Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Post #365 - May 13, 1944 Seymour Treated Me to a Double-Decker Cone of Chocolate Ice-Cream Last Night and When the Reality of You will be the Reason for, and the Joy of My Existence


May 13th, 1944

Dearest One,

The mail this morning contained the following: a lovely Mother's Day greeting from Gloria, a v-mail Mother greeting from Jack, both of which were for Mom; two other greetings were for me—one from Jack, also a v-mail greeting and a card from Adele (sent by Goldie).

I skipped up to Broad St. this morning and bought the Moms brunch coats of the same design, but different colors, cost $4 each. Goldie and Harry bought her a slip and stockings and the Wymans and Chases both her two good dresses at my suggestion. She hasn't seen anything yet and won't til tomorrow. This afternoon a two pound box of chocolates came from Mom—from Lil. (More surprises)!

Guess who just walked in—Tant Bosch and Sylvia. They had several v-mails from Milt and he is also on New Guinea. He told a little about his trip: they left from Newport News, Va., went through the Panama Canal, stopped at New Caledonia and then off to New Guinea. I wonder if he'll meet up with Jack. Ben and Jack don't seem to be able to get together, not yet, anyway.

It was HOT today and I'm weary from a hard day's work. I took the covers off the parlor set and gave them an airing. I had a lot of washing and pressing to do. This hot weather is terrific when it comes to washing and pressing. I changed Adele twice daily, dressing her up in the afternoon.

Stuart ran a fever the other day and seems to be suffering with colds. Warm weather causes all sorts of troubles in babies.

Harry has been working seven days a week, having to make one or two special deliveries on Sunday mornings. The boss gave him a break by giving him this Sunday off. I'm surprised he's sticking to the job. It's a really tough job, and he sometimes doesn't get home til three in the afternoon, having started at three in the morning. They bought Stuart a gift and went there this evening.

I thought I would be able to obtain the finished pictures this evening, but have been notified that they won't be ready until May 18. Guess you'll have to wait, honey.

Seymour treated me to a double-decker cone of chocolate ice cream last night, and that's the first time he ever treated me. I was so pleased I gave him a kiss and was he embarrassed!

Guess you wouldn't be embarrassed if I kissed you, so pucker up, baby, ’cause here I come (as Adele would say, “num, num, num”). More, honey, I love you dearly, as if that is something new. I'm happy, though, to be

Your Eve

13 May 1944

Darling Chippie,

No mail for two days now, but when you consider that I have all your letters up to and including 4 May—it isn't anything to complain about. There was a letter today— from Phil. He tells about taking you and Adele for a ride to Reardon’s. He certainly seems to be fond of the kid. He noted and described her reactions to her first ride in a “cah,” her evident relish for “coke,” etc. His references to her are most complimentary, too. He wants me to write and tell him something about England. I'll try to oblige him tomorrow when I expect to have time for it. Tomorrow, too, I'll try to get off that long overdue letter to Mom.

Nothing out of the ordinary happened today, and I'm really at a loss. Last night I went to the early show to see Ann Southern in “Girl in Cover-alls” (one of the “swing-shift” Maisie series), and enjoyed the fresh, unaffected,“American” humor of it. Ann Southern as “Maisie” is cuter’n a bugs ear. James Craig, as the Air Force Lieutenant, is very handsome, and does yeoman's duty in handling his difficult role of appearing to be stuck on two gals. He plays it convincingly, which speaks well for his ability as an actor. I remember praising him in a previous letter. I'm satisfied now that my high opinion of him was justified. However, the star that rates the real bouquets is Jean Rogers. She plays a two-timing, scheming gal, without a scruple, and her role is contemplated to inspire contempt, but she is so beautiful that one finds it hard to reconcile her face with her assumed character. Handicapped as she is in her portrayal, though, she manages to put it over. With her face and figure, she can't miss—she is that lovely. Look to hear about her in the future.

I hit the sack early (the first time in weeks), and, I'm ashamed to say, fell asleep before 11 o'clock. I did keep our date, though, even if I was a half hour early. Tell you a little secret, Baby—don't breathe it to a soul! It seems I just can't picture us cuddled up in that chair—and still remain “respectable.” Somehow, and I blush to confess it, your shirt isn't where, in all decency, it should be. Your legs, even more delectable in retrospect, are invariably bare of shoes and stockings, and are draped most becomingly over the arm of the chair. Delicacy forbids that I go into detail as to what “measures” I adopt after that, but, if you remember how I reacted to your gorgeous gams on previous occasions, you should have a pretty good idea of the turns my fancy takes. Why can't I be a “gentleman” in this respect, Sweet? Is it because the wolf in me outweighs my finer instincts (if any?)? I know it isn't very sporting of me to take advantage of you this way, and I must ask your forgiveness, but, alas, the flesh is weak—.

