Historic Germantown, Philadelphia
Return to Current Your Thoughts page | Achives Index

Your Thoughts Archive
February 11-19, 2012

LENT: After we received the ashes on our foreheads, Ash Wednesday, we had to figure out what we were were going to give up (abstain from) for the next 40 days. We boys had just been to Mass, told the jokes about the "smudges" on our foreheads and walked over to SFA and Sister Rita Josephine's morning prayers. Our school days, especially during Lent, were filled with Mass, morning prayers, prayers on the hour, before and after recess, ditto lunch and closing time at 3 o'clock. We were taught ejaculations like "My Jesus, Mercy" that could take 100 days off our time in Purgatory. ("My Jesus, mercy" see 200 days right there.) We ransomed pagan babies, threw nickels in the Offertory collection, attended the novenas to St. Francis Xavier in February and celebrated the Feast Days of dead saints, usually, it seemed, virgin martyrs. Should I add 40 Hours Devotion? But, what was on our minds was what should we give up for Lent that would make us appear holy without all the attendant suffering. Cake, candy, the movies, TV, Tastykake cupcakes, Sealtest ice cream, Frank's orange soda? It wasn't until the 1960s someone suggested that we should do more for humanity! Not give up all these treats, but actually act lovingly and charitably to all, To do more for our fellow man. That seemed like a good idea since I loved all the foods I mentioned above and had quietly broken all my vows of abstinence and fasting on the second day of Lent. (It didn't take long to eat the crumbs of cookies, a sliver of Food Fair chocolate cake, one Mike and Ike.) Then I felt like a Pharisee for about a minute and dropped off the wagon. My father would smile and give up broccoli, lima beans, and beef filets--food we never ate. Easter Sunday was joyous--ometimes good weather,sometimes new clothes, baskets of chocolate bunnies and jelly beans and visits to the relatives in Upper Darby if we were lucky. Hey, that 40 Days wasn't so tough!
Joe Lynch--Going to church doesn't make you a Christian anymore than standing in a garage makes you a car. [02-19-2012]

Duncan Hubley of GA, I was quite happy to read a positive post from a former athlete like yourself, about the departed Germantown Athlete and Coach-Jack Smith. We should be honoring our former Germantown Athletes and not dissing them. You mentioned how Jack S. attended GA and GHS and coached at CD-this was all true. However, I must add that he went to North where he was All-Catholic. At Fernhill Park, you knew North Guys and you hung with a few North Lads at your corner at Wissy+Mahmeim which was called"Manheim U". You also played ball at The Armory,Wissy&Hansberry which was diagonal from The Continental. At The Continental, I hung out with your North Buddies from Manheim U-Dave Heil[RIP],Dennis Glancey and Bob Charlanza who liked to bogart me on and off the court. We would be hanging at The Continental,drinking high-test and Bob liked to get heavy and get into poetry and Russian Writers. Being a reserved guy and having developed some counterpunching techniques[Intellectual], I survived. Now, I am a seasoned citizen,rounded 3rd,and I am being told by one blogger to march with The Wench Brigade and another asking if I took a little trip. I took a few trips in my life but a psychedelic trip is not my cup of tea. It is such a tragedy that North and CD closed. Your old friend,John Fries from Fernhill,made a gargantuan effort to save North. Your old Alma-Mater,GA,is doing well in Fort Washinton. I just had lunch at Zake's,across from GA where the GA Faculty dine-no wine. Duncan! Keep posting with your superb posts about some of the great athletes that you knew from Germantown and GA.
Bruce Schmiit [02-19-2012]


taking unmeasured chunks
of moth-eaten memories,
how can you tell if i'm lying
when i can't ?

lighting the wissahickon night
with sherwood forest fires,
cash sales and jelly donuts---
becoming a person
of more considerate sanity
by simply standing strong.

the geography of love
is an extraterrestrial comedy act
exacting revenge
on the least unhappy.

and while running
from a bunch of realists
chasing me
with a clean bill of wealth,
my mangled heart still pumps
a constant fountain
of germantown flames.

pitchers and catchers tomorrow. frankie.
FRANKIE BAGGS [02-18-2012]

In the 40's, I remember going to Chick's & buying a pea shooter (plastic tube about 15inches in length) then you bought a box of dry Navy beans to use as missles. These harmless weapons gave me & my friends many hours of fun. Anyone remember using these as youngsters in GTN ??
Lou Giorno, Mr G DOS [02-18-2012]

Joe Lynch, enjoyed your memories of the New Lyric. Being from the east side, that was a theatre off the beaten path for me and was never in it. Passed by it a number of times though and do remember it. Many here have read the rticle on Germantown theatres that I wrote for the Germantown Historical Society's publication, "The Germantown Crier". I'm including the link for those that haven't seen it. In researching theatre "memories" from folks who knew these theatres, the New Lyric trailed only the Orpheum and Bandbox in volume of "special memories" . With space constraints that I had to work with, I had to cut out most submitted memories. But, what was apparent was that was one very special theatre in th lives of many Germantowners. Here is the link. CLICK
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-18-2012]

