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9.15.2010

NEAT AS A PIN?

If the statement, "cleanliness is next to godliness" is a marker of God, then I was going straight to hell as a kid.  Do not pass or collect $200 but go directly to H E double hockey sticks!  I was most definitely what you call a messy in my childhood years.  In fact so much so that my sisters would oftly remark to me, "Lynn, when you grow up and have a house of your own we are never coming to visit you."  Even that statement somehow didn't deter me from my unkempt, askew ways.  It's not like as a kid you own a whole house full of belongings.  I mean, you have stuff but it usually fits into one room or so.  My problem was I was completely at ease with my disorderly dresser drawers, closet, piles of clothes on the floor, stuff on the bookshelf, my toys, books, my book bag, my desk at school, my hair, the state of my clothes on my body.  I didn't care and didn't want to be bothered by it.  More important stuff was there for me to tend to - reading, biking, adventuring, torturing my sisters, playing outside, swinging on the barn rope, running away to grandma's house, taking my shoes off and running through the cow pasture, exploring the woods, making pud pies, creating strange concoctions in the playhouse from leftover produce left in the garden, stirring the now maggot infested concoction I had created several days earlier, pretending to put on a concert with wigs and costumes while using a wooden spoon as a microphone, chasing the dog, peeing behind the barn, perfecting the bike/book/baby doll maneuver. You know, way more important stuff than organizing dresser drawers or neatly hanging your clothes back in the closet.  My nickname given me by my father was "Homer".  After Homer the Lion.  The premise behind it was that I hated to comb my hair or have anyone comb my hair.  I personally saw no purpose whatsoever in it. Literally my hair looked like a messy mane.   My intentions were never to stay neat and clean anyway.  Conflict came when we had to go to church or town or the dentist who used no Novocaine while drilling a filling.  I think at times it was a group effort to get me looking presentable.  My mom would harshly comb my hair as I tried not to wince from pain of all the tangles that birds nesting in it had created - all the while, trying not to look directly at her where scolding and despair was etched and growing like a beard across her face.  My eldest sister it seems always had the job of putting my cable knit tights on.  Come to think of it, I really was able to do it myself but feigned inability so she would have to do it for me.  She made a game out of putting those tights on me.  First she would get both legs started and pulled up to about the knees.  Then she would make me stand up and get behind me, lifting me off the ground while wildly shaking me fully into the tights.  I loved it!!  She would laugh mostly and so would I.  My middle sister was overly organized which irritated me.  I spent considerable time messing up her papers just to hear her scream.  Her hand writing was perfectly formed and well mine was, busy looking - like the letters were in a hurry to go somewhere.  Part of my messy demeanor was highlighted by the blue blanket that I carried or draped over me.  It's hard to look neat as a pin with your softie blanket used as a cape, a Mary Magdalene head covering or a toga worn for the wood spoon concert that had been performed earlier in the day.  I slept with that blanket until 7th grade when my sisters teased me so relentlessly that one day while trash was burning outside in the burn barrel I marched out there with my blanket and threw it in the burning fire.  Then I marched into my room and cried:)  To compliment this grand messy image I also had what my loving sisters called, "bucky beaver" teeth!  I had an overbite and could not close my lips entirely right without looking like I was wearing a pair of my great grandma's teeth.  There are vivid pictures of me, skinny as a rail, Homer the Lion hair, overbite, my blanket worn as a prop during the day so I could always have it with me, shoes untied, clothes hanging crookedly with a smile on my face.  Somehow I did get neater as I got older.  My sisters have come to every house I've lived in to visit.  My handwriting is quite nice now.  I had braces for 4 years.  I meticulously iron my clothes daily.  My closets and drawers do get cleaned out once in awhile. But, I still would rather adventure outdoors than clean the bathroom or try to make sure my hair looks perfect all the time. Plus I'm not exactly sure where the phrase "neat as pin" came from anyway.  I'm not messy much any more, just a touch free spirited!

2 comments:

  1. Topped off with a bit of SASS!!! LOVE IT!!

    So when did the ironing kick in? Right after the burning of the sacred blankie?

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  2. "Sack a tay-tas, sack a tay-tas!" Love those buddy socks!

    Loved the perfect physical description of yourself at around 7 years old. I laughed out loud here in the quiet liberry. I know; big surprise I laughed.

    If I could have a do-over, you would have sofie.

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