Today was as all the others this past week, as far as the weather is concerned, the only difference being that I was sufficiently idle to allow thoughts of you and the punkin uninterrupted sway. At times like these, I find the lack of you very hard to take. My dreams and fantasies are so well rehearsed, that they come unbidden to torment me with their elusiveness. When I keep busy, and even when my mind is fully occupied with the business at hand idea, this concentration is apt to be interrupted by flashes of recurring memory that are too disturbingly “real” to be accepted with equanimity. Thus, I have felt your kiss just as surely as if you were close enough to bestow it and thrilled to it as if it were an actuality. In the same way, have your arms around me filled me with the infinitely dear sensation of peace and complete satisfaction—and in the night—those fuller excitements that are peculiar to the night, have left me vainly groping in my unconsciousness for a fuller realization of their tantalizingly desirous delights. My greatest disappointment in this respect has been that, with one or two exceptions, and in spite of my prodigious, though unconscious, strivings, I invariably fall just short of realizing complete satisfaction. Invariably, I awaken with the full consciousness that I have just missed something I would have given much to attain. The feeling of frustration is too painfully real to warrant my looking forward with any degree of anticipation to a recurrence of this particular dream. Even those “flashes” of feeling fully realized (in waking moments) are too tormenting brief to be gratifying. However, in the latter case, I can help myself by consciously remembering and prolonging the sensation of the unbidden, but most welcome, kiss or caress, whichever the case might be. My hunger for you, my darling, is so vast, and my need of you so great, that I find it necessary at times to “force” all the thoughts and recollections of you from my mind, if I am to be of any use whatever to myself and others. God grant that the time be not too long coming when I will have no need of banishing you thus from my consciousness; when the reality of you will be the reason for, and the joy of my existence. May He keep you and our sweet Adele, and all my dear ones in good health and in high spirits all the days of your lives. May He grant me the privilege of the opportunity to discharge my own responsibilities toward that end. Amen!

Lovingly, Your Phil

May 13, 1944


Dear Phil: 

Please excuse the paper, but I don't think I can put all I want to say in this letter on V-Mail. 

Pardon the delay in answering, but I wanted to find out what was happening with Snuff. He received notice that his appeal was rejected by a 3-0 vote and is waiting to be called. He will probably leave some time in June. Phil, what happens if he goes over his ninety days? June 17th will be 90 days since he took his physical. If he receives his notice before the 17th to leave after the 17th, is that alright? He would be awfully disappointed if he had to take another physical and didn't get the Navy.

Spoke to Evelyn a few times this week, but, as usual, we didn't talk of anything that amounts to much. 

As far as refraining from writing in " that devilish vein", now that I have a better understanding of you, it will be quite alright for you to write in any manner that you wish. I want you to feel that I shall appreciate and enjoy letters from you no matter in what “vein" they are written. 

I would like to clarify to you my motives for moving to my Mother's. In the first place, I was going to move to my mother's when Snuff left, so I left a few months earlier in order that we would have a chance to get around and see all our friends and relatives. My main reason for leaving, though, was because my in-laws did not want me to stay. It was just one of those things.

As you said in your letter, you would like to see the war over and all of us in a place of our own. No more than we would, my dear Phil. In the first place we have . . .

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. . .on our honeymoon we have my brother-in-law and his wife with us. After the war is over, it will be just as if Snuff and I had just gotten married. We will take a place of our own and furnish it from top to bottom and really begin to enjoy married life. 

I want you to know that Evelyn let me read the letter you wrote to her on your anniversary. Really, Phil, I have never read any thing so beautiful in my life. It is wonderful to have the faculty of expressing your thoughts in such a beautiful way. I envy you in that respect. It seems so simple to write a letter when you do it, and yet when it comes time for me to write, it is really an effort. I know what I want to say, but I don't know how to say it. May be when you come back, you will give me some lessons in letter-writing. 

As far as thinking of you occasionally, I think of you a great deal and can't help but wish this mess was over and you were back home. I think that we miss you almost as much as Evelyn does, but in a different way of course. 

As yet we have not seen "And the Angels Sing". It will not be here until the summer. 

We went to see the "Purple Heart" last night, and it unbelievable that there are such barbarians on this earth.

As far as the weather is concerned, we are having beautiful summer weather. No spring, for a change, 

I received your request and am ready to mail your package. I am having difficulties, because the package weighs 9-1/2 lbs. and I don't know what to eliminate. If you would send me another request, I will mail half now and half later. 

As far as asking you questions so that you will know what to write about, your letters are always interesting and very much looked forward to. You seem to be doing alright using your own imagination. 

