I may have stolen the title of this week's column from a vintage Chevrolet commercial, one many may remember and one named as the best automobile commercial of all time by Car and Driver magazine but all these things all represent summer for me, especially summers of the past.

I may have stolen the title of this week's column from a vintage Chevrolet commercial, one many may remember and one named as the best automobile commercial of all time by Car and Driver magazine but all these things all represent summer for me, especially summers of the past.
Baseball is still an all-American sport. I've been to a few Royals games, which was an experience I enjoyed that went far beyond just watching the game. I actually prefer kids' baseball to the major leagues and although I never played in a league, we had some fun playing baseball in the yard when I was a kid. One of my treasured memories is the day I hit a foul ball that went through my parents' living room window with a crash heard around the world, or at least the neighborhood. That would be memorable enough but what happened next is what I'll never forget. As I turned white and started to shake, anticipating the parental wrath that was certain to come, one of my friends, Craig Churchill, asked me if I would get in trouble. "They're going to kill me!" I wailed.
He took the bat out of my hands and said "They won't do anything to me." Before I could do more than sputter a protest, my mother emerged from the house, shouting. When she saw who had the bat, she stopped and asked him if he hit the ball. He said that he did and her anger tempered.  I never admitted who actually hit that ball until adulthood but Craig's actions made him my hero. We were eight years old at the time.
I still enjoy a good hot dog, preferably all beef. I have to admit my favorite hot dogs are Nathan's and although I buy them at the market, the best Nathan's dog must be enjoyed on the boardwalk at Coney Island in Brooklyn. I have no doubt other brands have their fans as well but I'm sold on Nathan's.
Nathan Handwerker, a Polish immigrant, opened his nickel hot dog stand in 1916 at the corner of Surf and Stillwell, located not far from the beach, boardwalk, and the subway station.  Nathan's remains on that original corner but there's also a Nathan's on the Boardwalk within view of the ocean and in many other places. And, Nathan's products are found in supermarkets almost everywhere, including Neosho.
My mother baked the best apple pies I've ever had the privilege to eat. She always make the crust from scratch and it turned out light, flaky, and tender. I sometimes make pie crust but I've yet to get mine to turn out as well as hers. My apple strudel and old-fashioned apple cakes turn out well but I can't quite get the hang of the perfect pie crust.
My first car was a 1968 Chevy Nova so I like Chevrolet just fine. Some of the cars my Pop drove in my childhood were also Chevrolets, a 1953 model with a hard top and visor over the windshield and a Chevy II. I still have a set of the keys to his last car and although I can't drive anywhere using them, they hold sentimental value for me.
With Memorial Day behind us, it's unofficially summer. School may not be out yet due to winter weather and the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, won't arrive until June 21 this year but for all practical purposes, it's summer. It's time to sit on the porch, cook on the grill, eat a hot dog, ride around in a Chevy, and enjoy some apple pie.
It's the season!






Lee Ann Murphy is a staff writer and writes a column for the Neosho Daily News.