Tuesday, December 2, 2008

On Family Old and New

Hallo! Just back from my Thanksgiving week in Phoenix, AZ, year two. Everything was the same as it was last year. Same Brother and Sister-in-Law being super hospitable and fun. Same Parents being goofy (like when my Dad hid his See's chocolates in the microwave. Would've worked too except we all watched him hobble over and stash them inside. He's a master of deception.) Same warm sunny weather. Same never-ending swaths of BEIGE BEIGE BEIGE. Yup. All basically the same as last year. Except I didn't puke my guts out. And we didn't go to the Grand Canyon.

Oh. And this year I have THE CUTEST NIECE IN THE KNOWN UNIVERSE. No biggie.

Please visit her Online Shrine for your daily worship.

One fun thing we did this year was force my parents to do Oral Histories. I learned several interesting stories about my grandparents.

For example:
My newly married and very poor maternal grandparents were lucky to get one of the very small log cabins at the WPA worksite. They knew a skunk was nesting underneath the house, but so far everyone was getting along just fine. Until some neighbors stopped by for a visit. (Here you should picture me cough-saying "Visiting Teachers." Can't prove it, but do the math. They show up at your house + try to "help" = Totally Annoying Results. I'm just sayin'.)

The "neighbors" saw the skunk and had the GENIUS idea to chase it out of its cushy sub-cabin home. Well, it was the thirties and I'm guessin that good cabins to live under were few and far between. Old Pepe wasn't going anywhere without a fight.

He ran under the cabin to defend his territory. And ....


... Just like that, poor Grandma and Gramps returned home to find their house and all of the contents therein completely saturated with skunk stink. They had to move out of their cabin and lost all of their stuff. INCLUDING a brand new sack of FLOUR. Which in Great Depression Currency was like three Hermes Birkin bags. If my Grandma had even known these words she probably would have told her no-good "helpful neighbors" to stay the freak out of her biz-nas from now until like forevah. (That's what I would have told them, anyway.)

To add insult to stinky injury, they smelled so Skunky no one would be their friend or rent them a new apartment for weeks. Poor stinky fore-fathers. Life was so so SO hard for you.

I'm glad we did these family histories because now I know that my mistrust of "helpful neighbors" is both well-founded and genetic!

PS. Does this strike anyone else as a story that could only happen in rural Idaho during the Great Depression?


soundofstilhed said...

Idaho...what a great state to have enjoyed for 18 years before leaving 4evuh! Wonderful...then stinky...then DC here I come!

erinmalia said...

don't old people have some great things to say?

and more helpful than chasing a skunk would be to just leave it alone. at least that's what i would do if my visiting teachee had one near her house. (but that's more likely because i'm selfish.)