I haven't forgotten my promise to send you some-pictures. In fact, this afternoon we hope to take some, and by the time I receive your next letter, I'll probably send some to you. 

Hal is quite grown up by now. He has 14 teeth and only has two more to go until his two year molars. He weighs 25-1/2 lbs. and still has blonde-hair-and-blue eyes. He picks things up very fast and is quite ahead of himself. I could go on for hours and hours about the things he does that are cute, but I guess you can imagine what they are from the things your daughter does. 

I think I have rambled on quite enough for one letter, so I shall wait until I hear from you again. 

As ever,


P. S. Don't forget that request. 

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Post #364 - May 12, 1944 You are Willing Enough to Learn Everything You Like, but Sometimes You Fail to be Practical and On the Dance Floor Klein is a Marvel of Rhythm


May 12, 1944

Dearest Hubby, 

Your letters of May 5 (the one meant for the 5th) and that of the 6th came this afternoon. I really hadn't expected any mail and was pleasantly surprised. Glad, too, that the packages reached you in good time. I figured a package every two weeks would be just right, just as you did. 

Renee is really Parris’ childhood sweetheart in the book. His feelings for Cassie are much different even though he does offer to marry her in the story. You can have any and all of the C. P. pictures. I am sending along one of Adele and one of me when they are ready. That will leave me the other two of Adele which I want to show to everyone before I send them off to you. Sorry I neglected to tell you how I, voted, sweet, but Democratic, of course, I thought you knew. 

There isn't anything in your May 6 letter that requires comment. 

It was hot today and I did plenty of sweating. My mother washed early this morning. It was a huge wash, having accumulated over a week or more. After toting it over and hanging it up, cleaning up the house, giving Adele her lunch and having my own, I proceeded to cut the grass. I had trimmed the hedges earlier this week. My mother has a pair of those shears for just such work. I was sweating away, when up comes the postman with your two most welcome letters. 

On looking over your letter of the 6th there is one comment I would like to make. You mention how handy Red is at various tasks. Yes, I wish very much that you were that way. It shows ambition, not to mention willingness to learn everything. You have the latter, sweet, but there are times I wonder at the former. You are willing enough to learn everything you like, but sometimes you fail to be practical. (No hard feelings, huh?)

I've brought Adele down, on two occasions, for her pre-bedtime glass of milk. She sits in the hichair, to drink it, her feet bare. When this is the case, she rubs the sole of her foot along the upper part of my leg where it is smooth and it tickles. Reminds me " - - -  (darn it!)

Fay is going back to camp with Morris, and is taking the baby along. They are leaving Monday. He expects to go overseas in about four months and wants them to be with him. Anne has been with Tony since last Sunday, rather Friday, and will return this Sunday. She made the trip alone, her mother and sister caring for Richy." Everyone seems to be seeing their various mates, and it gets me to thinking - 

when will I see you, baby? Soon, I hope! 

Dot doesn't expect Snuff to leave this month as the Navy quota for this month has been filled. Guess it will be sometime in June.

Lil called this afternoon to tell me that she had sent out a package for Mom for Mother’s Day. Hope you didn't forget to remember Mom on Mother's Day. 

I had a nice v-mail, as usual, from Syd. 

Well, dearest sweetheart, I've had my say and am ready for the easy chair. I love you so much! I am 

