Again, sometime around 25 years ago, I can recall opening gifts at one of our family gatherings. Box after box, nothing but clothes.
Who does that to a kid? I’d spent the first several years of my life being programmed to expect toys and cool stuff for Christmas gifts, only to have the rug pulled out from under me.
Of course, this was the first of several gatherings that year, and the toys and cool stuff were plentiful that year. Still, it was a scarring experience. And I’m only exaggerating a little bit here.
That was last week. In fairness to my mother, here’s the rest of the story.
There’s still some debate over how old I was when this happened, but the gist is this – I was going through a growth spurt. Now that I’m a parent, I understand what a chore it can sometimes be to keep a child clothed with properly-sized garments.
So from now on, if I tell that story, I’ll include that I had the misfortune of hitting a growth spurt right around Christmas and was in such need of clothes that when anyone asked Mom what I needed that year, the answer was an easy one.
I suppose that softens the blow somewhat. That explanation works for a 33-year-old. Still, when it comes to Christmas presents, logic doesn’t always work with kids, and kids are impressionable.
Last week’s column generated a bit of response directed toward my mother, so I felt it necessary to defend her here, especially since I was never really left wanting as a child.
While we’re updating old columns, let’s talk about the weather.
From my column on July 24:
Sunday afternoon, there was a big, allblack wooly worm on my front porch. Winter is coming.
That worm was right!
I know plenty of superstitious folks, and the wooly-worm-as-winter-weather-predictor tale is a prevalent one around here. And there was plenty of ice and sub-freezing temperatures to go around this weekend. Fortunately, we didn’t experience the widespread power outages that were caused by a similar storm nearly five years ago.
That’s not to say we aren’t due another big storm, though. It was, after all, a pretty big wooly worm.
That wasn’t the only bit of folklore from that column. Since I wrote it, we’ve taken in a stray cat, and she’s gotten fatter and a bit furrier in the last several weeks. We’re not sure that she isn’t pregnant, but for the meantime, I’m chalking that one up to feline winter weather preparedness.
I also made a backhanded comment about people buying all the milk and bread they could get their hands on. A bit of low-hanging fruit, I admit, but when I’m right, I’m right.
Justin McGill is the general manager of The Cadiz Record and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.