way to the back of the store. Once there he pointed to an obscure rack of odds and ends, looked back at me and said "You see John, I told you I had a hat for you." And there on the top of the rack sat this hat, a sort of straw version of a Tilley hat. And above the rack of these odds and ends was the sign: ONE DOLLAR. I looked over at Merlin and there he was, proud as proud can be, beaming from ear to ear. "I told you that I would find you a hat,” he said, “bet ya didn't think I could do it for a buck, did ya?" We both looked at each other and began to laugh. For Merlin, it was all about the journey and how he got the biggest bang for his buck. | "Don't bother much with that cold business!"

18: Golf Games by Maggie Bryson When Grammy and Grampy came to visit a few years ago, everyone was busy working during the week except me, as I was a graduate student at the time. Grampy quickly filled my days with golf dates. I am not a golfer, but could not say no to spending this time with Grampy, doing something that was so special to him. Needless to say, I was not a very good golfer, but Grampy insisted on giving me advice for each swing I took. Eventually, I was extremely frustrated and during our third game of the week, around the fourth hole, I finally mustered up some courage and told him that I didn't want any more of his advice, it was not helping me, and I was getting mad. He hit his ball off the tee, and then proceeded to give me some more advice. Trying to block him out, I approached the tee and hit my ball, which flew through the air and BAM, smacked directly into Grampy's ball, which flew off the fairway into the forest. Grampy laughed and laughed, saying "Well, you showed me, I won't give you any more advice!" He said in all of the years he had been playing golf, he had never seen anyone hit another player's ball off the fairway with their ball! After that, I didn't get any more advice and we both enjoyed the rest of the game. | Wedding Day by Maggie Bryson Dedicated to Grammy & Grampy, you are a true inspiration and I feel honoured that you were at my wedding. It was so special to me to have all of my grandparents at my wedding in May 2010. I was especially happy to have Grampy there, as only a few months earlier, he didn't know if he was going to be able to make the trip. He was in the hospital at the time, and many have shared stories of him walking the halls, building his strength to make the trip to Ottawa. He even found the strength to make a second trip to Ottawa that summer for Sarah's wedding. Grammy and Grampy were celebrating 60 years of marriage that year. I can only hope that John and I one day will celebrate 60 years of marriage. | Elsie & Merlin tying the knot, 1950 | Grampy & Maggie, 2010 | 18

19: The Baby Whisperer by Maggie Bryson Almost every time I see Grampy, he reminds me that when I was a little baby, just home from the hospital, I would often stop breathing. He was very proud to know just the trick to make me start breathing again so I could sleep normally; he would place me on his shoulder and I would sleep wrapped around his neck and shoulder. He says that he would get up in the night with me and sure enough, without fail, I would go right back to sleep on his shoulder. Grammy says that he never got up in the night with any of his own eight children, but always got up with me! | Lessons in Smuggling by John Ostapyk The first time I met Grammy and Grampy, Mag and I went to pick them up at the airport. We were in high school and they were coming from Florida to Ottawa to visit for Christmas. As soon as Grampy saw Mag, he put his carry-on bag down, walked out from the American customs side of the gate, and gave Mag a hug. I, meanwhile, was expected to walk the wrong way through American customs to pick up his carry-on. He said that he had carried it all the way from Florida, and he didn't need to carry it anymore. Luckily, this was pre-9/11 and the border agents allowed me to walk through the gate to pick up his carry-on. It turns out that this bag was full of Florida oranges which he brought for us; such a treat, despite that you weren't allowed to bring produce across the border. But, he still managed to sneak it past customs, or maybe he just tricked me into sneaking it! Maggie's Addition: While Grampy's carry-on was full of illegal oranges, Grammy's carry-on was full of home-baked cookies. During the flight, Grampy tried to use Grammy's carry-on as a pillow! Luckily, Grammy kept a close eye on him and saved the cookies from being squished. | Merlin & Ben, Elsie & Maggie, 1982 | Maggie & Grampy, 1982 | 19

20: Golfing Tales by Mary McCarthy My very first meal at Fourth Avenue provided an appropriate introduction to Merlin’s joking side. He purposely set my place with a huge spoon with holes in it, and we were having chowder! During that same meal, he casually asked me if I had ever paid duty while crossing the US Border. Unfortunately, I had paid duty, which did not impress, but thankfully it was on a pair of golf shoes, which turned out to be my saving grace: golf! I was forgiven and our golf future as fellow “lefties” began! This brings me to a particular round at Green Gables, Cavendish, P.E.I. Merlin had been using a special Florida golf ball that had an insignia of Mickey Mouse on it and when we came upon the fifteenth hole, a par 3, over water, you guessed it: Mickey was gone. Every year after that when we came upon the fifteenth tee at Green Gables, Merlin would say, “Listen, don’t you hear Mickey crying?” That story also brings to mind the legendary collection of golf balls. Many a round saw us coming home with more golf balls than we began the day with, and it wasn’t from all the great shots! I can still picture my dad and Merlin sharing a set of left handed golf clubs while visiting Merlin and Elsie in Florida. By the end of the week the two of them had perfected the putter hand off so smoothly, it looked as though they were dancing the dose-doe! | Carport Chase by Mary McCarthy On their 40th Anniversary weekend, Elsie had asked Merlin to shampoo the driveway and carport with an electric floor scrubber. Merlin had opted out of starting it right away and first went golfing. Elsie reacted by chasing him around the front of the house with the garden hose on full blast. I’ve never seen either of them move so fast! Knowing Merlin’s love for homemade cards and gifts, I once made a blue fuzzy golf cart seat cover for those early morning rounds (just don’t ask him to cook the eggs). I also once made him a special turban designed to hold ice so that he would stay awake for those late night card games, and, yes, some midday ones too! You could always count on Merlin for a game or two, whether he was saving the whale, holding the Jack, or bidding without a five, Merlin would somehow walk away from the table with a limp from his pocket full of change! | Keith, Paul, & Merlin on the 15th hole at Green Gables | Merlin, Doug Kelly, & Mary in Florida | Eating in the spotless carport, June 1990 | Elsie & Moo | 20

21: The Pearls by Gwen McCarthy It's July 1981 just a few days before Tim and I were to be married. Elsie really wanted to wear her pearls to our wedding but was afraid to because she was worried the string may break since they were quite old. I offered to take the pearls to Moncton to be restrung at my neighbour's jewellery repair shop. After all, you can't trust just anyone with your valuables. Happy to be doing this for my future mother-in-law, you can only imagine the dilemma I was in when I was told that "the pearls" were not worth the expense of being restrung as, you guessed it, they were not real pearls after all. I was then faced with the unpleasant task of executing this report back to the in-laws. Elsie was none too happy, and made it known to Merlin that she would not be long replacing them with the "real" thing. Merlin, I am sorry to say, was not the big winner that day, so there was no walking away from that one, heavy on one side and dragging one leg behind him. | no choice but to learn the game. This really frightened me, as they all seemed to take it soooo seriously and did not hesitate to point out any bad plays. Merlin, however, was always very kind and patient, gently explaining the "rules" of the game to me. One rule was to "never rough the low man!" Back then, we would sit around that table, playing into the wee hours of the morning, and there is one particular evening I remember all too well. Mike Bryson and I were partners and hadn't been out of the hole all night, but there was this one gorbie who would not stop roughing us. I think it was Merlin, although I can't say for sure, because all I ever saw was this arm coming up from under the table to throw a great big card in to me. There was no saving the big ones for the last trick that night. | Never Rough the Low Man by Gwen McCarthy It's hard to be around the McCarthy's without gathering around the table for a game of 45's, so when I first started going to the farm I really had | Gwen handing over Ollie's home-made bread to Merlin the morning after she & Tim wed, 1981 | Tim & Gwen get hitched, 1981 | 21

22: Never Take No for an Answer by Curt McCarthy Merlin is adamant about standing up for yourself and for what is right. He wouldn’t let anyone intimidate him or push him around. His motto: "Never take no for an answer, they're depending on you." When Mary Ashton received an overdraft charge on her credit card, Grampy got wind of this and called her right up: "Mary, you have to go to the bank and get that charge reversed!" Mary absentmindedly replied, "I'm only one customer, they wouldn't pay any attention to me.” Well this really did it. Grampy shot back with, "How do you think they got to where they are today? One customer at a time! They only have one customer! That’s all they have! Don't take no for an answer!" Once when I was in Florida with Grampy, we were sent out on a mission to get some fresh orange juice. Unfortunately, it was a Sunday morning and the store was closed. We also didn't have any money on us at the time. We pulled up to the front of the store as I changed the song on the CD player to the Charlie Daniel’s track we had been singing along to repeatedly all week. After noticing the big sign on the window reading CLOSED, Grampy still didn't drive away. Apparently he had spotted an employee inside. Instead of leaving, which is what most people would have done, he said, “What are you waiting for? Get in there! Elsie wants some orange juice!” He advised me, “When they come out, put out your foot in the door until they let you in. If they ask about money, tell them you'll be back tomorrow.” I walked up to the door, knocked, and asked the owner if we could have a gallon of orange juice and pay them back tomorrow. I didn't even have to put my foot in the door. I said, “Sorry about the money situation,” but the owner gave me a big smile and replied, “Not a problem, we depend on people like you.” From that day on I knew when not to take no for an answer, and realized that most people depended on customers like us. But there is one exception. The only person Grampy takes no from is Grammy. For years Grammy would not let Grampy and I sit together in church. "You two are ridiculous when you’re next to each other,” she’d say, “You’re just not sitting together!” And, of course, we did not. After one church service in | A meeting of Rosettes and Rosaires in PEI to celebrate Grampy's birthday with his pal Herbie | 22 | Florida, Grampy wanted to show Tim and Gwen a buffalo herd (which turned out to be four separate herds at different locations). Mary and I had been checking them out earlier. After the first 20 minutes of driving, and two herds later, Grammy was getting anxious and cried out, "I wanna go home!" Grampy knew that Grammy had seen enough buffalo herds for one day and we turned around toward home. Sometimes, when coming from the right person, you just have to take no for an answer.

23: Post Meal Nap by Noah McCarthy Once when Grampy was younger, he ate supper just like any ordinary night. After supper he went for his "post meal nap." When Grampy woke up, he glanced at the clock, it read 8:00. So he went and got his golf bag and headed to the golf course. When he got there he started looking around for his golfing buds. That's when he realized it was 8 pm not 8 am. Right when he figured that out, he bellowed, "GEE HOVERS.” That's only one of many Grampy ROSAIRE moves! | Sleeping Races with Merlin by Mike Bryson Back in the day when Merlin used to work hard farming and I was busy building the St. Leonard airport, Dinah and I lived with Merlin and Elsie. Merlin and I would get home after a hard day of work around 4:30 in the afternoon and we would routinely meet in the family room where there were two couches and a TV. Merlin would often grab a couch and I would grab the other and we would have a race to see who could fall asleep first. As good of a sleeper as I was in my heyday, I couldn't hold a candle to Merlin, who would often be a sleep within 45 seconds of his head hitting the pillow. He used to cheat as well, as he would often turn the volume of the TV way up and say, "the louder the TV, the better.” Apparently he had lots of experience sleeping in that room with his kids, watching the TV at full volume. | Merlin sleeping in Ottawa, 2002 | Merlin asleep at the old farmhouse, 1979 | Kelly, Grampy & Noah, 2002 | 23

24: Thistles by Keith McCarthy One spring in the mid 1970s Dad bought an above ground pool for us. What a treat! It was about 20 feet across and four feet deep. You could do cannon balls off the back roof of the garage into it if Mom and Dad, or a tattling older sibling, wasn’t around. The one thing you didn’t dare do was walk anywhere near the pool, a lesson learned the hard way by Tim and Keith. I know, “How do you get into a pool if you can’t walk anywhere near it?” Well that logic apparently slipped Dad’s mind. | After a few subtle suggestions from Mom, Dad decided he’d better plant some grass around the pool to keep dirt from tracking into the house. A few weeks passed and the grass wasn’t coming along very well. Dad noticed there were many footprints on the newly seeded patch, despite his warnings, and somehow concluded that Tim and Keith were to blame. Of course the two saintly boys knew by this age that asking for clarification was useless so they just humbly accepted the blame as usual. Of course Pat never did anything wrong and those four saintly daughters couldn’t be the culprits, and Paul was too young. Dad figured he needed to teach those two boys a lesson. | One sweltering July Saturday, after picking rocks all day, everyone got to knock off a bit early so they could go golfing at Aroostook. Mike Bryson and Pole (Mike McLaughlin) were going to join us so that would make six, including the three oldest boys and Dad, who had just started to golf. Bryson always seemed keen to golf with the McCarthy’s, for some reason that wasn’t revealed until a few years later. Upon returning home from the field, the three boys scurried out of the pickup toward the house to get ready for golf so they’d be sure to be able to get 18 in before dark. Then Dad told Tim and Keith that he had a job for them. In order to keep people from walking on his new patch of grass Dad decided that a drastic measure had to be taken. Tim and Keith got the bad news, “Boys, you’re gonna have to stay home and do some shovelling. Grab two wheelbarrows from the barn and meet me out behind the barn.” So Tim and Keith moped into the barn as we were told, mumbling a few choice words about having to miss out on golf. Their misery was about to multiply. They had no idea how what they were about to do would stick with them for a lifetime. | Some neighbour kids in the old swimming pool | 24

25: Upon meeting Dad behind the barn, amongst the thick weeds and infestation of bugs that somehow avoided Dad’s DDT, the boys were given the bad news. They were used to taking the blame for Pat’s bad deeds, but this was one they would never forget. “Boys, the way I see it, warnings haven’t been enough to keep you off that grass that’s trying to grow around the pool, so I think I need to teach you a lesson. While we go golfing, you fellas shovel those thistles into these wheelbarrows here, chop ‘em up with your shovels and then spread ‘em out over the new grass. That way you won’t be walking around that pool anymore!” The boys were dumbfounded. All they could do was shake their heads and grumble, “We have to miss golf to do this?” Needless to say, they didn’t wave to the golfing crew as they left the yard. However, within a few weeks the grass soon looked like it had been there for years. As it turned out that lesson was "reinforced" for years with some not-so-subtle reminders. Every time you got out of that pool by any means other than the ladder and narrow patch of walkway that extended from it, you were sure to get thorns from those damn thistles in your foot. Yet another one of Dad’s gifts that kept on giving. To this day Dave Savage remarks about how he can’t seem to get rid of the thistles that take over his backyard year after year. | (L-R) Merlin and his potato pickers; Little Merlin and his sister, Mary; Out on Long Lake, Merlin in Louis Gorey`s boat | 25

