Saturday, March 31, 2007

A bit of humor for April 1st

The topic of the April 1st edition of the Carnival of Genealogy is "Funny, foolish, family!" which is appropriate for the day, don't you think.

Embarrassingly Funny...I have a cousin who is named Ralph. His mother really wanted another boy. When Ralph was born his mother exclaimed "It's a boy!" so, naturally, his family nickname became "Boy". Now, Ralph lives in Indianapolis and one day a few years ago (back in the 90's, 1990's that is) he and his nephew were shopping in a sporting goods store. The nephew sees something he wants to show Ralph, and hollers out "Hey Boy, look at this!" Well, there were a few young black men shopping there also. Rather red-faced Ralph tries to explain, but just seems to make the situation worse, so they left the store as quickly as possible. Since then, that moniker has not been used out in public. Actually, since Ralph is nearly 50 years old it isn't used much at all anymore.

Silly.... Another nickname we had for Ralph was "Fred" because of a dumb joke he told when he was about 12 years old. "Did you hear about the farmer who had three sons, all of them were named John except Ralph and his name was Fred!" We still sometimes call him Fred.

Sad and Silly.... When I was a teenager my mother and I worked in my grandmother's restaurant. On Sunday's we'd both work the 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. shift. When we got off work, we'd go home and usually watch the Sunday afternoon movie on tv with my little sister. This particular Sunday the movie was a real tear-jerker. It was called "All Mine to Give" and was the story of a young teen-age boy whose mother had died and left behind seven children. I don't remember why, but the father was no longer on the scene. Anyway, before his mother died the boy had promised her that he would find good homes for his siblings. Now, you're thinking, that's not funny. And you're right, it wasn't. We were all still relatively dry-eyed until the very end of the movie when the young man had found a home for each his siblings and himself. Even then we were "ok" but when we all looked at each other we started crying. We cried and cried until we laughed because we knew it was so silly to be crying so much. Well, we thought we had gotten through it. Then the doorbell rang. It was my grandmother and she could tell we had all been crying. She wanted to know what was wrong. Well, the three of us started crying all over again and we tried to explain, between the laughter and the tears. I don't think she ever did understand.

Foolish...In 1965, my older brother (Doug) was in the Navy. He was coming home on leave and was flying in to Chicago's O'hare airport. My mother, sister, other brother (Jack), and I drove to the airport to pick him up. We went to the gate for his flight but he never showed up. For whatever reason, one that I've never been able to figure out, after several hours of waiting, my mother decided that Jack and I should stay at the airport to wait for Doug. Now, you're talking about a 16 year old boy and a 17 year old girl. Well, we did as we were told. We waited, and we waited. We waited until it was too late to get a bus home that night. So, there Jack and I were, spending the night at the airport! Jack and I are both explorers. We like to check things out. So we wandered around that airport and somehow ended up near the International terminals. It was about four in the morning when we were awakened by an announcement being blasted out of the speakers "the Beatles have arrived, the Beatles have arrived". My sleepy response was "the who?" and Jack said, "No, not the who, the Beatles". About 7 a.m. we called home and told mom we were going to get the first bus out that we could. She said "Okay, Doug was asleep on the couch when I got home!" Seems he had gotten an earlier flight and hadn't had time to call us since he was flying standby. He hadn't seen us at the airport and instead of waiting and trying to find us went ahead and took the bus home.


David Bowles said...

Enjoyed your stories!
I've tagged you for a meme on life balance. The instructions are on my blog. Hope you'll participate.

Tim Agazio said...

I love your stories...thanks for sharing them!