That area of East Germantown mentioned by Bob McCreight had several ethnic social clubs, all within a couple blocks of the British American Club. Here is a link to a today photo of what was the Italian Bocce Club... CLICK Here is a link to what was the Irish AOH Hall (aka Hibernian Hall) CLICK And, here is a link to a photo of what was the ULISDA Club, now a Chinese restaurant CLICK
Dennis mcGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-18-2012]

Bob McCreight, here is a link to a today photo of the British American Club. CLICK
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-18-2012]

Dan Hartnett, There is much I have difficulty in agreeing with regarding your assertions about Arab education-which was the best in the world between 8th-10th centuries. Better than anything in dark Europe. So please post to my university email and we shall have a discussion if you wish. Of course it would be better at a symposium (a libation of wines as the Romans saw fit!) but we have to do as we can. BTW Alcuin and other great North European scholars travelled to Arab lands to learn and address interested scholars at the 'seminar' method the Arabs instituted. Be well and have peace.
JimMcKernan, Professor East Carolina University [02-18-2012]

Bucky, I know you can take a joke or a poke. Long time no see. Pitchers and Catchers report to FL.
Earl Shibe, 29.95 any car any color [02-17-2012]

J.Bruce Schmitt,JBS,Bruce Schmitt - you must be taking me too seriously although I do now need an aspirin after laboring through your most recent posting. Have you ever experimented with LSD ? Since some of your observations are occasionally "way out there" my friend - LOL
Bob Eastside [02-17-2012]

As far as I was concerned Jack Smith was the Germanrtown Boys Club for me. I started playing sports at GBC when I was 12 years old and having never played soccer before I had a hard time not catching the ball with my hands, but I was big for my age and I could throw and kick the ball across the field on a fly. I was a big goof but I was lucky enough to be picked for what they now call the traveling team that played on Sundays. I will never forget the night before we played Lighthouse of which I hadn't a clue about that rivalry, Jack gathered us in the locker in Pops area to talk to us. He said he didn't care if we won or lost he just didn't want us to quit. We beat Lighthouse eight to nothing, which was a rare occurance for a GBC team, and dominated them for the next four years until Jack went to Nicetown. Don't know the meaning of quit. City champs three of those four years and Cup champs all four years. Richie SFA'64,NC'68, GBC'62-'68.
Richard Pio, Born and bred in G-town 1950-95, now in Ocala Fl. [02-17-2012]

SATURDAY MATINEE: For 10 cents in the 1950s you could spend Saturday afternoons in The New Lyric Theater on Germantown and Manheim and see a couple of westerns (Lash LaRue, Hoppy), hours of cartoons (Bugs,Daffy,the Roadrunner), a serial of Gene Autry's daring (The Thunder Riders was my favorite.), coming attractions for next week (Frankenstein), and The News of the Day for any adults who wandered in. For 10 cents. When you left The New Lyric you received a yellow post card with a number that could get you in for free the next week. O Joy! I used to collect the cards thrown away by the kids and try my luck the next week. The Theater was always noisy,chaotic; you could hardly hear the show. Kids and their little brothers would be gobbling down Mason Dots, Raisinets, Mike and Ikes that cost a quarter to 35 cents. We'd smuggle in chocolate bars, Bonomo's Turkish Taffy (though you had to smack it against a hard surface to get the best out of it. Watch out, little brother.). Good and Plenty always lasted a long time sucking on them, licorice in the center and the price was right--5 cents. I remember once seeing a Frankenstein trailer and sleeping on the floor in my parents bedroom for a couple of nights after that trauma. Those Saturdays were real events, a whole afternoon of chills, laughs, a sugar-high that would take us into the Jackie Gleason Show and baths for the week. We had no TV so those movies were our culture and our world- view. If you stayed home from the Saturday Matinee, all was not lost. You could watch Patches on Channel 10, a buck-skinned story teller-guitar player who showed two hours of cartoons in the afternoon. All you had to do was walk up and down Fernhill Road, knock on doors and ask to watch their TV for a few hours. We were 4 houses away from a woman we called Mrs. Dopey (the dog's name) who often let a group of 6 or so ragamuffins plant themselves on the floor and furniture so we could watch a live show (man with a coonskin hat) with cartoons. At 4 o'clock, some would leave and go to confession, a long walk from our street. (If you were going to go to Communion the next day, you'd better have no sin on your soul!) So, my question is: Which of these scenarios is the Saturday Matinee?
Joe Lynch--The cuss you will.--Mr. Fox [02-17-2012]

Thinking about old East Germantown I was wondering if anyone remembered the Germantown British American Club on the 900 Block of East Locust Avenue. It was between my dads first beer store and the Yellow Cab Garage, between Devon and Boyer. Nelson Street was across from the driveway? We used to deliver beer there and there was a pool table and in the lower level was a long shuffle board. Don't know if anyone remembers it.
Bob Mc Creight, 57 Havertown [02-17-2012]