Your Eve 

12 May 1944 

Evvie, my darling, 

After yesterday's long, but uninformative, and no doubt tedious letter, I think it is only fair that I devote this one to telling you a little about my activities of the past few days - what I have been doing, rather than what I have been thinking. Night before last, as I mentioned in passing in my last, I went to the Base Theater to see "Oklahoma", and then went to the dance at the Aero Club. The picture was the typical "blood-and-thunder Western melodrama, but the lively action and Western locale was a welcome change from the ordinary run-of-the-mill pictures I have been seeing of late. John Wayne is the same big, likeable, cowboy that he has played in a dozen pictures. Martha Scott is pretty (without too much S. A.), in the time-honored tradition of Western heroines. The plot itself is the hackneyed theme of the poor-but-honest cowboy winning out over innumerable obstacles to win the girl and the glory from the clever, unscrupulous "promoter". It's been done hundreds of times before, but it still makes for an exciting evening at the movies. The dance was just getting under way when I got to the Aero Club. The orchestra consisted of five G.I.'s playing the piano, bass, Clarinet and sax, trumpet, and drums. A very small aggregation you will say, but believe me, Sweet, they made up in quality what they lacked in volume. Their arrangements were wonderful, their style smooth, their rhythm and musicianship flawless. In short, they left nothing to be desired. The hit tune over here at present is "Pesame mucho" (I'm only guessing at the spelling), but I'm sure you are familiar with that lovely Mexican melody. I'm very fond of it myself. Anyhow, their rendition of this was "right on the ball". The trumpet solo on the melody was so perfectly in accord with the way I think it ought to be shaded that I couldn't help but wonder at it. My prime object in going to the dance, though, was to watch Klein dance. Ordinarily he is the most awkward gook you ever saw, but on the dance-floor he is a marvel of rhythm. He is an insatiable clown, however, both on and off the dance-floor, and after watching his atrocious conduct towards his partner, one cannot help but wonder why the girls put up with him after some of his more outrageous antics. He "makes faces" every few minutes, (and with his natural equipment he can look hideous enough to turn a strong stomach); he startles his inexperienced partners by breaking into the most intricate and uninhibited "jive" steps; whispers outrageous suggestions in their unbelieving ears; "loves them up" shamelessly" and openly at every opportunity, and generally behaves in so boorish and lascivious a manner, that it is embarrassing just to watch him. Still, I have yet to see a girl walk out on him. Quite the contrary! After seeing him dance, some of the girls actually have the nerve to ask him to dance. I'll never understand that. He is a most accommodating cuss, though, and though it puzzles me as much as it must you - I can't help but like the guy. Knowing that I was there solely to watch him perform, he obliged me by confining his dancing and clowning to the area of the floor just in front of where I was sitting on the side-lines, Moreover, he displayed all his tricks (and a few new ones) for my edification. As soon as the music started, he left me - to show up on the floor with the only really pretty gal in the place. She was a slight, but well-formed blonde, a good little dancer, but not very "hep". This latter failing bothered Klein not one little bit, he merely did his stuff, and left her to more or less shift for herself. That is, as far as the dancing went. Actually, he was all over her like a tent - hugging her, nuzzling her, making her look silly by suddenly taking off on one of his innumerable "breaks" to leave her standing blankly bewildered and motionless until he should deign to again pick her up where he had left her, and seemingly making such an ass of himself and her that I marveled at her willingness to put up with it. On several occasions, I observed the ire mounting in her, but Klein, as I said before, is no dummy, and sensed the "storm-warnings" in time to pull off a new piece of foolery that left her laughing. The poor gal was so puzzled by his antics that she didn't rightly know whether to be insulted or amused. I think that accounts for his success with the gals. He makes it commensurate upon them that they give him the benefit of the doubt. Shortly after the intermission he came across the floor to me, literally dragging a girl, a brunette this time, in his wake. Without any ado whatever, he bowed exaggeratedly in my direction and introduced his acquaintance of but a few moments as follows: "Corporal Strongin - meet my wife". I think I blushed most unbecomingly at that juncture, but managed, somehow, a foolish "how do you do"? Klein didn't even give her a chance to answer, 'cause he immediately got her in a bear hug, and she was much too busy trying to evade his clutches to bother with mere formalities. On the dance-floor, she was a joy to watch. She danced as lightly as any fairy I ever imagined. More surprising - she matched Klein's own brilliant and intricate style of dancing step for step. During the next intermission he stopped over long enough to confide that he was going to "make" this gal or break a leg trying. They disappeared from the dance floor shortly after I noted him whispering very earnestly in her ear. He assured me next day that she was most receptive of his advances (to put it as delicately as I know how). Either he is the world's biggest liar, or a fitting successor to the immortal Casanova. I'm rather inclined to believe him, because although he has unwittingly repeated some of his more lurid adventures, of which there are enough to fill a book, he has yet to change a single detail in the re-telling. 

So much for the dance (did I hear you say too much?). 

Yesterday was entirely spent on the pay-roll. In the evening, I took in the early show, which was "The Man From Down Under" with Charles Laughton, Richard Carlson, Donna Reed, and Binnie Barnes. This one was surprisingly good. I enjoyed it because the story was unusual, the acting superb, the action scenes exciting and suspenseful, and the direction so able. Charles, Laughton, of course, does his usual masterful job of acting. Binnie Barnes is likewise dependable in this sense, and she turns in one of her best efforts here, I particularly liked Richard Carlson; he has long been one of my favorites. Donna Reed is winsome and well cast. The plot, though, remains the important factor in the "Man From Down Under". It is the sort of story that makes a good book. The prize-fighting sequence is the realest, most exciting, and most convincing it has been my pleasure to see in a long time. 

