I am amazed at the things my mom told me when I was a child. Some of those things were solid pieces of advice while others were out right ‘porky pies.’ But at the time I didn’t realize how to pick the truth out of the exaggerated lore. Now that I’m older and Mom is living with me, it takes my all not to start giggling hysterically when she comes up with one of those porky pies from when I was young.
For instance, my mom loves to blame what she eats on her dreams. If she has a crazy dream she always tells me it is what she ate. When I was a child she would get me not to eat something before bedtime because I was concerned I would have nightmares and to this day she still believes it is true.
“I had crazy dreams last night, Bethie. It must have been the piece of pork I had.”
“Bethie, I had a nightmare last night. It must have been those potato chips.”
“Oh my goodness! That popcorn made me dream something awful last night.”
It used to worry me when I was little. I thought that eventually everything you ate gave you dreams not thinking that it wasn’t the food that caused the dreams. We just dream.
I don’t ever contradict what Mom says. I think it is cute. She gets this look on her face and then expounds her wisdom. It’s her wisdom and most likely her mom and her grandma and her grandma’s grandma before her. Her little quips and lore give me a visual and something to think about. Here are just a few you to ponder.
“Bethie, if you put Desitin diaper rash ointment in your ear you will never have an earache.” (Of course you won’t get diaper rash either.)
“Bethie, our family has Black Dutch roots.” (I thought she made this one up but it is actually not a porky pie. We have Cherokee descent and Black Dutch was a slang term for a mix of Cherokee and another race. Black Dutch is slang…go figure! )
“Your sister was raised on Karo syrup and milk. That is what was put in her bottle.” (Oh…that explains it. ) Mom said that is what they put in bottles for babies instead of formula…what?!)
“You know, only girl cats will eat biscuits so that is how you can tell if they are girls or boys.” (Huh?!)
“Zinc oxide cures any skin ailment. No…really!” (Personally, I’m allergic to the stuff but maybe I had too much of it slathered on me as a child.)
“Grandma used to pay me a nickel to get an enema.” (That was in the day where they thought you should have one every two weeks. A whole nickel! )
“Elephants scare me. I hope one doesn’t come up our driveway.” (She’s serious! Hee hee)
“Do you think that the hill is going to slide off the mountain and come in my bedroom? I hope it misses my side of the bed.”
“Don’t ever go out after dark. That is when the bad people come out. God made day and night so we know when to stay in or go out.”
(Referring to Dad) “I wouldn’t give him a way for a million but wouldn’t take another one for a penny.”
(About her laundry) “We are either awfully dirty or incredible clean…one or the other.
“Keep Peanut away from boys. I was fourteen when I started dating your father and look where that took me.”
“Sometimes a girl just has to pig out. It’s natural.”
(When Dad gets really full of himself) “How great thou…aren’t.”
(About the guinea pigs) “Don’t you just want to dress them up in doll baby clothes and carry them on your hip? Well, not really. They would probably poop on you.”
“Oh, the sun just came out! It makes me want to run outside naked as a jaybird.”
“No, don’t buy a new mop. That is what duct tape is for.”
“Where do you want to go for lunch? I want to go to Shari’s. But if you don’t want to go we can go where ever you want. You know, it doesn’t matter where we go. I’m just happy to eat but Shari’s does sound good, doesn’t it? I mean, it’s okay if we don’t go there but…” (Sigh… hee hee)
“I’m so glad you were a girl, Bethie. I wouldn’t have loved you any less if you had been a boy but I am so glad you are a girl. Girls in our family are very smart and resourceful. Not that the boys aren’t but it is in a different kind of awkward way. I think I’ll shut up now.”
“Is it just me or is your dad a bit odd?”
“I love him, I really do but sometimes I want to just go to the moon for some quiet.”
“I broke a cup but it was your Dad’s fault.”
(When you don’t want more coffee) “You’re a sissy.”
“Bethie, do you suppose when the power goes out that people call and get mad for being charged for those days they had no power?” (I tell her that there is no electricity running at the time so no one is being charged) “I know that. I just was wondering…”
“I really don’t like chocolate. I never have.” (As she grabs a chocolate brownie and eats it)
(As she guzzles white vinegar out of the bottle) “Vinegar cures everything.”
“I really do have the smartest granddaughters. No man is good enough for them. I think Sissy should just go get a sperm at a bank and be done with it.”
(As she pushes the vacuum beyond its abilities) “I don’t get it. EVERY vacuum I have ever had breaks within a few months. It must have been made by a man.”
“There is nothing better than a root beer float…or two.”
“Bethie, you were my surprise and I am so thankful that you picked me. You are the light of my life.” (She then brings down her eyebrows and points her finger at me) “You better not go anywhere before I do!”
Mom, what a doll!