22nd June would have been the 97th birthday of Ben Morse, a friend to me and to many of my friends.

Ben had two long and enriching partnerships, the first for forty years with Louis Beachner  ( a somewhat well known actor in his day); the second with Bruce Wirtz (an Episcopal Priest).

Bruce served in the Diocese of Western Massachusetts which is why and how I came to know Ben.  Ben died in Dec 2016 here in Sarasota.

Ben had also been in the theatre business,  here he is as a handsome young blade.

The retired Ben was a fabulous cook; a witty host; and a man whose impatience was legendary.

One day Ben handed me this box.  I hoped against hope that he was not about to propose to me.

Fear not.   The box contained this

Ben had noted that I needed an old fashioned bottle opener. I yet keep it in the box -  makes it easy to find in my kitchen implements drawer.

He also thought that I should have a decent wine bottle stopper. Being thoughtful he chose one with a dog design  (back in the days when Penne was the love of my life)

Bruce's son Nelson was the executor of Ben's will.  He said that if I wished, I could take an item from the house  to remind me of Ben  (and of Bruce).

I chose this!   It bears truth at at least two levels.


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