“But mothers lie. It’s in the job description.”

Today is a bit bleak and a little chilly. The Easter Bunny better bundle up tonight to make his rounds. I’m imagining the Bunny wearing a warm jacket, wool socks on his feet and matching mittens on his hands. In keeping with the season, he’ll also be wearing a brightly colored bow tie. It is, after all, spring.

When I was a kid, we always took baths on Saturdays. When I was older and into multiple baths each week, I wondered why only one bath a week back then. We were kids, we got dirty playing outside. Washing hands and faces couldn’t have been enough. I’m thinking we had a layer of dirt the other five days, not six because on Sunday we started out clean.

I always thought we were lucky Easter was on a Sunday. I was young. I believed in the Easter Bunny. What did I know of lent and the liturgy? I figured we were lucky because we only had to take the one bath which served two purposes, our Saturday night ritual and getting clean for Easter.

We never hounded my mother about letting us go to bed early on Easter Eve the way we did on Christmas Eve. The Easter Bunny seldom brought surprises. We knew we’d find a few small toys, maybe a coloring book and crayons and a stuffed animal, mostly a rabbit. There was always a giant chocolate rabbit. I remember once I bit into my rabbit and found it was hollow. It was a mere shell. I complained to my mother about the rabbit being a bit deceptive. She agreed.

All the jelly beans except the black ones tasted the same to me. That’s probably why black jelly beans are still a favorite of mine. I don’t like black licorice so it is a bit of puzzle why I like the black jelly beans. I think they must be most people’s favorite because now you can buy a package of just black ones. I remember looking at my tongue in the mirror after I ate the black jelly beans. My whole tongue was black. I thought it was kind of neat.

When I was a kid, my mother had a way to make us tell the truth. It had nothing to do with morality. She’d ask us if we had done whatever like breaking a dish or a glass and all four of us would say no. My mother would say it must have been the ghost. We’d all nod in agreement and hoped it ended it there. It didn’t. The test was next. My mother told us our tongues turned black when we told a lie. We’d check in the mirror, but she also had that covered. Only mothers can see the back tongue she told us. She’d then ask each of us in turn to show her our tongues. The guilty party wouldn’t. He’d put his hand over his mouth so my mother couldn’t see. Nabbed! I don’t remember how long that worked, but it was a wonder. My mother always found the guilty party. I thought she was amazing.

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22 Comments on ““But mothers lie. It’s in the job description.””

  1. Richard Says:

    Bright with increasing grey ’n wet … that’s my kinda forecast! Already made the Kroger trip. They had pineapples on sale for 99¢ each! Asparagus $1.77/bunch. They’re fat li’l spears, too, not the skinny ‘pencil’-type asparagus. Altaufa mangoes 50¢ each … got two of ’em to cut into wedges for the next pork loin. Or, I could use ’em to accent the ham I just picked up … 12 lbs for $9.88. It was a good day for groceryin’ …

    I traveled back and forth along Memory Lane and can’t recall a time in childhood when a bath per day wasn’t the rule for us. Baths never made sense to me. You sit in the water you use to get the dirt off of you and then rinse with that same water … I always looked at a sit-down bath as a way to rearrange the dirt using water as a medium of distribution. Gimme a shower any day of the week. They just make sense.

    Never paid any particular attention to the Easter Bunny unless he was made of chocolate, and then only to decide if the head was the first or last part to be eaten. The white sugar eggs with the oval window trimmed in icing never made sense to any of us. They’d still be in the basket next Easter if it were up to us … they were kinda pointless unless y’ needed a decorative sugary item to attract ants into the house.

    Still don’t like jelly beans. They’re a waste of time. Licorice whips were okay, tho’ … I think that’s why I like fennel and anise (they’re the same thing, really).
    That tongue trick of your mother’s is pretty slick. We were introduced to one of Mom’s ‘don’t-be-doin’-that’ Problem Solving Tricks when we got to the age we believed we could use curse words. Mom’s ‘One Size Fits All’ solution was Tabasco sauce. A couple shakes of that on the tongue was believed to Cure the Problem. Nuh-unh.

    Once I made the mistake of cursing within earshot of Mom. Out came the Tabasco. Since I resisted the punishment, I was restrained while my mouth was forced open in order to administer the Tabasco. Idea Time! I clenched my jaw and my teeth blocked access to the tongue. I won! Nuh-unh. Mom just put the Tabasco on my teeth. Gotta lick you teeth sometime, right? I did. It was just as effective as if it had been applied directly. I know this may seem ‘cruel’ or ‘child abuse’ to some, but Tabasco’s not hot enough to qualify as punishment … really, it’s not. It was more the humiliation of having been caught that bothered us, and Tabasco never stopped us from making the same mistake again if we got aggravated enough.