JBS. This is in response to blogs written several weeks ago, I wasn’t going to write this for several reasons. Number one I have forgotten some of the facts and number two, I felt sorry for the man and it is one of those events you have to be there to fully understand everything that took place but since he went to St. Joseph, you may find it interesting. I am not sure which club it was in Jersey, let’s say the Latin Casino. In the late 60’s I went there with a few guys. I guess it was an off night because there were very few people. The comedian they had that night was an award winning character actor by the name of Henry Jones. It is not a household name but his face would be known to all. When he started to do his act the few people there clapped with little feeling, only one woman was giving a healthy clap. As the act continued I guess the crowd mentality took effect in that people copied the leaders in what ever they did, which was to ignore the man. I’m glad the man was a success in this field and maybe he just marked it up to a bad night but I just can’t help thinking about it every time I see him on the TV. He was from Philadelphia, I don’t know if Germantown but he did go to St. Joe’s
Jack McHugh [02-17-2012]

Joe D'Ag: Wanted to read your whole post but I had to stop so I could "put down the stick so I didn't put out somebody's eye"
Joe Passanante [02-17-2012]

Helen Leone D'Angelo: I commend you on your compassionate post about Robert Goo Guarinello,The Hollow Poet, and your take on beauty-"Beauty Is In The Eyes of The Beholder". Intrinsic beauty is much more important than extrinsic beauty. I knew too many lads with good looks who were rascals. You went to St. Vincent's as did Bernie McKernan who knew two cute kids from his class who became scoundrels[A Lynch Word] and killed a policeman near Broad&Erie. On this site, we talked about the brawl between Nicky Lazaro and Junior Kripplebauer who was ruggedly handsome and traveled with beautiful babes. He got really ugly with the horrific act and method that he used against The East Germantown Gladiator-Nicky. Beauty is more about character and joy. I appreciate the lovely ladies on this site who exhibit character and morality when they write beautiful words and comments about our friends from our beautiful neighborhood-Germantown. Some of these Foxy Ladies[pardon the pun] must watch Fox News since their posts are fair and balanced.
Bruce Schmitt [02-17-2012]

Duncan, you are correct, Jack Smith, was a fine coach and leader of young men. The players at CDHS thought the world. Indeed CDHS played in the city title game against Frankford in 1968 but did not win. At the end of overtime with the score at 1-1, the game and title was awarded to Frankford because they had more corner kicks than we did. An stupid rule that was in place at the time. It was heartbreaking. I was not a player but a spectator and when the decision was announced it was nearly a riot. Sad outcome to a valiant effort.
Peter F. Coyle, Lafayette Hill, Pa. [02-17-2012]

Joe D'Agostino, that was funny! Thanks for sharing that.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-17-2012]

JBS, My suggestion for you fellas to form a wench brigade for Goo stemmed from Froggy Carr who also was a playground guy that others looked up to. Look at the history of the frogs on their web and you will get my meaning. They had about 1000 marchers this year and you could do the same for the Goo Goo. OH, I went to GHS, WHO DAT.
anonymous [02-17-2012]

I knew Jack Smith. (RIP)He went to Germantown Academy, either before me of after me. He was an exceptional soccer and baseball player. He went there for at least a year, and then transferred to Germantown High. He later coached Cardinal Dougherty High School, while I was coaching Germnatown Academy. He was upset that one of his best plsyers, Arthur Sweeney joined his friends Thomas Keehan, Rich Ingram, and Bob Soley from Germantown Boys Club at G.A. in 1965. In fact Jack's soccer team at Cardinal Dougherty won the city championship in 1968. Their only loss to G.A. 4-3. Jeff Wood (RIP)a sophomore scored three goals. Jack was a very fine athlete and a lot of his talents rubbed off on athletes at the Boys Club both at Germantown and Nicetown. Duncan Hubley
duncan hubley, 5068 McKean Ave. Germantown [02-16-2012]

A Recent E-Mail. To add some humor to this site. The Things I Owe My Parents 1. My Parents taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE .. "If you're going to kill each other, do it outside… I just finished cleaning." 2. My Parents taught me RELIGION. "You better pray that will come out of the carpet." 3. My Parents taught me about TIME TRAVEL. "If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week!" 4. My Parents taught me LOGIC. "Because I said so, that's why." 5. My Parents taught me MORE LOGIC . "If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you're not going to the store with me." 6. My Parents taught me FORESIGHT. "Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident." 7. My Parents taught me IRONY. "Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about." 8. My Parents taught me about the science of OSMOSIS. "Shut your mouth and eat your supper" 9. My Parents taught me about CONTORTIONISM. "Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!" 10. My Parents taught me about STAMINA. "You'll sit there until all that spinach is gone." 11. My Parents taught me about WEATHER. "This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it." 12. My Parents taught me about HYPOCRISY. "If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate!" 13. My Parents taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE. "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out." 14. My Parents taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION. "Stop acting like your father!" 15. My Parents taught me about ENVY. "There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do." 16. My Parents taught me about ANTICIPATION. "Just wait until we get home." 17. My Parents taught me about RECEIVING. "You are going to get it when you get home!" 18. My Parents taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE. "If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way." 19. My Parents taught me ESP. "Put your sweater on; don't you think I know when you are cold?" 20. My Parents taught me HUMOR. "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me." 21. My Parents taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT. "If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up." 22. My Parents taught me GENETICS. "You're just like your father." 23. My Parents taught me about my ROOTS. "Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?" 24. My Parents taught me WISDOM. "When you get to be my age, you'll understand." And my favorite: 25. My Parents taught me about JUSTICE. "One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!"
Joe DAgostino [02-16-2012]

