I’ve been a super slacker lately and for that, I apologize. But just so you know, I’m slacking in nearly every aspect of my life right now. It’s actually a bit of a problem. Rather than tackle other, more important things, (like writing a 10 page report that is 3 days overdue), I’m putting together this post, so that you all have something to read on Thursday. You’re welcome.
My mom is one of five kids; she’s the only one who had children. Needless to say, there weren’t exactly tonnes of kids running around at family reunions. It was pretty much me and my brother and a bunch of adults who drank coffee and smoked cigarettes.
My mom has two brothers that we were close to; there was an ongoing game between these brothers vying for their niece’s attention. Uncle Jim would hug me good-bye and say “You’re my favorite niece” and I would automatically say “You’re my favorite uncle” back. At which point, Uncle Jim would then laugh in Uncle Keith’s face. I’d backtrack but it was already done. Uncle Keith lured me into the same trap several times as well. Eventually, I realized… “But I’m your only niece…”
Regardless, Uncle Jim was kind of my favorite uncle, almost, purely because he had a wooden leg. I loved his wooden leg.
At first, I’m sure Uncle Jim thought it was cute, maybe even endearing, but after awhile, I’m sure he was sick of hiking up his pant leg for me to knock on his wooden leg.
I wasn’t ignorant to this; even as a child, I was fully aware that this ritual tested his patience time and time again. But I also loved the wooden leg. I always wanted to knock on it. I’d sneak up and crawl under the table towards my uncle with great anticipation. I thought I was quite clever.
The trick was to figure out which leg was the fake one “without him noticing”. Clearly, he always noticed me tapping his wooden leg and his real leg successively. I’d figure out which leg was which and then I start knocking hard and talking to the leg, you know, so that he was surprised when he realized I’d snuck up on him.
It pretty much ended the same way, every time, but I was still always surprised when he said I got it wrong.
I was sure that he was pulling my leg. (RDRR) I’d just have to check for myself. Naturally.
Eventually I reached an age where I no longer crawled under tables to sneak up on people and I became curious as to how Uncle Jim came to have a wooden leg.
He gave me, what I believed at the time to be, a logical explanation.
I accepted the answer and continued on my merry way.
Years later, I was thinking of Uncle Jim and his wooden leg and how much I loved it. I remembered crawling under the table and sneaking up on the leg, which always turned out to be his real leg and therefore, that much less exciting. I remembered asking him how he lost his leg. I also remembered the answer.
R.I.P Uncle Jim!
Big thanks to EliseArt for providing the illustrations, complete with new and improved EliseArt logo.