Monday, January 23, 2012

Welcome 2012

            It’s nearing the end of the month, and I’m guessing you’re beginning to give

up on your New Year’s Resolutions.  Whatever they may be.  For myself, I don’t

 bother making then anymore.  Who needs the guilt?
Confessions are so much more fun than resolutions, so I have a confession to pass on.  Actually, this confession is a year old, but it has taken me a while to be able to acknowledge that I am really this stupid.  And stupidity is something I greatly fear.  That’s not the confession, but doing stupid things on a fairly regular basis makes me fear it as a permanent state of being for me.  Here’s my 2011 really dumb thing.
            In about September or October last year I bought my first iPhone.  I had held out for a long time; my old Nokia still worked, you see.  It had some years ago become a dinosaur, but not so old as to not have a text function.  I discovered this quite by accident once while digging around on various functions I had never used looking for an alarm clock.  Wow! To my absolute astonishment, I had three very old text messages – about a year old by that time.  Hmmmm, no need to reply now.  Anyway my old phone didn’t have an alphabet key pad and it would have taken months to tap out replies.
            So one reason I got a new phone was so that I could send and receive texts more easily.  My text etiquette (or textiquette) was not good, but I figured I could fake it until I learned the ropes.  Furthermore, my oldest granddaughter, Emma, was twelve and had given up actually talking on the phone (preferring texting and Facebook), so I knew if I ever wanted to have communication with her, I would need to text.
            Reason number two was the keys on my old phone had begun to stick and it was getting to be impossible to even use it as a phone.  Therefore, no choice.  Buy an iPhone.
            I didn’t do too badly at first.  There was the occasional odd message when I hit “send” instead of erase, but I was improving.  Then after Christmas I got a text from a phone number I didn’t recognize.  It was a general greeting about hoping I had enjoyed a nice holiday and let’s get together soon.  At the bottom of the text it said “HNY.”  HNY?  Who in the world did I know with those initials?  I reread the text.  Still no clue.  HNY,  HNY.  Who was that?
            I am horrified to tell you that I pondered this for several days.  Maybe a week.  Then it came to me.  I’ll bet you’re thinking, “Hurray, I’m not as dumb as she is.”
            Hands down I am the dumbest person you know.  There you have it.  Probably also the oldest since I still hark back to the days when correspondence begins with “Dear” and ends with a name. 
            So don’t feel bad about quitting on your New Year’s Resolutions.  Being stupid takes longer to admit to and is harder to overcome.
            HNY to all!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Blog for Theo

Blog for Theo

            Harry Potter is Theo’s alter ego.  He, being almost six, has moved up from Super Heroes such as Batman, Superman, or Spiderman, and now whenever he has the chance to be someone other than himself, he chooses Harry Potter.  Just for effect, he has a real Harry Potter wand which he will rarely be without.  He also had Harry Potter glasses and a cloak, but cloaks get hot and the glasses were lost pretty much the first time he took them off.  This is no deterrent.
            He is very earnest in his appropriation of Harry.  He looks up at me from his height of about three foot four or five with soft brown eyes that are very expressive.  When he is tickled, his eyes crinkle up at the corners and almost close, but when he is explaining something to me that is an important truth, his eyes open wide and his eyebrows advance starkly upwards towards his hairline.  This gives him a charming look of perpetual wonder and confidence. He bobs his head in agreement with himself.
            “Yeah, that’s the truth, Wawa,” he contends.
            When he laughs, he throws his head back and opens his mouth in a big wide O so that I can see clear down his throat while he is cackling.  He has big loopy caramel colored curls that sit tightly around his head, and when he is tired he will twirl them.  He has done that since he was an infant.  He is the kind of kid who, when he first sees you, will run across the room to jump up into your arms in a joyful embrace and squeeze your neck.  He is completely irresistible.
            His mother finds him less so when he says things such as, “You’re a muggle.  I’m sorry but that’s what you are.  I am magic and I really live at Hogwarts.  Every night I fly away from here to my real home at Hogwarts.  You have no power over me because you’re a muggle and I am magic.”
            Mothers do not find such talk irresistible. 
            However, Theo has always been one to lay things on the line irrespective of your feelings.  I mean, truth is truth.  Once  a couple of years ago he and his sister Ruby were spending the night with me.  His brother Gus was off with a friend.
            Ruby and I were sitting on the couch reading a book.  Theo was watching Justice League, the remains of his picnic dinner from Wendy’s on the coffee table.  He came over to see what we were doing, and while looking at the book, too, began digging deeply into his nose with his right forefinger.
            I said, “Theo, do you need to get a Kleenex?”
            “Nahhhh,” he replied.  “Here! I got it!” he said proudly and put his finger up to show me his prize.
            “Ugh, Theo,” I said.  “Put it on your napkin and for Pete’s sake, don’t eat it.”
            Walking dutifully toward his napkin on the coffee table, Theo nodded his head agreeably and added, “Sometimes I eat them.  I think it tastes good.”  His head was bobbing up and down, his eyebrows raised up around his hairline.  He was giving me good instruction.
            “You know what it tastes like, Wawa?” he asked politely.
            “I can’t imagine,” I replied.
            “Pizza!” he said, and sat down to watch the rest of his movie.
            Muggles, boogers, wands.  Truth all wrapped up in crinkly smiles and loopy curls.  For a grandmother, irresistible.

Monday, November 28, 2011

That Old Holiday Spirit

That Old Holiday Spirit        

            It’s interesting how this time of year brings out different emotions in different people.  The weather, the crowds, the music, the decorations; it all figures in to how each of us put on our holiday faces.

