Friday, April 17, 2009

I Started a Joke . . .

Yesterday I compared raising golden retrievers and children. Sort of.

Our youngest, Son 2, has always marched to the beat of his own drum. His second grade teacher told us he kept everyone in the class in stitches with his stories. They were not made up. Unfortunately, they were all true.


Except for that joke he got from his Uncle Bernie.

What can I say about Uncle Bern? He also marched to the beat of his own drum. Perhaps Son 2, even at his tender age, recognized a kindred spirit. Uncle Bern was my Dear Professor's father's younger brother. (Should I draw a genealogy chart for clarification?)

Uncle Bern sort of stepped into the role of family patriarch when our dear Daddy Britt passed away at the "young" age of 65. Where Daddy Britt was quiet and stoic, Uncle Bern was the life of the party. There was always a twinkle in his eye. He delighted in telling family stories, like the annual family reunion that he claimed was "the largest gathering of the ugliest people he had ever seen."

Uncle Bern was quite a sentimental fellow. (wink, wink)

Our trips to south Texas for family gatherings at MeMom's house(DP's mother) were sure to include Uncle Bern. During one night of hilarity, UB shared one of his favorite jokes with us. (Mothers of young children, this is a cautionary tale!)

I am firmly convinced that multitasking was born not out of the invention of super computers with mega memory, but in the brain of a young child who can appear to be completely absorbed in play while his brain is recording every word within earshot.

That is what happened on this occasion. Son 2 and the rest of the "wrecking crew" (as Uncle Bern loved to call the group of kids represented by the three cherubs belonging to my Dear Professor and I plus the three belonging to my Sweet Sister-in-law and her Wild Cajun Spouse) had retired to the den while the older folks continued to sit around the table after the meal and palaver.

The family stories were piling high when Uncle Bern pulled out his favorite joke to the delight of some and the discomfort of others. All I can share in polite company is that it involved an abundantly proportioned lady riding on a train, an uncomfortable and sudden attack of Montezuma's revenge, a handy open window, two cowboys sitting on their horses while watching the train pass, and a reference to big cheeks and foul smelling chewing tobacco.

The men in the group found this joke highly entertaining while a few of us ladies swooned . . . ok, yes, I laughed. Are you happy? We all promptly forgot the incident on the way home. All, that is, except Son 2.

We found this out after he told the joke, in its entirety, at the first show and tell opportunity he was afforded in second grade. I know because his teacher reported it to me.

Do you have any idea what it is like to convince the witness protection program that you need to be relocated because of a joke?