26: People Do Some Funny Things by Tim McCarthy This is an addendum to Keith's, much better composed and detailed, story entitled "Thistles.” No offense. I've never heard Dad or Pat tell this story, only Keith and/or Tim. Dad was famous for we-jobs. They were jobs that we did. Well mostly me, or you, or whoever, and Dad supervised. He did a great job supervising. The year was sometime long, long ago, maybe 1970 or so, and Dad was having a hell of a time trying to grow grass around the backyard pool. WE tried everything: staking with coloured string and ribbon, spreading cow shit, putting up saw horses joined with two-by-fours, ‘Keep Out’ signs, scarecrows, you name it, nothing worked. The girls loved the pool and kept stepping on the newly seeded grass all around it while Keith and I worked in the fields. Nothing would grow except dandelions, and to make matters worse, the girls kept tracking mud into the house. This did not sit well with Mom. One hot night in early July, Dad had a great idea, which turned out to be a save-the- grow-grass-around-the-pool-we-job. While Pat (and others) went golfing, Keith and I took the wheelbarrow out to the back field, shovelled up about a dozen or so loads of thistles, and spread them around the pool. Needless to say, this was the most effective ploy ever to keep people off the newly sowed grass seed. Ever since then, there has been a great crop of grass and thistles on that spot where the pool was. People do some funny things, eh? | 1 The year Bobby Orr scored the winning goal in overtime on May 4th, at the 40 second mark of the 4th period, in a 4-3 win over St. Louis. Oh, and Orr wore number 4. Go figure. Think maybe God had something to do with that. Keith and I are smart enough to cheer for Boston, by the way. Maybe you should start. Anyhow I'm not long winded so I'll get right to it. We can bible/Orr/Bruin thump later. | McCarthy clan, 1960 | Tim & Dad, 1959 | 26 | 1

27: Grampy has lived in Fredericton since about the time I was born, so I’ve spent almost every Sunday morning of my life with him. I would always choose to sit beside him in church, as he added many special moments to the mass, and always made it next level. Grampy is always slightly ahead when it comes to the music. My job was to nudge him so that he’d slow down and not get too far ahead. Of course, this would get us both laughing! The bonus from this is that I always knew the words coming next. There were other words that Grampy struggled with in mass, especially that pesky responsorial psalm. If it was only five or six words, Grampy would most likely be able to remember it, but any more than that was pushing it. So more often than not we would say the first few words together and then finish off with an appropriate number of mumbles. | Grampy has also taught me... -cleopatric messaging: code for telepathic signals when Grampy is in trouble for bidding recklessly (I’ve been the partner of a 25 without a five!) and if he needed extra help from his partner he would say: “Send me a cleopatric message, Kelly!” -the fastest way to shake off a set: “Just blame it on your partner!” -a whole different language: sometimes at school or when I’m hanging out with my friends I’ll accidentally use some McCarthy vocabulary. I’ll recognize the tell-tale signs of incomprehension as they give me that "why the face?" look. They’ll ask what Arshield means and I’ll reply: "just take it as an insult." | Lastly, as everyone filed out of church, I would usually offer to be Grampy’s escort walking him outside, even though he really didn’t need the help. As we proceeded out of the church, Grampy would often tell me, “God is proud of you, Kelly, and when the time comes you will be on your way to heaven for helping your old Grampy.” | WWGD (What Would Grampy Do?) by Kelly McCarthy | -to greet people with a song: when I would enter Grammy and Grampy’s, Grampy always greeted me by singing a song with my name thrown in it. -to look before I jump: while holding his finger close to my chin while I was looking the other way, he’d say, “Kelly” and I’d turn my face right into his finger every time. “You’ve got to look before you move,” he would say! | 27

28: Young Farmer by Karen Crossman Sexton I remember all of our fun trips to Merlin and Elsie’s house. I always loved the trips with Merlin in his pickup truck, taking Scott and I to the diner for hot chocolate. It was the best! But my favourite memory is when I knew that I was Uncle Merlin's favourite niece: he was determined to set me up with a young Grand Fall's farmer so that I would be close by all the time! | A Few Mints by Scott Crossman I remember the fact that I used to help out in the potato house, cutting the grass, building barrels and all that just for a few of those mints out of Merlin's glove box. Looking back, I got screwed! | From left: Peter, Greg, Daren Karen, David, Emily, Scott, Paul, & Lisa, 1981 | Tim, Pat, & Blackie the horse, 1959 | 28

29: Joe by Don Robinson It was 2005 when I met the McCarthy clan. Merlin was so happy to have a fresh set of attentive ears for all of his old stories. Many times I heard, "Did I ever tell you about the time...." in between John Wayne dusters, mass for shut-ins, Jeopardy, and visiting a weekly destination with "Valerie Pringle Has Left the Building." Accurate details didn't matter all that much, especially, for example, with names. Merlin called me Dan so many times that he decided he had better call me Joe, so that he wouldn't make any mistakes. I guess it's hard to remember so many names, especially second-time-arounds!! He thought it was such a great idea that he said, "You can call me Joe, too!" After that, we were just two regular Joes. | Want or Need? by Kevin McCarthy Whenever I would go over to visit Grampy and Grammy, there were always three things I could expect: great company, delicious food, and a game of cards. Over the years I was able to learn and perfect my card playing skills - from Spades, to 45s - there was always a game to be played. | G & G with Mare & Claire 1989 | Lucie & Merlin, Talent Show. PEI | 29 | One of the biggest lessons I learned as a kid growing up came from Grampy. He taught me the difference between want and need. Every time I would ask him if he needed anything, he would give me a frowning stare and then wait for me to ask him if he wanted anything before both of us would break out in laughter. | Pascal, Grampy, & Kevin, 2009

30: Prize Trophy Moose on the Tobique by Pat McCarthy It was the best of times and the worst of times. 1969 was a great summer, as described by Bryan Adams, but the hunting season belonged to Merlin. The fall digging season started out sunny and cool. Merlin would get up early, around 5:30, and listen to the weather forecast and potato futures on the American radio station WAGM from Presque Isle. | He would also cook breakfast for the kids, well before we were up, another story for another time. After several weeks of good digging resulting in a bumper crop, the weather started to get cool and damp. Rainy weather was forecast for the third week of September, which coincided with the three days of Moose season. When Moo applied for his Moose license, he had mentioned that the only way he would be going was if it was raining and we could not dig. Potatoes were the means to everything else. When Merlin got up on Saturday, September 27, 1969, the radio station was predicting rainy, cool fall weather all day and outside the house on the Portage, it was pouring rain. Merlin phoned his buddy down the road, George Dube, and | asked if he was interested in driving to the Tobique to the Woods Camp: the answer was yes. Merlin saw this as an opportunity to get some fresh, wild meat for the eight hungry kids and hard working wife, Elsie, back home. The plans were to drive up early, eat breakfast at the camp and then head out hunting. The drive up the Tobique was slow, the road was windy, and on this dark, rainy morning it took even longer. They arrived in Plaster Rock, the future home of the World Pond Hockey Championship, and knew they had only 45 minutes more to the Camp. As luck would have it, when they were minutes from the Camp, on the old dirt road, a huge bull Moose was standing in the middle of the road. The question being considered was, “do we want to shoot this bull now or wait ‘til after breakfast?” As both doors to the old red Ford half ton flung open at the same time, the answer was clear: It was now or never. As both farmers loaded their rifles, Merlin with the Winchester 30 30 (how he came about to have the 30 30 is yet another story), George with his 308, the shooting began. When the noise stopped, the beautiful bull was laying in the middle of the road. Now the fun was over. After many hours of dressing it out and struggling to get it onto the back of the half-ton, the hunters continued to the Camp and ate their well deserved breakfast. | 30

31: In the middle of the afternoon, the hunters returned home with their prize, a 1684lb moose, one of the largest to be taken on the Tobique. They drove into the yard and Elsie came out of the house, saw the huge moose and is quoted as saying, “Where will I ever find a pot big enough to cook this?!,” as reported in the Grand Falls Cataract. | Baby Paul with Moma Cher, Dad, Lin, Di, Jan, Timmy Boy, Keith & Pat on the bear rug, 1969 | 31 | I remember that Merlin had a profound love for cars and especially new cars. He once had one of those Studebakers, with a three pronged front which was similar to the rear of the automobile, you really had to look closely to see whether it was the front or rear of the car. He and Lloyd, our neighbour, used to play "car rodeo" in the winter time. We used to have mountains of snow, not like today's winters, and several times during winter the main road would be blocked because of snow. We had to wait for the snow blowers to come | Car Rodeo by Basil McCarthy | and clear the roads. After the snow blowers did their thing, they left vertical banks on each side of the road. Lloyd and Merlin would have a great time sliding their cars on the vertical walls of snow, and did several wheelies in the process. Off course, he and Lloyd would be the only ones on the road. | Merlin with his first car, a Studebaker. He sold it after only six months in order to plant potatoes

32: Rollin by Terri McCarthy Oh the good ole days when Paul and I lived with Mama and Papa! Just imagine living in a house that is always spic and span, the driveway freshly scrubbed, the clothes hanging on the line, the windows washed, and, of course, the smell of great food cooking. That brings me to the name of this story: Rollin. While we were co-inhabitants on Fourth Avenue, Merlin spent many a day at the golf course. He would usually head up to the course after coffee in the morning for nine holes or so, and go back for another 18 in the afternoon. But what was so amazing is that no matter what time Mama would be serving supper, Merlin would roll in just as Elsie, Paul, and I were sitting down to the table. Sometimes we’d have supper at 5:00 or 6:00 or even 6:30, and sure enough Merlin would arrive at that exact time! Just as we would be passing the mashed potatoes around, Paul would hear something and say, “Here comes Rollin.” After supper Merlin usually looked at me and said “Terri, you’ve got a great appetite.” He never lets anything slide by! | Grampy Wires his Grandchildren by Terri McCarthy One visit in particular to 158 Hanwell Road was very memorable. It was a Friday night and Paul, Noah, Allie and I had gone to Fredericton for the weekend. At the time, Allie was three and Noah was six. We went to Mama and Papa’s for supper. After supper Paul, Elsie and I were busy in the kitchen cleaning up. Merlin thought he would spoil his youngest grandchildren and give them some chocolates. To this day, I am not sure how many chocolates he gave to them, but when we were done cleaning up in the kitchen we noticed that Noah and Allie were acting different. They were very hyper. It wasn’t the kind of hyper that can come from too much chocolate, but from something much stronger. It was then that we questioned what they had been eating. Merlin told us that he gave them a couple of chocolates from the tin on the coffee table. Once we inspected them we discovered that they had been eating chocolate covered coffee beans. They were experiencing the effects of an extremely high dose of caffeine. We made our way over to Fred and Lin’s to hunker down for a long evening of Noah and Allie not being able to sit still, running around the house, and being loud and silly. It was the wee hours of the morning before the caffeine finally wore off and they crashed for the night. Editor’s Note: Linda said that as Noah tried desperately to sleep, his eyes shut tight, he claimed with exasperation: “I just don’t know why I can’t sleep! I’m trying so hard but my head won’t stop spinning!” | 32

33: The Hunter by Tim McCarthy Pat was allergic to dust, and as a result usually had an iron clad excuse for not working in the potato house. One Saturday in the fall of 1970 (the year Orr scored that famous goal, need I say any more), Pat decided it was time to buck up and put some food on the table for the family. He had gone out the night before and purchased a new shotgun and various other hunting accessories and apparel. | After a long day at Argosy, working in the potato house, Dad and I left for home, looking forward to some delicious partridge for supper. On the way up the Argosy hill, Dad spotted a couple partridge scurrying off into the woods at the side of the road. He quickly jammed on the brakes, jumped out of the pickup, and commented, "Pat must not have been hunting around here; otherwise those two birds certainly would not be around." Dad quickly grabbed a rock and hurled it at the partridge. The rock struck both partridge, killing them instantly. I was very proud of Dad and figured that Pat must have got his hunting ability from his father. Dad threw the two birds in the back of the truck and we headed for home. | When we got there, Pat was nowhere to be seen. He returned around 7:30pm, badly scratched up and bleeding a little from a hard day in the bushes. Dad said to Pat, "How you doing Son?" "Me,” he continued, “I'm looking forward to a great supper. We snagged a couple of partridge on the way home, but they are kind of small. If we throw them in with the ones you got, we can have a nice feast.” Pat hung his head and sadly reported that he was unable to bag any partridge. Mom had no choice but to make shadow soup for supper. Pat continued to work on his hunting skills. Tim marvelled at Dad's hunting skills. Dad commented, "Pat what were you doing all day out there?" | Pat decked out with his new 12 gauge shotgun and lots of ammo, 1986 | Dad & Pat, 1963 | 33

34: The Legend of Rosaire by Laura Douglas Rosaire: A commonly used word used in the McCarthy clan to replace such words as: dilly dally, drag one’s feet/heels, procrastinate, stall, delay, shilly shally, waste time, indecision, hesitation, vacillate, etc. This is no fable, myth or fairytale: this story is based on true events! It was a warm sunny day on the greens of the Grand Falls Golf Club, Merlin was anxious to get out there and play the sport he loved so dearly. He arrived at the course without making previous arrangements to meet up with anyone; he knew he would find someone there to amuse, I mean to play with. He closed his car trunk after removing the goods, grabbed his clubs, and began to walk towards the teeing ground; this is where he spotted his friend, Rosaire. Merlin easily joined him in the game, with his sociable talents to entertain, you would be a fool not to want the company of this man! However, on the flip side of things, Merlin had his reservations playing with this fellow, remembering that Rosaire was an “unusual” character. Rosaire was up first to tee off. He stared long and hard at his 14 clubs, trying to rationalize which one would be the ideal club of choice. After enough pondering, he grabbed his driver and nodded, almost to reassure he had made the correct selection. As he began to walk away from his golf bag and move closer towards the area where he would strike the ball, he stopped abruptly, turned back to the bag, and switched his driver to a wood. Merlin tried to remain patient and calm but he knew this was only the beginning of a very long day of golf. Rosaire began to place his tee in the grass and elevate the ball slightly above the ground, but he just could not seem to place it at a comfortable height. Several minutes later, he found the right measurement, stood up to see his placement in coordinates to the hole, and, as he looked up and out on the green, he decided the tee was not quite in the right position. Merlin’s tolerance was running thin, but he tried to visualize and focus on his own game instead. The ball was finally set on Rosaire’s tee, surely he was ready to swing, but before he could grip onto any club, he noticed a speck of dirt on the golf ball. This was simply unacceptable; he grabbed his ball and headed for the golf ball cleaner. Round and round his ball spun, unquestionably becoming cleaner with each turn he made. He pulled out the ball and took an awfully long look at it, a dissatisfying grin washing over his face. Merlin was nearly at his wits’ end as he watched Rosaire wash the unmistakably clean ball yet again! Finally, after finding his club for the second time, resetting his tee, washing his golf ball (four or five times I might add), he was ready to strike the ball, or so Merlin thought. No, Rosaire picked up a few pieces of grass, monitored which direction the wind was coming from, repeated this action one more time for reassurance, and then positioned his body accordingly. After five or ten practice swings, Rosaire swung his wood with all intentions of hitting the ball and almost struck it, but not quite. Eventually, Rosaire did hit that ball and it was not as glorious as all his preparation would have led you to believe. Poor ol’ Merlin’s day went on and on like this. A game that was supposed to bring him home shortly after lunch brought him back at exactly supper time. I guess it turned out alright, as arriving home at exactly supper time was one of his signature moves. Author’s Note: Now do you understand the depth of Rosaire!? This catchy word is spreading around not only with family and friends, but you can even hear it from voice jockeys on Montreal radio stations! Nowadays, innocent children need no telling of this story to understand the meaning of the word, they comprehend and appreciate it all on their own, because it just makes sense! | 34

