I’m a bad, bad Grandma. It involves mashed potatoes.
I know this because I got “the eye” from Audrey today. You know the one. The silent stare. Raised-eyebrow-one-penetrating-eye-glare-stare. The very same one my parents gave me when I was… well, bad.
It began with pizza. Sounds innocent enough, but that pizza began a tale that got me into all the trouble I’m now in. The pizza was bakery-style pizza, the kind with red sauce only… the kind sliced into nice, even rectangles and easy to eat. Audrey got the pizza at our local grocery store bakery department, and when she walked into her kitchen this afternoon with the white box, 3 of her 4 boys giggled with delight at this treat.
But William, Audrey’s oldest son, was not feeling the gratitude. He looked at me and said, “I don’t like that pizza.”
In my best Grandma voice, I asked, “Have you tried it?” Then I added that standard adult statement from the adult repertoire of food-related statements, “Because you’ll never know if you like something unless you try it.”
William was one step ahead of me and his answer was quick. “I’ve tried it. I hate it.”
“Ah,” I answered, “let me tell you about my experience with mashed potatoes when I was a kid.”
And I told him the story. I was 5 or 6, just about William’s age, when my Dad and I had a little dinner-time struggle with mashed potatoes. My Mom had made dinner… I don’t remember what else came along with it, but I do remember the mashed potatoes. I hated mashed potatoes. I hated the feel of the “things” and “lumps” all wrapped up in the mash. Of course I know now that those “things” are just potatoes that haven’t been completely mashed, but it didn’t matter back then. I remember sitting opposite my Dad at our dinner table in our kitchen in LaMesa, California. I remember the color of the kitchen table… gray with white swirls. I remember my Dad saying that we eat what’s put in front of us and we appreciate the food.
But I didn’t appreciate mashed potatoes with “things.”
I remember my Dad and Mom saying, “You won’t know if you like them if you don’t try them.”
I answered something like, “I’ve tried them. I hate them.”
Then my Dad made me sit at that table for ever… and ever... until I tried a spoonful of those mashed potatoes.
As I told this story to William, his eyes grew wide with curiosity. When I got to the end of my story, he said, almost resignedly, “And you loved the mashed potatoes. Right?”
“WRONG!” I said. “I HATED them. And I still hate mashed potatoes!”
William burst into laughter at my unexpected ending and I began to laugh right along with him.
Until I felt “the eye” upon me. Yep. It was Audrey…
I’m a bad, bad Grandma!