Friday, March 23, 2007

Laughing Through My Dotage

I went to lunch at Shoney's with my friend, M, today, and she was her usual outrageous self. I have known her for over thirty years. We played a lot of golf together, in our younger days, and bridge. We've actually had a lot of fun, but as we get older, I have to admit that she has gotten weird.

We had just given the server our order today, when she said, in her piercing voice, "WHEN IS OUR CONGRESS GOING TO HAVE THE BALLS TO IMPEACH GEORGE W. BUSH? JUST TELL ME WHEN." I glanced around at the other diners, who were all looking at us, and said, quietly, "Would this be the same George W. Bush that you couldn't wait to vote for in 2000?"

As long as I have known this woman, I have never been able to figure out if she actually expects an answer to her questions. Our conversations often sound like this:

M: Do you remember So-and-So?

Me: No

M: Sure you do. You remember So-and-So! He's the one who owned __________ business.

Me: No. I have never met him.

M. You haven't ever met him? Are you sure?

Me: Yes, I'm sure.

M: Well, you know his wife, don't you? They have four kids and all of them were on drugs and two of the boys are in prison, and one of the girls married ______________ and they divorced six months later.

Me: I swear I've never met them.

M: Hmmmmm. I was sure you had.

Me; Well anyway, what about him?

M: Who?

We like to go to Branson and shop at the outlet malls and then go to dinner. Once, just for a change, we decided to go to one of the shows. Neil Sedaka was appearing with The Captain and Tenille. We sat right down front - great seats. The Captain and Tenille were on first, and we enjoyed them. Then, it was time for Neil Sedaka. The stage turned around, and he was sitting at his piano and singing. He finished his first number, and just as the applause died down, he stood up and came to the front of the stage. And, M said (in that voice, again) "HE'S SHORT! I DON'T LIKE SHORT MEN." If he heard her, he didn't let it show. But, I do think it got him off his game for the next couple of numbers.

She gets a notion in her head, and nothing can sway her. We went to a furniture store one day, and on the way there, she said, "I heard they have a line of women's clothing, now." I said, "Why would they want to sell women's cothing? They're a furniture store." Nothing I said could dissuade her, however. So, when we got there, we went all over the store, with me looking at furniture and M looking for the Womenswear department.

When there was no place else to look, we started out the door, and a salesman came up to us.
I tried to warn him off with various hand signals, but he didn't notice. She asked, "Don't you sell women's clothing here?"

S: "No ma'am, we don't."

M: Didn't I see in the paper where you've put in a clothing department?

S: No, ma'am.

M: I'm sure I read that.

S: No, we've never sold clothing.

And, she gave him a suspicious look, and said, "Hmmmm. Well, all right."

There's nothing she likes better than a good argument. And, as I recall, her parents were the same way. When they'd get together, their discussions would become outrage, and soon, they'd all be yapping at the same time. It sounded like midnight at the Pound. Now that her parents are gone, I'm sure she misses those gripefests, because there's no one left who will argue with her.

For all the aggravations she causes me - I always seem to have to go home and take a couple of aspirins after being with her - she's still a good-hearted person. She's generous to a fault, and interested in everything. And, after thirty-odd years, I've learned to laugh at and with her.

There's one thing for sure. She's never boring.


HoosierGirl5 said...

Hi there...
I'm popping over from Jay's blog to wish you a Happy Birthday!!!
Hope it's a good one. He sure wrote a sweet post about you!
You share your b-day with my son, who will be 17 tomorrow.
Hope it's a good one!

captain corky said...

Happy birthday Jay's Mom aka Betty. one question if you don't mind: Who started Blogging first you or Jay?

wordgirl said...

I'm here through your son. Have a wonderful birthday tomorrow. BTW, tomorrow is my birthday, too.

dot said...

Happy Birthday Betty! Your friend sounds like a hoot!

RockDog said...

Happy Birthday, Jay's Mom! Have a great day!

Edyta said...

Happy, Happy Birthday, Jay's Mum!

Amy said...

Happy Birthday Jay's Mom!

How cool are you! A mother with an adult son who has her own blog.

