So last Saturday evening, the Favorite Husband and I were lounging around on the couch, watching an old movie (Ingrid Bergman in Joan of Arc; I maintain The Passion of Joan of Arc made some thirty years earlier is much better), when my attention was drawn to the good-sized picture window to the right of the television. It was still light out, a little before actual twilight, and, near as I could tell, someone was driving a BUS across our yard, about ten feet from the window. It took a while for context and words to coalesce properly in my brain. While this HUGE THING is driving by I engaged in a rather fruitlessly stupid finger pointing and uttering things like "Ub... buh... ehh..." until the proper word found itself a good ten or fifteen seconds later. "Moose."
(THE SCENE: Second grade, so circa 1970-71. This is the height of what they now call second-wave feminism--first wave being general sufferage around the turn of the century--when women really began to make inroads in employment opportunities and the full social-political spectrum. Along with this came the well-intentioned need to TEACH OUR YOUNG GIRLS about reaching for their dreams and not to let the evil patriarchy dog ya down too much.)
(Mojo's second grade teacher, Mrs. Allen, is asking the children in class one by one what they would like to be when they grew up.)
Today is Valentine's Day, which I do not particularly celebrate. Never much cared for it. Luckily the person I have been with for the past thirty years agrees with me here, so all is well in Mojoland.
Now as a grouchy older adult person Valentine's Day reminds me of two things. The first is an early, "classic" episode of the Simpsons called I Love Lisa, about a terrible crush Ralph Wiggum—irretrievably stupid loser that he is—had on Lisa. The whole thing is rather sad as Lisa cannot reciprocate, and has at least two memorable moments: the Valentine's Day "I choo-choo-choose you" card, and Ralph's delightfully painful attempts at flirting, which culminates in a come-on line I have frequently used to my great amusement and delight ever since: "So.... do you like... .stuff?"
Yeah, 'tis the season, yadda yadda yadda. I'm sorry, okay? I'M SORRY.
Maybe ten years ago, around this time of year, I hit a deer with my car. First time in nearly 30 years of driving. Like MOST people, it was not intentional; it was dark, I was going around 45 MPH in a 45 zone, and this BLUR came from the left and jumped in front of my bumper. I struck it, and the poor deer went careening off to the side of the road, where it ran off apparently none the worse. My poor little truck was not so lucky. I limped home with an askew bumper, a dragging noise if I turned the wheel too far in one direction, and missing my passenger side headlight.
What makes this particularly memorable (besides being the first and only time I had struck a deer) was... just the week before my poor Favorite Husband likewise struck a deer for the first and only time in 30+ years of driving, and likewise had to put in a claim to get HIS car fixed. So despite feeling rather bad about the poor deer, I was sort of giggling to myself before I made the call to the insurance company to get my car fixed. Because really, what are the chances?
My Sainted Favorite Mother had a saying for as long as I can remember. If you were stating the painfully obvious or just trying to tell her something she already knew, she would lovingly snap "Teach your grandmother!" in lieu of the less polite and less cultured "Shut the hell up."
Or so I always believed. "Teach your grandmother", in this context, had a very obvious etymology: one's grandmother, it is assumed, is/was a wise, intelligent and experienced person, and any life lessons you might wish to impart to her have probably already been learned.