After the show, I started on my daily letter to you. This took until bed-time, as you can judge by the length of it. Your V-mail of the 4th arrived with Gloria's of the same date. I assure you, Baby, that you and Adele aren't the only ones in the family that have a fondness for "cahs". If it is at all possible, you can bet we will have one shortly after I get hone. How else will we be able to "hit the road" for a month or two before I’ll want to settle down to work? I haven't forgotten our plans, Chippie. I couldn't, 'cause I think about them constantly. Your explanation of the punkin's tendency to "pigeon-toedness" is new to me, but I'll take your word for it - and I won't worry about it, Incidentally, do you know of the bill in Congress to provide medical attention for the families of the men in Service? I believe it has been passed by both the House and the Senate, and requires only the President's signature to become Law, 

From the tone of Gloria's letter, I would say that there is at least one person who can appreciate my "devilish" form of writing. Glad to hear that we now have two corporals in the family. Hope that he winds up at least a buck-sergeant. 

Today was another busy one for me. Think I'll go to the movies tonight (for a change). 

There was no fresh mail for me today, so, for the first time in a couple of weeks, I'm "caught up" with you, 

Can't think of another single thing to say at this time, Sweet, so I'll say adieu, for the time being. Tell Mom I still have her letter in mind, but somehow can't get around to it. Tell your Mom that she has owed me a letter for too-long, and I only have so much patience, and it has just about run out, and I'll be angry with her if I don't hear from her soon. Ask your Dad if he won't write to tell me about his new job. Why don't you send Anne Furr's address, as I asked you to do some weeks ago. I'm still waiting for Lil's letter. What about the one that Jack N, sent to us? I haven't received that, either. Dottie, I believe, owes me a letter, 

The weather has been beautiful these past few days, and I can't help but think how wonderful it would be to be home at this time. These balmy Spring days inspire many, many thoughts of "home", Evvie, darling, and this particular form of "homesickness" does me a whole lot of no good. The desire to be with you grows and grows until I hardly know how to contain it. Got any good ideas, Baby? 

My best love to the cherub, and you, and all the family. I am, just as always, (only a little more so each passing day) - - 

Your Phil 

P. S. Don't be too impatient for those bonds, Honey, it'll probably be a month or two yet before you begin receiving them. I'm hoping we won't collect too many of them (if'n you know what I mean!). 

Monday, June 28, 2021

Post #363 - May 10, 11, 1944 Stuart is Quite a Good Looking Baby, Big Blue Eyes, and That Mop of Pitch Black Hair is Getting Light Brown and I Would Far Rather be Poor—and Content, Than Rich, and Thinking How to Get Richer


May 11, 1944 

Dearest Angel, 

Sorry that I could not write yesterday and you will learn why when you've read this. As I told you on Tuesday, I decided to visit Ethel yesterday and that I did. 


I wore my suit, white blouse, copper pumps and a copper shoulder bag (it held all those things I thought necessary for Adele). Adele had on her powder blue overalls, blue and white bonnet, blue sweater and white blouse. We left immediately after lunch, since Adele woke up at 6 A. M. and I had made her go back to sleep til 8 A.M. We took the "J" bus at 9th and Lindley and got off at Oxford, to catch the 59 trolley. There wasn't a trolley in sight and Adele was becoming unmanageable. Besides holding Adele and the heavy shoulder bag, I also carried the gift for Stuart. As we stood there a car pulled up and a young sailor stopped, said he was going up Castor Avenue for a few blocks and offered to help me with Adele. It was so terribly warm and I felt just a trifle ill from the effects of the bus ride. Seeing that he was sincere I accepted his offer. He took Adele into the car and I got in. He took me right to Ethel's door and helped me and the baby out. During the short six or so block ride from the bus stop to Ethel's I learned that he had been in the Navy two years, had served 18 months on Guadalcanal and was back home for the first furlough of his career. He had married a week and a half ago and was planning to take his wife back to San Francisco with him, so that they might be together til he joined his ship. He offered me a cigarette and when I refused, was amazed. He said he was disgusted with the sight of young girls (as young as 15) smoking and drinking themselves to death. He had just gotten an additional five gallons of gas from his ration board and was returning home. He asked about you and asked if I was going home. When I told him I was visiting my cousin who had just had a baby, he said, "Wish her lots of luck from me.” He was Catholic and 24 years old, having known his wife for eight years They were confirmed together. You are probably wondering why I've told you all this. Well, Harry condemned me for having accepted his offer and I wanted to know what you thought. Both Moms thought it perfectly okay. Why don't people respect my judgment, even a little? Was I so terribly wrong. Harry has such funny, suspicious ideas that I can't help looking at him with wonderment at times. I sincerely hope you don't feel that way. You, as well as he, knows full well that I'm not one to accept rides from anyone, least of all someone I don't know. I’m not easily fooled and thought a lot about it before entering that car. Harry wanted to know what you thought - so shoot! 