35: Golfing Days by Gordie Douglas Some of my memories of Merlin are from the old farmhouse. Specifically when we had supper there, which included many potatoes. Merlin would often declare, "I wonder what the poor people are having for supper." But most of my stories are from the golf course. Merlin would start his day at the potato house, inspecting his crops and sneaking off for coffees with the other farmers. Then it was time to pick me up and load his pickup with his gas golf cart. It was off to Aroostook Valley Country Golf to much swearing up Cardiac Hill. It did not matter much what we were scoring, what mattered was being on the golf course. We would return home like warriors and Merlin would know all the border guards. Some illegal purchases may have gone through during the many years. | Don’t Stop for a Lunch by Mike Ashton In January 1979 Merlin, Gordie, Pole and I went to Sarasota for a golf week. The course we played was pretty fancy, with specific tee off times and a guy whose sole job was to see that you started off on the first tee at the right time. After nine holes we did what we always did at Aroostock; stop for a lunch in the clubhouse restaurant. After a while, a very irate starter guy stormed in and said, “What on earth are you goons doing!? I’ve been out on the course looking for you for twenty minutes!” We’d hit so many balls in the | Tim, Keith, Fred, Mike Bryson, Paul, Pat, Mike Ashton (holding Ben Bryson), Gordie Douglas & Merlin, 1982 | Cicely & John Ashton, Mike, Merlin & Jan, late 1970s in England | 1983 | Merlin, Gordie, and Pole, standing disappointedly on recently purchased (swamp) property, sight unseen, in Florida, 1980 | 35 | water that I think he thought the alligators had got us. “Having a lunch,” said Merlin. “Not after nine holes you don’t,” said starter guy. The upshot was that we then had to wait until everyone already playing the course finished the tenth hole before he’d let us play the back nine.

36: Grampy taught me how to drive when I was 16 years old. He taught me how not to drive when I was 11. And then he taught me a little more when I was 23. The pre-teen lesson location was the Grand Falls Golf Course, but more specifically the paved ramp from the steel, half circle golf-cart park to the parking lot. Grampy backed the golf car out of the parking spot and pulled up to the garage exit, next he told me to get out, switch places, and drive. I adamantly told him that I didn’t know how, but similar to his response when people claim, “I can’t play 45s,” he shrugged it off as a ridiculous statement – a funny thing some people say. So, tentatively, I got in the driver’s | seat and asked I what to do next. Grampy gave me "the look," jammed off the parking brake, and told me to “Go!” Scared to disappoint him I pushed down on one of the pedals and sped down the ramp. Seconds later Grampy yelled, “Brake! Brake!” to which I instinctively pressed harder on the gas pedal. I didn’t know there were multiple pedals let alone what the pedals were for. At top golf-cart speed I swerved and then CRASH. I had driven straight into Grampy’s truck. There was a crack down the front of the golf cart and a quite a few scratches on the truck’s front bumper. I was so upset and Grampy sensed this – he never, ever told anyone and took me out for an extra special ice cream. Next time we went to the golf course he had a new cart, one he was not so willing to let me drive. “Watch and learn,” he instructed. Years later, this event had stayed fresh in my mind. I had just gotten my driver’s permit and Grampy was visiting. He said, “It’s time.” And out we went. I pulled slowly out of the driveway, careful to show him that I now knew the difference between the brake and gas pedals, and started to drive down Ball Park Avenue. I thought it went fine and was a great first-permit lesson, but as I signaled to turn back into our driveway Grampy said, “Where’re you going? Go straight.” I listened and drove up the street, but started to panic as the Avenue was ending and we were approaching the main drag. “Don’t worry,” he said, “You want to learn, don’t you?” Going out on the main street my first time driving a car was terrifying, but I’m happy to report that this outing has no collisions. | Even more years later when I was going to university in Fredericton, Grampy called me on the phone and told me to come over immediately. Upon arriving, Grampy and Joe (to protect his identity) were waiting outside. “We’re going for a drive,” Grampy said, “Get in. Take the front.” We got into Joe’s car and headed up Smythe Street, and every few seconds there was an abrupt “Jack” and then a quick “Rabbit.” We went to Wendy’s for some chili with lots of hot sauce, but the real reason for the invitation was Joe’s Jack Rabbiting. Grampy has always been keen to teach me driving lessons. This was his favourite of all. He always would say to me, “Remember that day with Joe?” and then laugh and slap his leg as only Grampy could. | Learning How (Not) to Drive by Emily Ashton | 1985 | First ever lesson, the Old Farmhouse, 1982 | 36

37: Words of Wisdom Surprise me: response to any offer involving a choice between two or more things; also a popular order at restaurants, just ask Noah. If anyone ever offers you anything, be sure to accept it: common piece of advice referring to anyone offering you anything, ever. She didn’t say that: response to any number of Elsie’s quips. Can’t get that in New York City! reference to any homemade meal, likely prepared by Elsie. That's for the birds: something not worth thinking about, pursuing or doing; often combined with a forward toss of the wrist and shoulder shrug. Holy Whistling Eyed Peter! expression used to convey a level above "next level," only used in extraordinary circumstances, for example when Cheryl was crowned Miss New Brunswick Potato Queen in 1971. He doesn’t give a rip: expression meaning ‘he doesn’t care.’ It’s further than you think; Doesn’t matter how long you hit it as long as you keep it in the right direction: golf expressions It won’t matter in twenty years: describes most, if not all, instances made into a bigger deal than necessary People do some funny things...not you, or me, other people: ie. explaining this would be a funny thing to do Piece of shirt: a little something, really not necessary; to be taken sarcastically, ie. Oh she REALLY needs that piece of shirt Tudda dudda man: to describe a special feat, especially by a young child Dress it up a little: advice for any storyteller Do I need anything? Asked regularly, just in case, often followed by: “might want, might want, not need.” There's another word for that: used as a no offence way to point out an alternative understanding, ie. "He doesn't have to wash dishes, he's tired." "There's another word for that" (i.e. lazy). Bingo, bango, bongo: a golf game played out on each hole. The first one on (Bingo), the closest to the pin (Bango), and the first one in (Bongo). Merlin was a master of this game and purposely was a ‘short ass’ (just off the green) so he could reap the benefits of two out of the three dots. Eat your soup: Uncle Merlin was always telling us to eat our soup; kinda funny considering most times he said it we weren't eatin' soup! - David Gillespie | 37

38: The Real Rosaire by Curt McCarthy Rosaire Theriault was born in Grand Falls in 1924. Like most locals, he played golf at the Grand Falls Golf Course. This is where Merlin met Rosaire, and where the use of the word "Rosaire" was born. When it comes to unveiling the man behind the mask, we go directly to Merlin McCarthy, who walked the links with him many times. The following is an exclusive interview with Merlin. We asked him to clear up once and for all what the word "Rosaire" really means, and how it became common language in English speaking countries. | Rosaire Theriault. Yah, I can clear that up pretty quick. One day on the golf course, after Rosaire was diagnosed with skin cancer, he asked me if he could use some of my sunscreen. I said, “Sure, Rosaire,” and passed him the tube. Now listen here now: Rosaire had always been against sunscreen, calling it useless, but now he thought it would help him out. Rosaire used up my whole tube of lotion, lapping it onto every part of his body. I told him that he didn’t have to take a bath in it, but he didn't listen. He even pulled his pants down to get at his thighs, instead of rolling his shorts up. And he didn't rub any of the sunscreen in anywhere. Rosaire. I played with Rosaire often enough to be able to tell you that he was a Rosaire. Another day we took off down the first hole when suddenly BANG. Rosaire jumped up and banged his head on the top of the golf cart. I let off the gas and held the break. Rosaire’s bag had fallen off the back and he yells to me, “Stop driving so fast, Merlin!" As I was laughing, I told him to buckle up his bag. He said it didn’t need to be buckled up, "just drive slower," he said. So away we went and wouldn’t ya know it, ten seconds later before the bridge on the first hole, another BANG. This time Rosaire had a few choice words for me. I told him to buckle his bag or walk. And the Rosaire walked. Rosaire was always doing something nobody ever needed to do. You would constantly hear him back there zipping at his bag. Zip zip zip zip zip zip zip. First off, he had a full head cover for every club in the bag that he would have to zip all the way down to the grip and then back up again after his shot. So I'd be yellin’ “Rosaire, Let’s go,” feeling bad for the next group behind us because it would be a cold day in hell before Rosaire would let anyone play through. After he finished with the clubs, God only knows what else he was zipping at back there. I told him that those zippers are only good for so many zips- he didn't listen. Anyway, whether it was using all my sunblock, blaming me for his bag falling off, putting windows on backwards in Paul and Terri’s house, or holding groups up while he cleaned out his bag, you sat there wondering what went through his mind. I guess I started calling people Rosaire when Curtis was zipping at his bag back on the cart for a good five minutes one day. A group was coming up behind us, I said, “Let's go, Rosaire!” and told him these stories. I guess that's how that started. You should know how to use the word by now I think. Author's Notes: As told by Merlin McCarthy to Curtismany years ago. | 38

39: Curt's poem, "A Sketch of the Grandfather," in the Lady Lake newspaper, Father's Day, 2003 | From top: Marg & Moo on the links; A few games in PEI with Meg, Curt, Jan, & Grampy Meg & Curt with Grampy at Mayfield Meadows, PEI; Meggie Moo, Grampy, Ryan & Martha | 39

40: Rosaire or Merlaire? by Meg McCarthy I think we all know the original story about where the term Rosaire came to life, but after golfing with Grampy over the years, I honestly think that Rosaire’s Rosaire routine is minimal Rosaireness compared to Grampy’s game ritual. While golfing with Grampy, more often than not about half of the time on the course is spent driving (at a slower pace than we could walk) along the verrrry edges of every pond, lake, or puddle, searching for peoples’ lost golf balls. In the summer of 2010, he made it a ‘we-job:’ on certain holes, he wouldn’t allow me to drive with him in the golf cart down the fairway, instead I was instructed to walk along the water, whacking away the tall grass, looking for balls. “Now, don’t be afraid to get right in there,” he would say, and when I would catch up to the cart empty handed he would just shake his head in disappointment. There are ALWAYS golf balls waiting to be found. And apparently, you can never have enough (just ask Tim). I don’t know if it was because he spent so much time on the course Rosairing, paired with all of the attention he gave the club employees, but after working at Carmen Creek Golf Course, I quickly learned that Grampy was famous: a local celebrity. He was in every single photo album on the computer, which dated years back. Other than the workers, Grampy is the only one who made the photo cut. They even have a dozen pictures of his hole-in-one celebration. | 40

41: Feeling Festive in Florida by Meg McCarthy We’ve heard the classics time and time again, but they are always new and exciting, because they always seem to change a little each time they are told. Great tactic: keep the audience interested. I don’t even know if Grampy pulled the banker’s mustache, or ripped the whole thing off! But I’m sure we all have our own stories about Grampy to tell as well, and here are a few of my favourite from our vacation in Florida. Buffalo Blues One winter in the late ‘90s, Tim reluctantly decided to bunk Shadow up at his sister’s place for a week and take his girls and Curt on a family trip in the sun. As much as he hated parting with the pooch, even he must admit the Yuletide fun at G&G’s condo made up for the guilt. I learned and saw some strange things that week. For starters, on the trip to the airport, Curtis, a fresh pre-teen, somehow not only swindled shotgun, but also had the front seat at a full tilt backwards, cut-off shirt removed, in attempt to catch some pre-vacation rays: ROSAIRE. Upon arrival, I thought, this sure doesn’t feel like Christmas, there’s no snow. And how will Santa fit any presents under Grammy’s tiny tree? But the time spent with G&G made up for these two downfalls. Grampy is a firm believer that going to see the Buffalo is a must-do for tourists, and lets no visitor leave without the experience (side note: I think the Buffalo sausages at the Fredericton market are made from 100% Florida buffalo). Well, Grampy was ecstatic about seeing those buffalo. I wish I loved anything as much as Grampy loves both live and cooked buffalo. Grammy, on the other hand, was less than thrilled. From the front seat of their red car, she yells to Merlin out of the window, “I WANNA GO HOOMEE!!” Florida is also where I learned to drive a golf cart; Grampy would just rip around town on that thing, who needs a car when you have a golf cart?! And it’s also a much more convenient way to socialize with neighbours and/or anyone walking down the street. Grampy doesn’t mind a conversation or two. He doesn’t mind sharing a laugh either, which seems to run in the family. I think he passed on his good sense of humour, well, to the bulk of us at least. | The King of Snores Staying at G&G’s place in Florida over the holidays, we attended a few masses on Christmas Eve, one being at midnight. This was where I quickly learned never to dabble in such a late mass again. As interesting as the sermon was, I fell asleep. This wasn’t your regular half-asleep-half-awake light nod off, I am talking a full blown sleep when snoring takes place, and Grampy had to poke me to wake me up. On the drive home, he was joking around asking what I learned in church, and commenting on where I must have learned to snore so well. The answer came to me an hour later when I was lying awake in bed, house shaking from Grampy’s snoring. | 41

42: Kings in the Corner Now, these were the days where Kings in the Corner or Rummy was played, by default, with the young grandchildren (Either the term ‘trump’ didn’t go over so well with us youngsters, we didn’t "know how to play” 45s, or Spades wasn’t in fashion yet). One evening, as Tim was washing up the dishes and Grammy and Gwen were doing crosswords in the living room, Grampy, Curt and I decided to get some next level games in on the sun porch. Grampy was losing, so he decided it was time to break for a quick story, “You know kids, when I was a young boy, I always let my Grandmother win.” “Well Grampy,” I said, “times have changed.” Grampy was satisfied with that answer, and took on the challenge. Things started to get intense: high-man, low-man, and middle-man flip flopping all over the place. Grampy cracked under the pressure, and ended up smashing a glass (hit it over with his elbow) on the cement floor. Silence. “I never did that,” he quickly said, and placed the blame on Curtis when Grammy came rushing in a mere second later with the pocket vacuum cleaner in hand. | A Shameful Confession by Meg McCarthy As a teenager, I was told time and time again that I was “deep in the fog,” I felt the pressure to try and play the part. One afternoon, I decided to dip my toes into what our old man calls “the fog,” and jig class with a few girlfriends to walk around the Regent Mall. I quickly came face to face with a consequence much worse than detention. Before soaking up even five minutes of mallrat life, who do I see ahead, arms waving and bee-lining straight towards me, but Grampy, in the flesh, and feeling spry and fresh from his afternoon mall stroll. When he confronted me about not being in school, I had to dip further into the fog with a little white lie, saying that we had the afternoon off. He tends to be a wise man who can call a fogger when he sees one, but, nevertheless, he saw it as an ample opportunity for a game, and didn’t hesitate to throw me in the car along with his newest purchase (insert any sale item that | nobody would ever actually need), bought in bulk from the WalMarts, that he got such a good deal on (later to be pawned off onto the next lucky visitor.) | Moo Junior & Senior | The Law of Probability by Meg McCarthy One Saturday afternoon, Mary and I skipped over to G&G’s for a few games; a good start to any weekend. Grampy, fresh off a good golf game and an even better lunch, was providing full on play-by-play commentary, as he tended to do when feeling particularly energetic. Mary desperately needed that final trick to save a set, and felt moderately confident playing a high spade. Grampy was last to play the hand and after a quick count, noticed that Mary was "counting on it." He hollered out, “Possible, possible, but NOT probable!” as he slapped down a higher trump and hauled in the hand for a set. | 42

