THERE’S A HAMMER ON YOUR BUMPER……
Today class, we will discuss the importance of thinking before you speak…
I thought I’d share with you some sentences that have remained burned in my memory over the years. These sentences were used in different circumstances by different people, but in each case a little thought before speaking would have been wise.
Our first sentence….”There’s a hammer on your bumper”. Sadly these words were uttered by “moi”. Many moons ago, I was riding down a highway in the car with my family ..I think we were on some sort of vacation, driving along for hours. I had a primo seat….a WINDOW seat! I could see EVERYTHING…and not wanting to waste the experience, I was watching the cars pass us. For some reason, I would get very nervous if our car passed someone else…I think I felt that this was a VERY risky thing to do. I don’t even want to re-live the emotions that went through me when we passed great big semi-trailer trucks…(complete and total terror).
So we’re driving along, and then my father went for it…he passed another car…to insure that the other car would behave itself and remain in its own lane, I watched the other car with intense concentration. And then I saw it….this car was speeding down the highway…WITH A HAMMER ON IT’S BUMPER!! I felt an over-whelming sense of urgency…I needed to tell the driver of the other car!!! I immediately opened my mouth and spoke without thinking…I made direct eye contact with the other driver, pointed my finger at his bumper and said, ” THERE’S A HAMMER ON YOUR BUMPER!!!”….mind you, we’re driving 55 miles an hour…everyone had their windows up. The driver didn’t slow down, or pull over or ANYTHING….and so again I said, in a much louder voice, “THERE’S A HAMMER ON YOUR BUMPER!!” Again, I made frantic pointing gestures at the driver, and then at the bumper….the driver just stared at me.
I didn’t even have time to register frustration…my family started convulsing with laughter…..and to this day, someone…(yes, Mother, I mean you) will get a big laugh out of the time I didn’t ” Think before you speak”…..Hmmmm, maybe that’s why they let me have the window seat more often…just to see what I’d say. Drat…That reminds me of another sentence. It happened on ANOTHER family vacation..and a car we were passing had a rope on it’s roof….you guessed it..” THERE’S A ROPE ON YOUR ROOF!!.
Our next example, another sentence was uttered by me in a car with lots of family in it…but this time I had the FRONT SEAT PASSENGER WINDOW!! WaHoo!! Of course I was an adult, and the Mother of the car, so maybe this seat assignment was to be expected…Anyway, again we’re on a family vacation….It was a hot and humid day and the sun was beating down….the kiddos had been whooping it up..alternately fighting and then having fits of hysterical laughter in the backseat for hours and my brain must have been fried from trying to distract them from EACH OTHER…(that is my excuse for the following) ..I was staring at the billboards that we were zooming past to distract myself and way off in the distance I saw a billboard that shocked me. Once again I didn’t think before speaking and I blurted out the following…” LOOK AT THAT SIGN!…IT SAYS IT’S 106 DEGREES OUTSIDE!!!”. My wonderful hubby cleared his throat and politely informed me that I was looking at a sign that was posting the price of premium gasoline being sold at a gas station..once again the kids got hysterical..but at least they were laughing. Now you know how long ago this happened…gas..1.06 per gallon…( I had my children when I was ten..I’m still quite young.)
A similar experience…AGAIN..driving with the family, this time through Nashville…..the home of country music…naturally they sell every kind of country/cowboy clothing you could want. Once again I was in the place of honor…reserved for “Mom”…Way up ahead of us I saw something amazing! I had never seen anything like it before and I didn’t want anyone in the car to miss seeing it so I yelled out, “LOOK UP AHEAD!!, LOOK AT THOSE GIANT BOOTS! THEY’RE HUGE!! THEY MUST BE TEN FEET TALL!!”. The boots WERE ten feet tall, it’s just that they were images on a billboard..not..real..cowboy boots…sigh…
Our last sentence was spoken by my oldest Son when he was going to college in Montana…His campus was beautiful, but of course, VERY cold in winter…Now I love my son VERY much, but he might have wanted to think this one through before saying it to his MOTHER WHO WORRIES TOO MUCH….He called me up and after some deep emotional sharing of his past week…..(example..Me to Son..”How was your week?”..Son replies..”fine”. Me to Son..”What’s the weather like?” Son replies.. “Fine”.) Ah yes, the kind of connecting a Mother lives for…anyway just before Son is about to hang up..he says, ” I got frost bite on my ears, but the nurse says they’re not going to break off.” HE REALLY SAID THIS TO ME! THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENED CLASS!!!..truly, this really did happen..”THE NURSE SAYS THEY’RE NOT GOING TO BREAK OFF!!”..Oh Lord, help me now….Just saying..this is one of those times he might have wanted to.. ” think before you speak”. In case you’re wondering..six years of therapy later, I can repeat those words and not curl up into the fetal position.
OH! After writing all of this I realize I don’t need to go get those tests done to determine why I say such random, stupid stuff, I thought this was something new that I was doing, but……………….I’ve been doing it all along!
I hope that this has been helpful to you class…and if it hasn’t…well….I saved myself the cost of a visit to a shrink.