I ran after Adele all afternoon, til I was so weary I wanted to scream. I can't stand high heels when doing that sort of thing. She finally begged to be "napped" at three and slept on Paul's bed til 4:30. 

During that time I took a good look at Stuart, who looks very much like Paul. He's quite a good looking baby, big blue eyes, and that mop of pitch black hair is getting light brown. His face is oval shaped and his features are exactly like Paul's. He’ll be a handsome boy some day. 

Ethel loved the sweater and I sewed the buttons she had on. She decided she would like to have his initials put on and I sewed in the outline. In the meantime Paul had a birthday party to attend. It was for a little girl and Ethel had to buy a gift. When she returned she had a package for Adele, containing a lovely blue and white pinafore. It is white cotton material with dark blue polka dots and has three fine rows of blue (about an eighth of an inch) to trim the bottom. It looks some thing like this: 

After dinner we managed to borrow a play pen and I had a bit of rest. Adele stayed up til 11 and frolicked with Al. He danced with her and she wouldn't let him sit down for a moment. If he did she tried to get him up again. 

Mom wanted to join me, but didn't feel like taking the bus. I called Fay and Morris, thinking they might go up to that neighborhood this particular evening and sure enough they were. Ellie took an apartment a few blocks from Ethel and they were going there for dinner, but not til 6 P. M. I arranged with them to pick Mom up and bring her over to Ethel’s. They called for us and brought us home at 11, which made it swell all around. They have been positively grand to me, dearest, and I'm quite fond of them, as friends. Rae and Mickey spent the night in town, not knowing that we intended to spend the evening there.

Adele is so attached to cars that she refused to leave the car and I had to practically drag her out.


Another thing - Ethel has a bathroom scale and I decided to weigh Adele. She was exactly 29-1/2 Ibs. Then we checked by putting her on the baby's scale, which weighs up to 30 lbs. On this one she was exactly 29-1/4 lbs. I, by the way, weighed between 119 and 120, which means I've gained about two pounds since I last told you my weight. I've got a marvelous appetite for a change and am eating more ice-cream and candy. I'm always buying something for Adele and get the urge myself. That's what's doing it. I'm going to try to hit 125. You know, sweet, my summer clothes are extremely tight. I had taken in the red pinafore I bought last year about an inch and had to let it all out. Want to see me gain weight? 

I thought Adele would sleep til about 8. No - she had to get up at six (darn it). I did some house work that took care of the morning and Adele’s nap time. I went to the drugstore for a bottle of white shoe polish. This is the third bottle I’ve bought for her. I use it like water. My sanitary belt broke and I had to throw it out. I couldn't seem to buy another and finally handed a cheap one for 15¢. Everyone recommended the tampon, instead of the pad, so I bought a box. It's not supposed to be used the first two days. I'm always willing to try something new. I recall using one in Columbus (when I didn't have a pad) and I didn't like it cause it was too long. These are very small and should be comfortable. I'm *due" some time after May 16 and will let you know what I think about them. 

Harry put the screens in and we're all set for summer. Golly, honey, the warm weather brings back heartbreaking memories of last summer. You had moved from Columbus about this time and I was hoping, so desperately, that I would see you for a little while.

And now for some comment of Ietters 3 and 5 May. This concerned itself with you being the fatherly type. Of course, dear one, I understood your apparent coolness to Adele when you were home, realizing that you didn't want to become attached. I can't say that I liked it, cause I didn't. It really doesn't reflect in any way on your love for her and I'm surprised you thought I could think that. Phil, when I said you were definitely not the "fatherly " type, it was no more than the truth - you aren't. The "fatherly" type makes a great fuss and todo about their offspring, which you plainly state you have no intention of doing, except, in private. I fail to see where showering love on your child (of course within a limit) should be embarrassing to any extent. I want you to shower her with affection and love when you return, to make up for the loss of you all this time. She loves to be loved, a natural instinct of all children. They want to know they are wanted, and that's the only way to show them. Yes, dear, it might be best your way. We'll see someday. I like the way you said "once". I had no intention whatever of hurting you in any way and I'm sorry if I I did. What do you mean when you say "I don't want to "spoil" you by writing too much"? You can’t spoil me that a way. Your ending was novel "In dub a tibly, Your Phil". 

On May 5 you neglected to tell me whether or not you "won" playing cards. Guess you didn't or you wouldn't have neglected to mention it. 

Next was the subject of money. Phil, do you realize that we are both living in different atmospheres? I'm amongst people (almost every single one) who have and are making more money than they ever had. They are attaining or have attained those few things I treasure, a home, car and nice furniture, all their own. I don't envy them anything, I know we'll have them someday when you have the opportunity to get them for us. It's just that I couldn't see wasting all the time between now and reunion. I’ve been "dead" for all this time, as you have been, and I want the reunion to be free of all worry, especially financial. I realize that the future usually works itself out, but there is no harm in being prepared, is there? I hope to return to work in the fall, but hope the war is over so you can take over.


