I Don’t Have the Money Right Now

Sally Cronin was kind enough to let me blog sit and publish this post on her site, Smorgasbard today.  I had difficulty reposting so I am doing it today.  Thanks, Sally.

Mother prides herself on being frugal, but loves nice things. Should she win the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes today and be guaranteed five-thousand dollars every week for life, it wouldn’t change anything. She’d live in the same house and drive the same car because, “I don’t have the money right now.” She’s been the same size and worn the same styles since she married, so she never has to buy anything that’s not on clearance. In fact, when shopping, she’s not above placing the size eight she has her eye on among the size eighteens and then coming back to see if it’s marked down a few weeks later. You’d think God was looking out for her. “Would you look at this? They’ve marked it down. I don’t mind paying fifteen dollars, but there’s no way it’s worth eighty-five to me.’

The one great exception is her pursuit of the perfect shoe. Domestic abuse early in her marriage messed up Mother’s ability to easily find shoes on the bargain rack. Just so you know, she’s the one who committed the abuse, though Daddy never even noticed. As a young man, Daddy worked shift work and put off going to bed as long as possible. He felt sleeping was a waste of time when there were better things to do. As a result, when he finally hit the bed, he slept like the dead. One night, he rolled over on Mother’s long hair and she couldn’t wake him. She poked, elbowed, and yelled, to no effect. In desperation, she kicked him till he finally roused enough for her to get her hair loose. In agony, she got up and soaked the toe till it calmed enough for her to sleep. The next morning, it was bruised and so swollen she couldn’t even get her shoe on. This was back when doctors made house calls. Daddy fetched Dr. Pike who diagnosed the big toe broken, pushed the battered toe back in place, and wrapped it to her second toe to act as a splint. She hobbled around in just a sock till the swelling went down enough to endure a shoe. Afterwards, she required a half size larger and needed more supportive shoes, which are of course, more expensive.

As a result, Mother fixated on good shoes. Should she find her heart’s desire, particularly at a marked-down price, a terrible dilemma ensues. Torn between her desire, for that particular pair of shoes, the battle of shoe desire versus frugality begins. It’s a trial to witness. “Do I really need these shoes? I don’t have any nice (brown, blue, white, green, yellow) ones. I won’t ever find any more this color, style, price, etc. again. You know I have a hard time finding shoes that feel good after I hurt my toe.”

She always makes it sound like the toe incident was an Act of God, not an attack of my poor, innocent father, so I feel obligated to remind her. “You know, you wouldn’t have all this trouble if you hadn’t kicked my poor daddy.” Just as I hoped it would, this remark always catches the attention of store clerks and nearby shoppers, who no doubt envision her kicking a poor, incapacitated invalid, not the snoring behemoth she kicked seventy years ago. They do seem a bit disappointed when they turn to stare and see only a tiny eighty-nine-year-old lady standing there, clutching a pair of red shoes.

After they’ve all had a good look, I remind her. “Those do look good. You’d probably enjoy them. If you change your mind, we can bring them back.”

“You don’t think it would be foolish of me to get these? I don’t really have the money right now, but I have a hard time finding good shoes. These were originally $169 and they’re marked down to $59. That’s more than I want to spend, but I’m not going to find them any cheaper? What do you think?”

“I think you won’t get a better deal unless you throw a brick through a window, so get them if you want them. Besides, if they were just a dollar, they’d be more than you want to spend.” She is just warming up. We both know she’s getting the shoes, but there’s still work to do.

“I know. I have a couple of new pairs I haven’t worn yet, but blah, blah, blah. Do you really think I should get them? I still have two-hundred dollars left from the money I got for Christmas.” This was in April. She’d rake in a fresh bankroll for her birthday in May, but this discussion is going to go on a while, anyway. I was almost, but not quite, ready to kick in on the shoes to get out of the store. She asked two customers and a clerk for opinions. They were divided. That didn’t help a bit!

