Uncle Stanford

The most amazing people come through the door at Buck’s that I am losing interest in wandering across Highway 280 in case I miss anyone. I happened to be here when a most marvelous gentleman came in for dinner with his niece and her husband. We got to talking about the great world’s fairs such as the one in 1939 held on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay. He had actually been there and remembered it vividly. I happened to mention the 1915 Pan Pacific Exposition, which was held in what is today the Marina District in San Francisco and I was startled when he told me that he as there too, and he recounted how he had really liked The Zone which was a special place for the kids.

I was going to ask him about the Spanish-American War when he asked me a rather interesting question. I was wearing a louder-than-loud necktie and he asked me if I had tied the tie. I said I had and he said, “Good, I like a man who knows how to tie a tie.” Now that is a rather fine thing to be told. He went on to recount how he had grown up in Hollister. I figured that John Steinbeck, my favorite author, would have been in the area then and I asked him if he had ever met Steinbeck. He said he had met Steinbeck as a boy. We talked about the new Steinbeck museum and he said he thought it grand.

I realized that I hadn’t introduced myself so I did and then he told me his name was Stanford Steinbeck. It seems he was John’s first cousin, there fathers being brothers. Stanford’s mother was in the first class as Stanford to admit women and they have been a Stanford family ever since.

Carl and Caroline Countryman were in tow and I heard Stanford brag on the kids. It seems the Countryman manufacture state of the art microphones at Countryman Assoc. and they have twin boys.