43: Must be the Press by Meg McCarthy I’ve learned that Grampy doesn’t like much attention. For example, many times he is found roaming the apartment halls making all passersby laugh. I’ve been asked by Grammy countless times to go upstairs and bring him back home when people come to visit, because the other ladies have lured him away with a deck of cards and promises of 45s. The times I’ve joined in on games upstairs, I have quickly learned that they really aren’t very | Can you spot the real Merlin? Left: Allie, Laura & Grampy having a special treat; Above, Meg as Merlin with Allie, Halloween, 2010 | good at the game; always losing against him, yet always sad to see him leave. But of course, he is humble about his wins, doesn’t seem to think much of them. I was lucky enough to get to play in the PPI Spades Tournament Final 2009. I remember winning the games that got us to that point, but I don’t quite remember that last game. Grammy and Grampy have taught us how to use selective memory when it comes to Spades games. Never remember the ones you lost. I think Grampy must have won that game because I do remember somebody entering G&G’s cottage in the early morning hours, hours after the last game had ended. G& G were both asleep (or so we thought), but as soon as the guest steps inside, out comes Grampy in his pyjammins: boxers and white tank top, hurrying to put his glasses back on, mumbling, “Must be the press, must be the press.” Everybody wanted a picture with the champion! | Mary congratulating the big winner: Congratulations Grampy & Emily! #1 Spades players of PEI tournament 2009 | 43

44: Haircut Hassles by Meg McCarthy Grampy is never set in his ways. For example, every time I cut his hair, he had requested a number two length cut. One day, when I was setting up the razor, he decided to go with a zero. I wasn’t sure whether to abide by the customer’s request because when Grammy got wind of this desire she was less than thrilled. Only a gorbie would ask for such a foolish request. I decided on going with the zero because on the rare occasion that Grampy doesn’t ask for a surprise, he really knows what he wants. It was a fresh summer look for February, but hey, somebody has got to start the new styles, right? | The Green Cardigan by Meg McCarthy As we know all too well, Grampy likes to hold on to that element of surprise. One day, Grammy surprised him by throwing out his favourite green cardigan. He was not impressed; this called for drastic measures, and so he quickly nudged aside his green mug to gain a better view of his list of phone numbers. Over at the library studying hard, as good students should, Meg’s phone rings. When she picks up, it’s Grampy, whisper-mumbling away in a panic. Whispering because he didn’t want Grammy to overhear him; mumbling because he seems to be set in his ways when it comes to mumbling on the phone; panicked because it was his absolute favourite green cardigan. Mary and Meg had simple instructions: track that cardigan down. Unsure of the sweater's whereabouts, that whole week Meg was in and out of Value Village raking the racks, and getting workers to double and triple check the new arrivals out back for this forest green sweater. No luck. Mary was on the phone, constantly playing phone tag with Community Living, leaving messages in hopes of finding his prized possession. Finally, Meg and Mary decided to make a personal visit to Community Living, where they heard the bad news. The cardigan had already been shipped off to Toronto. Some lucky son of a gun is walking the streets of Toronto wearing the best sweater in the world. After telling Grampy the bad news, he was quick to give Meg his Bad Hair Day hat to keep safe, as he believed that was next on Grammy’s list. | Ready for a trim in 2010 | PEI cut, takin' it real short, 2008 | 44

45: Berry Picking by Jessica Bryson I believe Grampy was the one who coined the phrase: "What the baby wants the baby gets." He is a very intelligent man. I love you very much Grampy. I never really enjoyed picking berries, but I would never refuse the opportunity to go berry picking with Grampy. It was always a good time - we would usually get a treat at McDonalds after and home made pies a-la-Grammy to boot! I always wondered how Grampy filled his basket so fast when we were picking, but as a little girl I just figured, Grampys were better at berry picking. It wasn’t until I was older and I caught a glimpse of Grampy emptying his basket out when I saw that it was filled with leaves! He stuffed the whole container with leaves and then put some berries at the very top to make it look like it was filled! I was shocked - all those years he was just using his grandkids as cheap labour! I suppose the pies were worth it though. When I told my Mom this story she laughed and said it sounded similar to Grampy picking fiddleheads. Apparently, Grampy came home one day with a garbage bag full of “freshly picked fiddleheads.” Strangely enough, the fiddleheads were dried up and brown - similar to the ones on sale at the First Nation's reserve. Kind of makes me wonder about all those years spent picking potatoes too!! | Grampy, Jess & Anna, 1988 | Grammy, Jess & Grampy, 1995 | 45

46: Rose, Rose, Rose by Fred Savoy Rose Arsenault used to be the weather anchor/person on CBC and each day Merlin made sure he watched the weather forecast very religiously. For the weather news, I think not, as Rose was and is quite beautiful. One day as we were golfing at Mactaquac, (an awesome group consisting of Merlin, Paul Allen, Dave Ketch and myself), Merlin sniffed out, because of the amazing perfume radiating on the fifth tee box, that Rose was in the group ahead of us. The man lost it; couldn't concentrate, gee hovers, gee hovers, gee hovers was all that was coming out of him. | Then, all we heard was, “Sorry boys,” and he took off in the cart, which he usually never drove fast, and gunned it to go up and see ROSE. We were dumfounded because Merlin was as giddy as a young buck and left us high and dry. You can just imagine our curiosity. We watched intently as Merlin started talking to Rose, got off his cart and walked towards her. What we saw next floored us. Rose threw her arms around Merlin and gave him the longest, sweetest hug that, from the tee-box, looked like they were smooching. Our jaws dropped. The sun of a gun threw my clubs off the cart and joined Rose and two other ladies (for a couple of holes), just to prove the point that he still had it. He was useless for the rest of the round once he re-joined us. OH ROSE, ROSE, ROSE. | Grampy's birthday at Fairways Cottages, Cavendish, PEI | Laying the Seeds by Doreen "Sister Dee" McCarthy When we were kids, I sometimes went up to bed a bit late. Merlin's bed was at the end of the hall, so I'd pass it quietly on my way to bed. He'd often be there, not in his bed, but beside it, asleep on his knees! That always impressed me; he'd fall asleep while saying his prayers. | Little Merlin at work in the fields, wearing a sweater hand knit by Mother | Doreen & Mary | 46

47: Grand Falls Golf Tournament by Fred Savoy Grueling event, 60 teams of two, incredibly poor weather conditions, pressure, pressure, pressure. WINNING TEAM---- MERLIN McCARTHY/FRED SAVOY! The sports writer noted that it was the awesome putting of the potato farmer (part-time) that made the difference. Merlin, to this day, still moans about the four-footer-uphill for birdie on the par 5, fourteenth, missed by both golfers. He was heard saying that his partner threw him off. At the closing ceremonies, Merlin was as proud as a peacock as he entered the Grand Falls Golf Clubhouse where hundreds of prizes were on display. He knew that he would have first choice of the litter, receive all kinds of verbal jabs, get all the attention of a grand winner; all to be topped off with his picture (plus partner) in the famous Grand Falls Cataract. | Fred & Merlin looking thrilled after their big win | Now, not all true stories have the intended or expected ending---- the winning team was announced, as expected, but just as Merlin was rising to receive all the adulation, attention, applause... young Paul, baby of the family, rose and dashed to the enormous display of prizes to be had and claimed a carry-on golf bag for himself. Boo-hoo Merlin. His partner, Fred, strutted up and selected a cell phone with free service for a year. WHAT A DAY, WHAT A TOURNAMENT!!! | In the late 70s, Elsie & Merlin took a road trip in Europe with Guy & Anne. Merlin developed a problem and had to visit many pay toilets. Guy took him to a Pharmacy and Merlin explained that he had the "flying axe handles," another NB gem! Guy once took Merlin to a large department store where Merlin found a Lazy Boy chair for a little nap. Guy found Merlin and wanted to introduce him to a friend, but Merlin replied, "Come back later, can't you see I'm busy!" Take an extra potato, even though you won't eat it; it helps the market. Guy was anxious to take Merlin to an early Baskin Robbins in the US but Merlin, the Ice Cream lover, looked at the huge selection and, you guessed it, selected VANILLA! | Johanna once asked Merlin how Edna managed to live past 100, having had 14 kids. His reply: "She never had the wants," which in translation means that when you have that many kids, what's the use wanting anything because you'll never get it anyway! Merlin always warned people not to eat white bread with butter because it killed Aunt Mamie Roach. But if you asked about her age he would inform you that she was well up into her 90s. | Advice and Peculiarities, or Peculiar Advice by Fred Gillespie | 47

48: Bank Negotiations and A Young Farmer’s Education by Keith McCarthy It was the 1970s, the Me decade, the hippie culture finally landed in New Brunswick a decade late, which is typical for NB. It was also a time of high interest rates, commonly well over 10%. Merlin had long known that it was important to stand up for yourself, but this Me stuff was still lost on some less experienced young farmers in the portage. Banks were cashing in with profits like never before and they had come up with a new ploy to squeeze even more money from people. One spring, right before planting season, Merlin had heard from neighbours that their yearly banking arrangements were going to cost a fortune. There were new charges on high risk loans, a higher interest rate and new "carrying charges." Since there aren’t many ventures much riskier than farming, everyone in the portage was complaining about the new scam. When Dad’s spring appointment with the bank came up he drove down the road to Rideout’s in an attempt to educate young Louie, who was just getting started in the business. The two of them made their way to the Bank of Montreal in Grand Falls. Upon being called into the manager’s office, Merlin instructed Louie to sit in a chair right outside the bank manager’s door. Merlin was careful to leave the door slightly open so that his pupil could learn from his example. The manager was seated behind his desk filled with mounds of paper files. He welcomed Merlin and asked him to have a seat. He pulled out Merlin’s file and began to tell him the bad news, “Well Mr. McCarthy, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that we will be able to loan you the money you need to get your crops in this spring. The bad news is that there are some new conditions that you must agree to.” The manager proceeded to tell Merlin about the extra few points on the interest rate, and new carrying charges, that would be applied to all high risk loans. Dad mulled that over for a few seconds to consider his response: “No way, I guess it’s time for me to go shopping for a new bank.” The manager responded, “Oh Merlin, there’s no need for that. I’m sure we can work something out.” Merlin rose from his chair, raised his voice and said, “How come I’m high risk?” He reached across the desk and grabbed the manager by the moustache, “I think you’re the one at high risk.” He let go of the moustache and banged his fist on the desk, “I have a house full of kids, a mortgage on both the farm and house, and I can do better than this!” Merlin heard Louie’s chair scrape the floor and hurried footsteps away from the office, so he figured it was time for him to do the same. Merlin turned to walk out when the manager said, “Well Merlin, you have a very convincing argument, how about I knock 5.5% off that interest rate?” “Good idea,” said Merlin on his way out, “I’ll be in to sign the papers later.” Merlin made his way out to the truck where Louie was rolling with laughter. “How’d you make out Miles?” “Well,” sighed Merlin, “You left a little too soon; he knocked five and a half percent off the rate!” Lou’s chin hit the floor in disbelief. “Well you sure tuned him!” exclaimed Lou. Upon returning home, Dad told Mom the tale. All Mom could say was, “You didn’t?!” "Better to have that $7000 in my pocket than theirs!” Mom, as she was prone to do when filled with pride for Merlin, brought a large bowl of Grapenut ice cream for Dad to enjoy in his easy chair. “I couldn’t be more proud of you dear, here, enjoy!” | 48

49: First Grandchild Contest by Linda Savoy The pressure was on when Fred and I had been married nearly five years and there was no sign of a grandchild. Dad decided to offer an incentive – a golf cart for the first grandchild. The game was on. Fred and I were keen, especially Fred. We thought we had the prize and were very excited, but a letter came in the mail with a picture of Dad handing the keys to a very large Eva and a smiling Louie. Dad’s adopted son, Louie Rideout, beat us to the punch. Shawn was born six months before Sarah. | Dad and his first official grandchild, Sarah, in 1978. Dad bought this Petit Quebecois suit specifically for her when visiting Quebec. No one is sure why. | Linda gets married, 1978 | Merlin the farmer, showing his kids how it's done | 49 | Family DO at Tim & Gwen's, 2007

50: The "Fast" Checkout by Anna Bryson One afternoon at the Atlantic Superstore I began to get a little impatient at the self serve checkout line. Self-serve was a new concept to Fredericton and in my experience was always the shortest and fastest line. So what was the big hold up!? Well, peeking around the line I saw at the front, familiar gloved hands waving in the air. It was Grampy - standing in front of the self-check screen - NOT checking his groceries! I burst out laughing and rushed up to tell him, “GRAMPY, you have to check your groceries yourself in this line- you’re holding EVERYONE up!” “Absolutely not, Anna! They’ll do it eventually- that’s what they’re paid for. You know they’re more than happy to do that - that’s their job. They love helping. Gee Hovers, they’re going to be so happy to help us. No rush, no rush.” And this went on for a while. While I waited. And he waited. And the loooong line waited. And just like Grampy predicted, eventually an employee came and helped and everyone was on their way! | VIP Parking by Anna Bryson One day during an intense snowstorm, Mary and I were searching the superstore parking lot for a free space, when through our snow covered windshield we saw something pretty strange. A car had parked in the small hut used for grocery carts! We couldn’t believe it! Who would be crazy enough to squeeze a car in the covered cart return space!? As we got closer, we realized, it was Grampy’s car! Of course only he would be out and about and looking for special treatment during such treacherous weather! Sooo Grampy! | Merlin, 1947 | Merlin fishing | 50

51: The Four of Spades by Laura Douglas When eating at G & G’s you’re always in for a delicious meal, but typically it’s all over when Grampy starts to push away his plate, pepper, glass, margine, table cloth and anything else close to him. He pushes it all to the person who is sitting nearby, as a hint to others that this part of the visit is over, and it’s time to move on to bigger and better things: CARDS! He never goes out and says “I want a game,” but instead, he will sit there quietly, dealing out cards, until three people join him. At this point of my card playing career, I was unfamiliar with Spades, the game Grampy had grown to love, so I told him up front to be patient with me and that I would need a lot of guidance. Well if you don’t know by now, Grampy will explain the best way he wants to, and you better understand the first time because that’s all you’re going to get! I sat there nervously and listened as he gave me some encouraging tips. Every now and then I was given “the look” for hiccup moves, but overall I was doing pretty well as a first timer. One round I was caught in a dilemma of whether or not I should bid nil and asked my teacher for some advice, he said “I wouldn’t if you have four spades.” Well as nervous as I was with this stressful decision, all I heard him say was “I wouldn’t if you have the four of spades.” Well folks, I had the right set of cards for a nil BUT did not take the chance because of that pesky four of spades in my hand! Instead of gaining 100 points and a big smile of approval from Grampy, we got set, not to mention the look that came with it! I explained the situation and he laughed and laughed and went on teasing me the rest of the game. A few years have passed now, but that one game of cards still haunts me to this day! Whenever I play Spades or am just chewing the fat, Grampy without a doubt will say, “watch out for that four of spades,” or, “oh look, I better not go nil, you know what card is in my hand,”and, “uh oh, someone’s got the four of spades!” The torture never ends. | 51 | Merlin the Lawyer by Cheryl McCarthy Dad had three years of formal education. During that time he walked to school barefoot uphill both ways. Dad's formal education ended in the third grade when he was expelled for refusing to shave. Despite the short duration of his schooling, he was nevertheless well prepared for the day when he accompanied his nephew, Jimmy, to court as his legal counsel. As he entered the courtroom, he noticed that the other | lawyers were carrying files. So as not to be undone, he grabbed a Canadian Tire catalogue and stuffed it under his arm. Jimmy was well represented and Dad easily argued his point of view, pounding his fist on the catalogue to emphasize the seriousness of the matter and the importance of his "files." On that very day, Merlin the lawyer brought justice to Portage Road. Reflecting back, he realizes that he had an unfair advantage against the six opponents he had that day in court, as he had been watching episodes of Perry Mason for two years.