“Mother, if you want them, get them. You don’t have to consider anyone but yourself. I’m going to look around while you make up your mind.” I head for the hills, returning with the hope she’s reached a decision. When I came back, she was in line with two shoeboxes, three customers behind her. She wasn’t budging.

“Look, I found the same shoe in yellow. Yellow is my favorite color. Which ones do you think I should get?” At least she’s made the decision to purchase something. There’s no way she was leaving that store without shoes.

I took a huge gamble. “I think you should get the red. You can wear them with more.”
Clearly offended, she made for the counter. “I’m getting the yellow! I might never find yellow shoes again.” She still looked torn about the red ones.

At this point things could still go horribly wrong. I know Mother wants me to recommend one over the other, but I don’t know which. It’s very important that I validate her reasoning on this matter. My psychic abilities failed me. Impulsively, I tossed caution to the wind, knowing the wrong answer could put us back at square one. “Get them both. You wear lots of red AND yellow. You may never find any more just that color and you do need shoes! When we get through here, let’s go to the Chinese Buffet for lunch. My treat!”

Thank Goodness, it worked. “I think I will.” She happily pulled out her money and made her purchase. Everyone in the store clapped. Mother hadn’t been that happy since her last shoe purchase.

Though we had eaten at a Chinese Buffet, she charmed the staff into a carry-out container and free coffee. “I have all this left on my plate and just hate to waste it.” Her shoe-high lasted all the way home all through the time I helped her in with her two shoeboxes, fanny pack, (which she usually wears instead of strapping on) and carry-out from lunch. Just as I started my car, she ran out to get her cell-phone she’d tucked in the glove box. I hadn’t been home ten minutes when my phone rang. “I’m so glad I got these shoes. I looked in my closet and I don’t have a single pair either color. I do have some tomato red ones and a yellow-greenish pair, but I didn’t have any in exactly these colors. I really needed these.”


Crazy Charlsie Part 23

Charles staggered into the kitchen under a mountain of farm goods expecting exclamations of joy. Instead, the normally voluable Cora met him with pursed lips.  Clearly disapproving, She announced.  “The Reverend Mason is waiting for you in the parlor.  He says he’s here on business that can’t wait. I’ll bring in coffee and coconut cake in a minute.”  Cora had never made a secret of her feelings about Dr. Mason since he’d dodged her congregation’s request to purchase the old Presbyterian sanctuary when the Presbyterians built a new new one, especially after it stood empty for three years till being turned into apartments and a thrift store.

Though Charles still golfed and served on the school board with Reverend Mason,though  he’d not invited him into his home since the pastor refused to sell to Cora’s congregation, responding.  “I don”t think the neighbors are ready for a black congregation.”  Charles didn’t want Cora to have to serve a man with his prejudice.

“This is a surprise, Joe.  Have a seat.  The coffee should be ready in a minute.  Cora put it on before she left.   I’ll just duck out to the kitchen and get it.” Charles greeted him, knowing Cora would be listening at the kitchen door, anxious to learn the pastor’s business.

” I can’t stay, Charles.  I just came by to to let you know about the schoolboard’s decision.” Reverend Mason replied, avoiding Charles’s eye.

”What decision?  The schoolboard’s meeting is not until next week, is it?” Charles said.  Something wasn’t right.

”A special meeting was called.” Reverend Mason replied.

”A special meeting and I wasn’t notified.”  Charles spoke flatly.  “What’s your business?”

Dr Mason answered miserably.  “You know that last year the board voted extend from eleven to twelve years for graduation starting next fall.   Since Charlotte only lacks two credits to graduate, the board voted to award her diploma now, instead of making her attend another year.  I have her diploma with me, all signed by the board.  Would you like me to present it to her?”

Charles was stunned but fortunately, not speechless.  “I would NOT!  So you don’t want Charley in your school!  Charley is the same person,now, he was a few weeks ago.  He has never caused any problems and suddenly the board thinks he is unfit to attend!  How can they justify this?”

