It was that great southern philosopher Lewis Grizzard who many years ago said that the weatherman talked too much. "All we want to know is whether or not it's going to rain." If he felt that way twenty-something years ago, he should hear meteorologists these days (they're now really smart and sometimes women.) This morning, for instance, I just wanted to know if the rain was going to be of the Biblical proportions they'd been promising all week (turns out it was.) But before I could hear the bottom line, I had to be educated about how soil temperature in Idaho had caused a frontal boundary to spawn a wedge that pushed high pressure back to Mexico and that - mixed with Gulf moisture - meant that we all could quite possibly drown by midnight. "But in case you don't, we're giving away antibiotic-free turkeys to 100 viewers tomorrow. Remember, you must be watching to win!"
I was gathering this news from a meteorologist on a different channel than our usual (yes, one of the signs of old age is that you have a preferred news channel.) I actually didn't know this woman was still on television. Just the sight of her face, though, brought a smile to mine. I was taken straight back to a breakfast with Mama many years ago, not long after we'd first started noticing signs of dementia. Our roles as adult/child had just started their reversal and on this particular morning I had to promise to take her to breakfast if she'd let me take her to get a flu shot.
The flu shot went by without incident but in the middle of that breakfast she suddenly hit me on the arm and got quite animated. "LOOK! THAT'S THE WOMAN THAT TELLS THE WEATHER ON CHANNEL 2!!!!" I was really hoping that the object of her shouting was sitting a great distance from us, rendering her unable to hear Mother's glee. No such luck - she was at the table right next to us. I could've reached out and hit HER on the arm. I just said "I think you're right" and gave an apologetic smile that tried to say "sorry, but she's old and it doesn't take much to excite her." The meteorologist just gave me a wink and a smile that let me know it wasn't as much an intrusion on her day as I feared it would be. A minute or two of silence passes and I'm hoping the episode was behind us...but the hollering started again. "GOOD LORD SHE'S A TALL DRINK OF WATER!" I thanked the Almighty that her height was the only thing of note that my mother could find to holler about. The only thing I noticed about her was that she apparently has a coffee addiction that rivals my own. She pounded as many cups as I did and drank it black, the way the Good Lord intended for people to drink coffee.
So, anyway, a promise of bad weather turned into a visit with Mama. Laughing instead of hurting is a good way to miss her.