Many of you may not know it, but I am hysterical. No....really! I am! I think I came out of the womb
I was never openly disrespectful to Mom, or anyone for that matter, but things would just pop into my head and they had to come out. Sometimes I thought them so funny that I was hysterically laughing before I could even say them. On occasion I would see the corners of my mothers mouth go into a half-smile, but never more than that because she was not about to encourage my hilarity. In fact she spent a lot of time cautioning me about my mouth and my "humor" and warning me that someday it would get me in trouble. It has a time or two, but only because people didn't understand how funny I a really am. (wink)
In my defense, I come from a pretty darn funny family. Believe it or not....my mom's side of the family was filled with humorous characters and funny stories. My grandfather once shot his own reflection in a mirror, thinking it was an intruder. Grandma killed a snake and put it on the walk heading up to the house knowing Grandpa was scared of snakes. Yes...these are my kin. Explains a lot now doesn't it.
Now Mom was funny too and she had an amazing sense of humor.....which usually showed up in church. Put her with her sister and it was like two 10 year old little girls sitting together. They would look at each other and you could see it start. Why were they laughing? Who knew, but before long....both had their heads down and were literally shaking and trying to keep from snorting out loud. At my cousins wedding rehearsal they got so tickled they were both laying in the pew....yes....they were snorting. The mother of the groom was not amused. Neither was my other aunt who threatened to take them outside if they didn't behave. They only laughed harder. Eventually after years of this kind of behavior, my mom and aunt realized that sitting in the same pew during Mass was a recipe for disaster so they ended up sitting across the church from each other and out of each others line of site. I think Father sent them each a thank you letter.
My aunt was not the only one who could get my mom going in church though. Once my mom, my brother and I all went to confession on a Saturday afternoon. We walked into the pew....Mom first, then my brother and then myself. Neither my brother nor I were paying attention and I guess we both assumed Mom had put down the kneeler. She had not. Both of us went to kneel down and hit the ground chinning ourselves on the pew in front of us. Let me just say......I'm sure it looked a lot funnier than it felt. Mom looked over at us and started to laugh. Neither my brother nor I were amused, Mom however was. She laughed and she laughed. Tears began to form in her eyes and we knew her trademark snort was just around the corner. Watching her trying to unsuccessfully hold back the snort got us to laughing too. It was contagious and none of us could control ourselves.I am sure Father wondered what was going on, not to mention the others who had come for confession and got a show. So you see, I am obviously funny.....even when I don't mean to be. It's a gift I tell you.
Through the years, I have surrounded myself with friends who are 1) either as funny as I am or 2) appreciate how funny I am. Yeah, I know.....if you are my friend, you know what I am talking about. Whether it was hiding from the cops behind a fridge on New Years eve, laughing our way to St. Louis or having the pleasure of being my wing person as I make up fake identities at a bar.....you know how funny I am. You also know who you are.
My kids have also spent many years dealing with my humor. They, like my mother have not always appreciated my quick wit and at times I am sure I have even embarrassed the tapioca out of them, but along the way....I have also taught them to have a sense of humor and to laugh....even when life doesn't throw a lot of "funny" your way.
In case you weren't aware....I am not your ordinary mother. As I have gotten older my humor at times has crossed over to the dark side and my mouth can be a bit irreverent. When my kids were young though, I always tried to keep my words and my humor appropriate around them, but even the best of us has our slip ups. I think Z finally realized who he was dealing with when he was about 8 years old. At that point in his life, I rarely cussed and the F-word was strictly forbidden in our house. Then came the day that Z saw a different side of me. The side that changed his view of me......forever!
Z and I were out outside working in the yard and we came upon a snake. Now this snake was huge and seemed to be squaring up for a fight. Z jumped into action, trying to be my big protector. He picked up a nearby brick to kill it. Now here is where I should tell you that I was wearing flip flops, not knowing that steel-toed boots might have served me better that day. Z threw the brick at the snake and missed it by a mile, however....he did NOT miss my big uncovered, unprotected, freshly polished toe. The brick left a huge gash right across the nail and actually broke the toe. The pain was immediately excruciating and as I grabbed my foot and began to hop around....from my mouth flew the words F*ck a Duck! Now never in my life had I used that particular phrase.....so I have no idea where it came from. What I do know is that it was loud enough that everyone on my block probably heard it and I turned to see Z white as a ghost with his mouth and eyes equally wide open. I am not sure whether it was the words that came from my mouth, the dance of pain I was doing or the expression on my face, but all of a sudden my 8 year old just burst out laughing. He was laughing so hard that he doubled over. He obviously had inherited our families signature snort as he was snorting and trying to catch his breath. Even in my state of pain, watching my son gasp for air as he laughed at this unfortunate incident....well it got me to laughing too. And we laughed.....and we laughed.....and we laughed. By the way.....no snakes were injured or even remotely traumatized during this little incident. My toe however.....was not as lucky.
I think it was at this moment that he realized who his mother really was and I realized that my son, like me, had an amazing sense of humor. As Z has grown, I have had a glimpse into what my mother might possibly have dealt with....with me. I have been the recipient of his "witty" comebacks and his humorous remarks that were so funny in his head, he almost couldn't get them out. He like his mother is pretty darn funny and sometimes together.....well lets just say.....only the truly funny can hang with us.
So yeah...I'm funny. And apparently....I, like generations before me....have passed this onto a whole new generation. For this, all I can say is.....your welcome!