Sister grace was the best. I always felt bad that I never told her that she was a "difference maker" in my life. When I tried to reach out/locate her I found out she had died. Hey Earl Shibe-are you poking fun at me or making fun of me?
Bucky Durney [02-16-2012]

Bob Eastside: I surmise that your nuanced post about my admiration for Aquinas indicated to me that you felt my blog was hokey and punctiliously scrupulous- I hope that Jack Brogan,another LaSalle Alumnus,does not find my language pedantic. I wonder if that aonymous blogger who told me to march with The Wench Brigade was from LaSalle also. I write an objective commentary about Goo and this unknown blogger intimates that I am a fudging comedian. As a LaSalle guy and a product of a Catholic Education, you should not take umbrage with the fact that I studied at a Jesuit Institution and took a course in Metaphysics and Epistemology. If one studies metaphysics, one realizes that Aquinas was the greatest Catholic Philosopher and Theologian. We should applaud bloggers like Dan Hartnett and Professor James Mckernan who read Aquinas. Frank Klock, Our Poet Emeritus, studied Metaphysics and appreciates the sagacity and brilliance of Aquinas. Aquinas has been a part of my life for many years. I am not a born-again Christian but I attend Mass every Sunday at The Aquinas Institute in Priceton. Mass is celebrated in the mansion of Thomas Mann, the famous writer, and we often discuss Aquinas and the homily after Mass with coffee. So much is to be learned from great Catholic Writers like Aquinas and Augustine. We have known a few Germantown Characters who took the wrong path and got into big trouble. Augustine said,"By The Grace of God,So Be I". The World is really a Book of Knowledge that must be traveled so that we must read more than the introduction in order to have an open mind. The Monk of The Hollow and Paratroopers will tell you that the parachute and mind must always be open to be well grounded.
J. Bruce Schmitt [02-16-2012]

JIm McKernan: Thanks for your insightful post. My understanding of Aquinas synthesis of Christian philosophy with Aristotelian logic mirrors yours. What I find interesting is that Aristotle's works were preserved by Muslims, a fact that they like to point out, but they never did anything with them. Aquinas did. I liked his "proofs of the existence of God" which were not exactly proofs, but highly suggestive, e.g. explain the first cause, the order and balance of the universe suggesting design and dependence, etc. While there were many challenges to the church, I didn't see then originating so much in Italy as in Northern Europe, i.e. the reformation, but the impact that is felt the most today, originating in the Enlightenment as it produced opposite understandings of man and explains much of today's divide. In any case,I fear that if I comment further I will be bombarded with a large "thumbs down" as this conversation doesn't lend itself well to all things Germantown. Libera nos a malo!
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [02-16-2012]

Goo Goo Da Goo Goo Goo Da Goo Goo Da Goo Goo, Da Da Goo Goo Goo and a little more Goo......Okay nupf said lets move on.....lol.
Ed Farrar, Chester, VA [02-14-2012]

To all you lovers out there, Happy Valentine's Day!
kevin McKernan, Love the one you're with. The past is gone, the future is not guaranteed; this day alone is a gift. love passionately d ed [02-14-2012]

Please say a prayer for Vic Benvenuto-he's having a tough time in the hospital I feel so bad for him. Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G DOS [02-14-2012]

Lou Giorno:the way you describe Nicky Lazaro affeccting people upon entering is the same as a skunk entering. monk; smile because you the chance,cry because you missed it..monk
monk [02-14-2012]

Dan Hartnett, very glad to read your recent posts. You mention Thomas Aquinas,(a priest) who gave us the method of known as Scholasticism. It dominated university teaching for several centuries in the European Universities. Readers may be bored with my writing but they should understand how powerful the Church was during the Medeival period (500 A.D.-1350 A.D.) I too have read Aquinas in a hermenuitic manner at Galway University his works and what I have taken from them was a genuine respect for his ideas on the role of the teacher-he said a teacher needed to combine "Faith" (meaning Catholic Doctrine) with the sublime logic of Aristotle (a Pagan to the church as he lived before Christ but a master of logic) This was his great marriage of thought and quite risky at the time. He called for teachers to learn along with their students. I also call your attention to my favourite professor Peter Abelard, the 11th century Philosopher at what was to become the University of Paris(same place Aquinas would inherit) who made the cardinal sin of loving his student Heloise-the niece of the Bishop for which Abelard was punished with castration. She was sent to a nunnery and he wrote her love letters all of her remaining life. It's better love story than Romeo and Juliet. However it was to be in Italy where a "rennaissance" was pushing the world towards man and "humanitas" rather than godly subjects. The Catholic Church was being challenged-the rest is history. For those who support teachers ye may be surprized to know Martin Luther implemented the first state system of FREE vernacular schools (in German language) it took 1550 years after Christ to do this.
Jim McKernan, Professor, Greenville NC [02-14-2012]