52: Initiation by Linda Savoy | Grampy’s Special Treats by Martha Savoy Going to Grand Falls to visit Grammy and Grampy as a child was always so much fun! Grammy always had delicious baked goods for us, and Grampy always had a few special treats up his sleeve for us grandchildren to enjoy as well! There are so many special memories to share, and I would like to list some of the highlights of going to good ol' Grand Falls as a child: Trips to McDonalds: what a treat! Growing up in Woodstock, we didn't have any fast food restaurants, so whenever we were with Grampy he'd bring us to McDonalds for some Happy Meals! Driving Grampy's golf cart: no matter what age we were, Grampy always put his trust in us and let us practice our driving skills around the golf course! Buckets of KFC chicken: despite treating us to some good ol' fashioned McDonalds, Grampy even bought us some delicious fried chicken from time to time! Peppermints: from pockets full of mints to containers stashed around the house, Grampy always had peppermints on him! I could go on and on, but the fact of the matter is that Grampy has, and has always had, so many ways to make each and every one of us feel special! | When Fred and I were first married we worked in Dalhousie for a year. Mom, Dad, and Al and Marge McCormick came to Campbellton and we went to meet them there. Dad quickly asked Fred to carry a heavy cooler from the trunk up through the hotel to their room. (Fred didn't notice the tail sticking out the end of the cooler). Of course, he had NO idea that he was carrying a large illegal salmon acquired across the river in Quebec. He found out when he got to the room and the tub was full of ice. The hotel was full of rangers and wardens, in Campbellton for a conference. Fred nearly sh__ himself as Dad and Al laughed their heads off at his initiation. | Grampy, Sarah & Martha | Dad and Lin at Lisa & Mike's wedding, 2006 | Fred joins the family | 52

53: Grampy the Scampy by Allie McCarthy One sunny summer day, Grampy came to our house to visit us and he was very busy hiding things. About five months later, we were at our friend's house and suddenly Noah found a peppermint on the bed. He couldn't figure out where it came from but he ate it anyway. Grampy had hidden it in Noah's pocket. My friend wouldn't give Noah one of her little candies because she thought he had stolen one from her. I laughed when I figured it out, and Noah chased me screaming "Grampy!" | Five Minutes! by Kathleen Morris It's 2008 and Kathleen is tagging along the annual family vacation to New Brunswick and PEI. We are all staying at Paul and Terri’s, where Grammy and Grampy are also living. Paul, having some Grand Falls connections, hooks Lisa and Kathleen up with a voucher for eight two-for-one drinks at Grits. The girls think, Jack Pot! After taking full advantage of the deal, somehow the two make it back to Paul and Terri’s, where both were feeling quite under the weather and in need of some quality rest. | The next morning who comes into our room at 7:30 to wake them up for some berry picking? GRAMPY! He says, “Girls, you wouldn’t want me to light a match in here, you’d go up in flames! Time to get up, we gotta go pick some berries so Grammy will make us a pie!” Tugging on their toes, Grampy tries to wake them up and gives them a five minute warning to get ready. Of course Lisa and Kathleen don’t move an inch. Grampy comes back five minutes later to find the girls still sleeping. This time Grampy pulls off the covers and raises his voice, “Now girls, it’s time to get up! Let’s go. Five minutes!” Can you guess that the girls still did not move an inch? Five minutes pass and Grampy is right back at the end of the bed and cries, “GIRLS, IF YOU DON’T GET UP IN THE NEXT FIVE MINUTES, YOU WILL BE MOWING THE LAWN FOR THE REST OF THE VACATION!” The girls never got up so fast, got dressed, and dragged their sorry behinds to the van for some family berry picking. While at the berry field Lisa and Kathleen are picking away, feeling pretty horrible, and Grampy hollers over to them, “Isn’t this great girls, all you needed was some fresh air!” | 53 | Scampy Jr., Scampy, Scampy Jr. II

54: A Family Treasure by Mary Crossman If I start telling old stories I will be dating myself. How could I remember, at my young age, your courting days and the close of the evening when a cup of tea in private would have been nice, "Oh, I'll boil the water”, after numerous tries, the water would not boil, "Oh my, I guess the kettle wasn't on." I got a quarter and was sent off to bed. I wasn't the little brat that sneaked down the stairs and peaked. The years were so, so kind to us. Merlin liked to go shopping. Elsie never went with us, we would have a "better time without her." Too kind to say, we embarrassed her. One day she heard us coming in, laughing hysterically. Merlin couldn't read the price tag, so the cashier took off his glasses and cleaned them for him. Poor Elsie, it is a wonder I got out of N.B. scar-free. One visit back, I was supposed to be helping her as she lay flat on her back in traction, as I recall. Merlin and I went to the Mall; a photographer was taking pictures to make up a calendar: 12 pictures; 1 per month; bargain price. Merlin said, "What do you think? Elsie would love a picture of us...a year of pictures?" I said, "You’d better think about buying a couple of bullets for the gun in the closet if we buy the calendar, so that she can shoot the both of us." Now, only go as far back as a year ago, the Shingles were a very sore subject. I went into the room to say hello and I'm shocked at how very ill he is, he looked up at a picture of himself on the dresser and said, "I always did take a pretty good picture, didn't I?" The humor never dies. | Musical Abilities by Jan Robinson Merlin and Queen Mary (Elsie's sister) loved to cut the rug, especially to that 60's pop song "Knock Three Times." They were a joyful sight putting in all the actions and Mary roaring her characteristic infectious laugh. Merlin's absolute all time favourite tune is "Tennessee Waltz" which he reserves for the "fiery red haired girl" who said "Yes" sixty-one years ago. Merlin has also been seen putting on a dance show at the annual PEI talent show with all the grandchildren. | From top: Merlin and Lilly Bryson cut the rug in PEI at Merlin's Birthday Do; Grampy and Grammy dance The Tennessee Waltz; Guy, Anne Marie, Merlin, Jo, & Fred | 54

55: A Man for All Reasons by Guy Gillespie Merlin J. McCarthy Life Time Achievement Awards! Of the many note-worthy firsts, I record only a few out of respect for the need to be brief. Fireman: Made early morning fires at the country school house. Fell out of the hay-mow, broke his wrist, lost his job! Realtor: Accumulated hundreds of acres of prime potato growing land and became a respected grower and harvester. Observed one farmer lose his farm while sitting on his porch, watching traffic go by. Acting Defense Attorney: Successfully defended his nephew in court! Carried the Canadian Tire catalogue as a prop, instead of a file with legal references and precedents. Inventor: Had the first heated golf cart, he used a Coleman Camping Stove, effective, but a dangerous fire hazard. Master Mechanic: Was able to get broken farm equipment working again by way of a decisive blow from his trusty hammer. Scratch Golfer: Shot a par round on local golf club, included a hole in one. Introduced the term "Senior Par" (Bogey, for most golfers) Innovator: a) Only golfer on record to have "Meals on Wheels" deliver his lunch to him on the course. b) Introduced the practice of buying tough meat to serve to sponging relatives. c) Designed the first, and only, successful incentive program for "Mustard Pullers": He offered free passes to the Presque Isle Fair for superior performers. It involved the winners getting in the trunk of the car while he drove through the main gate. d) Coined the phrase "gross abundance" as a kinder response to obese potato pickers. | Merlin, Guy, & Anne Marie, Munich, Late 1970s | Merlin & Queen Mary | 55

56: Paper Bag Lunch by Lisa Douglas I have so many special memories and stories with Grampy. Grampy, you are the heart of the family, and there is no one like you. I love you very much and thank you so much for being such an incredible Grandfather to me. The creme de la creme of special traditions with Grampy goes to our visits for lunch to the place with the shiny golden arches. Laura and I would get so excited to go for lunch with Grampy! After all, it was something that we only did once a year with him. Yes, our mother is none other than Cheryl McCarthy, and we were somewhat deprived as children of this special rite of passage. Can you imagine why? To this day I still have a hard time with it. I mean, this was the place where everyone was happy and having a good time. Kids were smiling, playing in the park, pretending to talk to the life-size statues of Ronald McDonald and his friends, and eating happy meals while checking out their new toys included with their meals. What’s not to love about that? Can’t you just picture us there in the scene enjoying ourselves with our Grampy? Well things went a bit differently for us. We smiled with joy the entire ride over to McDonalds. We were finally getting to go! We didn’t walk into the restaurant; we skipped and bopped up and down as our ponytails swayed from side to side. This was our moment. We picked the perfect spot to eat our lunch right beside the park. That way once we finished we could easily run and play while our Grampy watched us. We sat down and opened up our brown paper bag lunches that our mother had so thoughtfully packed for us. Apparently she said we “didn’t like” McDonalds food. So we proceeded to eat our chicken sandwiches on whole wheat bread, devoured our delicious juicy red apples, and sipped on our refreshingly cold milk from the thermos. We were so young and innocent that we didn’t know any better, but there were a group of Grampy’s friends at the restaurant who sure did. “Merlin, how cheap can you get?” was one of the comments that flowed in Grampy’s direction along with some questionable glares. Poor Grampy was being thrown under the bus for bringing his grandkids to McDonalds and being too cheap to buy them lunch. As I said, we were too young and innocent to know what was going on, and had a great time regardless, but Grampy still gets teased from his friends to this day. | 56 | G & G with Mary & Keith, the Ashtons & Savoys

57: I always thought it was so awesome that Grampy had his own golf cart. Who needed to walk when you could drive in style? It was my first experience behind the wheel, and boy did I love it. I have to say that I was quite the natural. I was responsible, followed my Grampy’s instructions, and rode smoothly wherever the road/ grass would take us. However, when my sister was driving it was another story. Let’s just say that the ride became a little rougher. The smooth air that seemed to refreshingly bounce off your face when I drove suddenly and abruptly became an inconsistent gush of wind that would violently cause you to open and close your eyes quickly, as you tried to keep an eye on the road. I could feel my grip tighten on the side of the cart with one hand while the other hand nervously checked if the strap was securely tightened across my body in the back of the cart. All I can remember Grampy saying was “hold your horses Laura, ease up on the gas.” Our bodies seemed to jitter and bolt back and forth quite a bit as | Rabbit Hunt by Lisa Douglas Visits with Grampy were always so much fun. What was not to love about a man who had an endless supply of peppermints to hand out, tons of stories to tell and amuse us with, a grizzly bear in the shed to keep you in line, and traditions of things that we did together that never grew old. Some of my favourites were driving the golf cart, and trips to the most wonderful place on earth for children....McDonalds, and rabbit hunting. The thing about rabbit hunting was that it was all about the thrill of the chase. Laura and I would pile into that huge pickup truck, take turns sitting on Grampy’s lap to steer (very cool), and travel through the woods bopping up and down on the rocky dirt roads. We looked anxiously for our furry little friends, and from time to time would spot one, point excitedly in their direction, and watch as they hopped away. “Aaahhh that one was pretty quick,” Grampy would say. “Let’s find another one, we’ll catch him next time,” Grampy would assure us. Well, we kept looking for those little bunnies and saw many in our day, but it didn’t matter that we didn’t catch a single one because it was all about the anticipation of the hunt. | she tried to adjust and take control of the speed of the “vehicle.” Now of course Grampy would give us both lots of praise and encouragement when our turns were over. He never let on that Laura was in need of a bit more practice. He would just say, “We’ll give it another go tomorrow.” You can be sure that when tomorrow came, we reminded Grampy of those very words. | His Hands by Marguerite McCormick Merlin is 12 years older than me. When I was 12 I remember him in his Knights of Columbus outfit - that full regalia, all dressed up with the sword and the hat. He was a Fourth Degree Knight. It’s funny, I don’t know why I don’t remember much from when we were young, it’s probably because we were all so busy, and doing our own things. I do remember Merlin coming in from working in the fields, or the potato house, and we had sinks in the kitchen, and there was one special pan just for him to wash up. He would be so full of dust and would dip his hands into the pan to wash his face. | Jack Rabbit by Lisa Douglas | 57

