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June 13, 2012 / hippiechickamblings


I recently learned something about my grandmother (“Maw”) that shocked me. She only completed three years of school. I figure she must’ve been largely self-taught, since she could read anything she wanted, and wrote as well as anyone I know. She loved to play word games, especially Scrabble, and some of my fondest memories are of the two of us fighting it out over the Scrabble board. If you weren’t prepared to stray a little off the beaten path, you didn’t stand a chance against Maw.

Maw: How about we play some Scramble before we go to bed?

Me: You mean, Scrabble? I guess we can, but you have to promise not to cheat.

Maw: Why, I never cheated at anything in my life!

Me: Oh, don’t act so innocent, you know what I mean. You’re only supposed to spell out real words—not made up ones.

Maw: I don’t make up words!

Me: You don’t, huh? What about the last time when you tried to tell me “d-u-z” was a word, and I told you it was spelled “d-o-e-s”?

Maw: And I was right, too! “Duz” is a word, and I proved it!

Me: Maw, it wasn’t in the dictionary, remember?

Maw: Don’t matter. “Duz” is worshing powders!  I showed you right on the box!

Me: I know it’s the name of your laundry detergent, but it’s a proper noun and that’s against the rules, and—Oh, never mind, have you got your first word yet?

Maw: Yeah, and you can’t tell me it ain’t no word, neither (spells out “p-r-o-n”).

Me: Pron? What’s pron?

Maw: Uh, Brother, now don’t sit there and tell me you don’t know what it means. ‘Specially since I didn’t want to use it in the first place.

Me: Then why did you?

Maw: It was all I had.

Me: You didn’t have anything but “pron?” I hate to have to tell you this Maw, but “pron” isn’t a word.

Maw: I know it is, too a word!

Me: Okay, then tell me what it means.

Maw: Now, get away from here!

Me: No, really, I’m afraid you’re going to have to tell me, because I never heard of “pron.”

Maw: I can’t believe you never heard of that and you’re a grown woman, too! You need to keep up. It’s them old pictures of nekkid people! Nasty stuff!

Me: Are you talking about porn?

Maw: That’s what I said, pron. Nekkid stuff.

Me: Where on earth did you hear about that?

Maw: Why I seen it right on the TV! It was on the news, and it had that old man that lives in this big house. You could set a dozen of my houses in it, it was so big! And he had all these young girls running around his house in rabbit ears, talking about taking their necked pictures. The news was calling him the “Prince of Pron.”

Me: You mean Hugh Hefner?

Maw: That’s him, the old buzzard! I can’t for the life of me figure how he got all those pretty girls to live with him, though. You could plow a fence row with his nose.

Me: Probably because he’s richer than Solomon.

Maw: I just don’t see it. There ain’t enough money in the world to make me do that.

Me: Do what?

Maw: Take my clothes off and go running around nekkid in front of people! I don’t know what’s going on with young women these days. It’s just pure Satan, I reckon.

Me: You think the devil makes them go nekkid…I mean, naked?

Maw: What else could it be? Why, in my day, a girl wouldn’t let a single soul see her nekkid…until her husband saw her.

Me: So Grandpa was the only person who ever saw you naked?

Maw: Me? Why, your grandpa never seen me nekkid in his life!

Me: I’m not sure how that works, Maw. You had ten children.

Maw: That’s right. And if he’d seen me nekkid, I might’ve had twenty! Women need to think about stuff like that before they go around showing off what the good Lord gave ‘em.

Me: I imagine young people must seem way off track to you.

Maw: Oh, they are! I don’t think it’s all their fault, though. Young’uns just don’t have enough to do anymore. When I was raising mine, they worked and helped out from the time they was little. Life’s too easy, now. They ain’t got nothing to do. They just lay around, won’t get haircuts, smoking that old Juanita…

Me: Smoking Juanita? Marijuana, you mean.

Maw: That’s what I said. Juanita.

Me: Now, Maw, how do you know about that?

Maw: What do you think, I live in a shoe? I keep up. I know some fellers used to live up the road that smoked Juanita.

English: Hippies sitting around smoking pot in...

English: Hippies sitting around smoking pot in Chiang Mai, Thailand, November 1973. These are US tourists on extended vacation. Thomas R. Martin, USN seated. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Me: How do you know that? Did you see them smoking it?

Maw: Didn’t have to see it to know they did. I could tell.

Me: How?

Maw: Why, ‘cause they was always smiling!

Me: Maybe they were just happy.

Maw: Ain’t nobody that happy!

Me: So you think just because somebody is smiling, that must mean he’s smoking pot?

Maw: Now, I never said anything about a pot.

Me: No, pot is another name for marijuana.

Maw: It is? Well, that’s a lot easier to remember than Juanita.

Me:  So you think everybody that’s smiling has been smoking pot?

Maw: Ain’t you been listening? I never said EVERYBODY that smiles has been smoking the pot. Just certain ones.

Me: Yeah? Which ones?

Maw: You don’t catch on too good, do you?  You sure you ain’t been smoking the pot?

Me: You don’t see me smiling, do you?

Maw: Well, if you was, you’d know what you were smiling about. Them fellers that smokes the pot just smiles all the time…for no reason.

Me: I see

Maw: I think you stay home too much. You don’t seem to know much about what goes on.

Me: I do learn a lot from you.

Maw: Better not tell your mother. If she knew I was teaching you about the pot and ‘specially about pron, she wouldn’t like it.

One Comment

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  1. annie / Jul 19 2012 8:26 pm

    I think of a Carol Burnett skit when I read this!!..AWEsomE!!

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