Archive for January, 2012

Sebastian Cabot and Other Swear Words

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

“Insanity is hereditary: You can get it from your children” ~ Sam Levinson

Those of you over 40 probably remember the late 60s/early 70s TV comedy Family Affair. The show was about a well-paid hip bachelor with a to die for Manhattan apartment who, after his brother and sister-in-law die in an accident (wow what a fun premise for a comedy!), “inherits” three of his brother’s children. The trio included 6 year old red-headed twins Buffy and Jody – who totally annoyed me – and their 15 year old sister, Cissy.

ITALIAN LESSON: To swear = bestemmiare

In my four-year old mind, the real star of the show was the house butler, Mr. French. Mr. French was a proper English gentleman, and he seemed so likable to me. Looking back, I actually think I was more intrigued with his real name than his character on the show or that signature black umbrella he toted around New York. You see, the actor’s name was Sebastian Cabot, but I thought it was Sir Bastard Cabinet.

I think Mom and I called him Sir Bastard Cabinet for years, even once I knew what his name really was (and I think Mom just got a kick out of it). Plus, it was burned into my brain cells, just like freckles (see Freckles post).

Next up, a post about how my four syllable first name became the one syllable name it is today. Wow, how lucky I am to have so many sweet memories, thanks to hours upon hours of chats with my Mom. Kudos to Mom, and thank you to Sir Bastard.

Please share in the comments spot: Do you remember this show and/or what were YOUR funny names for people from your childhood?

Melts in Your Mouth…Oh God Nooooo!

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

After reading my last post about the “Cradle Crap” my friend Irene (Smith) wrote to me about the time her ultra clean German mom found a stray M & M in the living room. I thought her tale was so funny I wanted her to have the guest post spotlight, so enjoy a bit of Madness, German style! Here you go:

I remember my Mom and her ladyfriends talking about cradle cap when I was little. I was so grossed out. My brother is eight years younger than I and I quickly learned babies are precious, beautiful, funny and sometimes very gross. One day my mother and I were watching TV on the leather couch in our living room with my one and a half year old brother in Mom’s lap. Watching TV with my Mom was so much fun. It was the sixties. So TV, 500 Rummy, Barbie and Etch a Sketch were huge for me.

After Mom had fed, changed and put baby brother to sleep, she was straightening up the living room. Mom was born in Germany. She was so much fun and the cleanest person I have ever known. A speck of dust had no chance of surviving her daily cleaning routine, which was top to bottom, every single day. Her motto was you don’t wait for the house to be dirty to clean it, you clean it every day so it will never be dirty.

So baby brother is asleep, Mom is straightening up the living room; a stray piece of popcorn here, an M&M there, and she picks up the M&M and casually pops it in her mouth. She immediately spits it in her hand and with a grossed out look on her face says “Mein Gott (OMG with the accent), its a sh!tball!” Diapers back then left a lot to be desired as far as gaps go, and it seems my baby brother occasionally produced an abundance of small balls of what he would later call “dookie.” (Well he still calls it dookie and he’ll be 48 this April!) I guess one of us sat on a stray M&M flattening it on the leather couch, but it really did look exactly like a brown M&M!

How my father loved hearing that story upon his return from work. He was fun too, and seized any opportunity to tease her. Forevermore, when my Mom’s continuous cleaning got on his nerves (this included his precious Sunday NY Times being completely folded, put back together, with pen put back in its place by my Mom, in the time it took Dad to pour a cup of coffee or run to the bathroom), whenever she complained about him being messy (again, messy could mean you were having a snack and did not sweep the crumbs off the table every 10 seconds), he would say “Oh calm down, you ate a sh!tball!!”

Irene & her family

Thanks for the laugh Irene – I can practically hear your mother’s accent!
~ Me

So, pop an M & M or a handful (just make certain they are the real things) and head back to the home of MADNESS HERE.

Cradle Crap

Saturday, January 14th, 2012

“When I was born I was so surprised I couldn’t talk for a year and a half.” ~ Gracie Allen

My mom was certainly gifted with a clever tongue, and her way with words always made me laugh. Her wit was mentioned in a few of my previous Madness posts such as The Sh!t List!, Mom’s Prison Rap, My Clever Ma and This Little Piggy.

Yesterday I was pleasantly reminded of a funny phrase mom used to say when I was little. You know how babies get something called cradle cap on their heads? It’s a form of dermatitis which appears on the scalp of infants. But let’s not get gross here, I don’t even know if you’ve had your morning coffee yet.

(ITALIAN LESSON: That’s a cute baby = Che carino bimbo / Che carino bimba (for female)

Anyway, it was…well, Mom said it best, calling it “Cradle Crap”, and she used to gently peel away whatever traces of this mushy scalp crap I had on my little baby head.

Cradle crap, exploding diapers and boogers — bless you moms for all you endure!

Time to vent! Please share your baby incidents in the comments section HERE. I’d love to hear your stories (bring on the yuck factor, I have a pretty strong stomach)!