58: Tell Tale Sign of a Businessman by Sarah Savoy- Amir Grampy’s grandchildren were being contracted by their parents to rake leaves one fall for the payment of $1 per bag. They were given large garbage bags and sent out to work. After hours of hard labour only a few bags were filled; Grampy recognized this as a clear case of child exploitation. Being the savvy businessman that he was, he consulted with his grandchildren and learned that there was no requirement on the size of the bag that was to be filled for the quoted price. He left them and returned a short time later, exchanging the large heavy-duty garbage bags with much smaller grocery bags and sandwich baggies. This resulted in fairer compensation for his grandchildren and a lesson in good business practice for their parents. Thank goodness for Grampy. | To my surprise Grampy had a task set out for me before we even met. I figured I'd take this opportunity to shine early. The fridge door in Sarah's kitchen apparently opened to the wrong side. He told Sarah that her man (me) should make himself useful and fix it. So, during my second visit to NB before we left to visit Grammy and Grampy for my first time I decided to quickly fix the fridge door so I could stand tall and say it was done. It was a standard fridge, with a freezer on top, so I assumed it would be fairly straightforward. That's when I ran into a little bit of bad luck. I took the door off the fridge and managed to lose one of the screws. The door would no longer stay connected to the fridge. Sarah didn't have any extra screws in the house for a temporary fix so I was really stuck. We were already running late and now I was sweating. I ended up leaving the fridge door leaning against the fridge and transferred certain things into the freezer to prevent them from spoiling. The freezer door was still connected to the fridge because I hadn't touched it. | We entered Sarah's parent’s place and for whatever reason I wasn't feeling very confident. Sarah went into the kitchen where Grampy was and he said, "Did you bring that man of yours?" At that point I seriously considered walking out of the house and running away. Anyways, I went over and gave him a hug. The first thing he said was "did you get around to fixing the fridge?" I responded with "oh yes, let me tell you." He quickly replied "Sarah, this young man is a keeper." Not sure what he thought I said but I wasn't going to clarify. That was the first visit and the rest was smooth sailing. Grampy is a legendary man with a legendary past. He always has something interesting on his mind and delivers it with effortless comedy. Second to his big heart is his welcoming nature and I consider myself lucky to call him family. I went to Home Depot the following morning and as a result still have some dignity. | Merlin talking with Nanny Savoy, 2010 | Grampy & Sarah, 2010 | Sarah & Mansoor's wedding, 2010 | A Useful Man by Mansoor Amir | 58

59: Merlin and Mass by Ben Bryson In my first year of university I lived in residence on campus. Being away from home for the first time it was comforting to have so much extended family in the area. Different relatives would make sure that I had a home cooked meal and a place to do laundry if I wanted. Grampy’s job was to take me to Mass on Sunday morning (whether I wanted to get up or not). At the time, Aitken house used a telephone style intercom system to inform people when somebody at the front door wanted their attention. I introduced this to Grampy pointing out that it worked exactly the same as a telephone did. Simply punch in the number next to my name and the machine will phone me. Showing his characteristic ability to adapt to new technology (I am told he would regularly call my sister Anna over to his house to push “play” on the DVD player), he told me that he would never be able to figure it out. It’s easy, I assured him, you will get it. The following Sunday morning found me sleeping soundly after a long night of studying, when a confused looking student came into my room and roused me. “Ben, there’s a crazy old man walk around the house yelling your name.” I quickly got dressed and went outside. There was Grampy looking into different windows calling my name questioningly. “Ben?......Ben?” | “Grampy!” I called, from behind him. “Ben!” he said, “I found you.” “Yes you did.” I replied. “Let’s go. Elsie is waiting in the car” “Ok Grampy, let’s go” We got in the car and went to mass. Grampy never would use the intercom system but he knew how to get what he wanted. I made sure to be waiting outside from then on anytime that I knew he was coming over to pick me up. | Grampy & Ben fishing, 1986 | 59

60: Charlie Van Horne by Keith McCarthy Merlin was known to be involved in politics especially in his younger years. He could move to either side of the political fence, never stuck in his ways. Many a famous politician was known to have sought his wise counsel: Trudeau, Diefenbaker and Hatfield to name a few. Well in 1967, there was an especially interesting campaign underway in NB and the Conservatives had a very colourful character running for them. Charlie Van Horne was a flamboyant, cowboy hat wearing, great public speaker, an all around good guy, except maybe for some suspicious financial dealings, but what politician doesn’t have some warts. Merlin worked for Charlie to muster support around the Grand Falls area. He gathered several farmers from the portage to attend a Conservative rally. The famous fiddler Don Messer traveled the campaign trail with Van Horne that year. His job was to entertain but primarily he raised the spirits of the crowds prior to Charlie’s booming oratories. Following Charlie’s speech to a fairly large gathering in Grand Falls, Charlie was making the rounds shaking hands and meeting most of the crowd in attendance. Merlin, being a close friend of Charlie, interrupted him and brought him over to meet Kenny McLaughlin, a neighbour of Merlin’s. After pleasantries were exchanged, Merlin playfully mentioned to Charlie that Kenny was adamant that a bridge needed to be built right away on the McCluskey road where Kenny lived. Charlie of course promised that if elected he’d be sure to build that bridge, no question about it. Kenny piped up, “But Charlie, there’s no water on the McCluskey road!” To which Charlie replied, “No problem, we’ll truck it in!” Right on cue Don Messer immediately struck up the band playing a rousing tune to Charlie’s exit from the rally. Charlie lost the election which may have been a blessing for NB or else we may be in worse financial shape than we are today. However, he did become famous for a bridge, the one that links Campbelton to Quebec bears his name to this day. | Linda, Pat, Dad & Jan, 1958 | Dad & Tim | 60

61: The Joys of Public Transit by Dinah Bryson Grampy loved travelling by bus. He was so impressed with the fact that you didn't even have to get off to go to the bathroom; they carried one right along with the passengers. The only better way to travel was the train. On the train, you could ride backwards or forwards, and they had a bathroom on board too. How great is that!? He could never see the sense of driving somewhere that the bus was going. You would just be following the bus to your destination!! | Potato House by Pete Mulherin I will always remember the old potato house. I recall being in the basement of the potato house in Argosy. When racking, we forked into a conveyor that carried the potatoes up to the main level for racking and bagging. I was forking, which was a hard job to begin with, and I decided to show them what I could do. I was forking so fast that the potatoes were going up two and three deep, and the sweat was just pouring off of me – on the verge of a heart attack. Merlin sticks his head down the hole and says, “Can you speed it up a little!” in that dry tone where you never know if he is serious or not. Another time we were loading a rail road car with 112 pound bags. I was not that old, and these bags were probably close to my own weight. I was struggling to carry these things and ended up dropping one. I remember being on the ground struggling to get up and Merlin says, “Is everything okay? Wouldn’t want you to bruise the potatoes.” | Fred, Lilly Bryson, Mike, Di, Anna, Elsie, Gwen, Ben, & Merlin, 1984 | Dad & his baby girl at Lisa & Mike's wedding, 2006 | Merlin & Elsie's 25th Anniversay, 1975: Jan, Tim, Elsie, Paul, Cheryl, Nanny Carty, Merlin, Pat, Nanny Gillespie | 61

62: Coca Cola by Jacob Moore On behalf of my sister Emma and my brother Joshua, I want to say how much we love Grampy. He is very special to us, and we pray for him every night. I know I’m just a kid, but I’m old enough to know that visiting my family in New Brunswick, and going to PPI is my favourite time of year. I think about it a lot during the year, and often ask my Mom how much longer it will be until summer when we can finally go on vacation. I love being busy all day long, moment to moment playing with my cousins at the park, beach, playing in baseball games with my aunts and uncles, volleyball tournaments where I serve with my foot, swimming in the pool, going to get Cow's ice cream, and hanging out with my Grampy. I especially remember one day when I was about three years old. You see, my Mom is kinda strict about me eating healthy foods. Not as bad as her mother (my Nanu) was with her, but still pretty strict. I was never allowed to drink pop although I really wanted to! I went over to visit Grammy and Grampy with my Mom. Mom was busy talking with everyone in the cottage, and I was hanging out with Grampy. I noticed that he was drinking a coke, and he must have seen me staring it down because he then asked me if I was thirsty. “Yes!” I answered quickly. He gave me some of his coke, and I took a sip real quick. It was cold and fizzy! I turned to my Mom and said excitedly, “Look what Grampy gave me, Mom!” The look of complete surprise was all over her face. She couldn’t believe what I was drinking, but she didn’t say anything because Grampy had given it to me. I was set...and it was a sweet day! I felt it was a good time to bring up a certain haircut that I anxiously wanted to give. Back at home, I always get my hair cut by my Mom, Dad, or Nanu. I really wanted to have the opportunity to have a turn to cut someone’s hair, but my Mom, Dad, and Nanu always refused for some reason. I thought my wish would never come true until one day when Nanu told me that Grampy would probably need a haircut that summer. So, back to the cottage I go to ask Grampy if I could cut his hair. I thought it would have been a done deal, until I saw Grammy giving Grampy a funny look. I didn’t quite understand what that meant, but Grampy then proceeded to tell me that he had just had a haircut, so he didn’t need one. Oh well, I thought, maybe next year! | Grampy's great grandchildren Emma, Joshua, & Jacob | 62

63: Hole In One by Jan Robinson Two years ago, age 85, Dad arrived back at the condo from a golf game. After a little lunch, I asked Dad how his game was and how were all his friends at the golf club? “Pretty good game,” says Dad. “Well, how was your score?” I ask. “I got a hole-in-one and parred the rest.” I was all excited, “You got a hole-in-one?!!” He very calmly and quietly answered, “Well, I got one before one time, it wasn’t my first.” Dad gave the credit to the two young girls who worked at the golf course, telling them they put the hole in the right place that day, so he told them drinks were on Merlin! The next day he went back and parred the course again. | From the Top, Down by Mike MacDonald Having just recently been introduced to the “McCarthy culture,” I have made some interesting observations thus far. To rosaire or not to rosaire that is the question? It has been an absolute pleasure getting to know such a group of remarkable people. Like most cultures, the behavior of its people is determined by a top down effect. As the patriarch of such a proud culture, it is apparent both you and Elsie have instilled some important values that have persisted into the next generation. It is clear that there is a distinct familial bond that exists, and it is a beautiful thing! Your granddaughter is the light of my life and she always affectionately refers to her “Grampy!” Meeting Laura and having the opportunity to share time with you, and your family, the past two years has been a blessing for both my daughter and I. One time when we were going over to your place for supper, I heard Olivia say, “We are going to Grampy’s.” Kids are able to pick up on feelings and emotions and express them in a very real way, so I figured Olivia’s comment was ultimately rooted in the special relationship you have with Laura and all your grandchildren! | 63 | Grampy, in-between-push-aways sporting his favourite musician in a game of Headbands | Grampy's Hollywood hospital style, 2010 | Dad showing Paul evidence of The Original Push-Away

64: Rain Check by Mike Bryson A long time ago when I first started dating Dinah, I had one of my first of many golf games with Merlin. It was early days for Merlin’s golf career and he had the golf bug awfully bad. I remember one Friday night bringing Dinah home and she found a note on the stove: “Pls let Mike know that Pat, Tim & I are golfing in the morning and we will pick him up at 8:00.” It had been raining most of that night and it called for more rain through the weekend, so I didn’t give it much more thought. The next morning I awoke to a phone call and it was Merlin advising that the boys still wanted to go despite the weather forecast. I remember standing on our veranda waiting to be picked up and watching the rain bounce off the driveway. Curious, I thought, but it was Dinah’s Dad and I did want to make a good impression. Sure enough the car pulled up, the trunk automatically popped up and I threw my clubs in and jumped into the back seat. Merlin says, “Sit up front Mike, the boys chickened out, said it was raining too hard.” I immediately thought, NO KIDDING, but muttered something like “that’s strange.” Curiously, other than the Pro Shop guy, we were the only other people in the clubhouse. After nine holes I meekly suggested that maybe I could go in and get a rain check. Merlin thought we should play a couple of more holes and advised that we would play #1 and 2 and then cut over to #8 and 9. (Grand Falls was a nine hole course then and we played it twice to get a full round in). Who was I to argue? After the second hole I headed over to the pre-planned shortened route, but Merlin could see a break in the clouds over Fort Fairfield or Boston and thought we should carry on to #3 and the remainder of the course. I was soaked by this time and starting to question whether I really ever wanted to see Dinah again. Off we went. We eventually made it back to the 8th tee box and the clubhouse was in sight again. I hit my drive and Merlin pipes up, “Mike, it’s getting kind of wet and we are close to the clubhouse so let’s head in.” I remember thinking that it might have been nice to have mentioned that before I hit my ball 200 yards in the other direction. I walked down, picked up my ball, and walked back to the clubhouse with Merlin. We piled into the car and he drove about 50 feet before stopping in front of the clubhouse. Merlin pipes up and says, “Why don’t you go in and get that rain check you were talking about.” I remember explaining to Merlin that it probably would have been better to have done that before we completed 16 or 18 holes, but that argument wasn’t going anywhere and neither were we until I got out of the car. I went back into the Pro Shop and met the same guy who we had bought the green fees from four and a half hours earlier. I remember him looking at me strangely and asking if he could help me. I remember somehow mustering enough nerve to suggest that maybe my partner and I could get rain checks. He pointed out that it was raining when we started; I quickly agreed with him and pointed out that not only was it raining when we started but it rained throughout the 16 holes that we played. I also indicated that I was playing golf in the rain with my girlfriend’s father and really didn’t want to discuss it too much further. I told him he could charge me for the nine more holes, eighteen more holes or do whatever he wanted to do BUT I needed two rain checks. When I got back in the car Merlin was quite impressed that I got the rain checks. He talked about it for years to follow, which made it all worthwhile. | 64

65: Golf vs. Digging by Mike Bryson Early in Merlin’s golfing career he had the golf bug worse than anyone has ever had it. He would go golfing any chance he could get. After one golf season, late in October, there was an exceptional day that I will always remember. It was a weekday, let’s say Wednesday, and I was busy building the new St. Leonard Airport. It was a bright sunny day and the temperature was close to 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit for you Yankees or older types) and no wind. A perfect golf day. We had not seen a day like this for weeks and it was obviously the last good golf day of the year. I called in sick and quickly convinced Mike (Pole) McLaughlin to do the same, and we headed to Aroostock Valley Golf & Country Club. As we headed down through the Portage we decided to stop to see if Merlin wanted to come. Elsie was in the kitchen baking cookies (we had a few) and she advised us that Merlin was busy down at Argosy harvesting his potato crop for the year. She pointed out that this four week period was the only time of the year that the man was busy and he would never go golfing during digging. We agreed but immediately headed to Argosy to talk to Merlin. We found Merlin deep in the basement of an old potato house giving out lots of direction of where and how to place the potatoes. He asked us what we were up to and when we mentioned the weather and Aroostock, his face lit right up. It quickly reversed into a big sigh, as he explained that it was digging season and he could never, ever, ever leave. We pointed out one more time the perfection of the temperature, and the possibility that it would be the last day in the golf season. On the way to Aroostock Merlin kept whining about if his Dad could see him now that he would be really upset. Merlin didn’t shoot that well that day and kept questioning what his Dad would say if he saw him playing golf during digging season. We had a great time and we teased Merlin for many subsequent years about playing golf during Digging. Every time I reminded Merlin of this story years later, he was always quick to point out that months after our famous golf game, he was racking potatoes and he came across a big wet spot in the pile of potatoes where there was a lot of rot: RIGHT in that spot where he left that sunny October day to go play golf. He would always laugh and say it was worth it. | New Years Eve/Papa McCarthy's (Jimmy) Birthday, Marguerite, Clara Roach, Gordon Hitchcock, Merlin, Elsie, Nanny Carty (Edna), 1955 | The handsome couple, Mike & Di, with Merlin | 65

