Use Your Imagination (but for Mom’s sake, not too much)

8 Jul

While at my parents’ house a scene unfolded that I desperately wanted to share with you.  So, I rushed to my camera to grab a picture so you all could enjoy the moment as much as I did.  But alas, the battery icon flashed and then the whole thing went black.  No picture.  Only memories.

So, instead I had my Mom take this photo of their patio. And together, you and I can reconstruct the moment.  Are you ready?  Okay.  Here we go.

Here’s the scene.  Mom and Dad’s patio.  Notice that window in the center?  That’s my Mom and Dad’s bathroom.  Their only bathroom, but I suppose that’s another story.  It’s a beautiful June day – no heat, no mosquitos, no rain and so the windows are all open.

Now, see the little ladder under that window?  It’s an old splinter-in-the-toe three-step model.  We’ve had it forever.  I don’t know why it sits there, maybe for instances just like the one I’m about to describe.

Okay, here’s where you have to put your imaginations to work.  Imagine that in the center of the patio is a folding table where the five big boys are coloring Star Wars pictures.  They’ve been at it for a while because Gramma Jan set up an incentive system to promote coloring within the lines.  When they have completed a picture they may bring it to her for analysis.  If the picture has no colored wax escaping its borders the artist earns two stickers.  For those pictures where the crayon is contained for the most part, but could have used a little more fine motor attention – one sticker.  And those who rushed to bring a picture for grading without completing all sections, or scribbling are sent back to try again.  It is serious business.

All this occurs as we were trying to prep Mom and Dad’s house for a surprise party and 38 guests, so time is of the essence.  Mom just got to a point in her delegation and accomplishments where she feels it is okay to leave us all to our own demise devises and shower.

So, now you’re up to speed.  Do you have everyone in their places?  Boys at the table coloring.  Mom behind the window attempting to shower.  Ladder innocently taking up it’s space in the universe.


Owen gets up from the table, freshly colored artwork in hand, and goes over to the ladder, climbs up two steps and says,  “Gramma Jan?  Excuse me, Gramma Jan?  Are you in there?”

And instead of ignoring him, which I’m certain is what any of the rest of us would have done, Mom replies, “Yes, Owen?”

“Gramma Jan, how many stickers for this picture?”

Then my mother, who’s patience I did not inherit, peaked through the curtains and said something like, “Um, just a second Owen, I need to get my glasses back on.  Can you hold it a little closer?”

“Is it worth two stickers, Gramma Jan?  Is it?”

Mom, still undaunted by her probable nakedness or the trivial nature of the request, goes on to analyze the picture while holding the curtains around her face like some medieval wimple.

But then Abraham came to the rescue, and brought this whole ridiculous scene to a close with the following advice, “Owen, you can just go in there.  The door’s not locked.”

One Response to “Use Your Imagination (but for Mom’s sake, not too much)”

  1. GB July 8, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

    I could see/hear it all – especially seeing your Mom with whole medieval wimple thing going on. Nakedness probably relates to Godliness in some way…. Cute story.

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