Sunday, December 9, 2007

The tragedy of the red buttons.

I don't recall whether this was before or after the Winter of '49, but it was before the Summer of '51. A tiny house and a small farm; that was almost the sum total of the worldly goods of this family of 10. We were poor, which took me many years to figure out. Getting something, anything new, was as rare as the teeth in the hens that free-ranged around the old homestead. Well, one day Mom and Dad took a rare trip to town, leaving in the only vehicle we owned, the old beet truck. We were left at home with Bob, my oldest brother, in charge of keeping the youngest of us alive and safe. That was always an adventure! Anyway, sometime later that day, Mom and Dad pulled back into the yard, emerging from the old truck with packages in their hands. This was so unusual that all I could do was stare in disbelief. Mom looked at our stunned faces and said, "Come on in, I have something for you." She didn't have to say it twice because our curiosity drove us, like a cowboy on a horse drives a herd of cattle. It wasn't quite as insane as Black Friday but there was some stumbling, bumping and pawing to be the first one in the door. I don't remember, nor, at the time, did I care, what she had for everyone else, I just wanted to see what was there for me. Oh my gosh, the vision I have of seeing those brand new, beautiful, dark blue denim pants! They came with attached straps, crossing in the back, and coming up over the shoulders, buttoning to the waistband with beautiful red buttons. Even the stitching was red! There was a pair for me, my twin sister, Dolores , and my baby sister Mary. They were a miracle, those brand new, never-been-worn by another soul, pants. The only thing to do at that point was to put them on as fast as possible to feel the miracle next to my skin. The three of us promptly did just that. I had never felt such pride, strutting around, showing off to anyone who would look! But, as the saying goes.........pride goeth before the fall. Those beauties had been caressing my little hind end for just a short time when that same little hind end decided it better get to the old two-holer. As much as I hated leaving the attention these beauties were generating, off I went down the "path". There was no lighting in that structure, so I decided I'd better unbutton the straps before going inside. As I started this task, I realized those one-of-a-kind, red buttons were bigger than the button holes that were keeping them secured to the waistband. I struggled, I bounced, I cried! Those buttons would not move! But, unfortunately, my bowels did. All I could do was stand there, with profound disappointment flooding my very soul, crying profusely over the loss of the newness of those pants. I'll never forget those red buttons.........

1 comment:

Michelle said...

I was telling a couple of girls at work about your blog! They're dying to read it :)
Love the stories!