Sunday, December 18, 2011

Grandmothers and the like

December 18 Reverb Broads
Who would you most like to meet and why?
Dana at

I would love to meet someone famous or life-changing or at least who changed my life. Yet, on the occasions where I've had the opportunity to meet some of my favorite authors find myself completely shy and awkward. For example, I stood there silently, scared to open my mouth as Dave Eggers drew his left hand into my copy of a Heartbreaking Work of Terrible Genius. 

I hate that sense that I should be able to converse naturally with these people, though completely incapable of doing so.  I can only imagine how painful it must be for them, sitting there with dumbfounded mutes all around. If I'm going to meet someone, I'd rather that all of us to be comfortable.   I would like to meet my grandmothers.

My maternal grandmother, Grandma F, died from an accidental fall down the stairs when I was in eighth grade, so it is somewhat disingenuous to say I haven't met her. For those first thirteen years of my life, I certainly knew her, but only as a child knows a grandparent. What I would like to do is to meet her as an adult.  Her three sisters, "The Aunts", are three of the smartest and most wickedly funny people you will ever meet.  I can't imagine that Grandma F. would be any different. 

With regard to my paternal grandmother, she passed away before my birth.  My grandfather remarried before I was born and she has always been my Grandma K.  I would like to meet my dad's mom. Women are usually the key to family history continuity.  My dad, his siblings, and his cousins are all great story tellers, but it would be nice to be in the kitchen and hearing the stories from another point of view. There is something magical  about women sharing stories.  It's those stories that help hold a family together.

I would think that by meeting two women who are a part of me, it would be far more comfortable to sit down and have coffee and tasty baked goods with them rather than feeling I need to impress someone famous. A little more history to tie me into the world behind me.  A couple more roots to give me strength to stretch my branches into the world.

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