Motherly advice. Metaphors for life. Words of wisdom. Call them what you will, but moms have a certain way of getting their messages across.
As much as we love our mothers, we sometimes wonder what in the world they’re thinking when they suggest, for instance, to “wear clean underwear in case you get into an accident.” Heck, merely being involved in the mishap could scare the bejabbers right out of you — making the warning useless. And it’s highly unlikely that the first thing a paramedic does at the scene of an accident is check a patient’s skivvies.
As the youngest of four children, and admittedly the most challenging, I became accustomed to lectures from my mudder, Verlene. But perhaps the one that has stuck with me the longest discourages gossiping.
“There’s so much good in the worst of us. And so much bad in the best of us. It behooves the most of us not to talk about the rest of us,” she says, the words slow to roll off her tongue now at the age of 98.
While it may have been simpler to wag a scolding finger at me for passing on a rumor, the message probably would have been forgotten.
Thanks, Mom. That’s much better advice than the dirty-underwear speech.
For Mother’s Day 2001, we asked readers to send us their favorite “Momisms.” It was our most popular write-in, before or since. Some of our favorites: “Don’t let the fire in your underwear burn your brain out.” “Don’t park the billy goat in front of the car unless you know how to drive a stick shift.” “If you go swimming and drown, I’ll never speak to you again.” “If you’re going to be a bum, be a bum out of town.” “If you swallow your gum, your insides will stick together.” “Belly buttons are for putting salt in when you eat celery in bed.”
So it’s time to ask again for Momisms. Whether you are a great-grandmother, the father of teenagers, the mom of adult kids or part of the new generation that has come of age in the past 13 years, we want to hear from you!
While we understand it’s tempting to talk about all of the warm and fuzzy feelings Mom conjures up inside you, please try to keep that to a minimum. Instead, we want to hear about the whimsical advice she has given you over the years. Send your Momisms, not more than 300 words, along with your name and hometown to: firstname.lastname@example.org or snail mail to:
Akron Beacon Journal
c/o Kim Hone-?McMahan
P.O. Box 640
Akron, OH 44309-0640
Deadline is May 1. We’ll run our favorites on Mother’s Day — Sunday, May 11.