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    September 2017
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The Economics of Halloween Candy

Are you stocking up on Halloween candy yet? I used to love Halloween. It was the only time there was a lot of candy in our house. You know that is the focus for kids, right? Also, it doesn’t matter how much you are trying to impart the deeper meaning of the traditions behind various holidays, here is the way kids think: Easter = chocolate bunnies, Memorial Day = s’mores, Independence Day = ice cream, Halloween = candy, and Thanksgiving = pie. Christmas is special though. Christmas = presents.

But getting back to Halloween: Mom used to tell us a story of a politician in the making. Once after the annual neighborhood candy shake-down (saying “Trick or treat” is actually a threat, you know) she heard our five-year-old brother Ronnie dividing up the candy with his cousins, David and Danny. Like this:

  1. Ronnie, to David: “One for you and one for me.”
  2. Ronnie, to Danny: “One for you and one for me.”
  3. Repeat until the candy is gone.

Is not that an excellent example of a politician’s definition of equal division of goods!

Probably the five-year-old actually thought he was being fair, and I’m sure Mom corrected the situation.

Still, it seems the kid had a career path chosen at a very early age.

Don’t miss the rest of the Stories My Family Tells as I Write 31 Days this October. Click here to check out the wide range of topics from a wide range of writers.

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Storytelling Surprises

Storytelling can surprise you sometimes. I truly have been enjoying writing the funny stories my family tells, but I just can’t today. I can’t tell a light-hearted anecdote about one of the cute kids in my family.

I was typing along on yesterday’s story about my big brother, Ronnie, and my Mom, just getting it down on paper, so to speak. This story has been told countless times through the years. It was an easy post to write.

Then, at the end of the story, I typed the line, “In loving memory of Ronnie and Mom. You will always be missed.”

Period. Full stop. Also, full heart and full eyes. From that place deep inside where emotions are tender and obey only their own reality, the tears welled up, surprising me. I had typed those two sentences matter-of-factly, to honor my Mom and my brother. And it is a matter of fact. I will always miss my Mom, gone 15 years now, and my brother who died the year before I was born. (By the way, if someone tells you “You can’t miss what you never had,” don’t believe them. And try to refrain from smacking them upside the head. Or not.)

So today, instead of sticking to my Write 31 Days theme, I would like to encourage my family, and all families, to get their stories on record—the stories from your past and the stories that are happening now. It doesn’t have to be fancy or pass any grammar checkers. Just write them. Or the next time you get together with your family, video them. I would love to see, in my own family, how our stories interconnect. And if any family member is interested in starting a blog, I would be happy to help. I’m not an expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I can help you get started.

Tomorrow, I’ll have another story ready. It will be short. Light-hearted. Probably involve a cute kid. But for today, my eyes are still brimming. And I just want to reminisce.

sneak

My sister posted this on Facebook today.

Don’t miss the rest of the Stories My Family Tells as I Write 31 Days this October. Click here to check out the wide range of topics from a wide range of writers.

Go Ahead. Make My Day

Doesn’t every little boy like to play cops and robbers? When my older brother, Ronnie, was about five-years-old he loved to pretend he was a sheriff from the Old West. This was when the television landscape was densely populated with lanky, sharp-shooting sheriffs and squinty-eyed outlaws.

Unfortunately, at this time Kathy was too young to be an outlaw, and the rest of us weren’t born yet. So, of course, this left Mom to take on the role of the rough-hewn, reprobate scourge of the Old West when Ronnie’s little cousins or friends weren’t around.

Mom, being the good mom that she was, threw herself into the role. She robbed banks, held up stage coaches, and generally made herself the terror of the otherwise peaceful towns residing in her son’s vivid imagination.

Of course, Ronnie didn’t slack in his attempts to restore peace. He chased whatever bad guy Mom was at the time until the menace was neutralized. And by neutralized, I mean shot, of course. What else is an Old West sheriff to do when confronted with a desperate outlaw brandishing blazing guns?

One day, when the sheriff shot her, Mom flopped down on the couch. “You. . .you got me!” she managed to say before her eyes closed in pretend payment for her pretend crimes. The miniature sheriff swaggered over to assess the situation, gripping his trusty six-shooter. . .then whacked the outlaw on her head with the very real butt of his very real toy gun.

“There!” he said, satisfied with his work. “That ought to do it!”

In loving memory of Ronnie and Mom. You will always be missed.

Don’t miss the rest of the Stories My Family Tells as I Write 31 Days this October. Click here to check out the wide range of topics from a wide range of writers.