A bit of humor just in time for your holiday grocery shopping…
Imagine you’re a little girl about 7 years old.
It’s Sunday noon after church so you have on your best clothes: dress, tights, Mary Janes. Your hair is pulled into two pigtails, one of which is higher than the other, and there are bows on your pigtails because… PRETTY.
You and your dad are shopping in Kroger, the new one with the huge 2-story foyer that has dramatic lights and large windows– and amazing acoustics.
As you leave the store, going through the foyer to the parking lot, you’re standing on the back of the wheeled metal shopping cart, being pushed along by your dad.
You have energy.
Thus when you and your dad set foot in the foyer on your way to the parking lot you ask him: Now?
With a sheepish look on his face, as he glances at all the other adults in the foyer, he says: Yes.
At which time you, a wiggly little human being, start singing LOUDLY with gusto and joy. Which one of the following five songs did you sing?
Perhaps you’ve noticed lately that the news media in all its permutations is obsessing on the idea that we Americans are divided… on all issues… with no unity on anything to be found?
WELL, I CALL HOGWASH.
Thus I, a free spirit and seemingly only sane person left in the middle of this country, give you the following list wherein I’ve taken it upon myself to point out issues on which Americans agree.
YES, I USED THE A-WORD.
So what do you think, my gentle readers, are you comfortable focusing on unity instead of divisiveness? And of equal importance, what have I forgotten to add to this list? 🤔
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7 ISSUES ON WHICH AMERICANS CAN AGREE
Commercial airplane travel is a tedious experience, even if they don’t lose your luggage.
Daylight Savings Time is a bad idea in and of itself may or may not be a bad idea, but changing your clock in response to it, or any time change, is difficult. [Thanks to commenters, revised upon reconsideration.]
Paying attention to any Kardashian is a waste of your time.
Sports announcers, hired because they claim to be experts, are as clueless as the rest of us about who’ll win the game.
Christmas merchandise for sale in retail stores in August is ridiculous.
The price of a movie ticket is too high.
Meteorologists who report the weather on TV news are bluffing about what’s going to happen.
HERE’S the dealio. Friend and her husband live in a house on a country road, with an acre front yard, situated on the top of a steep hill.
This is rural. Very rural.
Directly across the way on the other side of the road on top of another hill is Friend’s husband’s parents’ house.
From their front doors they can see each other’s houses in general, but not the specifics, such as what’s going on inside the house or who’s sitting on the front porch.
Because they’re isolated up on their hills, it is private.
• • •
• • •
EXCEPT that Mother-in-Law recently retired from a full-time job and bought a pair of binoculars to watch the birds in the trees that surround her house on a hill in the middle of freaking nowhere.
However birdwatching has not been enough to keep MIL entertained. She is bored. And clever.
In fact, MIL has figured out that by sitting just so in her living room she can use her birding binoculars to look inside Friend’s house.
Or to see who’s sitting on Friend’s front porch.
To spy, in other words.
This new turn of events has put a strain on Friend and MIL’s relationship. MIL sees nothing wrong with peeping in on her son & wife’s daily life, and despite being asked to, will not stop her peeping.
Friend is peeved.
• • •
• • •
BEING a pragmatic soul I asked Friend why she didn’t shut the blinds on the windows on the front of the house. She told me she didn’t want to do that because it was unfair for her to have to do something she didn’t want to do because of her MIL’s interference in her life.
So I suggested that Friend needed to do something to get MIL’s blood pressure up and offend her enough so that she’ll stop being a peeping mom.
“Amuck, amuck, amuck…”
To wit, I suggested that Friend could join a coven, dress like the witches in Hocus Pocus, and have a witches meeting in her front yard, complete with dancing, spells, and a big cauldron of boiling something, like the witches of Macbeth.
“Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and caldron bubble.”
And you know what, my gentle readers? Friend told me that I was being silly, unsympathetic to her plight, and that I was: “NOT TAKING THIS SERIOUSLY.”
To which, between giggles, I managed to say: “You’re right, because this is not a problem. This is an opportunity to EITHER get over MIL’s interference & shut your dang blinds OR cause some mayhem.”
The choice is hers.
Question of the Day
With a peeping mom directly across the street from your house, would you buckle under and shut the blinds?
Would you stir the pot and cause some trouble to make a “mind your own bidness” point to peeping mom?
I await your insightful answers in the comments below.
In light of this theme here’s something I’ve been thinking about. I’m unclear about what I should do when I’m in situations like the following one.
I was at a doctor’s office, in the examining room, with a medical assistant who was settling me onto the examining table, getting things ready for the doc.
When she reached across me to grab the blood pressure cuff I noticed that she had a tattoo on her inside left wrist. What caught my eye was that the tattoo was of a semicolon.
As you probably know, that is the tat one gets when you have, or someone you love has, engaged in self-harming behaviors; OR when you or a loved one have attempted to commit, or possibly in the case of a loved one succeeded in committing, suicide.
[More on the semicolon tattoo meaning here and here.]
In general I’ve found that people with visible tattoos seem pleased when you notice the tattoo. They often have a story to tell about their tattoos and I’m willing to listen.
However, in this particular case I was reluctant to say anything, so I said nothing and just smiled like I didn’t know what I was seeing.
So my questions are:
Would you consider a visible semicolon tattoo to be an invitation for conversation about what it means to the person with this tattoo?
Or would you not say a word about it unless the person with the tattoo brings up the topic?
Anyone got any experience with or advice about how to handle this type of situation? I feel like there might be some kind of modern etiquette involved here, but I don’t know what it is.
Friend’s youngest child, a girl, is going to college this fall. Friend and husband didn’t go to college and their other children either didn’t go to college or lived at home while pursuing a degree.
Friend, who knows I went away to college and lived in the dorms [oh yes I did], was asking what advice would I give to her daughter.
Based on my experiences.
During the Dark Ages.
The question stumped me. I mean, it was soooo long ago, and while I admit that going away to college and living in the dorms helped define who I am today, my immediate answer was the somewhat less than articulate: I DUNNO.
Friend, of course, was taking none of that nonsense so together we got talking about time-honored clichés & proverbial wisdom. You know, the things we say to each other, meant to be inspiration or balm for the soul, as we listen to each other’s woes and joys.
Eventually we realized that our advice could be put into five categories. We might be phrasing things differently, but we were saying the same basic five ideas over and over again. They are as follows.
• • •
BE WARY: take care • don’t be a pawn in someone else’s game • make no assumptions • ask yourself, where is the lie?
BE YOURSELF: follow your dreams • reach for the stars • well-behaved women rarely make history • define yourself
DO YOUR BEST: never give up • if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again • the same fire that consumes the straw, refines the gold • positive begets positive
PEOPLE SUCK: stupid is an iceberg • no matter what, someone will take it too seriously • never make as your priority someone who considers you optional • “no” is a complete sentence
OH WELL, WHATEVER: don’t let the seeds stop you from enjoying the watermelon • tomorrow is another day • build a bridge, get over it • plans change, often