My mother is pretty cool, but she has never even read my blog, (which is probably a good thing) and I see you have your son in your links. That's awesome!

Sassy said...

Happy Birthday Jay's mom!

Hope its a good one :D

susan said...

Everyone needs a friend to shake things up a bit!

And a great kid to spill the beans, were you going to tell us?

Happy Birthday Betty!

John said...

Happy birthday.
Your friend sounds a bit like my wife.

Betty said...

hoosiergirl: Thanks. And, Happy Birthday to your son, too.

captain corky: Thanks. Jay started blogging first, then suggested that I do the same.

wordgirl: Thanks, and Happy Birthday to you, too.

dot: Thank you. And, she is quite a character.

rockdog, edyta, thank you.

amy: Thank you. My daughter, Kell, is on my links, too.

Thank you, Sassy and Susan.

John: I hope she doesn't make you suffer too much. Thanks for the birthday greeting.

fiwa said...

Another visitor from Jay's blog, which I just found yesterday.

Wishing you a very happy birthday. It sounds like you are a wonderful mom - I hope your birthday is a special day.

Ellie's Mommie said...

Just ready your son's post. Absolutely awesome! Reminded me a lot of my Mom!
A toast to GREAT MOMS who put their kids first!!
Hope you have a FABULOUS birthday!!

Cheryll said...

Happy Birthday Jays mom!! I hope you have a great day. xoxo

CarmenSinCity said...

Your friend is hysterical! You are a very patient woman to put up with her and jay too! hehehe HAPPY BIRTHDAY by the way. I think it's great that you both have blogs and I'm going to add you to my links too :)

Have a great birthday and keep blogging!!

Tink said...

You crack me up. I really needed a post like this today. Thank you.

Happy Birthday! What will it be, cake or hot guy dancing around in something skimpy? Growl.

phsymom said...

I have one of those longtime friends ... I wouldn't trade her in for anything.

From one single mom to another ... HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Blessed Be,

Neil said...

Happy Birthday Betty. Hope it's a good one. N xxx

Betty said...

My thanks to fiwa, ellie's mommie, cheryll, karen, physymom and neil. You've helped make my birthday special. It almost makes me glad I'm a year older. NOT!

carmensincity: Hope you don't mind if I add your link. Thanks for the birthday greeting.

Tink, Tink, Tink: At my age, I think I'd better choose the cake. Nope. I'll choose the hot guy. You've gotta die some way.

Erica AP said...

Happy Birthday! It was so sweet of Jay to write an entry for you. You sound wonderful and you're writing is very captivating too!!

Betty said...

erica ap: Thank you for your kind comments.

Melissa said...

Happy birthday, Betty! I've popped over here a few times via Jay's blog, and always enjoyed what I read.

Wishing you a wonderful year.

Arkansas Songbird said...

Well, Happy Birthday, Betty!!

I totally enjoyed reading about your friend. She sounds like my Granny. Granny would talk out loud like that in church making comments about the sermon while it was being preached and also about the choir. Granny was a hoot!! She thought she was whispering, but people on the other side of the church could hear her.

Armin said...

You daughter told me to head over here to wish you a happy birthday. So here I am:

Herzlichen Glueckwunsch zum Geburtstag!

Oh, and it's my father's birthday today as well. Come to think of it, not for very much longer, as it's almost midnight in Germany now.

Anonymous said...

Dropped in from yer boys to say ''HAPPY BIRTHDAY' Betty. He makes ya sound like the greatest. Me's a single mom meself so me can hope that me kids love me as much as yers do when they is older. Being teenagers {{enough said eh}}.. LOL.

Ya raised a great boy. Just thought me would let ya know that. And he's a awesome writer. But how bad was he when he was little?? Me is imaging that he was prolly one bad little boy. LOL..

Anyways, Happy Birthday and hope ya has lots more good ones.

Lorna said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BETTY!!! Take the cake and feed it to the hot guy.....that would make my birthday memorable I am sure. :-) LOLOL You are to be congratulated on raising a fine son who obviously loves his mother very much............hugssssssss

Betty said...

Uh-Oh! Sassy: I didn't mean to leave you out of my "thank you" messages.

