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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

home : features : features August 19, 2014

5/12/2012 10:00:00 PM
Column: Reflections on the woman of the hour
Photos.comInside is a chocolate bar and a coupon for a one-day vow of silence, making this the perfect Motherís Day gift.
Inside is a chocolate bar and a coupon for a one-day vow of silence, making this the perfect Motherís Day gift.

Casey Martin
Courier Columnist

So, you know, I have a mother.

"What?" you're undoubtedly crying. "Not you, Casey. YOU have a mother? How did that happen?"

Oh, I see what you did there. Sarcasm. Nice.

Anyway, I DO have a mother, and today is Mother's Day.

Mother's Day was first celebrated in 1907, when a lass by the name of Anna Jarvis put together a memorial for her mother. It became an official holiday in 1914. At that time, Ms. Jarvis expressed her disappointment with the crass commercialism of the holiday.

Wow. You had no idea how commercial it would become, Anna.

When I was a wee boy, I'd make my mother a Mother's Day card, and my brother and I would make breakfast. We would also go out of our way to be "nice." Considering our absolute ignorance of the intricacies of maintaining a household, this usually entailed vacuuming (which we loved to do anyway) and fetching glass after glass of iced tea, simply because that's all we knew how to do. We also brought her lunch, did the dishes without being asked, and were eternally grateful to our dad for taking us all out to dinner so that we wouldn't have to clean up twice in one day.

(As a child, I hated doing the dishes. As an adult, I hate doing the dishes. But since I am an adult, I can make my own kids do the dishes. Man, it's great being a parent.)

I would also rail and scream and cry against the horrid injustice that was Mother's Day. Why, I would argue, is there MOTHER'S Day and FATHER'S Day but no KID'S Day?

And my mom would give the same answer that mothers have almost certainly given since 1907: Every day is Kid's Day.

"Say what? Show me where it says that on the calendar," I never said because I was a respectful young man.

But it's Mother's Day, and I really want to honor my sweet mother, who has had to put up with so much from me. The thing is (and prepare for your old pal Casey to get a little sappy), a gift and a card don't seem like enough. My mom is the best cook in the world. She's one of the smartest people I know. She is one of the few people who will laugh at my jokes. Soon after she turned 40, I began teasing her about putting her into a home. I owe her.

I make the same dumb jokes every time I see her, and she doesn't laugh, but she does roll her eyes in a merry way. In fact, my dad, brother and I were all merry pranksters, and for years she put up with our shenanigans with aplomb, typically sighing while shaking her head, "Oh, Casey."

It would take a really unique bunch of flowers or piece of jewelry to encompass all that Mom is. She was my math teacher in high school, and when I was hilarious (i.e. distracting), she'd do that oh-so-motherly thing and call out my entire name.

Despite being one of the craftiest people I know (you know, knitting, quilting, etc.), she also has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of NASCAR.

She's what I call a day vampire. Right at 5:30, on goes the nightgown, up go the feet and on goes the "Jeopardy" while she does a crossword simultaneously.

She put up with my tantrums, my doldrums and my goofy elations. She supported me when I was going through college, and when I got married, and is now the doting grandmother of four little girls. She's still my cheerleader. She's my confidante. She's my sounding board. She's the one to say, "Really? THAT'S your plan?"

She's my mom.

Well, she's 70 and has the cash to buy what she wants and needs. I could still make a card with glued-on macaroni, but that doesn't really convey how much I appreciate her. So, Mom, I love you. As Mark Twain (famous son) once said, "My mother had a great deal of trouble with me, but I think she enjoyed it." I think you were talking about my mom, too, Mark.

And to my kids: All those things that your poor grandmother had to put up with from me, your mother also has to put up with. And your mom (my wife, Sarah) has four of you little hellions. Let's be extra-nice to her, shall we? She's a big fan of chocolate. And absolute quiet.

HSE - Yavapai Reentry Project -UVSplash
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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012
Article comment by: Aunt Ann Groutage

She is all these things. The smartest person I know.
She knew how to talk before, how to walk before me,
Learned to read before me.

Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012
Article comment by: Brit Bayne

This is not only beautifully, humorously, and nostalgically written it's also full of truth and honesty. I don't know who this Casey "kid" is but he's incredibly handsome and talented. A raise may be in order.
Nicely done Mr. Martin.

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