Dennis McGlinchey: Your post about anonymous bloggers resonated with me. Recent posts from bloggers have been all over the map-very good,just good,bad,and some ugly. I am not a psychologist but a love-hate thing seems to be going on- especially about Goo Guarinello and Nicky Lazaro,2 legendary guys from Germantown,Goo from the westside of the tracks,and Nicky from the eastside. As we know from this site, both were bigger than life and were controversial figures back in the day. I went to SFA with Rowland Mole Adomoli and he later went to Roosevelt Junior High with Nicky Lazaro. Nicky always had a posse, even at Roosevelt. Mole was a gladiator and he was happy to be in Nicky's posse at Roosevelt where there would be safety and security with Nicky and the group. In the 50's. Roosevelt could be a dangerous place and one had to have street-smarts. Nicky became famous in Philly Circles after his famous brawl with Junior Kripplebauer of K&A Fame although he was really from Fairmount. Goo knew The Famous John Berkery who did not like Junior K. a little bit. It fascinates me how some of the lads that I knew in my callow youth turned out. At SFA, I knew guys who became lawyers who defended their former classmates in criminal cases. At The Prep,one student became A Cardinal and another is a jail-bird in a orange pajama in Kentucky. Ed Biff Halloran from West Germantown went to Malvern and got connected with some of The Big Boys in NYC and disappeared. This site is a reflection of the many different personalities of the folks that grew up and lived in Germantown. I am pleased that some of the tough athletes that I knew from the asphalt courts in G-town turned out to be substantial citizens and talk like Philadelphia lawyers and write like Professors. We should apreciate different points of view on this site and keep our parachutes[minds] open. However, I do pray that some of the anonymous Germantown bloggers lighten up on some of their harsh comments about some of the deceased folks that we knew from the past. One identified blogger even mentioned that he was going to leave the legendary Mr. Happy Hollow alone.
JBS [02-14-2012]

happy valentines day to all.marie
Marie Bommentre [02-14-2012]

Sister Grace was certainly well named. She exemplified grace and bestowed it to all.
Del Conner [02-14-2012]

Goo was a lover, not a fighter. We never knew him to bully anybody. He would give the shirt off his back to help you out. Seems to me that Lou Giorno didn't really know Goo and that may be the problem - he never got to sit at the "cool" table and resents it to this day.
anonymous [02-13-2012]

Death Notice: JOHN F. MARTIN Jr.
anonymous, Germantown Guy [02-13-2012]

One day I was having a drink at The John Sandora Post-Nicky Lazaro walked in,and everyone left--Same thing happened at The ULISDA club.He got your attention big time. Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [02-13-2012]

When are you HH people going to let up on GOO GOO? Let him RIP ! I will not post anything about him again ! Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [02-13-2012]

Sister Grace Winifred: that's all you have to say to her old students at SFA in the 1950s. She taught the rowdy 5th grade boys who were just then discovering spin-the-bottle, 7 minutes in paradise, deodorant (Arrid, mom's) and gooey hair. She tamed us with her levelheadedenes and even made us want to go to school on Saturdays to clean her room. Crowley and Durney and Lubking and I used to shine those floors for her, pull down those shades and clap those erasers. I think we were in love with her, to tell you the truth. She, now that I look back on it, was a beautiful young woman who had to be expert in at least 11 subjects every day and deal with that Durney fellow and Ron Manzo (who had his own thing goin'.) Somehow she kept her sanity, equanimity and spirituality in the face of 60 plus pre-pubescent boys who always needed bathroom breaks. I think some of us were already shaving and I know a few had parole officers. One of us made a living stealing Scripto ball point pens--to order. We on the west side of Germantown Avenue were her angels; the east side caused her all the grief. . . . or was it the other way around? About a decade ago, my sister Kathy and I took Sister Grace Winifred to dinner, she lived at the Villa in Flourtown. At that time she was very old (still, she had her apricot sour) and was actually looking forward to death. Were we that bad? Sister Grace made up for all those nuns who bounced us (deservedly so)off the walls and the chalkboards. But Sister Grace showed us boys great kindness even though the girls always won the spelling banner on Fridays. If there is a God, Sister Grace has Him tidying up Heaven for her boys--Bucky, Denny, Bill Anderers, Walter Heileman, James Christopher, Bill Haas, Bob O'Donnell, James Lawless, Chuck Lubking, Ray Dawes and hundreds of other scalawags. Some of these boys are worthy of heaven; a few might need some Purgatory. Sorry, Girls, you'll have to get the next elevator.
Joe Lynch--No one is here except all of us. [02-13-2012]

Appears that Mister McGlinchey has a penchant for less then admirable people mentioned in the posts. In addition to Goo,Nicky Lazaro,and Fr.Benonis, he recently added a one Billy Barnes. Ironically he never had any personal contact with any of these individuals.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida CD'62 [02-13-2012]

Bruce - Interesting Comment to Dan: "I was pleased to read your posts about Catholic Education,the nuns,Catholic Principles,and even Thomas Aquinas whose "Summa Theologica", which I read in college at The Jesuit University in Philadelphia In this secular world, I am happy that Aquinas's Deistic Principles were inculcated in me and I understood why God Exists" - Show of hands on how many read anything about Summa Theologica ? Oh well - guess I missed that course on the Deistic Principals although I do have a La Salle College degree - Darn !
Bob Eastside [02-13-2012]

Yo Lou, give a guy a break. A guy can't help it if he is "ugly" and wears coke bottle glasses. That didn't sound like you or was that you being unkind? Anyway, beauty, or ugly is in the eye of the beholder. Deep breath Lou.