66: Merlin played golf for many years, but it wasn’t until later in his golfing career that he registered his first hole-in-one. He didn’t want to be out done by his brother- in-law Guy, who did it with about six nephews in tow, or by his daughter Dinah, or his son Paul; pretty well everyone in the family has had one except me, but I digress... It happened on a par 3 at Carmen Creek. I wasn’t there, but Merlin told me lots about it, on many different occasions, so I am pretty familiar with the description of this memorable event. | From back row: Pat, Keith, Lin, Di, Cher, Tim, Dad, Jan, Paul, & Mom | First of all, immediately after sinking the shot from the tee box, Merlin walked over to his cart, pulled his putter from his bag, raised it over his head and started to exclaim: “putter for sale, putter for sale,” he figured he had no further use for it. Secondly, golf tradition is to walk into the clubhouse, announce your hole-in-one, and buy the next round of drinks. Merlin didn’t do that. Instead, he went into the maintenance shed and congratulated the maintenance guys and greens keeper for FINALLY putting the hole in the right place. He also sprung for a lunch for the guys. It is not surprising that Merlin finally achieved his hole-in-one, but it surprising how long it took him. He was a very accurate golfer. In fact, on hole #2 at Grand Falls, Merlin would always complain that the brook that crossed the fairway was at the exact same distance that he hit his driver. He would often say, ‘Mike, I am going to have to aim for the bridge, just in case I hit this one,” and sure enough, frequently his drive would fly down the middle of the | fairway, roll across the bridge, and land up on the other side of the brook. He would let out a laugh, look back and smile and say “I told ya.” Good times Merlin, very good times. | Hole-In-One by Mike Bryson | 66

67: Six Steaks by Mike Bryson Grammy and Grampy came to visit us in Ottawa on many occasions, but one memorable time in the mid-eighties, when we lived in Kanata, Merlin went out for a walk and came back with six beautiful steaks for dinner. I was very impressed, until I learned of all the details. Back in the day in Grand Falls, everyone’s favourite butcher was Kenny McCluskey, the butcher and owner of Kenny’s Kash & Karry on the Portage Road, just down the road from Toner’s Garage and across the road from Fred Pirie’s potato houses. Everyone would get their meat from Kenny and as they were leaving the store, they would simply tell Theresa McCluskey to put their order on their account - "Charge it!" Back to Merlin’s visit in Kanata: Merlin goes for a walk one day and comes across a butcher shop. He goes in and picks out six beautiful pieces of meat for the BBQ. As Merlin gets his meat from the butcher and explains that he doesn’t need anything else, he simply tells the butcher to put it on Mike Bryson’s account and leaves the store. After I have the BBQ started, Dinah whispers in my ear that she is not entirely sure if her dad is pulling her leg or not, but maybe I should walk down to the Butcher Shop and ensure our dinner has been paid for. I reluctantly walked down, as I was entirely sure that our dinner had not been paid for. I walked into the Butcher Shop and identified myself as Mike Bryson, to which I received a tremendous slap on the back and the smiling butcher advised me that he was “extremely happy” to meet me, and handed me a bill for our dinner. As I was leaving he yelled out, ‘Tell Merlin he can do his shopping here anytime!” | Young Merlin and his sheep, which he sold to plant potatoes | 67 | Grampy's famous look-like-you're-working-in-the-kitchen pose: a classic

68: The Garburator by Mike Bryson Merlin loved to shop across the line, or should I say, he loved to smuggle stuff across the line. One day Dinah mentioned that our kitchen sink garburator wasn’t working and we couldn’t buy one in Ottawa because they were illegal to use in Ottawa. Merlin jumped at the opportunity to go shopping across the line and professed that he knew exactly where we could buy one in an old hardware store in Van Buren. I was concerned about how we would get it across the border, to which Merlin replied that there was no duty on kitchen appliances. Seemed like a good idea, so off we went in Merlin’s pickup truck. We found the garburator quickly and headed home. I put the garburator box on the front seat between Merlin and I. Of course, before returning home, we had to stop for some Wise potato chips and a jug of milk. As we came out of the store Merlin gave me the keys and said, “you drive.” Strange, I thought, but didn’t consider it much more than that. All was going well until we pulled under the canopy at the Grand Falls customs border. The Customs Officer was putting on his hat and walking out the door when Merlin exclaimed, “Mike, you didn’t hide the garburator!” I quickly reminded him that there was no duty on kitchen appliances, to which Merlin replied, “Yeah right, who told you that!? Put your arm on that thing!” he barked. I figured it was useless at this point and was getting ready to declare the garburator, when Merlin answered the Custom’s Officer question about importing any goods with “Nope, just some Wise chips and a jug of milk.” The Customs Officers glanced at me comfortably resting against the garburator box, said “have a nice day,” and we were off. Merlin laughed like a crazy fool and told me that I should have seen the look on my face when the Customs Officer was coming out. He slapped his upside down right hand into his opened left hand, as he often did, and laughed and laughed and laughed. Very funny Merlin, very funny. | Celebrating the birth of the twins, Moo, Mike, Paul, Elsie, Pat, and half of Di, 1982 | 68

69: There are moments that stay with you forever, images of people and places you’ll never forget. Once such memory for me involves an older, but always-handsome man grinning from big-ear-to-big-ear and doing a double-armed fist pump. In this family we’ve played thousands of games of cards. But one game stands out above them all...the finale of the great spades tourney of 2009. Before the tournament began there was a draw for names and I chanced Lin as my partner. In the nicest possible way, Lin and I breezed through the opening rounds. Scarcely a set or bag accumulated, we quickly found ourselves in the championship round. Other teams were not so speedy and decisive, no offence, and their games stretched out over the week. Unable to wait any longer, Lin had to leave PPI before the tourney finished. Now as I have unabashedly advanced, Lin and I are both great players. But we’re not the best as there is such a thing as a next level player. With Lin gone such a player stepped up as my partner. His name - Merlin. In the finals, Meg and Curtis proved to be stronger than expected competition. After given ‘em a beatin’ in the first round, they mustered a comeback in the second. The final game was back and forth as the scores crept towards 500 while the clock ticked towards midnight. Meg and Curtis took the lead, and, left with no other option, Grampy belted out a double nil. There was no talking in the room as the growing crowd watched in anticipation. With four spades, meaning a 1 in 10 chance of success, Grampy never let his worry show. But I had one spade more and on the last hand my spade trumped his. I looked across the table and saw two arms raised in victory, and seconds later - a double-armed fist pump. The press trickled in late into the night, and Grampy gave interview after interview and posed for picture after picture. The next day he played his first 18 holes in months! | Double-Armed Fist Pump by Emily Ashton | 69 | The Double-Armed Fist Pump | Early Practice, Grampy & Em at 4th Ave, 1986

70: The Gambler: Revamped by Meg McCarthy One night in 2010 on the island, we were shocked to find Grampy outlasting all the rest of us. We were all falling asleep around the card table, and he was wide awake, pushing for more games. We wrapped it up around 1am, when we told him we had to get some sleep. | On a warm summer’s eve, In a cottage in Cavendish, I was seated ‘cross from Grampy, I was nodding off to sleep. Two teams took turns a-winnin.’ And as the darkness swallowed daylight, Jan was rosairing, so he began to speak. He said, "With a PhD secured I can read people's faces, Knowin' what their cards are By the way they hold their big ones. So if you don't mind my sayin' You’ve got one last big trump, For a taste of your green tea I'll give you some advice" So she handed him her mug, And he drank down her last swallow. Then he bummed a peppermint, Shouted “switch that kettle on” He said “mark it at 250!” With the index finger jabbin’ His opponents were confused, how’s he still awake? You've got to know when to hold 'em, Know when to play 'em. Know when to take a bag, Know when to give. You never count your tricks When Grammy’s at the table, There'll be time enough for countin' When the hand is done. | Now every McCarthy knows That the secret of the unbeatables, Is trustin’ in your partner, Placin’ the blame on them too. 'Cause every hand’s a winner; Every hand a loser. And double nil is surely feasible, If you dodge that four of spades. And when the game was finished, He turned back toward the clock. Crushing down his peppermint, All opponents drifting off to sleep. The kettle on the cupboard, Was whistling through the kitchen, Reviving all the players, “This one names the champion!” Grampy, he did speak. You've got to know when to hold 'em Know when to play 'em, Know when to take a bag, And know when to give. You never count your tricks, When Grammy’s at the table, There'll be time enough for countin' When the hand is done. | Excitement consumed the cottage, Radiating from the sole awake, The night was late, morning so young, But The Gambler lay on guard. As he waited for the press to come, He recalled the night’s events, All previous games a-blur, But the final, memory preserved. You've got to know when to hold 'em, (When to hold 'em) Know when to play 'em, (When to play 'em) Know when to take a bag, And know when to give. You never count your tricks, When Grammy’s at the table, There'll be time enough for countin' When the hand is done. You've got to know when to hold 'em, Know when to play 'em, Know when to take a bag, And know when to give. You never count your tricks, When Grammy’s at the table, There'll be time enough for countin' When the hand is done. | 70

71: The regular! | Rid the table! | She never said that! | What did we bid? | The Secrets to Survival I didn’t mean to do it but I did it just the same: always in sing-song, often after killing another player's trick; sometimes "I" is replaced with "he" or "she." Keep your diamonds: also sung, often. Whatever will be, will be: also sung, very often. You know I always used to let my grandparents win: stated during card games, when losing. Rid the table: said after a meal when looking for a game Chew, chew, chew-chew-chew: sung when you have a good hand or things are going particularly well; often combined with a repeated fist jab toward your partner. Originally Curt and Grampy's handshake. That’ll change: often spoken during card games, following a reading of the score, when losing. Down, down, down on _______: sung in reference to the opponent(s) combined with a thumbs-down sign in sync with the beat. | The 2009 grand champion! | We don't bother much with bags. Prize 2009 score card. | 71 | El Cheapo! | Scramble! | Count your cards. | Oh! Hidden card. Hidden card. | That'll change!

72: Around 1994 our family went to Florida to stay with Grampy and Grammy. There weren't enough rooms so I slept in a sleeping bag in a walk in closet. Grampy found this extremely funny and ever since has offered me a closet to sleep in any time I am traveling near him. The most recent offer came this Easter, 2011. During the same trip Grampy took all the kids to see the Buffalo herd that the compound housed. They just so happened to be charging across the field in an impressive display as we drove by. It was 4 o'clock and Grampy told us that the Buffalo Show started every day at 4. Any other time we drove by the herd would be far away or just lying around unimpressively. “What do you expect?” Grampy would ask, “the show is at 4.” | Everybody knows how much Grampy likes to talk to people. In the grocery store I have seen him walk up to the self-checkout and then wait for the cashier to come and check his groceries through while he chats away with her. Similarly the two of us talked to every teller in the bank once when he insisted that I sign up for a chequing account to get $20 of free groceries. Golfing was big with Grampy and a big part of golfing was finding new golf balls. Every time I went with him I spent half the day in the woods looking for golf balls. Despite the fact that he had an oil drum and a safe full of them at home, and the fact that I have never ever seen him lose one, the success of the day was measured in how many more balls you returned with than you had left with. | Grampy Non Sequiturs by Ben Bryson | Grampy back from the Calgary stampede, 1977 | Ben & Grampy, 2010 | 72

73: Bootlegger As to told by Merlin McCarthy, with some dressin' up by Claire Ashton Grampy has told me this story many times, and I have passed it onto many people. A little while ago, Grampy insisted I write it up, so I grabbed a pen as he dictated; about a page hand-written. He assured me I would be able to “dress it up” here and there and get a novel out of it, offering for my inspiration, “Walking With a Limp”, written by the father of his hospital roommate. I told Grampy that it is awfully hard to write a novel and that maybe I could write a short story instead.“Any money in that?” he asked. I replied, " If you’re lucky and you can get it published in a magazine, you might get some money," and he said, “OK, first you write a short, then you write a long.” Uncle Keith gave me the advice to write the “Reader’s Digest version” for this book, but I promise you Grampy, that a long is in the works! This beautiful book, I can say proudly, has become a “long”; a testament to the many gifts of the original author of this story! It was prohibition, late 1920’s, there were no liquor stores. If anyone could comprehend the seductive lick and linger of whisky to the lips, or the all-at-once excited and solemn recognition from within the gut and on the tongue that the forbidden hiss of a cap from any corner of any home could stir, it was the people of the Portage. On a humid day, the aroma from a dried, dead ring on the bottom of a long-empty bottle might escape through the porous wood of a locked cabinet to tease an abstainer, as would molasses on bread; the fat, hearty, all too distant cousin to rum missed its relative on the tongue after a meal. It was hard, hard times and there was a great thirst amongst men on either side of the line that needed quenchin'. That’s why Ben Conden built a house right out back of the farm, long before I ever owned it, right over the border. He brought the liquor from Ontario and arrived by train, about 7 miles from where he would build. There were no cars in these days. He had a team of horses and a boxcar, but he had to stay away from the Mounties, so he came up about 3 miles- nearly made it halfway- through the fields when he got stuck in the mud. It was spring, and the mud was knee deep, the more the horses tried to haul the load, the deeper they sank. They looked like moose crossing the river, and sounded like birthing mares. My father had to harness up his horses to go out and help him. He pulled him the rest of the way, can’t say what he got for it. In no time, the ground hardened up and Conden built his house. I think it came in gallon cans. He’d make a split, half and half, and sell it by the bottle. When the officers came, he’d just slide it onto one side of the house, and when the Mounties came, he’d slide it on over to the other. He was in business until the middle ‘30’s when something happened. One of Conden’s customers up and disappeared, it was a mystery, no one ever saw him again. The Mounties and the Officers were poking around a lot, then they weren’t, because Conden disappeared too. Ten years after that they still found liquor hidden in the woods, a nice surprise for a desperate few, but after that the cans rusted and the liquor leaked out. I smuggled there for years after - I’d go get the groceries. Once I was coming back with a whole load and I got stopped and the officer asked me what I had and I thought about it and I told him that I had ice cream in the back and it was going to melt and I’d have some disappointed kids on my hands if I didn’t get goin in a hurry, and he laughed and he let me go. Can’t do that now because the border patrol all carry guns. “Grampy, did they have secret bars in any of the houses or at Conden’s where they'd drink?” "Bahh- No! I imagine you’d get your bottle and get the hell out of there!" | 73

