Jaquandor asked what I believe is the last of the Ask Roger Anything questions for this round, which I held off answering until now, because today would have been my parents’ 67th wedding anniversary:
What’s the thing you remember doing as a kid that drove your parents bonkers? (I’m talking harmless stuff here, nothing like playing with matches. Mine was to flick those spring-things with the rubber tip that keep the door from smacking into the wall as it opens. You pull those things over and let them go and you get this fun, loud BRRROOOOIIINNNGGG! sound as the spring snaps. Drove my mother NUTS.)
First off, I’m SHOCKED by your behavior as a child.
Secondly, I had the hardest time coming up with an answer to your questions. I even asked my two sisters, and they couldn’t think of anything.
I mean, I drove my father bonkers, but I didn’t see him feeling that it was harmless stuff. For instance, when I was in elementary school, I would watch the other kids play softball on the playground. And then those kids would go home, and other kids, who had already gone home, would return to the playground and play, and I’d watched them.
I almost never played myself, unless a team was really shorthanded, and they’d stick me in right field. I loved the game, but I wasn’t particularly good at it. I got better by the time I got to college, but not in 4th or 5th grade.
So I wouldn’t get home for hours after classes ended, and sometimes this would really anger my father, so much so that he’d pull out the strap – or worse, make ME go get the strap, so that he could use it on me. Well, at least once.
As for my mother, I did use to take words she said and add lyrics from the popular songs of the day. So if she were to say, “We go to get,” I’d respond, “if it’s the last thing we ever do,” evoking an Animals song. Or if she needed some help, I say, in my best Beatles voice, “you need somebody, not just anybody.” I don’t recall using these exact examples – and I can’t remember what I DID say – but it’d be something like that.
Truth is that my mother was usually oblivious to the reference, which was actually quite entertaining to me. I don’t think it really irritated or as much as mystify her. “What IS he talking about?” she must have thought.