I’ll Get It



Reminiscing about the ‘good old days’ seems to be a favorite pastime for many. We have a tendency to erase bad memories and instead our focus zooms in on pleasant thoughts of the way things used to be.

Long before answering machines, beepers, pagers and cell phones our homes had one black tabletop rotary dial telephone. In 1959 we were introduced to the Princess phone, otherwise referred to as the bedroom telephone. They all had built in night lights and my mom had a pink one. It was the first time homes had two telephones. Finally, in 1965 the public was offered the wall hung telephone and ours made its appearance in the kitchen, sporting the color of the day…avocado green.

No one was bothered by telemarketing calls back in those days and no such thing as caller ID was available. We called people on birthdays, holidays, anniversaries and simply to just say, “Hello.” “I’ll get it” was a common refrain heard throughout, whenever the phone would ring. The only text messages we ever received were in the form of written letters and the occasional pen pals many of us had. There was always the grumpy and impatient person on a party line call who would become enraged if we talked too long, grumble and slam the phone down. Our silent way of getting even would be to quietly listen in on their conversations and try to figure out who they were and where they lived. It was a cat and mouse guessing game, but for some strange reason, we found it mildly entertaining.

Today there are fewer landline phones and the people who still have them are inundated with annoying telemarketers and surveys. The silly intimacy of whispering into the kitchen phone to a love interest, while hoping your parents or siblings didn’t hear you are long gone.

Even though we are connected to the world via the net, I can’t help but feel a tad melancholy surrounding my nostalgic memories of closer family and friends when we communicated through that one old black telephone. These feelings of mine especially ring true when the void of a loved one not calling during the holiday season leaves a deafening silence in my heart.

Dennis L. Page

Roasted Chicken with Fennel and Vegetables

KODAK Digital Still Camera
KODAK Digital Still Camera

I guess I’m a dinosaur. You see, five to six times per week I still prepare homemade meals. I rarely use recipes and exact measuring of ingredients never enter into the dishes prepared in my kitchen.

If you have the time and love to cook then, by all means, making oven roasted chicken with fennel and vegetables will be a “winner, winner…chicken dinner” in your home. Fennel provides a subtle licorice flavor. Lemon slices and wedges add a nice citric taste.

KODAK Digital Still Camera
KODAK Digital Still Camera


2 fennel bulbs

2 large lemons

3 potatoes peeled and halved

6 carrots rough chopped

3 celery stalks rough chopped

3 to 4-pound roasting chicken

poultry seasoning

fresh rosemary, sage, and thyme

32-ounce box of chicken stock/broth

1/2 stick of melted butter


Preheat oven to 350 degrees

rinse chicken, clean out the cavity and pat dry

place vegetables, fennel, and lemon slices on bottom of the roasting pan

stuff chicken’s cavity with some lemon wedges, some fennel and a few sprigs of thyme, rosemary, and sage

tie the legs

loosen the chicken’s skin and rub some butter under the skin and all over the bird

liberally season the chicken with poultry seasoning.

place the chicken on top of the vegetables and add some more thyme, rosemary, and sage to the roasting pan

pour 32 ounces of chicken broth over the bottom of the pan

bake for 1.5 hours, basting frequently until the internal temperature is 165 degrees

KODAK Digital Still Camera
KODAK Digital Still Camera

This is what the chicken looks like as it is popped into the oven.

Let the bird rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Dennis L. Page