Thursday, December 29, 2011


"Aunt Fern told me a story, an embarrassing lesson she learned, when she was a young school girl," my mom started.
"She told you while you were living with her? When you were a young girl?" I questioned.
"Go on," I urged.
"Well, when she was a about ten years old, and this was around 1906, mind you, she was walking to school, just like I had to when I ended up going to the same school as she."
"Really? You went to the same school?" I asked.
"Uh huh. Different decades, of course," my mom made clear.

"A-n-y way," my mom wanted to continue.

I nodded encouragement.

"Everyday, she had to pass the prison located next to the school. Aunt Fern saw prisoners sitting down. Resting. She assumed. Sitting on the huge metal balls that were chained to their ankles."
"Seriously? Sitting right there? Out in the open? As people walked by? Near the school?" I was amazed.

My mom nodded.
Up and down.
She looked like she had just realized how weird that was. For prisoners to just be sitting there.

"Weird," I said.
"Hm," was her only response.
"I guess that was normal back then. Well, anyway, Aunt Fern just walked by. Without a word. Just walked onto the school grounds, into her classroom.

'Those men out there are sitting on their balls,' she told the class of students, and the teacher."

I laughed.

"Everyone busted out laughing," my mom's eyes lit with humor.

"Aunt Fern was confused," my mom giggled. "She didn't understand the concept of what she had said. The meaning behind it."

'What's so funny?' she asked her school mate.

"Aunt Fern told me all she could do was simply lower her head into her hands, and slowly move it to and fro," my mom smirked.


  1. How funny that would have been! Especially back in those days, as I imagine there would have been certain 'etiquette' rules of what was appropriate to be spoken about, and what wasn't! More formal than today, I mean...

    Cute story :o)

  2. Thanks for my laugh of the day!

  3. Fabulous story! :OD

  4. Sister dynamics never change. I'm still grinning.

  5. Start a blog on stories from the elders. I love it! I didnt know people made those kind of jokes in those days. LOL.

  6. Don't laugh, we will all be there someday!!!! Myself a little closer than I like, LOL.

  7. Funny. Happy New year and hope you have good year ahead.

  8. That's so funny! It reminds me of my own story. My son got some tiny magnetic balls last christmas, and I was amazed at the things he made with them. One day I asked him to clean his room and he was gone for at least an hour. I went to check "the progress" and found him sitting at his desk, his bed unmade, candy wrappers everywhere, cups of water, soda, etc.. When he saw me, he proudly held up the most amazing sculpture I had seen yet, to which I said, most irritatedly, "have you just been up here playing with your balls???"

  9. yeah, everyone... this was funny to hear coming from the memory of my shy mom... someone who finds these kinds of subjects rather embarrassing.

    thanks for reading!

    isn't it funny, susan, the things we say without realizing it, until its said... geez...

  10. HA! This is hysterical! Poor Aunt Fern!