Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Coveted and Not So Coveted

This is Brenda, my fabulous and a teensy bit spooky friend. Here we see her in the company of her monster cookie jar. Both of her children covet this grotesquely appealing item. To keep peace in the family, she has decided to commission monsterish cookie containers for them from the artist who created hers. A sensible solution that preserves precious family togetherness time that is better spent on, for instance, pranking one another with a creepy, slightly squished and discolored baby doll.

Here we see me with my boyfriend in the summer of 1980. It is the end of July. The occasion? My parents' second wedding. To each other. But that has nothing to do with the matter at hand. Which is the swing we are seated on, perhaps one of my mother's most dear possessions. She hauled the damn thing from South Dakota to Arizona to South Dakota and back to Arizona again with interim moves between locations in both states. She was convinced that because she loved it so much that all four of us kids would fight over it hammer and tongs when she was gone. None of us were particularly fond of it but didn't say so to spare her feelings. We offered that perhaps she could leave this plane with the swing in some version of a Viking funeral. Being Norwegian, this idea appealed to her. The swing would be disposed of in a dignified manner and she could peacefully pass thinking she had defused an enormous family kerfuffle before it had a chance to get going. In the end, the swing was so dilapidated it was being held together with ropes. Twenty-plus years of baking in the desert sun and being exposed to northern plains winters had not been kind. The sisters and I did perform a small Viking funeral in her honor without the swing a year after her death. All I know is, that crispy, dry wood would have gone up like a torch as soon as a spark landed on it. Blaze of glory time. It would have been spectacular. 

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