Irksome Verdant Turbulent Birds

16 12 2006

I’m in Dallas today. Luke flew into DFW from Chicago yesterday, and my nephew graduated from UNT in Denton with degrees in creative writing and music this morning. We attended the ceremony, which was as pompous and circumstantial as you might imagine, but Luke kept it interesting. Let’s begin with his fashion choices: brown quick-dry camping shorts, long-sleeved, army-green t-shirt under a short-sleeved, plaid, button-down shirt, black ankle-high socks and some sort of athletic shoe. When I commented that perhaps his outfit wasn’t quite appropriate, he countered that he was wearing a button-down shirt. Um, okay.

As Mr. GQ escorted me into the building, we decided UNT should change their mascot from Mean Green Eagles to Irksome Verdant Birds. Windy conditions prompted the addition of “turbulent” to that phrase. Mean Green Eagles may be catchy, but Irksome Verdant Turbulent Birds–that’s poetry, people.

Speaking of phrases, Jacob is in a new phrase phase. He tends to latch on to certain expressions or sentence structures and use them for a season until some other construction captures his fancy. His latest follows this pattern:

Thank you _________ for making _______ for us.

Yesterday morning George gave Jacob coffee with hot chocolate mixed in, and I think the caffeine jolt sent his brain into a gratitude frenzy. He started thanking everybody for everything. Thank you Edge Company for making the shaving cream for us. Thank you Ford company for making our van for us. Thank you Fason Tree Service for making this coffee mug for us. And my personal favorite, Thank you China for making the American flag for George and Jacob.

Irony about American flags made in China aside, I asked Jacob why the American flag was only for his father and himself. He replied, “And Luke.” Hmmm. I guess he takes the “patri” part of patriotism literally.

So, right now we’re waiting for the rest of the family to show up at my folks’ house for happy graduation sandwiches and such. Luke is playing the piano. I can hear my mom laughing in the other room. It’s all very multi-generational-rite-of-passage-ish. I love my family. They’re such a gift.

“Thank you, God, for making family for us.” And with that I’m off to sandwich land.

P.S. Just as I clicked “post,” I heard my mom ask Luke, “Will you do a favor for me?”
“No,” he replied.
“Yes you will.”
“Oh. Okay.”

Ha. I love these people.


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19 responses

17 12 2006
emma_furlong

family

I think I love your family too. Perhaps its the scintillating way you write about them, whatever it is, your stories always make me smile.
I lonly have a small family. My sister in law died last January and I’ve been keeping in touch with the rest of her family, I think we have all grown closer this year as a result.
Emma

17 12 2006
Anonymous

Thank you, Jeanne, for making laughs for us!

See you soon! Love, Sharon

18 12 2006
kathrynlena

*sigh* i miss mr. gq. and it’s only been a few days….please tell him that i say, “hello” and that i miss him, and that he should stop trying to marry me off.

18 12 2006
kathrynlena

*sigh* i miss mr. gq. and it’s only been a few days….please tell him that i say, “hello” and that i miss him, and that he should stop trying to marry me off.

18 12 2006
jeannedamoff

Re: family

Thank you, Emma, for smiling over my stories and loving my family. That’s just about the best Christmas present I could ask for. (Of course, I could ask for a villa in the south of France, but I’m trying to be realistic.)

I’m sorry about your sister in law but thankful to hear your family has grown closer. Have a beautiful Christmas. ♥

18 12 2006
jeannedamoff

You’re welcome. 🙂

Looking forward to it! Love, J.

18 12 2006
jeannedamoff

I will certainly tell him, Katie. Funny how Luke always seems to have everyone else’s love life figured out, but woe to the one who teases him or merely asks about his own. I think I’m changing his name to Mr. Double Standard GQ.

Merry Christmas, dear. ♥

19 12 2006
Anonymous

from mary not in france

oh i wish i were there

thank you jesus for making jeanne for me.

