Boxes For All Reasons

My friend Ron Genise posted this video of  The Most Useless Machine Ever on Facebook. Thanks, Ron!  The Most Useless Machine Ever is a box with an on off switch.  Every time the human turns the box on, the box reaches out and turns itself off.  But this box does more.  Be sure to watch it all the way through.  This is one silly and scary box!

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Juke boxes are a long way from the boxes Michael is building.  They are boxes, though, and sometimes they hold wonderful things, like a great collection of Rock ‘n Roll “…so put another dime in the juke box, baby…”

I’m not sure I’ve ever heard or seen a cigar box ukulele.   In researching this post, though, I came across many “how to” videos as well as mention of people like Lightnin’ Hopkins who got their start playing cigar box instruments.  This clip shows a cigar box ukulele being used to play a Tom Petty song, “For All The Wrong Reasons.”

 

This wonderful poem about the treasures in a sewing box was written by Linda Winchell.  Ms. Winchell lives on a farm in a small town in Michigan.  She loves writing poetry and children’s books.  To see more of her poems, go to http://www.poemhunter.com/linda-winchell/

‘Grandma’s Sewing Box’
by Linda Winchell

Spools of thread and needles
Slipper cushions filled with pins
Some tipped with colored beads.
Grandma’s sewing box was filled
with everything she seemed to need.

She would sit and darn Grandpa’s stockings
Or maybe sew a button on a shirt or two.
She always seemed to know what color of thread to use
She always knew just what to do.

She would place a thimble on her finger
And with needle strung of colored thread.
She would push the needle very carefully in
What ever had needed, Grandma’s special mend.

I would rummage through Grandma’s sewing box
It was like a treasure chest she saved for me.
She would let me play with all the colored buttons
And tried to show me how to needle point
A butterfly and bunny scene.

She would take my little fingers
And thread my needle with thin pastel yarn.
I will always remember my Grandma’s sewing box
And the times, I would visit her on the farm.

Early on in their careers, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak built the Blue Box.  The Box transfered signals to a phone which made it possible for the user to call around the world for free.  This Blue Box doesn’t have much to do with  our wooden boxes, except that they are both boxes and that the Blue Box was kept inside a wooden box.  The Blue Box sure is a cool use for a box, though. And a completely illegal use for a box.

Sometimes I forget that the whole world doesn’t share Silicon Valley’s intense interest in the sociology of Silicon Valley.  For those who don’t share that interest, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak (Jobs referes to him as Woz in this clip) started Apple Computer.  Steve Jobs is still the CEO (although I believe he’s on a leave of absence).

This is a part of the popular culture of my childhood.  It’s a few minutes of an episode of The Courtship of Eddie’s Father.  I still remember the theme song “People let me tell you bout my best friend….” In this episode, Eddie learns about the secret boxes parents keep.  Our boxes will be quite a bit more aesthetically pleasing than the box shown here.

Emily Dickinson numbered her poems rather than giving them titles.  This poem was written in 1860.  Ebon means Ebony.

169
Emily Dickinson

In Ebon Box, when years have flown
To reverently peer,
Wiping away the velvet dust
Summers have sprinkled there!

To hold a letter to the light—
Grown Tawny now, with time—
To con the faded syllables
That quickened us like Wine!

Perhaps a Flower’s shrivelled check
Among its stores to find—
Plucked far away, some morning—
By gallant—mouldering hand!

A curl, perhaps, from foreheads
Our Constancy forgot—
Perhaps, an Antique trinket—
In vanished fashions set!

And then to lay them quiet back—
And go about its care—
As if the little Ebon Box
Were none of our affair!


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