    And now, a bit of music from Ennio Morricone … the ‘Pocket Watch’ theme … Happy Easter …

    • katry Says:

      I haven’t had a mango in a long time. I learned to like them in Ghana. Exotic fruits never made it to the shelves when I was growing up. I do love pork loin and ham. I think we were ham folks on Easter.

      I totally agree with baths. What is the value of sitting in your own dirt? We, however, didn’t have a shower so we had no choice. My sisters used to take a bath together, mixing their dirt. In Ghana I took a shower every night, a cold shower as there was no hot water except for the first water to come out of the pipes. It was hot from the sun. That was for washing my hair then I’d finish with the cold.

      I always ate the ears first. I bought some ears for my friend’s basket. Those fancy eggs made of hard sugar were in my basket too. We just thought they were for decoration.

      I also like anise and fennel. I have come to like Jelly Belly beans as they taste like the real thing. Root beer is one of my favorites.

      My mother always caught us with that tongue trick of hers. We were never cursers, at least never where my mother could hear us. I don’t know what she would have done had she heard, soap maybe as there wasn’t Tabasco in the house.

      I’ve never heard this song before-it is lovely.

  2. Bill Says:

    One of the most disappointing experiences of my childhood was seeing that a mouse had gotten into my Easter basket and nibbled away at the goodies. It must have made quite an impression on me because I still remember it vividly. My children, now adults, long ago tired of hearing the story, just as they had with my story of walking to school in waist deep snow – “But you were shorter then Dad!”

    • katry Says:

      That is horrible. I too would not forget nibbled chocolate. Where was it kept and now long that the mouse ate it?

      It’s a great story which should be told every Easter. As for the snow-big lie!!

  3. Hedley Says:

    Shortly, the England National Team will play Germany. If we win it is a glorious victory, if we lose it doesn’t matter because it’s only a friendly. France looms large, and Paris calls Mrs MDH and me to the Hotel D’Aubusson. The domestic season will end in May and the national teams will head to Euro2016

    The Prince is on a brief hiatus, at a party but back for the vigil. I zoomed over to the theater to pick up 3D Batman for tomorrow morning – the show was almost sold out and the parking lot was packed. Who cares about reviews ? Da da da dad Ada da da Batman

    Dang, Lou Reed just popped up on my iPod/blue tooth speaker thingy. I really did like “New York”. Heck I am so tech savvy (tee hee)

    • Birgit Says:

      Hedley, dinner is prepared, beer in the fridge, soccer beer glasses are clean, TV is on and I’m ready for the match 🙂 I hope it will be fun! “God save the gracious Queen….”

      • Hedley Says:

        What ? Beaten on the near post ???

      • Hedley Says:

        ENGLAND ! Germany beaten at home by the Tottenham Hotspur youngsters – Dele was the best player on the field, Eric and Harry each scored and Danny shut down the left side

      • Birgit Says:

        Glorious victory for England. Congratulations!

      • Hedley Says:

        We will see Germany again in the Final in Paris

      • Birgit Says:

        Hedley, final??? Who cares for Germany, you both will see Paris! Have fun! I’m a little bit jealous… Last time I saw Paris was about 20 years ago, camping tour Normandy – Bretagne – Paris with my old french Renault R4. Memories…

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      You’ll always have Paris! That is so cool to be there this time of year. Paris is lovely in the spring. I was there in spring and in summer. I think I nearly melted in the summer. Paris is empty in August-they know.

      I’m glad you got the tickets, reviews or no reviews. I doubt any kid cares about a review any way.

      I’m into a science fiction movie-fun ay to spend the afternoon.

      Have a wonderful Easter.

  4. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Your story about the black tongue reminded me of yet another comic strip character. Family Circle. There’s a incorporeal family member who’s name is Not Me. Not Me does all the naughty things. We had a kid with the same name in our house, too. Nobody could see him either.

    I’m trying to recall if I considered myself to be dirty during the rest of the week. I can’t. Possibly dirty is subjective. During the summer I was in the water so much that dirt didn’t have a chance to stick. One time a neighborhood kid wanted to show me something cool by trying to rub little dirt balls of skin off my arm. He gave up in frustration saying I was too clean for it work. I was insulted. 🙂

    It’s finally sunny here. The temperature is still on the cool side. The dogs and I went for a walk earlier and it was a tad uncomfortable without my jacket.