74: Heart Strings by Jan Robinson When we were little we always had a Sunday drive after church. Years later, I asked Dad "Why?", and he said, “Your mother had you looking so good, I wanted to show you off.” When I graduated from nursing school in '72, Dad looked at me with quiet pride and a soft smile, “You look just like your mother.” I sure felt special. | Where’s Jan? by Jan Robinson Dad thinks his memory is getting bad now, but I can tell you it has improved a lot since 1954, when he forgot me at Violette’s Garage in the big town of Grand Falls. Lucky little Jan got a trip to town with Dad in his pick-up. He needed to talk business at Violette’s and try to beat them down on the price of some piece of machinery or truck. Dad went home for lunch and Mom asked “Where’s Jan?” Thank goodness he did remember where he forgot me and I’m here to tell the tale. | Lent was 40 days long, with a chocolate bar treat every 7 days because “Sundays don't count.” We loved lent, and Halloween, and Christmas: so many treats! Dad would bring home humungous containers of Grape Nut and Vanilla ice cream, fresh from the ice cream transport truck; and huge barrels of warm potato chips from the Humpty Dumpty chip factory in Hartland. During potato picking, we loved to see the Boss's pick-up coming down the field road mid-afternoon...pop and chocolate bars for the hard workers. I didn't experience this special treat too often because I usually got fired after a few days in the fields. Dad always told me that when you fired someone, you were actually doing them a | favour because they were in the wrong place, I didn't look at it that way back in the '60's when my siblings made more money and had more fun in the fields. It usually happened after a rainstorm. I would be the lone picker left in the field, not wanting to leave my section unpicked. My heart leapt when I saw the Boss coming, because he would get out of the pick-up, and with those big farmer hands, have my section cleaned up in no time. Soaking wet, he would quietly break the news; “Your mother needs your help in the house”...the words I dreaded every year. Years later, when I was a boss, Dad loved to hear the story of when I fired someone, or, “helped them out”. | Addition by Sarah Savoy-Amir: When we visited Grampy the first time after our marriage, he asked Mansoor and me very seriously if we forgot something in the car. We were puzzled at what he was referring to. He then shared with us a story based on true events starring himself and his eldest daughter and it became clear. Children. Each time we saw him during that visit we were greeted with the same question. He even offered to share with us the recipe which we adamantly declined. I think he was hinting at something. | Lent, Potato Picking, and Other Treats by Jan Robinson | 74

75: The Optimist by Jan Robinson Whenever I wrecked his cars, Dad's first question would be, “are you alright?” followed by, “It's just a car” (each time with a little less conviction). Once, I put terrible scratches and dents all along the side of the car. I told dad I couldn't understand it because I got into the parking spot alright, but there was no way to get back out by that pole without damaging the car. “Well Jan,” Dad explained, “the pole must have been moved”- never cracking a smile! After that, he told me not to park near a pole, whenever I borrowed the car. There weren't any poles to practice parking by in those back fields where we all learned to drive so we could get our licenses on our 16th birthday. Dad showed his optimism when he returned home from his doctor’s appointment from getting the results of his biopsy. Mom phoned me, so relieved, “It’s good news, Jan, Dad says it’s all good.” A few hours later, it came out. Mom phoned again with a different story, “he has cancer Jan, but he says it’s the good kind!” So Dad went through his radiation treatments in Saint John and during those weeks, he and Mom stayed at Ballpark Ave. where the girls and I had many card games, trips to McDonalds and Tim Hortons, not to mention all the chores in the backyard- the girls remember fixing the clothesline, pruning trees and shoveling dirt up against the basement wall. He made new friends on his many trips to the hospital- just as he made friends wherever he went. Dad attributes his friendliness to Dale Carnegie, a speech giving course he took in the 60’s. It changed his life, he was a quiet man before Dale Carnegie, and, Whamo! After the course he found his voice, and he’s never stopped talking, nor did he ever run out of stories. | The Gift by Jan Robinson Every Christmas Dad would shake his Christmas gift and say thank you for the ______, and he would be right, every time! I was convinced I found the perfect gift in the big city of Saint John when I was a student nurse; a pool stick that unscrewed halfway, which none of Dad’s pool sticks did (Dad bought a pool table in 1969. I think it was to help us attract boyfriends- what a Dad!). I couldn’t get home for Christmas that year, but my homesickness was slightly relieved by the delicious thought that finally Dad wouldn’t guess his gift. I sent the nicely wrapped gift to Grand Falls on the SMT bus. So excited, I phoned to see if it had arrived. “Thanks for the pool stick, Jan” said Dad. | 75 | Cicely, Elsie, John, Jan, & Merlin | Pat, Dad, & Jan

76: When Grampy Met Grammy by Ryan Patton Merlin was in his late teens working out in the fields one afternoon when his father approached him. He knew by his facial expression that his father had something important to tell him. “Merlin, you’re getting old and it’s about time you got out and found yourself a wife.” Merlin took the message to heart and did what any sensible farm boy would do in that situation; he started walking down the road. After miles and miles, he began to become a bit restless and his shoeless feet began to ache. In the distance, he saw a head of fluffy red hair sticking out of the bushes. This intrigued the young man, so he decided to take a closer look. He could see that she was barefoot as well. Young Elsie was hard at work in the garden, very attractive to a farm boy. Merlin knew that he was in love. This was the woman that he would marry. She was hardworking, barefoot, and had bushy, poufy, fiery, red hair, what was not to love? The rest, as they say, is history. | Behind Every Good Man: The Woman with Fluffy Red Hair and Bare Feet by Claire Ashton They said a good man is hard to find, but they didn’t mean that. This snapshot is just as much about the rare man as it is the perhaps rarer woman - she who stops tracks, wipes them down, and re-plants, individually, perfect blades of grass in their wake. What came first, the broken sleigh or the garden visit? No matter, it's what came after that famous incident of Grampy’s first beholding, or first beholding with love, of Grammy: the woman with the fiery, fluffy red hair and bare feet. He broke her sled somewhere along the line. He walked by her house, this isn’t all chronologically clear. She peeked shyly from around a fence. There was a flash of red hair and bare feet. Well, the rest is our history. We all know that Grampy’s comedic timing would not be so timely without the delighted snicker of Grammy, that his push-away would not have been possible without a million meals of pull-in, and that what we love most about each of them - the pillars of our clan - is their union, their co-conspiration, and all their creation. They have made together, grounded in that moment of attraction, the very best family to which anyone could ever belong - we are no flimsy sleigh, though it is a ride, we are solid, and we know to love, with laughter, for all time. | Merlin & Elsie on their honeymoon, 1950 | Out on Louis and Gladys' boat, 1949 | 76

77: Turkeys by Pete Mulherin I remember one Christmas when everyone at the McCarthy house was home from University. Just after New Years’ day, my dad was talking to Merlin and asked if everyone had gone back to school. Merlin said, “No, there is still one more turkey in the freezer so they will be sticking around until it’s gone”. He was always so quick with the humour. | My Grampy by Mike Moore I’ve always looked forward to my trips down East for the good laughs, card games, and amazing food. Grampy, I’ve never had the chance to meet either of my Grandfathers, but I can honestly say that you have filled that void in my life. You are my Grampy, and I love you. Grampy, aka Merlin McCarthy, is always someone who has been able to instantly put a smile on my face. Since the first time I met him, he’s intrigued me with all of his extravagant stories. For example, the one of him walking to school as a child uphill both ways, or the one about him going to get a mortgage at the bank and he thought the interest was too high, so he negotiated to a fair “Merlin rate” after threatening to take his business elsewhere. I’ve learned a lot from Grampy: how to be assertive with banks, how to be quick on your feet (even if that means you’re not sure what to do), and how to not take things so seriously. The way I see it is that Grampy and I have a lot in common. We have a special bond that sets us apart from others (namely, Pat, Tim, Keith and Paul). We are both very hard workers. Grampy was always working hard out on the potato fields, and I’m always out on the road working hard moving people’s "stuff." We both provide for our large families, although he is a few children up on me. I can tell that his family has always come first in his life, as does mine. All jokes aside, there is one thing that sets us apart from each other. I actually think that Grampy is a bit jealous of me, as he’s been asking me for years what my secret is for achieving my infamous tan, but I’m not planning on divulging that information any time soon. | Elsie & Merlin, Summer BBQ at Tim & Gwen's, 2007 | Grampy & Mike, 2007 | Merlin's buddy Herbie & his special friend Faye, 1993 | A bunch of McCarthy turkeys | 77

78: Merlin McCarthy’s English Language Dictionary allergy noun (plural -gies) 1.a strong dislike or aversion, ie. Make two versions of the same salad because Tim's allergic to onions! 2. A polite excuse to refuse a specific food item when eating dinner at someone’s home, ie. Just say you’re allergic! 3. An excuse used to refrain from completing an activity one does not enjoy, ie. Ryan is allergic to mowing the lawn. Arshield proper noun (alt. spelling Arsheel, ArseShield) 1. someone who is a jackass or useless, ie. Arshield, get off the couch and come wash the dishes! 2. someone who acts stupidly. ie. Nice one, Arshield. (see also: gorbie) blanket noun. 1. tablecloth, ie. Good thing she’s got that blanket on there. cleopatric message noun 1. telepathic messaging, often used between partners during card games, ie. Call my suit, listen to my cleopatric message. flying axe handles noun 1. diarrhea, i.e. cholera. Image evoked requires no additional explanation. fog noun. 1. The clouded stage of development characterized by excessive rosairing, failure to adhere to parental rules, and general lack of common sense; experienced most often during the transitional period between childhood and adulthood, ie. That Meg, she’s in the fog. gee hovers interjection, informal 1. used to express surprise, disappointment, enthusiasm, or emphasis, ie. Gee hovers! 2. In the most severe form, doubled, Gee hovers, Gee hovers! gorbie 1. noun one who does something foolish or stupid. 2. adjective used to describe one doing something foolish or stupid, ie. Why’d you put an empty ice tray in the freezer, you gorbie?!; Thanks for polishing off those Wise chips, gorbie. (see also: Arshield) heavy foot noun 1. part of the leg responsible for speedy driving, ie. That Gwen, she has a heavy foot. jack rabbit verb 1. style of driving involving successive and excessive breaking and acceleration, ie. Easy with the jack rabbit!; noun; That Mary, she’s a jack rabbit, that one. middle age noun 1. any age over 80 years, often the cause of illness or pain, ie. Doc, my minds going, I am middle aged, ya know. That damn pacemaker. next level adjective 1. an action, idea, or event that goes above and beyond normal expectations, ie. That dinner party was next level; A PEI summer with everyone in attendance would be so next level; I know a next level cake when I see one - and that cake is next level! nicknames noun, verb 1. used as a memory tool, for humour, and in sing-song 2. a necessity in life, eg. Merlin, Merl, Moo, Miles, Rosaire, Magic Merlin; Joe; Mary Lou; P.J. pepper noun 1. the ingredient used for the prevention of the common cold 2. the cure for any medical ailment, ie. Put the pepper to it! pretty good adjective 1. pre-millennium term for next level, ie. How was your golf game? Pretty good, shot a 67. | 78

79: push away 1. noun the ultimate diet. ie. No pie for me, thanks, I’m on the push away. 2. verb the act of pushing away. ie. Better push away on that dessert! I tried that fat thing for years! Note: Grampy loves to be on the push away, except for when there is a big bowl of mussels on the dinner table, in which case all bets are off. Whenever he catches wind that they are on sale, he sends a grandkid to the store to buy as many pounds as they can carry. racking verb 1. when someone selectively chooses components of a salad/dish while leaving other components behind, ie Tim racks the fruit salad for the goodies, leaving the melon behind. 2. A term used when you pick and choose only what you want on your plate, not what you need. Origin: racking potatoes on a conveyor belt in the potato house; sorting for the quality spuds and discarding the rest Rosaire 1. proper noun one who thinks and acts in excess steps, ie. She’s a huge Rosaire. 2. adjective word used to describe a person or act that is Rosaire, ie. That is so Rosaire. 3. verb the act of rosairing, ie. Stop rosairing around! 4. adverb word to describe the act of rosairing, ie. His walk is rosairishly slow.; She rosairishly cut up the carrots for the salad. Other uses: noun Rosettes: a group of female Rosaires, ie. Check out those Rosettes over there. Shortened form: Rose, Rosie, ie. Where's Rosie? salve noun 1. a medicinal ointment for healing or relieving wounds and sores. ie. Got the cancer in the ears. Pass that salve over here. 2. Any food item, especially a dip, which exhibits a smooth, salve-like texture, eg. hummus, tzaziki, salsa, salad dressing, artichoke and spinach dip, ie. Pass that salve over here! shadow soup noun 1. soup with a few vegetables and almost no meat, ie. Mother made shadow soup. third tap finger warm adverb 1. specific order/command for a glass of water in the hospital, repeated ad nauseam; sometimes combined with cryptic sign language, ie. Third tap finger warm. zero pronoun 1. none, nothing, no thanks. | Mary, Emily, Claire, & Grampy, 1989 | Grampy, Jan, & Claire, 1983 | Grampy's 66th birthday, Shediac, 1989 | 79

80: The Legend of a Storyteller by Ryan Patton When you think of Merlin McCarthy, many things come to mind: whether it is playing cards, hitting a golf ball down the middle of the fairway, or his clever sense of humour, but paramount to it all is his storytelling. This is how his people have come to know him. Frank Delaney’s novel Ireland is the account of a boy’s fascination with a storyteller whom he searches for his entire life after having heard his stories as a child. Throughout his life, he learns of his country’s rich storytelling tradition, and of the mysterious storyteller who visited his town when he was a boy. The novel concludes with the boy’s discovery that the man is in fact his grandfather. He also realizes that his voyages and experiences have transformed him into a storyteller like his grandfather before him. When I visited Grampy in the hospital, he asked us all to tell him stories. This was a change for me, as I knew my grandfather for his role as a storyteller. This is a passing of the torch. Memories and stories are everlasting. | (R) Merlin and his girls: baby Dinah, Cheryl, Linda, & Jan | Grampy's birthday, July 21st, 1995,in Brackley Beach, PEI | Merlin & Linda | Grampy and Allie, 2003 | Mare & Moo | Grampy, Maggie, & John, 2010

81: "This is all my fault!" Often said in a serious tone, but with obvious love and pride, many times on many different occasions when a cluster or more of family members are gathered together. | 81

82: The Woman Behind the Legend As one can tell by these stories, life with Merlin was never dull! But what stands out for me, what is so evident from these stories, is the wonderful legacy of children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren who have enriched every moment of our lives together. We have been, and continue to be, so very blessed by these wonderful people we call family, and in the end, that is what we can count on. That is the measurement of a richly blessed life. God bless our family. We love you all, Grammy/Elsie/Mom | 82

Sizes: mini|medium|large|behemoth
Default User
  • By: Mary A.
  • Joined: over 5 years ago
  • Published Mixbooks: 1
No contributors

About This Mixbook

  • Title: The Art of Moustache Pulling and other Stories from the Life of Merlin J. McCarthy, PhD.
  • A collection of stories and photos gathered to honour our 87 year old friend/husband/brother/father/grandfather.
  • Tags: merlin mccarthy, grampy, grandfather
  • Published: over 5 years ago

Get up to 50% off
Your first order

Get up to 50% off
Your first order