Thursday, August 21, 2003

A sure sign that summer is on the wane:Crouses' Clam Bake. On some Saturday late in August Rob and Paige host a seafood blow-out featuring huge pots of mussels, clams, and lobsters boiling on the outdoor propane stove, and many of the guests have not seen each other since last year at that time. That is, if they failed to attend the Groundhog's Day celebration. Paul the former projectionist will make a quick appearance:he drives down from Cleveland to Cincinnati, then drives back after eating and some polite chat. Sometimes Mulhauser's brother shows up but usually not- he's hiking somewhere. Rob and Sara Mulhauser were married three years ago at the Clam Bake. Reggie from across the street will come by and bring something wonderful to eat, and her daughter will be by with Mr Wiggles, the chihuahua. Max Crouse, who will be two in December, will toddle about with Fez the bulldog, both looking for trouble that no one allows them to get into. Later in the early morning hours when the guests are gone Jeep and I will fall onto a futon to sleep, joined by Fez. The whole thing has such comforting consistancy.

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