    I hope the Easter Bunny brings you a fine basket of goodies.
    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      It seems not me gets around taking uo residence just about everywhere there are kids.

      I didn’t think I was dirty. That thought came to me when I was older. I played softball, and in the summer the field was pretty dusty. The air around us looked smoky whenever anyone ran. I never could get clean coming out of that.

      The sun is just now appearing and it is 6:17. The sun had a short day here.

      Thanks on the Bunny. I’m wishing you the same: a basket too filled to lift!

      Have a great Sunday!

  5. Birgit Says:

    We saw a strange yellow light in the sky today, I think it’s called sun. Well, at least this explanation is more likely than an alien invasion. Traditional Easter fire this afternoon, – ready for the annual Egg Feast.
    Back to TV…

  6. olof1 Says:

    Sunny and warm here even if the wind did get rather strong at the end of the day. Tomorrow will at least startthe same they say but with the possabilty of some fog in the morning.

    Taking only one bath a week is probably the thing that saved most of us from getting allergies. We really need that layer of dirt so our immune system gets the chance to work and keep us healthy. Several studies have shown that before the iron curtain fell most eastern europeans didn’t have allergies but when thet got the same standard of living as we westerners have allergies started to thrive (well not a good word, I doubt that an allergy can thrive 🙂 ).

    It is always the eve that is big here, doesn’t matter what holiday we talk about. I think it has to do with the old lutheran oprotestantism who didn’t like people having any kind of joy for life, especially not on a christian holiday 🙂 On the eve’s nothing religious ever happened so if we were to be happy it might as well be that day 🙂

    I love salt licorice and combined with something strawberry flavored it is just delicious 🙂 I can’t remember ever getting any kind of licorice in the easter egg though, I guess it mostly were fudge and chocolates 🙂

    Have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      Cold tomorrow so little girls will have to hide their dresses with coats.

      I need got licorice in my Easter basket either, but I did get black jelly beans which then led me into the licorice discussion.

      New Year’s Eve is the only one which has any fun attached to it. All the rest are just like regular days with nothing special happening.

      I never knew that about Eastern Europeans. Freedom does have a cost!

  7. katry Says:

    Did you get eye witness accounts to verify your finding?

    Nothing so exciting here as an Easter Fire or an Egg Feast. We had Easter egg hunts when I was little but that’s it.

    Have a happy Easter!

  8. Bob Says:

    If it isn’t chocolate than it’s just not candy in my mind. Every Easter my mother bought us a chocolate rabbit. One year I remember that the chocolate rabbit was hollow which obviously was an attempt to increase profits during the holiday was a disappointment. My favorite Easter candy today is the Cadbury egg. Nothing is better than a milk chocolate shell filled with what ever heavenly substance they use to make the cream filling surrounded with caramel. Jelly beans or those marshmallow peeps just don’t make the grade.

    My mother was not as sneaky as yours. The black tongue ruse was brilliant. My mother Only threatened me with the Pinocchio story. I would stare in the mirror trying to see how much or how little my nose had actually grown as a result of my untruthfulness.

    When I left NJ this morning the temperature was in the 50s. There were no clouds along our route of flight to North Texas where the temperature had warmed to the upper 70s. It was a beautiful morning to fly.

    • katry Says:

      Some rabbits are solid, others hollow. The front usually tells you which. The hollow. obviously, is cheaper. That year I think my mother didn’t look. I shop in chocolate stores. They never have hollow anything. I too like a Cadbury egg, either the original or the caramel. I love peeps when they are hard as a rock having been left open to the air.

      We probably would have also believed the Pinocchio story but it didn’t have the immediate impact a black tongue had.

      It was damp and chill all day here. Ot will be chilly tomorrow. Poor little girls in their new spring dresses.

      • Bob Says:

        Here’s a URL about the history of the chocolate Easter egg.


        Happy Easter

      • katry Says:

        That was really interesting. It makes our chocolate creatures simple in comparison. The article said in Europe they make more eggs than rabbits. Eggs here, other than Cadbury, are rarer.

        Once I bought real eggs with chocolate inside from a web site. They were really expensive but I thought they were neat. I put them in my parent’s Easter baskets. They thought they were hard-boiled eggs and were surprised to find the chocolate.

        I always buy really good chocolate. It is so easy to tell the difference between the good and the cheap. I used to do small baskets for my nephews and put less expensive chocolate in them. The kids didn’t care.

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