Egging Me On
Here's a new expression for you; at least, it was new to me.
The Punch cartoon was entitled "True Humility," which I found interesting in two ways: one, I don't agree that it's true humility to say such a thing (that parts of a bad egg are excellent, for those who take a firm stand against link-clinking). Why? Because I have been saying things like that--smoothing-over things, get-the-attention-off-me things--and taking the smallest or worst piece all my life, even before I was a mother...and yet, I don't think anyone would say humility is one of my virtues.
The other thing that struck me is that humility isn't a, ahem, cultural value these days. A curate who didn't speak up for himself and try to get a better egg would be viewed as a candidate for therapy. He'd certainly never get his own parish.
Please Alert Alanis Morrisette
Two years ago I made NSLR a shepherd costume for his school's nativity pageant. I was rather proud of the headdress, for which I found instructions on the Internet. As you may have observed, a rectangular dishtowel tied on with rope tends to leave a distressingly bare, un-desert-nomadlike area at the back of the head. The key is to fold a one-yard-square piece of material into an uneven triangle and...but I digress.
A friend of mine reserved the costume in January of 2006. "If the fourth grade is still doing the Nativity in two years, can I borrow that costume?" "Sure," I said, "but I screwed up and it's really, really tight. I didn't leave enough seam allowance, I eyeballed the whole thing. R.'s really skinny, and he could barely squeeze it on." She assured me that her son is also extremely thin.
A few weeks ago I handed over the costume, and then a few days after that I saw my friend. "Boy, I've been meaning to tell you, X. can barely get that robe on. It is tight!" I smiled, also tightly. "We'll still use the headdress, though, and I'll figure something else out," she added.
Last night was the pageant. X. was the shepherd whose head was lost in the vast emptiness tailored to R.'s gigantic cranium.