            For instance.  The weekend before Thanksgiving, I was running some errands with my granddaughter Ruby who is three.  Her two brothers were off to a birthday party, so Ruby came with me to do a little shopping. 

            One of our stops was in Walgreens.  Outside the doors on the sidewalk was the ubiquitous Salvation Army bell ringer with his kettle collecting money for those folks who need a little help.  It was a chilly day, but our volunteer was cheerful as could be smiling above his red apron, nodding and wishing all a happy holiday.  I fumbled in my purse to get some money for Ruby to put into the kettle.  She waited patiently, and the Salvation Army worker asked if she wanted to ring the bell.  Of course she did, and she rang it a little while and then stuffed the money into the kettle.

            Just as she finished a woman came whisking toward the front door of the store from the parking lot.  She was probably in her mid-thirties, well-dressed and coiffed.  She was alone and in a hurry.

            “Oh!” she said, pausing briefly to glance at the Salvation Army bell ringer, his kettle, and I guess, Ruby and me.  Her face contorted in an angry grimace and she huffed audibly.  She could not have been more exasperated.  “Oh!  It’s not even Thanksgiving!  Jesus Christ!”
            Needless to say, she didn’t put any money in the kettle. At least she knew whom the season was all about.  Hope your holiday is better than hers.  In any event, I know she sure gave me a good laugh.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

blog for a December day

Blog December 10, 2010

            This weekend I am keeping my 2 ½ year old granddaughter Ruby while the rest of her family is out of town doing things that would not be fun to do with a 2 ½ year old along.  Ruby and I are getting on famously.  That is, we were as soon as I recognized who was in charge here.
            It’s not me.  When I picked her up, we headed immediately for the lake, because, of course, the lake is the ultimate wonderful place and we would have a great time.  It was pretty cold in the cabin when we got here, the thermostat having been turned down to fifty-five degrees when vacant, but right as the bags were hauled in, Ruby wanted to change her clothes. 
            “Put on a pincess dess,” she said.  “Glass sippers, too!” she said.
            “That’s great,” I said, pulling off her dress, “but you have to leave your turtleneck shirt on until it warms up in here.”  The princess dress had spaghetti straps, a thin satin bodice, and a short flouncy skirt.
            She looked at me incredulously.  “A pincess not wear an ugly shirt!” she announced.  “And no socks with glass sippers!”  How could I be so stupid?
            We wrestled a while with her pulling her shirt off and me pulling it back down, all the while she stood on  the toe of her socks and pulled them off by dragging one foot at a time out from under the other.
            I stopped pulling and considered my options.  I could make her wear the shirt and the socks, I was bigger and could out-wrestle her.  Or I could pick another battle.
            I smiled brightly.  “Okay!” I said with as much cheer as I could muster.  It’s terrible being defeated by a two-year old.
            But really, who ever heard of a princess with socks and a turtleneck?

Devil with Dimples

Blog for Joe Bob

            Joe Bob, following in the footsteps of his namesake grandpa, is all boy.  He runs everywhere he goes, like Dash from The Incredibles, and like Dash, he is really fast. Heck, I can’t catch him.  But if he is chasing me, he can catch me.  This makes him laugh a lot.  And when he laughs, his dark hazel eyes sparkle, and he flashes a deep dimple on the right side of his smile.  All his teeth show clear back to his baby molars and he looks a little like an impish crocodile ready to take a big bite.  His blond hair is wiry and coarse, and he sports a whirlwind cowlick right at the base of his hairline in the front --- just like Kenickie in Grease. 
            Joe Bob is practicing to be a husband.  By that I mean that whatever a woman, such as me or his mom or his sister, tells him to do or refrain from doing, he does not hear.  Being not even four years old yet, he is really good at this already.  Another twenty, thirty years of practice, he’ll be about perfect at selective hearing.  Is this genetic, like preferring blue to pink, Batman to Barbie, guns to purses?
            The last time I was at his house we ran an errand to Wal-Mart, and since he and his sister Lily were good as gold, they got to pick out a toy.  Of course they did.  There was a rifle that made a ka-pow, ka-pow sound when the trigger was pulled, so Joe Bob picked out that one.  Of course he did.  That gun saw  lot of action the next two days.  Sometimes he ambushed bad guys or grown-ups or his sister, and sometimes he gazed off into space mindlessly firing from his lap.  Ka-pow, Ka-pow, KA-POW, KA-POW, KA-POW, KA-POW!!  I wondered how long that gun would last before someone tossed it into the trash, but being the grandmother, that was not my concern.
            And he is musically gifted.  I was sitting at the breakfast table one afternoon with Joe Bob, Lily, and their mom Sheila, when Sheila said, “Joe Bob, why don’t you sing that song you learned for WaWa?”
            He and Lily call me WaWa, a baby name for Grandma.  Actually Gus gave that name to me, and some of my grandchildren call me WaWa and some of them call me Mary Glo.  That was Emma’s baby name for Grandma.  But who cares what they call me?  It’s just great to have grandchildren to call me something at all.
            So anyway, Sheila asked Joe Bob to sing a song for me.  He looked blank for a minute.  Then he remembered.  His eyes lit up, he flashed that dimpled crocodile grin and he sang:
            “I see London,
              I see France,
              I see WaWa’s
Then hysterical laughter.  Be still my heart.  With this kind of love and affection, he doesn’t have to run fast at all to catch me.