”This is miserable for us all, Charles, but we have to consider what’s best for everyone.  Many parents have expressed their concerns over sports teams use of locker rooms.  Students do not feel comfortable with Charley as things are.  Charley might not be comfortable either.  We have to think of what’s best for ALL students, Charley included.”  Dr. Mason felt righteous in his thinking.

”You pompous, Jackass!  Did it not occur to you that we are well-aware of the problem?  We live close enough to school that Charley could have come home when necessary.    Please tell the school board they won’t be bothered by me or Charley in the future.  You and your board must feel you have a divine guarantee of a perfect life to come to me with this.  Please show yourself out!”



Joke of the Day

'Hey guys! He just said we'll all be in gravy soon! We're going to be rich!' ‘Hey guys! He just said we’ll all be in gravy soon! We’re going to be rich!’

'Is that cow meditating?' 'Dyslexic.' ‘Is that cow meditating?’ ‘Dyslexic.’

farm 5

Farm 4

farm 2farm 2farm 3

'For some reason, I've never been able to bring myself to part with Elsie here.' ‘For some reason, I’ve never been able to bring myself to part with Elsie here.’

Gathering chickens

The farmer’s son was returning from the market with the crate of chicken’s his father had entrusted to him, when all of a sudden the box fell and broke open. Chickens scurried off in different directions, but the determined boy walked all over the neighborhood scooping up the wayward birds and returning them to the repaired crate. Hoping he had found them all, the boy reluctantly returned home, expecting the worst.

“Pa, the chickens got loose,” the boy confessed sadly, “but I managed to find all twelve of them.”

“Well, you done real good, son,” the farmer beamed. “You left with seven.”

Lacking all religion

A very zealous soul-winning young preacher recently…

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Another Joke for You

A woman had two female parrots who were always yelling, “We’re prostitutes, wanna have a little fun?” One day, she was talking to her Preacher about this. He said he had two male parrots and all they did was read the Bible. He thought perhaps they would be a good influence on the two females. So they put the four parrots together. So, the females yelled at the male parrots, “We’re prostitutes, wanna have a little fun?” One male parrot said to the other, “Put the Bibles away! We’ve made it to heaven!”

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Parrot Joke

Once upon a time there was a cruise ship sailing. On board, a magician was giving a show to some passengers. The magician ALWAYS had a parrot on his shoulder. Whenever the magician told a joke, the parrot would give it away. One time the magician had a knife, he spun it around it dissappeared! The parrot said “It’s in his pocket, it’s in his pocket”. The crowd booed him because the parrot gave it away. The next trick he did, he waved a wand around and it vanished. Again, the parrot said, “It’s up his sleeve! It’s up his sleeve!” The magician got mad because he couldn’t keep any of his tricks secret. The parrot kept giving them away.
One day the cruise ship sank. The magician and the parrot managed to make it to an island where they stayed for about 3 months when the parrot, all of…

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Oops, Did I Say That?

imageFor a while when I was a kid we had the Sailor Bill Show, a low budget afternoon kid’s show featuring Sailor Bill and his sidekick Polly Parrot.  Everyday Sailor Bill showed a couple of cartoons, interviewed some kids in the audience, talked to Polly Parrot, told a few jokes and made some effort to entertain us.

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Afternoon Chuckle

There’s this bar and in the bar there is a magic mirror.

If you tell a lie it will suck you in.

One day a brunette walks into the bar. She approaches the mirror and says ” I think I’m the most beautiful woman in the world” and it sucks her in.

The next day a redhead walks into the bar. She approaches the mirror and says “I think I’m the most beautiful woman in the world” and it sucks her in.

The next day a blonde walks into the bar. She approaches the mirror and says “I think…” and it sucks her in.

A blond, a brunette, and a redhead are interviewing for a new NASA experiment on sending women to different planets.

First, the panel of scientists asks the brunette, “If you could go to any planet, what planet would you choose and why?” She answers promptly, “I would…

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