I wrote about my nephew in a posting about getting your Christmas tree from a farm where you pick and cut your own. A recent conversation with a neighbor and something I heard on TV the same day reminded me of my nephew once again. The initial issue that brought all of this to mind was something my sister had told me years ago. We were discussing why so many women loved cats. She pointed out that some scientists believe that women are genetically attuned to be aware of a baby crying. Now, this observation may not be politically correct for many, but if you don’t like it talk to my sister, NOT ME. She went on to point out that the sounds of a cat’s meow are similar to a baby’s cry and thus the affinity of many women for cats. None of this has much to do with this post, however. But it triggered other thoughts.
Another thing my sister had told my long ago was that women were also genetically advantaged over men with an ability to endure, how shall I say it, the aroma of certain emissions that erupt from both ends on a regular basis from babies. Again, direct your nasty comments to my sister, NOT ME. This recollection was brought to mind by a recent commercial in which a minivan pulls off the road and a man and a woman jump out to address a problem which it becomes apparent is their baby throwing up in its second row baby seat. What caught my attention was the fact that, while both adults were in obvious distress (I think you can figure exactly ‘how’ on your own) from the smell, the woman stood by while the husband attended to the child. When I related this to my sister, her only suggestion was that perhaps the female was supposed to be currently pregnant.
But that commercial reminded me of an event when my nephew was 4 or 5 years old. One of those traveling carnivals set up operations on the property of a local Volunteer Fire Department and my sister and her husband decided to walk over after dinner with their son and a neighbor couple. Now the neighbor husband was not a bad person. Certainly not a felon. But he occasionally lost a battle with the finer points of ethics. Plus he was a bit of a blowhard. Anyway, he suggested he and my nephew take a ride on the Ferris Wheel. My sister resisted the idea since my nephew was just recovering from a stomach bug. The blowhard insisted he would be fine since the Ferris Wheel did not turn very fast and made no violent gyrations like some of the other rides. My sister gave in.
Up they went, but as they approached the top the neighbor began rocking the bucket they were seated in. Okay, now here’s the thing – if you get your dictionary and look up projectile vomiting, there’s a good chance you will become acquainted with my nephew. The term fire hose comes to mind. So the operator stopped the wheel when my nephew was right at the top to off-load and load passengers. The blowhard continued the rocking for a very short time. He stopped when my nephew began spewing his stomach contents all over him. But my nephew was not done. Next in line were the people in the buckets in front of and below them – much to their horror. Now, my nephew was a skinny little kid then, but he had a high capacity stomach. He once ate a quart jar of dill pickles at one sitting. So he had plenty of ammo. Again, much to the horror of those in the buckets ahead of them. At this point the operator made, I believe, a tactical error. Instead of just rotating the wheel until he could unload my nephew, he succumbed the screams and discomfort of those in each bucket between my nephew and the operator, taking the time to unload them (though not trying to load new passengers) and exposing those remaining to precious minutes of … well, exposure.
Every story should have a moral, I guess. About all I can offer for this story, though, would be the following advice. Never get on a Ferris Wheel unless you’re packing an umbrella.