~Throw Back Thursday~Tom & Gerry~

There is something unique in knowing what one wants to do as an adult from childhood.  My Grandfather Short was one of those unique people.

My Grandfather as a toddler
My Grandfather as a toddler with his “boat”.

I dig into my family archives as I do from time to time to restore old photo & slides and came up with these for a Throwback Thursday posting.  Thomas Arthur Short is my Grandfather and Geraldine S. is my Grandmother here.  Both are no longer with us, however their strong powerful existence still wanders through me, in particular Grandpa’s.  He knew exactly what he wanted even as a child obviously by the above photograph.  He worked hard and consistently to achieve those goals throughout his life, as I tend to believe that generation did naturally.

Thomas Arthur Short I
Thomas Arthur Short I

The Short family (which is my Grandfathers side) is a line of boatmen, or yachtsmen, depending on what you preferred to sail.  Grandpa relied on both terms but preferred “yachtsman”.  As a young man he was a Merchant Marine, then when he left the service he moved into opening up his own marine engineering business TASCO.  Being head of the family he took no bull and was very gruff indeed most of the time, which made him a great business man for the day.   He had a knack of separating business from pleasure with perfection.   However…

Grandpa's boat at the head of the race leading everyone out of the San Francisco Bay.
Grandpa’s boat at the head of the race leading everyone out of the San Francisco Bay.

Sailing (or yachting as he would say) was his bliss.  He absolutely loved it.  This was his pleasure.  Being Commodore of the St. Francis Yacht Club a couple of times and a Senior founding member of its vintage history, he regarded it as “Church”.  Included in that history was the Transpac Race which he was a huge part of and sailed it religiously. Something he not only was proud to do but “needed” to do as part of being “who he was”.

The acting was also included in that realm at the “Club”.  He got a kick out of it.

Grandpa Acting.
Grandpa Acting.

He enjoyed and had close friends such as Humphrey Bogart and Johnny Weissmuller (the original Tarzan), who were also fellow yachtsmen who sailed together often.   I remember both my Grandparents referring to Lauren Bacall as “Betty” in conversations, and she, in turn, called him “Captain Pete” (a nickname of his).  Oh and yes, they all did like their drink at the “Club”.  That is where the comradery was and that was where their souls existed.  She with the ladies and he with the guys talking up sailing stories.  Oh to be a fly on those walls!  He loved his dominoes and playing that game at the Club was his zen.  I still have his dominoes and last I knew, they held a yearly tournament in his name.  Will have to check on that.

TASCO having a day in the Bay with it's crew
TASCO II having a day in the Bay with it’s crew-1953?-1955?

According to my Grandmother, Grandpa did not like women on his boat.  The “Club” at that time was also not an “equal” ground to stand on if you were a woman.   So the photograph below just floors me in laughter.   Seeing my Grandmother with her legs up in a relaxed joker kind of way smiling at my grandfather in the galley doing the dishes, is certainly ironic, although that grin on her face looks very loving…which she was.   She was a volunteer at the San Francisco Hospital just about up and until the day her Alzheimer’s became more pronounced.  She always tried to get me to be a Candy Striper, but I could not stand the sight of blood.  Big fail on my part because she was absolutely a huge giver of time and that is certainly something she never thought twice about.  She walked to work daily from their apartment.

My Grandparents on the boat
My Grandparents on the boat-1953

To this day, I know if it wasn’t for these two I would not be who I am today.  I fought the system and did my own thing for many years, so having said that I can be accountable for “me”.  I have my own tales to tell.  However, they are the ones who introduced me to my business and daily living senses and taught me how to integrate that into life.   All that combined made these two great mentors.  Realistically, Grandpa made it all happen though.  He was the savvy one, to say the least.  The Bull…just look at that face.  I remember him saying:  Spend little and save more.  Makes sense and I live by that now.  Thank you, Grandpa!  Thanks for those tix to The Beatles circa 1964 Cow Palace too.

Thanks for stopping in.

Til next time…


Responses to “~Throw Back Thursday~Tom & Gerry~”

  1. I am so thankful I came across this site Kathy. I am just floored how incredibly beautiful all of the photographs and words written are. You are certainly a woman with many talents! Thank you so much for sharing all these facets of your life. Much love and success to you Kathy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Why thank you very much Gail. What a very nice compliment. Is this Gail from High School?


      1. Yes Kathy. I am that Gail. Congrats again on this amazing site.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds a real character! Family histories are always fascinating; thanks for sharing a bit of yours.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Anabel, he was character. Very stodgy yet had a good sense of humor. Thanks for stopping in to read.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Love it.

    Liked by 1 person

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