Lent is here, my friends, and I don’t know about you, but I gave a lot of thought to what I was going to sacrifice this year, as well as to doing a little something extra each day.
When my little girl was two-and-a-half years old, she fell in love with angels. My son was only around a year at the time, so the bedtime stories I began to tell were mainly for my daughter. I found and read to her every classic book for her age, and she loved them all, but mostly begged for angel stories, and those were hard to find. So, I made one up.
At 7:30 Tuesday morning, my just-turned-5 granddaughter, Gracie, called. When I answered, she said, “Gaga, it’s vewy exciting news! It’s SNOWING IN NORSE CAWOLINA! AT MY HOUSE!” (I’m not sure where my grandkids think I go when I leave Charlotte after visiting them. Chapel Hill might as well be the moon, as far as they’re concerned.) And, she was right — it was snowing at MY HOUSE, TOO!
We had a friend, Michelle, over for dinner last week. First, we had a couple of Margaritas, and later, over her second glass of wine, she told us a story about her husband’s dog, Bubba — a story she hasn’t even told her husband.
My fellow Americans, although I have decided not to become a presidential contender in 2016, I am nevertheless keeping my finger on the pulse of the country, and it has come to my attention that folks are receiving packets in the mail from the U.S. Census Bureau in the last few weeks. What? The census was taken in 2010, and according to the Constitution, we’re only supposed to be counted every ten years, so ...?
So, today is Super Bowl Sunday. I’m sure everyone has been to church (ahem) to “keep holy the sabbath”...and to pray that their team wins, meaning Seattle, because I mean hasn’t Tom Brady’s team (their name escapes me right now) won the Super Bowl like 782 times in the last 783 years? Enough, already!
Needed to go to the post office the other day to send something to my daughter which required a big padded envelope, around $400 in postage, and a postal clerk with the personality and patience of Attila the Hun ... only not as warm. And, naturally, I got in the “wrong” line. Because I was in Attila’s line, right behind the person who possibly caused him to lose whatever warmth he had maintained up to that point.
So, I read recently that a group of car scientists got into their new invention — a car that drives itself — and headed from San Francisco to Los Angeles, or somewhere, but a respectable distance, and each took turns at the controls along the way, and it was apparently a complete and total success, or to quote one of the car scientists, “That was cool.”
It’s time to make New Year’s resolutions. Everyone is doing it. I hate it. I shun New Year’s resolutions, because they just set you up to fail, and who needs more of that? And, what kind of person can possibly accomplish all the stuff people often resolve to do? I will tell you what kind: the kind that isn’t me, that’s what kind. Nor is it anyone I’ve ever met.
I’ve found myself in the predictable position of having a knee that no longer feels the need to work. It won’t open all the way. It won’t close all the way. And, I don’t blame it. It’s been through hell with me for 50-plus years, and it’s no surprise that all it wants to do now is sit around and eat bonbons all day.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to one and all...well, not really one and all, since at this moment I hate whoever invented technology. Who was it? Because, seriously, I want to hunt them down — Bill Gates, that Zuckerberg guy, Al Gore? No matter, I hate them all.
I love being a teacher. Well, not every second of every day, but still, I mostly love being a teacher. One of the biggest reasons is the week before Christmas break. This week, in any school, is just such a trip. All of a sudden, there is spasmodic giggling and unrest in the classroom, whining in the office, and a general who-gives-a-partridge-in-a-pear-tree attitude towards work of any kind. And, the students are almost as bad.
Well, it’s just a couple more weeks until Christmas in Ohio with my family, which numbers around a thousand. I’ll get to see all of my sisters, brothers, in-laws, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and about twenty-three assorted dogs. And, as I drive away into the Blue Ridge of Virginia and West Virginia, I can imagine you smiling, gently waving good-bye and calling warmly, “Be of good cheer -- you could still drive off a mountain!”
I’ve always said it’s important to have friends. Good friends are there when you need them, and are willing to share your grief, listen to your gripes, and be happy for your triumphs. Sometimes friends become family in almost every sense of the word, including the times when they tell you not to wear a certain outfit or that you need to take off a couple of pounds. The good thing is that it’s OK to tell them to shut up, whereas with your mother...well, anyway....
I had planned a quiet Thanksgiving. Just me, all alone, with a Stouffer’s turkey dinner. Sure, it’s pathetic, but I’m not the daughter who married a guy from Charlotte whose family might want to see them at Thanksgiving. And, I’m not the son who decided to go visit his cousins in New York ... cousins who, I might add, never went through 12 hours of labor to bring him into this world. So, I guess we all know whose fault it was that I’d be eating Stouffer’s turkey all alone on Thanksgiving ... but, you know me, I don’t complain.