Monthly Archives: February 2014

A Tribute to Tee Tee

to vs too

True story

A fellow blogger posted something today that made me think of someone from my past.  My English teacher from secretarial school.  Secretarial School.  Do they even have those kinds of schools any more?  I’m guessing not.  Geez.  They aren’t even called secretaries now.  If someone refers to me as a “secretary,” I immediately correct them and say “administrative assistant.”  On that note, if someone asks me what I did in my previous life and I answer “administrative assistant,” it is usually followed by, “what is that?”  Therefore, forcing me to say, “secretary.”  So, really, what’s the point?  Oh, wow.  I digress.  Big time.

Mrs. Schneider.  She spoke with one of those fake english accents and would drag out the last word.  “You sound like a cow chewing its’ cuuuuuudddddd.”  You know.  Kind of like Zsa Zsa Gabor but not.  She wore pointy bras that just begged for us to call her “torpedo tits” (Tee Tee).  And she buried 4 husbands.  After 9 months with this lady, I think I could take a gander at what the cause of death was.  Visions of cutting out their tongues because they ended a sentence with a proposition comes to mind.  Can you imagine if she were still around to read my blog?  I’d have to go around wearing a Hannibal Lecter-style mask for fear she would hunt me down and add my taste buds to her collection.

She was the Original Grammar Nazi.  If we so much as spoke with a lazy tongue, we’d get a lashing.  She abhored songs that did not use proper sentences.  Let’s take The Rolling Stones’ “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” for instance.  The use of the double negative would have sent her to the nearest loony bin.  And if we didn’t answer with a “very well, thank you” when asked how we were, we were sent directly to secretary detention.

My biggest fear was misuse of the comma.  Every time we had to write an essay, my anxiety would reach epic proportions.  I inevitably would get my paper returned to me with big, fat, red marks.  My assignment would look more like a subway map than homework.  And to this day, I’m not really sure if I’m using commas correctly or not.  Do I underuse them?  Overuse them?  Without Mrs. Schneider around, I guess I’ll never know.

Good Old Mrs. Schneider.  Thanks for trying.  I did walk away with quite a bit of useful information though.  That’s for sure.  But those commas.  Damn commas (or should it be comma’s?) will forever be a burr in my butt.  Forget about semi-colons.  Oh, I gotta go lie down.  Or is it lay down?  No, no, I believe it’s lie down.  Right?  I mean, correct?

Good Bye Dr. Suess

Except this.  This was her favorite.  Or was it mine?

Except this. This was her favorite. Or was it mine?

I was one of those weird pregnant ladies who would read poetry to my womb.  Every morning.  Before work, I would toast myself 2 frozen waffles loaded with butter and syrup and sit down to read a few chapters from a book of Mother Goose collections.  Don’t judge me.  I had to eat waffles because they were the only thing that didn’t make me feel like I had to hurl.  Besides, she was getting some nursery rhymes in return.  Swapping brain food for umm, brain food?  What’s so bad about that?

Why did I do it?  Not the waffle thing, but the poetry thing.  Because I had read somewhere that if you start reading rhymes to your fetus, they will turn out brilliant.  Brains courtesy of Little Boy Blue.  Who would have thunk?  This habit of reading to her continued on from the day she was born until she just didn’t want me to read to her any more.  When was that?  I can’t pinpoint a date.  I  will wager a guess at somewhere right around tween-dom.

Needless to say, we had accumulated about a million books throughout the years.  A million.  And now here I am almost 16 years later with them all over the house.  In her room, on shelves, in closets, in the playroom that is no longer the playroom.  Everywhere.  It was time.

So, with all the energy I could muster, I got myself a couple of cardboard boxes and started neatly piling children’s books into them.  One by one.  Each one a memory.  Angelina Ballerina, Dr. Suess, Goodnight Moon, Tomie dePaola, just to name a few.  I gave them to a friend of mine who has a bunch (yes, a bunch…no lie) of young children.  I knew they were going to a good home.  Why should I be selfish and keep them to myself, allowing them to collect dust?  Not being touched by anyone?  It was time to share the love.

I was surprised by my emotions.  I know I sound sappy.  But it was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in a long time.  So many memories.  I used to love bedtime.  Not only so that I could have quality time with my glass of wine, but because The Kid and I would snuggle up in her bed and I would read to her (no, I didn’t drink wine while reading to her).  Three books.  That was the limit.  Three books of her choosing.  Every night no matter what.  Well, I would swap with DH but he read to her too.  Every single night.

Aaah, those were the days.  Now I have to worry about her driving in a couple of months and going out with boys and hoping she doesn’t try marijuana.  Oh Lord.  I’m having a panic attack.  I think I want my books back.  Or at the very least, visitation rights.  Think my friend will mind?