19 12 2006
Anonymous

Re: Irksome Verdant Turbulent Birds

Jeanne, the Birds may be Irksome and Verdant, but unless they’re emotionally unstable or agitated, they can’t be Turbulent. And hey, lay off Luke’s fashion choices. I think they’re quite keen. The math professors at my son’s college are notoriously shaggy, frumpy and unfashionable — which bolsters my theory that, the smarter you are, the less grooming matters. Once Luke stops flossing and using deodorant, he will be well on the way to highbrow.

mike duran

19 12 2006
jeannedamoff

Re: from mary not in france

Dear Mary, now that you are so very near, we must schedule a hootenanny. Yea, we must do so without passing “go” or collecting $200. Our visit to Dallas last weekend was brief–Friday afternoon to Saturday afternoon–but on our way out of town we discussed the fact that your family was somewhere nearby living in a barn, and if we only knew where that barn was, we would stop by and surprise you with Christmas cheer. If I’d had any sense I would have put your cell phone number in my cell phone and called you. But when was I famous for having sense? Pathetique.

When shall we hoot?

♥, J.

19 12 2006
jeannedamoff

Re: Irksome Verdant Turbulent Birds

Okay, Mr. Picky Your-Adjective-Must-Modify-Its-Noun Mike. If they are irksome, one might assume they are agitated and therefore turbulent. Or one might just let me do whatever I want to, seeing as how I’m a grammar princess with rule-breaking privileges.

Luke definitely has the absent-minded, west-coast professor vibe. As for your “highbrow” qualifications, we’re there, baby. He brushes his teeth, but I’m pretty sure he never flosses (laziness), and I just convinced him to start wearing deodorant again. He showers daily and uses natural oils like patchouli, lavender, or tea tree oil, but that just wasn’t cutting it after an hour of soccer. Or even an hour of reading. So we bought some organic deodorant at Whole Foods and he agreed to try it.

Don’t tell him I said so, but he somehow manages to pull off his “look.” (“Fashion” may be too narrow a word to apply here.)

Merry Christmas to your gnarly self, dude. And the same to the dudette and all the dudelings.

Totally.
J.

19 12 2006
Anonymous

Me, too! Me, too!

My hubby is an Irksome Verdant (Turbulent) Bird alum. And let me tell you, he can be quite irksome.
Can I get in on this Dallas hoot? I’d even be happy to just nanny. Wait, wait. Let me reconsider that one. Last nanny-ing experience was not so good for the kids’ stomachs. Apparently, taco seasoning is not the best choice for a 3 yr old and a 7 yr old. Especially when it’s preceeded by several lbs of popcorn.
And, um, yes, I did go back and not only sing but also play the tune on the piano. I was thoroughly entertained.

19 12 2006
Anonymous

Re: Me, too! Me, too!

That was me.
Heather
http://heathergoodman.blogspot.com
One of these days, Alice…

19 12 2006
jeannedamoff

Re: Me, too! Me, too!

Like I always say, the more at the hoot, the nannier.

Hey, Heather. In honor of your husband’s alma mater, you should serve him several pounds of your taco-seasoned popcorn. Then he’ll be verdant as well as irksome. And I expect his stomach will be turbulent, too. I can’t help you with the “bird” part, though. Unless he comes to the hoot. (My cheez-o-meter just spun out of control.)

19 12 2006
Anonymous

Re: Me, too! Me, too!

Taco-seasoned popcorn would do nothing to green my husband. This man drinks Tabasco sauce for kicks. The first few months of our marriage, I took offense to his dosing my lasagna with the sizzling sauce. I learned. That’s just him. Apparently, half of his taste buds have suffered taste lost.

31 12 2006
Anonymous

Thanks for a giggle

Jeanne, you crack me up. I mean, I always knew you were witty and funny, but in catching up on your blogs I have been laughing out loud. Thanks for bringing some sunshine into my otherwise cold and rainy day.
Tina
http://spaghettipie.blogspot.com

31 12 2006
jeannedamoff

Re: Thanks for a giggle

You’re welcome! And thank you for reading my blog and laughing. That makes my day. ♥

1 01 2007
Anonymous

Inspirational Mascots

I also forgot to mention that at least Irksome Verdant Turbulent Birds (or even Mean Green Birds, at that) sounds like a potentially intimdating foe. My school mascot was a kangaroo. I’m not sure we even had a formidable adjective our kangaroo-ness. How’s that for an inspiring mascot?

1 01 2007
Anonymous

Re: Inspirational Mascots

oh, that was me again. Tina
http://spaghettipie.blogspot.com

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