VICKI'S VIEW: Positive Outlook

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I once knew this family from Arkansas. They were Razorback fanatics and a lot of fun…but weird.

They had moved to Syracuse, New York where we were living at the time. My dad was a missionary pastor who helped start Baptist churches up north where there weren’t any. So, the Arkansas couple were thrilled to have a Baptist church in the vicinity.

I loved going to their house to eat. In the den they had a giant pennant attached to the wall that portrayed a rather ferocious looking razorback hog. It gave me nightmares occasionally, but I still liked eating there. I was in the third grade and madly in love with their son.

When the Razorback football team won the whole clan would go mad by yelling while proudly displaying their football paraphernalia all over the house and yard. When their team lost, they went into mourning and hid the pennants and jerseys until the next win. Then the mania would start all over.

One time the wife was so excited by the team win that she ran outside and yelled the typical hog call “Soueeeee!” at the top of her lungs. A neighbor thought she was screaming for help and called the cops. But the family was not deterred and continued to enjoy their football experiences and sometimes would invite us all over to enjoy a game too.

Once they invited us and some other church members over who had three little red-headed boys who terrorized the church. Their hair was neon red and matched the freckles that dotted their faces. They pulled pranks and drove their Sunday School teachers crazy with their antics. My favorite was the 3-year-old. He was born mischievous and determined to wreak havoc.

At one meal he was sitting in a highchair next to my dad. While the adults were talking, he leaned near my father and said, “Watch this.” He then proceeded to fling the corn from his plate over his shoulder. At that moment, his mother turned and saw his empty plate.

“Oh, I see you ate all of your corn. Here is some more,” she said smiling at the imp of Satan. She dished out another spoonful. As she turned back to the table conversation, the little brat threw more corn over his shoulder. As we left the table at the end of the meal, I looked back and saw the floor and wall splattered with corn. Dad still laughs about it to this day.

But we enjoyed the friendship and football mania, corn and all. Eventually, everyone was transferred by their companies, or moved away. It was sad, and we lost touch, but we still have those hilarious memories of good friends and good times long gone.

But another very funny episode occurred just the other day.

Several months ago, I ordered pillows from a rather obnoxious, but sweet, man on TV who constantly barrages viewers with his merchandise. I ordered a semi firm pillow that I found to be too squishy. Meanwhile, my husband ordered a firm pillow. After several weeks, I added my old pillow under my squishy one, while my husband gave up on his and went back to his old pillow.

For several weeks, I watched his firm pillow just sit on a shelf in the bedroom, looking forlorn. I decided that this was a huge waste, so I told him that I was going to get rid of my second pillow and use his firm one.

He huffed and puffed for a while, acting as though I were asking for the moon.

“You don’t use it anyway,” I pleaded. “It just sits on the shelf!”

“But I might want to use it one day!” he said, stubbornly.

“That’s stupid. If you wanted it, you would be using it,” I retorted.

Finally, in frustration, he said, “Fine, you take it!” and slammed the door.

Then he opened it back up and said, “Why do you always want the stuff I don’t use?!”

I could not help it. I really tried, but just could not. I burst out laughing, falling all over the bed.

“I want your stuff, because you don’t use it!” I gasped out between gales of laughter.

We called a truce, and I took the pillow.

It is memories like this that brighten a really crummy day and give you something to talk about years later. They are fun to recall and funnier to repeat.

And I have another pillow.

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