Lou, You were a teacher and concerned about the children and people of Philadelphia. Goo Goo was a poet and a coach. Goo Goo had many smart and loyal friends from Happy Hollow City. Goo's good friend was The Monk from The Hollow. Your friend torched the car of a mean guy and was shot by that bad actor in a bar. Goo would have prevented the torching of the car and stopped the fight between Nicky and that gangsta. Goo would take a bullet for a friend. Goo was a heroic figure from Happy Hollow City. BeBe Rossi liked Goo too and his Hollow friends still miss him. Love is both blindness and kindness.
anonymous [02-13-2012]

Enough about Goo! He apparently wasn't everybody's hero. He's gone but lives in the hearts of some, but seriously, at this stage of life let's concentrate on those still here.
anonymous [02-12-2012]

You affirm my opinion of Nicky Lazaro a brutal criminal-and despicable person. The burning of anothers' property is witness to his shabby character. I never met Goo but he seems a more affable man . Lazaro will not be remembered for anything that is good. Goo at least was a coach and athlete.
anon [02-12-2012]

Dennis--your archive posting about GOO Goo is right on the money-he was a no good bully. For those that never saw him,he was ugly to the bone with glasses that were as thick as Coke bottles. Any girl that had 20-20 vision would never go near him. I don't think he ever went out on a date.
Lou Giorno, Mr G Dos [02-12-2012]

Another memorable character, maybe not in Nicky Lazaro's league, is Billy Barnes. A product from East Germantown and attended IC but can't say he graduated from the school. Those local, you heard of him as he's been in the news the past couple of years. He shot a cop during a robbery attempt in 1965 or 1966. That cop was disabled and suffered for the rest of his life, finally succumbing to his injuries in the 2000s. Billy Barnes was rearrested and tried for murder, but acquited on the murder charge. Now in his 70s, his life of crime started very young, stealing from the Sun-Ray at Chew & Chelten when he was in the 3rd grade and escalated from there. Supposedly, he reformed himself when he was in his 60s. I understand he is still in jail, but don't know why since he was acquited. Personally, I had no sympathy in his fight for his freedom, whem you made your life one of crime and terrorizing people..... When he shot the cop, he was robbing a West Oak Lane beauty shop. How much of a take could you get from a beauty shop? Doesn't seem that he was the brightest of bulbs....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-12-2012]

JBS, there is no need to ever wonder if an anonymous poster is me. The only time I ever posted anonymously was hitting the send button a little too soon.... Even then I followed up with an acknowledgement. Other than those driven to post incognito because of the threats of a lawsuit from one who posts here, I never understood the practice of posting anonymously or under a moniker.....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & riased in East Germantown [02-12-2012]

Peter Coyle, thanks for confirming the gravemarker for a dog in Awbury Park, Whether it is a lost memory or just too insignificant for most to retain, you are the only one I encountered who happens to remember it other than myself. I even remember what it looked like, a white stone square chair.... Del Connor, I really enjoyed your post on Awbury Park. And, congratulations and thank you for all your work and for what you accomplished with it. While it didn't become the true arboretum and attraction you envisioned, it is still a beautiful and historic oasis that East Germantown very much needs.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-12-2012]

Dan The Man Hartnett: It is good to see you posting again and bringing a high level of conversation to our Germantown Web-site. I was pleased to read your posts about Catholic Education,the nuns,Catholic Principles,and even Thomas Aquinas whose "Summa Theologica", which I read in college at The Jesuit University in Philadelphia. In this secular world, I am happy that Aquinas's Deistic Principles were inculcated in me and I understood why God Exists. It is much more pleasant for me to respond to posts about philosophy than blogs that deal with Germantowners who are called scoundrels and asked to march with the Wench Brigade. My friend,Tom Boyle, whom you know, would hang out at The Pub,29th&Allegheny,with me,and we would bring Lovely Ladies to The Continental for a Night-cap. A provocative patron,would call them" The Lovely Wenches". No way,would I ever ask Goo Guarinello of The Hollow to march with The Wench Brigade. Incidentally, Goo was plenty tough but Nicky Lazro was probaly tougher as one blogger indicated. This blogger told the story when Nicky torched the brother's car at Chew&Chelten. You knew Nicky well and you remembered The Famous Nicky Story at The Chew Bar where he was fighting "The Storm Trooper,"Junior"[Kripplebauer" and although he was shot,he continued to battle-Goony was impressed. There was only one "Nicky". Goo Guarinello was not like Nicky-he was more like Joe Procopio of Waterview since they were both good athletes. You knew Bob LaValle from GHS and he was friends with Mike Mugsy Masterson who also went to GHS along with Jack Smith. I knew these guys from SFA and GBS and you might have remembered them from GHS. You also went to Roman where another oustanding student attended-Thomas Goony Walsh. Dan! You knew a lot of characters in your time and I would never want to go against you-intellectually naturally. Jack Brogan's friend, Jimmy Binns,humbled a Prepper. I was humbled by a guy bigger than Jimmy B. although I won the battle but lost the war and you know what I mean. In my golden years,I like to hang out with Intellectual Gladiators like yourself and watch the river flow with a glass of Malbec-as they say in Spanish,"Pura Vita".
Bruce Schmitt [02-12-2012]

