It’s a More Cowbell Monday, which means I promise to make you laugh – some things are sacred after all. We’re going to have a departure from the norm though, and honor my mother-in-law, Mickey’s, birthday at the same time.
Mickey passed away over a year ago, but yesterday was her birthday and we make it a habit to chat about her on her special day. (Well, OK, we like to chat about her all the time.)
My mother-in-law was a damn funny lady.
She laughed like a bawdy saloon girl – a boisterous roll that could light up a room. My husband inherited that laugh and I LOVE it.
Mickey had “the 3 S’s” in spades: sassy, strong-willed and spoiled. All those qualities wrapped up in the dynamo package of a loving mother made her very unique and often challenging.
Did I mention she was spoiled? This was a fabulous thing when the people who spoiled her were around to do it. However, when my husband’s father passed away in 2005, fifty-five years after they got married, there were many day-to-day things that Mickey had to learn how to do. She leaned on my honey (a lot) and reached out to me as well.
My favorite moment was teaching her to pump gas.
Imagine being 74 years old and living alone for the FIRST time in your life, and having to learn how to pump your own gas. It had to be very frightening for her. It still boggles me to think of someone growing up so sheltered.
Anyway, back to the Great Gas Escapade…
Mickey’d call me up and use our “code names” – she was JBS for JB Senior and I was JBJ for JB Junior. (FYI, my married name starts with a “B” and her given name was Janet.)
“JBJ, she’d say…This is JBS. I need gas in my car. Do you have time to go to lunch?” Because of course a meal out was always part of the experience.
We had several lessons with her observing me before she got to where she felt comfortable doing it on her own. She had to use two hands to hold the pump and she cursed the whole time but she did eventually learn how to pump her own gas.
Below are the directions from our first lesson that she wrote down and kept in her car. I had nothing to do with all that recording of the mileage, etc. Mickey was a Depression baby and went through all of it every single time she went to the gas station (even though she always went to the same station, and was not on a fixed income).
God bless her!
Today, in honor of Mickey, I bring you a love song that would have made her laugh. DO be sure to listen to this one – the words aren’t what you think they’ll be.
Do you have older family members in your life that make you laugh or elders whose memories make you smile? Enquiring minds would love to know about them here at More Cowbell!