Sorry I must run now, sweet, but here's all “our” love and


Your Eve 

11 May 1944


Didn't write last night. Not that I couldn't have—it was a choice between writing and seeing “Oklahoma” and stopping in at the Aero Club to take in the weekly dance. I hope you don't mind too much that I chose the latter course, Chippie. I was busy all day yesterday and today making up the payroll and was just not in the mood for writing. The two V-mails which arrived in the afternoon, while most welcome, didn't require a specific answer. They were yours of 2nd and 3rd May. I think we saw “Lost Angel” within a few days of each other. You saw it on the 1st. I saw it about the 5th or 6th. Glad you enjoyed it, Sweet. Your letter of the 3rd contained a few questions that require answering. My reclassification does not affect my status in any way. The whole thing was so insignificant, that I do not consider it worth boring you with. Your second question was purely rhetorical and hardly calls for an answer. It was in connection with Goldie’s “feeling elated” because of Harry’s good-paying new job. You want to know if I think “you’ll ever feel so good about something very similar?” To answer you as truthfully as I know how, and I'm very sorry if it isn't the reply you expected, I never thought about it in just that way—but now that you forced me to, I can only say what I think. I think you'll be every bit as elated at my next raise in pay—but only temporarily. If I’m to judge by past performances, and I know no other criterion by which to judge, you will waste no time setting a new standard for me. I remember how you set standards every time I got a couple of bucks more in my pay envelope. I even remember your statement (you no doubt meant it at the time) that you would be content when I hit the 30-dollar mark. I'm very sure that if I am ever fortunate enough to match Harry’s, $60 per week, you’ll be content only as long as it takes to consider how much nicer $75 or $100 would be. I'm not taking exception with your ambitions for me, Sweet, and I realize that all this is your idea of how to get along in the world. But if you think for a minute that “getting along in the world” brings, or makes for true contentment and peace, you're sadly mistaken. But that is where our concepts differ. As far as I'm concerned, there's no happiness without peace and contentment, but if your happiness is only to be found in constant striving for the so-called “better things in life” (which attitude precludes both peace and contentment), then I'm very much afraid that one of us will be forced to change his outlook, if we’re to live in harmony. As to that, you haven't yet convinced me that your way is the more meritorious of the two. Until you do, then, I aim to be content with whatever of the good things of life I am able to provide for my family and myself without the constant threat of striving to “get ahead.” My sole ambition is to make all of us comfortable and secure—no more—no less. If I can manage it on $30 per week, the $60 can go hand for all I care. Only if I can't manage it on whatever income I have, will I strive in any way to make more money. Someday, Sweet, you will realize that the only true happiness lies in being truly content with what one has—regardless of what those possessions leave still to be desired. In the final analysis, I would far rather be poor—and content, than rich and thinking how to get richer. Remember, Chippie, the rich man doesn't get that way by accident. He either inherits it, or he strives for it. I dare you to show me a rich man who is truly and completely content. It's impossible. Why? Because a man must be ambitious after riches to attain them. The mere fact that he is successful in his quest does not change the man's character intrinsically. He is still the ambitious guy who had to be just that, and could no more stop being ambitious than you could change the spots on a leopard. Don't you see that it's nothing more nor less than a vicious circle? Ambition must necessarily be the enemy of contentment. And if contentment is essential to my happiness, then I'll take that. All this, Sweet, is meant in the broadest sense, else it has no meaning. Every man is “ambitious,” for that matter/ even the laziest man in the world has an ambition—that would be to lie on his back and do nothing. There are those whose joy and happiness lies in striving without end. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on where your happiness lies, I am not one of those. I'm hoping, my Sweet, that you aren’t either. If all of this seems to contradict or conflict with my recent dreaming and planning, let me point out that I am not entirely devoid of ambition. Happily, my ambitions are both fixed and limited, which isn't “ambitious” in the true sense of the word. Moreover, if those dreams and plans never materialize, I won't be overly disappointed, and could, conceivably, be well content with less than a home in the country, duplex apartments, etc, etc. That is the philosophy I would instill in you, my darling—that nothing in this world (and I speak only about material things) should be so important to you that it could keep you from being content with less. Stop thinking and talking so much about money. I realize every bit as fully as you do, that it buys many of the things we want of life, but I also know that all the money in the world cannot buy contentment and happiness, if one relies on one to bring the other. To my mind, contentment is the most precious gift in life; so precious, in fact, that could I but possess it, no amount of riches could induce me to part with it—yet strangely enough, all one must do to acquire it is