Sunday Scribblings, Junk

The prompt over at Sunday Scribblings is junk.

Valuables

My mother’s in the front yard, sitting as delicately as she can in one of those canvas folding chairs (two mesh cup holders) while wearing a lemon chiffon-colored sundress.
There’s blanket spread in front of her, piled with junk.
My junk.
Plastic Little League trophies, a stuffed tiger plush toy, Snoopy fishing rod and reel, stamp collection, buffalo head nickel collection, volcano science project from sixth grade, a box of tattered comics, one-man rubber raft (one oar missing), remote-controlled Porsche, slightly glue-gummied space shuttle plastic model.
Important artifacts from my childhood through late adolescence.
“Hey, what gives?” I protest.
“Oh, hi, honey,” she says as she absently smooths out crumpled $1 bills against the red, white and blue canvas stripes of the chair. “Clearance sale. Everything must go. No reasonable offer refused.”
She takes off her sunglasses and smiles.
“You have no right,” I stammer. “No goddamned right whatsoever.”
I clench my fists for effect.
“Oh, dear, but I do,” she says.
And produces a slip of yellow paper from her cleavage and hands it to me.
It’s a bill, a tally of charges across the years, in my mother’s tight, swoopy handwriting.
And I realize that I’m in hock. Up to my eyebrows.
“You don’t really have the best selection here,” I say. “Let me refresh your inventory.”

12 comments:

Tumblewords: said...

That old devil, Guilt, can rear up at any time! I felt this one.

Sophie said...

Ahhh, I could relate to this one too! It is only as we get older that we come to the realization of how much our parents did for us and what the cost was. The flip side of that is that we reverse roles and in turn take care of them. I think it pretty much evens out in the end, or I hope it does. In some ways I don't feel I repaid my Mom in kind, but she knows now that my heart was there when I couldn't be. Good post! I so admire your ability to tell the story without a lot of extra fluff.

b said...

Yes, mothers are the repository of our "junk" and are great supporters of our habits. This did so make me smile. I am the mother now.



b

http://torristravels.blogspot.com/2009/10/one-mans-junk-sunday-scribblings.html

Lucy said...

hmmm.... thanks for this genius idea Thom! :))

Dee Martin said...

ooh tasty twist at the end. Didn't expect the "Let me refresh your memory".

Americanising Desi said...

ooohhh i like this!

i like it very much!
Click The JUNK I need to Rid oFF!

gautami tripathy said...

I liked this. Mad me think og my own mother..different yet so similar..

what has time got to do with blood?

missalister said...

I love your fictional moms—your wishing well, parasite, moonbeam moms and of course your pearls-and-frills gun-toting, poison- and explosives-wielding moms—they’re so unconventionally conventional, so ThomG cool :-D

Jennifer Hicks said...

such emotion...such truth!
Wonderful post!

gs batty said...

we are all eternally in debt to our mothers but selling the little league trophies....that's cold

linda may said...

Wow! you firstly made me think of the things tha I hold of my own children. Then that tables turned and I thought of my Mum. She drives me crazy but she only does what she knows how, in her own way, her best.

Donna said...

I would hate it if my kids thought they owed me anything. It's a joy. Maybe difficult at times, but that never takes away from the joy.

One mother's perspective.