Friday, September 26, 2014

Reminders of Past Differences

There were a few contentious areas in my parent’s life. One of which was brought to mind at the funeral service of my cousin Phyllis Charlene Beck’s wedding to Donald Hodge. Mom decided in lieu of buying a gift, she wanted to buy a card and give them money.
She had Dad stop so she could find a card that she liked. After she bought it, they drove to the church for the wedding ceremony. Dad said, “You need to address the card, Phyllis.”
Mom said, “Her name is Charlene.” We had always called her Charlene as she grew up.
“The invitation said, Phyllis.”
“She’s Charlene to me.” Mom said.
They gave each other the silent treatment until they started to climb out of the car.
Dad said, “Did you remember the card.”
“Yes, I have it here, but you can write their names on the envelope.”
Of course Dad, in his masculine superiority, wrote Phyllis.

For the rest of my parents’ lives Dad would say something like, “I saw Charlene today,” and Mom would quip, “You mean, Phyllis.”


On other area of irritation centered with a decision by my father and grandfather. When Mom and Dad decided to remodel the house, Mom wanted the door to the living room to one side of their home. If it was centered as my granddad Beck thought that it should be, it would open to the bottom of the steps that led to the upstairs.
All of my Mom’s suggestions fell to the wayside. Granddad convinced my dad that because of the appearance of the house would look off balance, the door needed to be centered and that is where they placed I; smack dab in the center and in front of the steps.
This is where the contention started. Every time they needed to move a large piece of furniture into or out of the house, they would have to struggle, twisting and turning to get around the newel post and if anyone should complain, Mom was quick to remind them to blame my dad and granddad. “If you don’t like it, talk to them.”

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