Melissa: Thank you. You're welcome here any time.

Songbird: I enjoy your blog, too. Thanks for joining the party.

armin: Thank you and welcome. Happy Birthday to your father, too.

newfie's woman: I've read your blog a few times, myself. If you want to know what Jay was like as a child, I told all on my March 7 blog. That was his birthday. Thanks for dropping by.

Lorna: What a great idea. It didn't occur to me I could have my cake and hot guy, too! Thanks for coming to my birthday party.

Ellie said...

Happy Birthday!! I love that you two are still friends after 30 yrs, even if she is getting a bit eccentric.

sassybead said...

So I heard from this cynical guy that it's your birthday this weekend, so I'm popping in to wish you many many happy returns!! Jay sure wrote the nicest post about you!

Happy Birthday, Jay's momma!

Peggy said...

Betty, you are the kind of person that the term "salt of the earth" had to be invented to describe! Happy Birthday darling girl!

p.s. I still think you are a saint to deal with M on a regular basis. Loyalty is a strength and you've got loads of it!!

Alan G said...

Wake Up....
Wake up you sleepy head.
Get Up....
Get out of bed.

That's right cause everybody knows what today is..

Happy Birthday to you..
Happy Birthday to you..
Happy Birthday dear Betty.
Happy Birthday to you!

Hope you have a nice day.

Sister--Three said...

Hey, other self, I know this woman. She is not like wine who gets better with age as she turns rotten, you know, like a glass of milk left on the counter to sour! She looks at a rose and see the thorns. Sees a pretty stream and thinks of muddy shoes.

Happy Birthday.

Cazzie!!! said...

Happee Birthday lovely laydee, hope your wishes come true, you have done an awesome job as a mum, and you deserve to have a great time.

Cazzie!!! said...

Now that I came back to read your post...I think we could probably all safely say we know someone with similar character to that of your friend there. The main thing, as does ring true in your post, is that we laugh with and at the person, because we accept that each person is different, and it is the different things that make life interesting :)

Annie said...

I know this woman. I've been with her or her clone more times than I want to remember. But I will be with her again, and it will have been me that organized our meeting and time together. Sometimes I ask myself why I get together with her when I know I'll have a headache afterwards. And my answer - she's got a good heart, she cares about me and many things I care about, she entertains me and shakes me out of my routine. And, yes, she reminds me that I too have irritating qualities that someone loves, puts up with, appreciates.

Happy Birthday, Betty, and many many more.

her indoors said...

happy birthday Betty hope you have a lovely day xx

savannah said...

happy birthday, betty! *hugs*

HoosierGirl5 said...

Hi again Betty!

Drop by my place if you want to see the boy who shares your birthday!


Joy Des Jardins said...

Happy Birthday little Aries soul.

This was one of the funniest things I've ever read. OMG....I have a friend just like M. I laugh just like you, but honestly...sometimes I just want to crawl in a hole. She too is a very good person..generous. Do you think it's US Betty? Maybe we just don't have the tolerance we had when we were younger. My friend seems to have lost her guidelines as to what's appropriate to say to someone...sometimes I pretend I don't know her. She too gets outrageous notions in her head and can't be swayed. We've been friends for 37 years....through thick and thin...she's gotten a little crazy on me...but damn, maybe she feels the same way about me.

Thanks for this great post Betty...again, Happy B-day funny lady.

Dirk_Star said...

Happy official birthday greetings on Saturday.

Lol at your post. Great piece.

This is what I have to look forward too?

Maybe I'll get lucky and raising a youngster will kill me by my late fifties...

graymama said...


Jay's post about you brought tears to my eyes. I hope that Buddy can say such wonderful things about me when he is 39.

You are very special :-)

James Burnett said...

M sounds like a character, and on behalf of Jay, happy belated birthday.

Betty said...

Again, thank you, one and all, for your kind comments and birthday wishes. It's been a great party, hasn't it?

Newt said...

What a trip, she sounds like a ton of fun. I love the way you described your adventures with her *snort* and Happy Belated Birthday! It seems like forever since I've been able to catch up with everyone.