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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How Come?

It only seems right that by my age and stage, I should have the honour and respect of my miserable, mangey, self-assured offspring. I should by now have assumed the same position of reverence that my own parents enjoyed. That straight-spined silent obedience that I remember with such fondness and unrequitted joy.

When I bellow threats at the fourth attempt to rise my slumbering, dozey, messy daughters from their duvet nests, ought I really endure them telling me to settle down and quit yelling?

Something gone terribly wrong with the world, I gotta tell ya.

Now, on the farm, we knew the drill. Get up at 7:00, with your very own alarm clock set very, very quietly to a rock music station. Never ever allow that volume to go past two notches, lest your parents should hear the evil emenating from their loved ones bedsides. Get up. Do the chores, milk the pigs, haul the bales uphill six miles, groom the kitties. Have a shower, curl the hair into feathers, apply the blue eyeliner,make your bed, and at the exact stroke of 7:30, ascend the stairs and assume your position at the breakfast table in time for the reading of Our Daily Bread. Miss it and you die. Don't even think about missing it. Don't waste any time at the breakfast table with communicating, laughing, or discussing rides or sports or lessons for the evening. We won't be having any of those. Never ever scrape excess butter off your toast and back into the butter dish. People have died for lesser crimes than this.

Make your own lunch.

We won't be having any of that store-bought convenient nonsense either. It's simply unnecessary. Well, on second thought, you'll find some thinly sliced mock chicken and some ten day old sandwhich bread that fell off a truck on its way to the Union Gospel Mission. Those will go well with the bulk, speckled, reduced-in-price bananas that will make your mock chicken taste like unsweetened banana bread sans chocolate chips by lunchtime. Two white cream cookies minus frosting and sprinkles will complete your brown bag lunch.

Now, run downstairs right quick to get that eye liner and mascara applied. Then straight out the door and down the driveway to meet the 8:05 morning school bus. Don't let mom catch you looking like a harlot either. She'll curl her lip in disgust, not speak to you for four days, and increase your ARBEIT exponentially. Simply not worth the cost.

None of this Mahhhhhhhhhhhhhom, Did you make me some coffee? There's nothing for lunches. Where's the lettuce, mom? I don't like these juice boxes. Didn't you get me those protein bars from Costco? Mom. Quit nagging. I don't nnnneeeeeed to be at school until 9:05. New rules that you know absolutely nothing about. Mom. The straightener won't work. Mom? When are we going shopping?

Sheesh. What about some Shinka Fleish on buns, a little condemnation for breakfast, and some good old fashioned hard labour as a life style?

Yep, something, somewhere went terribly wrong.
And I have a sinking feeling that it all started back there with that contraband blue eyeliner.

I shoulda known my sins would find me out.


janice said...

I am laughing. That describes my life vs my daughter's, to a tee. Except, she is a MUCH better kid than I was. She is talking to me with her bad attitude, in the house, and playing sports and hanging at the mall, SOBER, while out of the house. I was respectful in the house, sitting on the grass and smoking other grass while out of the house. But, I did not talk back!

joyce said...

Janice, exactly. We were so "respectful" at home, ie- we knew what to look and sound like.
My children are so much more self assured, and sensible and mature really. Not to mention self-respecting and confident.

My children play sports, get dirty, sip wine, sometimes even let me in on their tears and fears.

It's wonderfully messy, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

That was just the times have changed, indeed. MK

Anonymous said...

Excellent Joycie, excellent reading.

Anonymous said...

bahahahah! joyce you just made my day!! now i don't feel quite so bad when i think in my head "stop being such a bi-atch!"
yep, some good ol respect would be nice once in a while but i definitely was far worse OUT of the house... that seems to be the consensus here.

thanks for bringing relief to my thoughts joyce!

brian's ex-student's mom.

Anonymous said...

HA HA HA!!!...about the scraping excess butter from the toast into the butter dish. That was totally forbidden at our house too.


Judy said...

You make me laugh.

Out loud.

joyce said...

glad to quell your fears, ex of brian's. (don't skim your comment too quickly- three words jump out-- bi-atch, Brian's, and "ex". Ha Ha) Yup, those daughters can be a challenge. I figure that by the time they are 25, they'll think we're not so dumb after all.
Here's hoping, anyway.

On butter dishes: I remember the first time I ever saw scrapings in the margarine tub, at some friend's house. I was mesmerized by the liberty at that. Amazed. It seemed to me that a house with those sorts of liberties must be forgiving in all sorts of other ways too.

Lori said...

Were you living in the same home I was growing up? I don't remember seeing you there but this could have been a page out of my life. My husband and I feel sorry for ourselves when we can't get the kind of respect we gave our parents.I guess we reap what we sow.