to want it above all things. A pretty cheap price to pay for, so dear a prize, don’t you think, Chippie? You’ll probably want to know my definition of the word, so I'll try to oblige (how did I get into this anyhow?) It is difficult to put a hard and fast meaning on so abstract a noun, but before I consult the dictionary, (it should be interesting to know how it defines it), I'll give you my concept of what the word implies. It embraces so many things that I hardly know where to begin. I think, in the fullest and broadest sense, contentment is a quality that, once acquired, “insulates” the possessor against the multitude of human fears, uncertainties, discontentments, and dissatisfactions. This is a state of mind that brooks no contention (in the sense that it allows of no deteriorating influence), and depends very little, if at all, on finances. Paradoxically, it is the blessing of the hobo and the “unambitious man” and the envy of the rich. I think that that about covers it. Now let's see what the dictionary has to say—contentment n., satisfaction, which necessitates looking up “satisfaction”—satisfaction n. the act of satisfying; the state of being satisfied; contentment; gratification; payment; redress; conviction. Which is all more confusing than helpful. The synonyms, “satisfaction,” and “gratification”—aren't that at all! They are merely necessary essentials of, or parts of, the whole. Think it over, Baby, and tell me why you are so infernally preoccupied with money. Think a little less of it, and a little more of things like self-respect and pride and honor, which always were and always will be far more important in the quest for ultimate happiness than anything money could buy. Let those who place their faith in Mammon do so. I’ll still take the “unimportant” things like truth, honesty, righteousness, and love, and count my blessings by those tenets. I'll be no less proud of myself if I remain a clerk at Sharp & Dohme for the next twenty years, than I would be, if I made a mint of money and wound up a banker at the end of that time. In either case, I’ll live by my principles, and if you can't agree with them, Chippie, I'll expect you to respect them. If I wind up a financial dud, as well I might, I'll thank you not to hold me in contempt for it. My “goal” is infinitely more significant than the measly $60 per week you set for me. I would have been far prouder had you set a far different “goal” for me: For instance, had you demanded that I be content with you and Adele, to cherish you always—no matter what, to be always kind and cheerful and considerate—no matter what, to be the best husband and father I know how to be, to be the best provider I know how to be (with no “goals” or limits to hamper me and to set a price on my potentialities in this direction) (you see now how incidental to the whole your mercenary qualms are?)—if you had demanded all this of me, I repeat, no one would have conceded your right to do so quicker than I, nor would anyone else promise more fervently or gladly to bend every effort to meet those demands—but when you insult me by presenting me with a request that I bring you nothing but $60 per week, I balk at the thought that you set your happiness and mine at such an unequivocally ridiculous figure. No, Sweet, it is not good to measure your happiness or security in dollars and cents. Measure it, rather, in your lovely little daughter—in the great love your husband bears you, and in the affection and admiration of your friends. I assure you, Evvie, you will be, and feel yourself, infinitely richer than the $60 per week which looms so large across your hopes and ambitions for the future. Were you in my shoes, Sweet, I'm sure you would appreciate far better all that I have said. I didn't mean to preach you a sermon, Honey, but my resentment at your constant references to money, and what you hoped to accomplish with it, was large within me, and I just had to tell you why and how I resented it. I realize what is back of it all, Sweet, believe me, but believe me, too, when I say that you are ignoring much more important issues while you try to figure out how much I ought to make in order to buy all those things you set so much store by. Never forget—you took me “for better or for worse.” Up ’til now, I have your own admission (repeatedly) that it has been more “better” than “worse.” Why, suddenly, are you so fearful that the “better” will become the “worse”? Have you lost faith in me? And if, God forbid, we shall see “worse” days, will you be so intolerant of me that the happiness and love that has been ours thus far will turn to disappointment and disillusion, as to so unfeelingly stated in a recent letter? Does your happiness depend so much on whether or not I am able to attain the goal of $60 per week? If not, why do you repeatedly insist that everything must be “right” for us? What is the alternative?

Sorry, Baby, that I used up all my time (and space) on a lecture, when I might have made it a happier letter for you, but it is essential that these things be “aired out” between us. I know that understanding this, you will find it in your heart to forgive

Your adoring Phil

May 10, 1944.

Dear Phil:

Well at last I heard from you. Sure has glad to hear from you. Glad to hear that you are O.K. Although I didn't write to you, I thought perhaps that I could make connections somehow to see you. Well Phil, if you will meet me in Nottingham at the Red Cross, I'll be there. Try and be there at 6 P.M, Saturday May 13. I will try and be there if nothing comes up. I'm doing O.K. I hear from your folks occasionally. That's about all the news for now. I'll be seeing you then. Take it easy.