To all you soccer moms& dads,and grandparents;Organized youth sports-with their fancy playing fields,colorful uniforms,expensive equipment,adult coaches and unlimited supervision are out of control.Back in our day,our parents had it "made in a shade."We would organize our own game of Halfball with equipment consisting of an old broomstick and a five-cent pimple ball.The pimple ball was also the ball of choice for all the other street games,such as Handball,Wireball,Wallball,and Stepball.For Halfball,the balls were cut in half and pitched underhand to a batter.Individual pitchers developed their own styles of floating the halfballs,which were then difficult for the batters to hit as they rose and fell on currents of air.Even our best hitters had difficulty connecting with a good floater.Individual Halfball teams would comprise from one to a half-dozen players-and there were basically two variations of the game.The first was played along the length of the street with various distances-generally marked by utility poles,lampposts,fire hydrants or manhole covers-used to designate a single,double,triple or home run.Balls that were hit past the pitcher or were caught on the fly were "outs." One strike-even a foul ball-also was an out.The second variation was played across the width of a street,where balls were batted against the side of a building(often a factory).The hits were then determined by how high on the wall the ball struck.Sometime,a home run required hitting the halfball over the factory roof,which might be as high as five stories.The general rule for strikes and fly balls also applied here.However,balls bouncing off the walls and then caught were "outs."
Paul Borian, Yo Goo ! There's trouble in Happy Hollow City once again.Your buddy Lou is bad-mouthing you once again.He won't let-up.He can't help himself.As always,like a good Christian,please forgive him. [02-12-2012]

John Payne, how's that for a memory! I remembered that post being around 2 years ago because I was appalled by it and responded to it. I went back and found it in the Apr 1-10, 2010 archives. There are several other less-than flatterieng Goo stories in that stretch of posts, all told from a "wasn't Goo a card" perspective. Hey, if he was a friend, so be it. But, not everyone here reading the stories of his slapping a kid 15 yers younger, or putting kids heads between the bars of the fence at HH, or using kids as his own personal servants, and whatever else he's done, thinks that's funny.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [02-11-2012]

Lou Giorno: Re: Goo - you sound like sour grapes. Our experience with Goo was that he was knowledgable, well-read, interesting, good-hearted and an all-around good guy. If you didn't have that experience, then you obviously didn't know him that well. We miss him to this day.
anonymous [02-11-2012]

those who knew Goo,get it;those that didn't,don't. monk:minds are like parachutes,they only work when they are open..
monk [02-11-2012]

Nicky Lazaro was a GTN.legend--GOO GOO is not in same class. If GOO GOO ever met Nicky Lazaro,he'd run with his tail between his legs--TRUE story--a guy double parked & blocked Nicky's car- Nick went to gas station got a gallon of gas & torched the guy's car. I saw this happen & ran my butt off.
Lou Day, Mr G Dos [02-11-2012]

Bucky D. holds the record for the most walks wherever he played base-a-ball. Why? He had the smallest strike zone 18" x 4".
Earl Shibe Park [02-11-2012]

Dennis, I am a couple years older than you and I ice skated on the pond in Awbury. Boating, I don't think so. I also remember the grave maker. I believe that was at Mrs. Scattergood's house.
Peter F. Coyle, Lafayette Hill, Pa. [02-11-2012]

While printed books were available in Europe after Caxton's Press (Ca 1423 A.D.) books in Philadelphia were not available-our Germantown friends did not have a saw mill for paper until ca. 1730 I understand. That mill I found is at the Wissahickon. The children in schools used a "Hornbook" a cow's horn flattened and writ on it the ABC's the Lord's Prayer and some prime numbers (3r's on a slate) It was wrapped in leather on the back and hung on the necks of our forefathers. The Romans did a similar thing with schools.
Jim McKernan, Professor [02-11-2012]

