en Along Twin Ponds Road <p> Gloria Dowaliby should haven been in show business. Instead, she chose the teaching profession. She was glamorous, witty and just seemed to have all those characteristics of a Broadway star. Fortunately for Gloria&rsquo;s students, she became a teacher.<br /> Gloria started her teaching career around 1953 at Lincoln-<br /> Lewis Junior High in Southington, Conn.<br /> I was privileged to have had Miss Dowaliby as my seventh-grade English, history and homeroom teacher.<br /> Along Twin Ponds Road <p> I bet she would be a little upset with herself if she knew that ever since she made the comment, way back in May: &ldquo;Those glasses are awful; they don&rsquo;t do a thing for you,&rdquo; that I&rsquo;ve been going crazy switching them back and forth with another pair she found acceptable.<br /> I don&rsquo;t even see well with the pair she favors.<br /> Oh well ...<br /> Yes, faithful readers, I do remember I recently wrote about eye glasses.<br /> Claire Roxann Willis Collier is my only sister, and she&rsquo;s<br /> precious.<br /> Along Twin Ponds Road <p> Is pizza your favorite food as it is with so many Americans?<br /> It&rsquo;s been mine ever since Butch Santy&rsquo;s mother served me some of her own, homemade style, back in the early &lsquo;50s.<br /> Of course, Mrs. Santy was Italian, and she probably grew up making pizza as so many Italian women did in those days.<br /> It&rsquo;s a good thing my father was as crazy about pizza as his kids were or we&rsquo;d have suffered big time.<br /> In my section of central Connecticut there were pizza o,r Italian restaurants on just about every street corner it seemed.<br /> Along Twin Ponds Road <p> &ldquo;Ray, one day you&rsquo;ll be ready for sitting atop a stool and singing and playing at Chuck&rsquo;s Steak House on a Friday night,&rdquo; remarked my first guitar teacher, George<br /> Raccio.<br /> I&rsquo;ve never known how to take that statement of George&rsquo;s, especially after having been his student for a couple of years.<br /> On one hand, it could have been encouraging. Chuck&rsquo;s was one of a chain of Connecticut steak houses very popular at the time.<br /> Along Twin Ponds Road <p> Here in Aiken, S.C., I can tell the season is about to change, and that fall is in the air.<br /> The leaves are beginning to exhibit those majestic reddish colors, and some are even dropping to the ground.<br /> My wife has been reminding me often that she can detect the change of the season.<br /> For her that has been quite easy lately as she hasn&rsquo;t been getting around much and seems to be more tuned in to subtle changes around her.<br /> Celebrating the best worst thing <p> The other day I thought of the phrase, &ldquo;the best worst thing.&rdquo;<br /> Is it even possible to have a best worst thing? Isn&rsquo;t that an oxymoron, like jumbo shrimp or pretty ugly?<br /> For one of my daughters, the past year has been the worst of her life, and she&rsquo;s still asking why. &ldquo;If Jesus loves me, why did he let this happen?&rdquo; she asks.<br /> Along Twin Ponds Road <p> &ldquo;What I really get a kick out of is that they call their high school mascot, the &lsquo;Syrupers,&rsquo; or something like that. Doggonest thing,&rdquo; my neighbor, Stan, laughingly shared with me.<br /> Stan and his smallish dog, Reggie, were heading up the street we both live on, Fantasy Way. My Yorkie, Nick, and I were headed toward them.<br /> It was early afternoon; we paused to converse.<br /> This gentle, elderly man&rsquo;s habit, whenever encountering me, was to say something short and sweet. He always wore a smile and made me feel good.<br /> '42' <p> Watching the movie &ldquo;42&rdquo; a few nights ago was good for my soul and reminded me of how much we need more movies or TV shows that inspire us with heroic deeds performed by true and deserving heroes.<br /> Most baseball fans, no matter how old, will recognize 42 as Jackie Robinson&rsquo;s number when he played with the major league Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team.<br /> It is the only number that has been permanently retired by all major league baseball teams.<br />