Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Humble Pie

This is a story about my aging memory and how I ended up serving myself a huge portion of humble pie. Over the years I managed to amass, inherit, collect, be given, and even purchase several less than haute couture clothing; including some sweaters and several long sleeved velour shirts.
Being the thrifty and just shy of being a hoarder, I’ve stored them in closets, drawers, and boxes.
My kids teased me about them and I said, “When I die, I will leave one of them for each of you.” including the in-law kids.

The one item that I am writing about is a sweater. I worked a summer on a dairy farm to earn money for clothes to go back to high school. This sweater was fuzzy and soft almost like angora. Its colors were red, burgundy, light gray, and charcoal. It had wide bands that ran from side to side in jagged lightning like stripes.
Although it looks odd today, it was in style then. After high school, I tucked it away when I went into the Navy and to Penn State, but when I graduated and came home and started hunting I found it hiding in a drawer. It was perfect to wear under my blaze orange jacket. It was soft and warm. Wearing it I was comfortable even when I was out in the winter’s bluster and cold.
Slowly, just like me, it began to show its age. It developed fuzz balls and the material at the elbows wore through. I kept returning it to the dresser drawer, thinking “one more year.”

When my son was visiting one summer from Amarillo Texas, they were kidding me about my collection. I pulled it from the drawer and gave him “his inheritance” early like the prodigal son and immediately forgot that I’d done it on the spur of the moment.
Hunting season came around and I looked for my sweater. I couldn’t find it and struggled with long johns under my hunting clothes. I was disappointed; the next year, the same. I couldn’t find it. I didn’t remember that it had moved to Texas. I had given up hope of finding it.
About two weeks ago, my daughter-in-law posted a picture of my son, proud as a peacock wearing it on Face Book. I accused him of pilfering my sweater to harass and tease me and generally gave him a hard time for taking it.
It was then that my daughter-in-law reminded me that I had given it to him nearly four years ago. I still didn’t remember it, but I was embarrassed none-the-less. I had forgotten all about it.

About then, I thought that I had to eat the whole pie.

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