Anonymous: I trust that you are not the same blogger who made comments about Goo Guarinello of The Hollow. I was not a Happy Hollower but I still do not understand why bloggers like to beat up on a departed soul-Robert Goo Guarinello of The Hollow. You are probaly a SFA Guy since you knew Jack Smith. You are probaly correct that Jack Smith lived on Portico St. which was not that far from SFA on Logan St. Jack Smith was liked by Sr. Mary Stephen of SFA and she might have thought that he was going to be a priest. I liked Jack but I never thought he was saintly and I might add that Goo Guarinello did not have saintly characteristics-Who does? I also knew Jack Smith from GBC where he was admired for his athletic talent by Bud Alexander and Hughie Mooney-2 GBC Icons. One evening after The GBC closed, I was with Jack,Mugsy Masterson,and other GBC guys. Mugsy Masterson had a hook-out with one of The Chapell Brothers from The Brickyard at The Acme Parking Lot across from the Firehouse at Gtn.&Bringhurst. It was getting good when another Chapell brother jumped into the battle and Jack Smith intervened and prevented a major donnybrook between The Brickyarders and Mugsey's allies. Jack Smith was respected by folks from both sides of the tracks[Gtn.]. Duncan Hubley,the great soccer player from GA, knew that Jack Smith was one of the finest goalies in the history of GA. Larry Rinaldi,a great athlete from North,would remember when Jack Smith was All-Catholic. Paul Borian,the great slugger from The Hollow and GHS, would tell you that Jack Smith was an outanding All-Public baseball player for GHS. Like Rocky Raffaele of The Hollow, Jack was a tough catcher-Forget about knocking him over at the plate. Jack was a former paratrooper and hung out at The Continental[Post 263],with friends like Hughie Mooney and Big John West. Not many people could hang with Jack Smith and John West if you know what I mean. Jack Smith was liked as a person and athlete and was respected by his CD soccer players-he was an outstanding coach. Dave McNulty of The Continental,had a penchant for provocative conversation,since he was an actor and orator- he had great rapport with Jack Smith who was very intelligent. Jack Smith was a legendary figure from Germantown-"May Jack Smith Rest In Eternal Peace'.
John Bruce Schmitt [02-11-2012]

Although I would pass through the Hollow every day going to SFA, and as a kid a few of us from the Fern Hill area would play on the rocks and the upper fields at the Hollow, I never “hung out” there. Having read so much about the infamous Goo on these post, I would love to see a picture of him. Never possessing any, any talent for sport, I might then remember the face and realize why I didn’t hang out there.
Del Conner, One picture is worth a thousand words. [02-11-2012]

Dennis McGlinchey ­ I grew up two blocks from Fern Hill Park loved it and playing on the grounds of abandoned old estates before they became apartment buildings. After art school I moved back to Philadelphia and lived on Opal Street in West Oak Lane for five year. I then rented the old farm house on Washington Lane for ten years before buying the Henry Cope mansion off Ardleigh Street in Awbury Arboretum. Soon after first moving to Awbury I got involved in the arboretum and neighbor’s association. Not wanting to see what happenedd to the mansions near Fern Hill I got on the board of the Awbury Arboretum Advisory Committee and served for over twenty years as vice-president of and editor for the Awbury Neighbor’s Association. It was due to my proposed five-year plan for the arboretum that led to the founding of the Awbury Arboretum Association in 1987 which wrestled control of the Arboretum from the non-profit City Parks Association and saved twenty-two acres that were about to be sold to a developer. I made the first signs the Awbury Arboretum every had, led the effort to have Washington Lane narrowed to two lanes from four, had abandoned houses torn down in front of the train station, and painted the train bridges over Washington Lane and Chew Avenue with murals in 1979 that were only recently painted over. This was five-years before the Mural Arts Program started to do similar things throughout the city. Awbury had been the estate of the Cope family and covered about 200 acres from Chew to Stenton Avenues. Awbury is a corruption of the town’s name that the Cope’s came from in England with stone circles similar to Stonehenge, Avbury. Awbury Arboretum was created in 1916 to stop the city from establishing the city street grid through the estate. The many Cope, Evans, and Emlen cousins donated areas around their houses to become the arboretum and stop the city from developing the streets. They gave the property across Ardleigh Street to become Fairmount Park’s Awbury Park, recreation center, King and Lewis schools. Although I was able help save twenty-two acres, now used by Weavers Way co-op as a farm, help restore the Francis Cope House and porch, restored the Henry Cope House and removed thousands of weed trees, I was unable to get the old timers to accept a new vision for Awbury that would have made it a true arboretum and a Germantown attraction for people to visit and support. It has a train station in the arboretum! Morris Arboretum would kill for such a connection to the Convention Center and downtown. Now, needless to say I knew every inch of the grounds and never came across a marker for a dog although I buried a number of good old dogs and as few cats in the course of thirty years at Awbury. Yes, great sledding hills there too. No boating in the pond though.
Del Conner, Hope Awbury Arboretum is here for another 100 years. [02-11-2012]

Dan Hartnett - thanks for your reply. I agree with you about the dedicated nuns who gave us our educational base. They ruled with a iron fist somewhat but this is what they HAD to do with about 100 kids in their class. If they gave us "time out" as some educators do today their would be 25 kids standing in each corner. Peace to you.
anonymous [02-11-2012]

Return to Your Thoughts page | Achives Index


ushistory.org homepage

Interested in using a picture? Some text? click here.
To contact the webmaster, click here

Show full list of ushistory.org sites

Copyright ©2000-2013 by the Independence Hall Association,
electronically publishing as ushistory.org.
The IHA is a nonprofit organization in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, founded in 1942.
On the Internet since July 4, 1995.