The boys and I met my mom, sister, and niece today in celebration of my birthday. It was an outing to Pizza Hut for their lunch buffet. A good time was had by all, except for one little fly in the ointment.
My mother revealed my age to the entire clientele of the local Pizza Hut.
Hold on a minute. I need to catch my breath. Whew! Had I known that was a condition of the free meal, I might not have attended. Oh, it's not like the waitresses come around singing Happy Birthday and give you a free pizza or anything. My mom, the big spender, gave me a hefty cash gift, and picked up the tab for all of us. She's a peach. But she just can't hold her knowledge.
In her defense, Mom didn't KNOW I would object to her telling my age. That's her story, and she's stickin' to it. You see, she was unattended at the buffet, having sat with her purse until the rest of us returned with our plates piled high to begin the feeding frenzy. And whom should appear but my old hairdresser. And unlike the hairdressers of the TV commercials of yesteryear, my hairdresser did not know for sure how old I was. So she asked. Which is not really a polite thing to ask about a lady, but then again, I'm not often accused of being much of a lady.
She is not my hairdresser anymore. Not for asking my age. She chucked it all and started herself a catering business. In fact, she had two events tonight, neither of which being a birthday party for me, and she said that since they had been cooking so hard already this morning, the only thing to do when they got hungry was to come to Pizza Hut for the buffet. You didn't expect her to eat her own cooking, did you?
Anyhoo, according to Mom, Cater/Cutter met her at the buffet and asked, "How old IS Hillbilly Mom, anyway? I know she's older than ME!" Funny how Cater/Cutter was so familiar with Mom, who just happened to have been her 4th grade teacher back in the day. And because Mom can't stand up to an inquisition, she caved and blurted out my age. To hear mom tell it, "Well, a mother has to know her child's age, so there was no way out of it." I told her to make a note-to-self for the future: That information is not for public disclosure.
Because a lady reveals nothing (it's true. Just check out the charm-school scene in A League of Their Own), I will not divulge my age here on my anonymous blog. Let's just use the age my students think I am...35. Cater/Cutter came to the table and started jawing about how long it had been since she'd seen us, and how she hoped I had a happy 35th birthday. I cringed and glanced over my shoulder to see if anybody was there that knew me. My sister's sister-in-law had come in with her husband, who sometimes subs at Newmentia, and plays Trivia in the same circles as I. So of course she came over later, and congratulated me on being 35. "Jack and I were just taking about that."
Throughout the meal, my 35-ness was constantly brought up. "Oh, you didn't hear me? No wonder. You're 35 now." After so many swipes at my agedness, I declared that if I wasn't so eager to get my money's worth on that free meal, I would have just left. My niece said, "Well, it seems like somebody at this table doesn't have a sense of humor." And I said, "I had a very good sense of humor in my youth, all the way up to the age of 34."
My sister gave me a birthday card with a hairy man wearing cut-off jeans shorts that showed a wide acreage of butt-cheek. She's so thoughtful. Then she wanted to get me a family photo frame for my desk at school, so I could put a son on each side, and that card in the middle, so my students would think it was Husband H. She needs to moonlight as a stand-up comedian.
We told stories about all the embarrassing things the kids used to do. It was all fun and games until the #1 son found out that not only did his cousin drop him on his head in Grandma's mossy creek when he was a baby and she was 5, but that I had inadvertently left him sitting on the bathroom counter at the tender age of 6 months, and he somehow toppled off onto his head when I turned around to throw away a Q-tip. They're bad for you, you know--those Q-tips. And apparently so are childhood strolls with your cousin in a mossy creek.
We won't even go into the pretend-cooking episode when Niece and #1 put a pan of random ingredients in Grandma's oven, and it started to smoke.
I certainly hope they both reach the ripe old age of 35.