Beth Cruikshank has published a new biography of Elly's mother, Marian Richards.
As usual, I will quote the part of interest to me and comment upon it.No one in the family had ever forgotten the hideous scene when his second daughter, Emily, had brought home a young medical student with a Polish last name and introduced him as her boyfriend.
Well now we know why Sobinski was acceptable for Michael Patterson when Blum was not.She had taken training as a stenographer and spent a dismal two years working in her father's import business.
Also Josef Weeder’s father’s business. I think Lynn must have something against the import business.When the RCAF 408 squadron was established at Linton-on-Ouse in England, Marian was posted as supply sergeant in the depot there.
No. 408 (Goose) Squadron. RCAF was in Linton-on-Ouse from Oct 1942 to Oct 1943 and Sept 1944 to June 1945. This was not the only place the Goose Squadron went; however, someone appears to have actually done some research. These dates cover the dates in the story.She took grim satisfaction in the struggle to keep her "boys" supplied with everything they needed to maintain the punishing schedule of bombing and reconnaissance flights that 408 Squadron flew.
It is a minor point, but the 408 RCAF Squadron did not fly reconnaissance flights until after the war was over. The aircraft they flew were strictly bombers. Probably someone just reading a history of the squadron would not know that unless they dug deeper into it.It came as a surprise when Jim asked her to dance one night at a ball being hosted by their Squadron band in a nearby town. His clique usually chummed with the outgoing girls, the confident ones who laughed and flirted easily and were always ready for a good time.
Translation: Sluts.Jim was a good dancer, and Marian enjoyed twirling around the floor with him. It shook her a little, though, when he kept hold of her hand after the foxtrot ended and led her into the slow, romantic waltz that followed. They danced the full set together before he let her go, and then it was only to return a short while later to claim her for another waltz.
Waltz, foxtrot? Sorry, Beth, but the popular dances in WWII England were swing, especially the jitterbug.On New Year's Eve, 1945, Marian watched curiously as Jim walked up to the band stand and had a whispered consultation with the conductor of the Lintonaires.
The Lintonaires were a Royal Canadian Air Force dance band based at RAF Linton-on-Ouse. I am impressed that this was researched.When the band struck up again, Jim was on stage with them. He sang Vera Lynn's beautiful love song "Yours" with heartfelt tenderness, his eyes warm and smiling on hers.
Vera Lynn was the most popular British singer in World War II. Another good choice.There was talk, as the war in Europe ground to a hard-won resolution that spring, of Squadron 408 being moved to the Pacific to join in the final assault against Japan. Marian was among the contingent that flew back to Canada shortly after V-E day to prepare for the new posting, leaving a very worried fiancé behind in Yorkshire. For the staff involved with supply, it was a busy, urgent time. But before the squadron could deploy, the war in the Pacific ended.
This is an accurate story of the 408 RCAF Squadron. Again, impressive researching.Up until then, he had been cheerfully unconcerned about setting wedding dates or making definite plans for their life together. "Let's wait and see what turns up," had been his invariable response to Marian's gentle prodding.
What does she expect? WWII was going on. These women are so hungry for marriage, it is scary.Jim had some savings from his Air Force pay. He would move to Vancouver, find himself a cheap room in a boarding house and retrain himself in watch repair skills with part time work.
I guess they didn’t have a GI Bill in Canada, like they had in the US.He cared little for people, but commerce was close to his heart.
People in import businesses are like that; because everyone knows a good businessman is someone that no one can stand to do business with.A month before her wedding date in September of 1946, she took her savings and with Emily's delighted help, spent it on a bolt of fine white sateen that draped like a dream and several yards of an exquisite lace which was, fortunately, on sale.
I guess this is more proof that the dress Elizabeth had was not Grandma Marian’s old dress.He was finally willing to admit that their little girl was getting out of hand. They agreed on a workable compromise between their different ideas on parenting, and made a pact to enforce the household rules consistently.
I really do not know what to make of this story about young Elly, particularly considering the idea that Lynn considered the real-life Marian to be physically abusive and blamed her father for not standing up to her. The way this story plays out, it’s almost as if the writer considers Marian to be the better parent because she disciplined Elly.Sometimes Emily and Stefan joined in those cheerful evenings, along with her daughter Cheryl and later their son Jack. Over the years, the cousins became good friends.
Not quite. Except for Cheryl, not even close to strip history. Ron and Cheryl and their kids Jaime and Grant are in the "April and Elly’s visit to the not-dead-yet Grandma Marian" strip sequence in July, 2007. Elly says Ron is her first cousin in that strip sequence. Their kids refer to Grandma Marian as Auntie.
In the strips, Grandpa Jim mentions an Uncle Jay and Aunt Molly to Elly, and then mentions her mother’s sisters (unnamed) are here from the island. This means that Uncle Jay is Marian’s brother and Jay and Molly’s kid is Ron, who married Cheryl. Cheryl is featured prominently in the strip sequence and so it is not surprising this confused Beth or Lynn into thinking she was the cousin and not Ron. As for Jack, there is no mention of him anywhere that I can find. Beth usually does a much better job of researching names of relatives than this.Even Jim put his foot down when Elly wanted to date a boy who drove a van splashed with crudely lettered "Make love, not war" slogans.
Back in those days, the problem was the van, and not the slogans. I remember vans with mattresses in the back were pretty commonplace.Still, Jim pointed out to Marian, at least Elly had been inspired by the peace-loving, folk-song era to learn to play the guitar. Always an enthusiast of music in the home, he not only bought their daughter a second-hand instrument but learned to play it right along with her.
I seem to remember this was a failed effort on the part of Jim in one of the strip sequences where Elly recalls the past. Jim was unsuccessful in getting Elly interested in music.Marian was less surprised. She had suspected for some time that Elly was tiring of her radical, weed-smoking chums and their extreme and often abrasive political views.
Poor deluded Marian. Although Vancouver was known for its Vancouver Committee to Aid American War Objectors in the 1960s, Toronto was known for its Toronto Anti-Draft Programme. I hate to break it to you Marian, but Elly was just like you. You went to WWII to nail a husband to get away from your dad. She went across the country to nail a husband to get away from you.Although he was a social animal like his father and too fond of partying for Marian's tastes, he had been the easier of her two children to raise. Phil's moods were mercurial, but they never lasted long, and his default position was cheerful optimism.
Translation: Phil would stop shrieking. Elly wouldn’t.Jim seemed to have lost his enthusiasm as well, and with it the cheerful interest in his customers which had helped build loyalty over the years. When their sales began to slip, she began to think it was time to quit while they were ahead.
Translation: Jim was faking his interest in his customers, which is kind of surprising.Recently, Marian has suffered some painful bouts with gall stones and has eased back on her volunteer work as a result.
I hate to break it to you Marian, but removing the gall bladder is standard procedure to fix that back in 1980 and speaking from personal experience, I know it works. Either you just want to suffer or this is some kind of slam against the Canadian health care system.It amuses her to see Elly setting exactly the same rules in her own home as she rebelled so vigorously against as a child. There is a special amusement in seeing her try to enforce them, especially with Michael, who is a mischievous male copy of his mother at the same age.
Holy crap! If Elly was like Mike was in the early strips, I suddenly feel sorry for Marian. On the other hand, if Elly is setting the same rules that Marian did, then judging from Elly's rules that means no rules?