My Oh So “Stylish Imitation” Coat

I like to wear my fur skin coat,

Watch the young men gawk and gloat.

Grace and beauty for them to see,

Stylish, glamorous, yes that’s me!

Even though I wear it well,

The boys just find it hard to tell.

Rabbit, Raccoon, lamb or Sable,

Touch me, tell me, if you’re able.

Chinchilla, ermine, fox or mink?

Why’s it Cougar that you think?

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(my oh so lame attempt to imitate the style of the great Shel Silverstein)

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Grandmother, she’s the real deal

To all of us who have been loved for a long, long time, who don’t break easily or have sharp edges, whose hair has been loved off, eyes have dropped out, are loose in the joints, and are very shabby:

HAPPY  GRANDPARENTS DAY

“What is REAL?”
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“What is REAL?” asked the Velveteen Rabbit one day… “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”

“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When [someone] loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”

“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.

“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”

“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept.

“Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand… once you are Real you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always.” *

*― Margery WilliamsThe Velveteen Rabbit or How Toys Become Real

OH, You mean Grandmother!

(Who knew that the Skin Horse was describing Grandmother?)

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The theatre was full.  It was opening day for a movie I had very much wanted to see. How could it miss with a brilliant cast of proven favorites?  Judy Dench, Maggie Smith, Bill Nighy and Tom Wilkinson have proven themselves again and again over the course of many, many years that each one can single-actedly  carry out any cinematic challenge.  The idea of them together as a team of characters promised a mother load of possibility.

 

My husband and my son were with me.  We have all been to India and have found that the intense sights, sounds, smells and experiences can create hilarious reactions when American’s try to adapt. (video clip of my son washing clothes in India)

I started giggling right off the credits, quickly progressing to dignified laughter. My son and husband also chuckled along with the matinée crowd of gray, sparsely haired, movie lovers.

Somewhere during the first 30 minutes or so, the full belly laugh started.  I realized that I was laughing a little louder and a little longer than anyone else in the theatre.  It felt really good to laugh so hardily until the reserved, rational part of my brain asked my throw caution to the wind part of my brain, “What is so darn funny?”

It wasn’t the India part that got to me, although it was funny, beautiful and alluring.  It was the other part.  That adorable group of retirees, grandparents, health challenged, life-seeking, technically behind, grumpy, elderly people could be me.  Disturbing,  right?

A few tears surfaced as I tried to reign in my laughter so that it would not cross over into the land of sobs.  I am happy to say that I recovered, regrouped and throughly enjoyed the rest of the movie.