Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #89
…This is me___Willy___is that you?” Willy handles the phone receiver like it is the mouth of a poisonous snake…
“Phoebe darling could you round up Willy for me,” asks Herbert Love, making his bi-weekly call from Washington D.C. This couple had never spent any large blocks of time apart and every detail on each end is shared, as September 1900 approaches.
Herb has settled into his civil servant post quite nicely, making national agriculture a serious vocation. His broad-based experience in the “field of fields” has served him well and as an unexpected bonus, President William McKinley has become a close friend. Love is a McKinley kind of guy, a trusted resource whose counsel is sought in areas that exceeds, surpassing his title of Under-Secretary of Agriculture.
Yet, despite success in his new world, the old one still requires his attention. To that end, he is learning to delegate responsibility. And just as he cannot be on both coasts at once, so must he assign someone to act in his stead.
“This is me___Willy___is that you?” Willy handles the phone receiver like it is the mouth of a poisonous snake. Some inventions are intimidating. This talking box is one of them.
“Yes Willy, it is me, Herb. I am calling from our nation’s capitol.”
“Only ours, my friend. As a matter of fact I have orders for ten cases of Loyal Campbells. There is lots of puffing and hot air goings on here and they appreciate not having to smoking that Carolina weed.” It is easy for Herbert to talk down the competition, now that he has had contact with many of them. “Everybody asks me: ‘Who is that man behind these beauts?’ and I tell them: ‘That is my cigar master and right hand man’.”
“Gosh, ya don’t havta be braggin’ on my sorry bones,” he says humbly.
“Brag, I will show you bragging. I will go so far as calling you my Operations Manager … for everything–the creamery, cash crops, of course the cigars.”
“You mean like a overseer?”
“Well, I would prefer to call it a foreman, someone to take my place, as long as they need me in Washington. I know you can do it, heck you have been doing it. And you will find we have doubled your pay.”
Herbert waits for a response. None forthcoming, he prompts by saying, “I know that two hundred dollars a month is not a fortune, but it will give you a chance to put some money aside, you know a savings account?.” Love perceives that Willy may be flabbergasted, on the receiving end of this one-sided conversation. “Anything new down on the farm?”
Alpha Omega M.D.
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