07 October 2008

Do As I Say, Not As I Do

“You know, you can’t bring that stick home.” I’ve heard that a million times. Usually after I’ve discovered a branch that I insist on carrying while we’re hiking. Boss Lady is averse to the bringing home of sticks. She tried it one time, only because I carried the branch for about a mile. When she realized what a mess of splinters I made in the back of the car on the ride home, she immediately informed me I would never be allowed to bring home another stick.

“I’d really love to know what you’re thinking when you’re carrying that branch? Just what is it you plan to do with it?” That’s the standard follow up question after she tells me I can’t bring the stick home, no matter how far I carry it. I’ll let you in on a little secret: I’m not usually thinking about anything. I just like carrying sticks.

What I’d like to know, though, is why, if I’m not allowed to bring home sticks, Boss Lady’s Mother is. She’s got a nice “y” shaped birch branch that appeared in the front flower bed several days ago. I tried to steal it, and was quickly instructed not to touch it. Now, we don’t have any birch trees in our yard. And the neighbors don’t have any birch trees in their yards. So, the only way this branch could have reached that flower bed is if somebody brought it home. And if I’m not allowed to bring home sticks, then why is somebody else?

I’d also like to point out that Boss Lady’s Mother’s obsession doesn’t stop with sticks. For several years she has had a minor obsession with moss. She wants to cover a perfectly good chair with moss, and put it out in the yard. So, while we were hiking on Sunday, she harvested moss from a rock and a rotting tree. Then Boss Lady found a “nifty” tree skin. I didn’t know trees had skin, or that they could shed. I thought only snakes shed skin. But, we found birch bark that was in perfect tree shape even though all the tree had rotted out of it. Boss Lady insisted on carrying it home.

Boss Lady’s Mother is also obsessed with rocks. Several times during our Sunday hike, she noticed nice, flat river rocks that would be perfect stepping stones in her flower bed. She also noticed a few interestingly shaped stones. Boss Lady’s Mother particularly likes stones with unique shapes. So much so that she once snagged this stone on an outing.

But, I can't bring home a plain old branch?

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