Friday, August 8, 2008

Peachabowfumee...

My folks raised all us kids to be well spoken and polite. No cussin' allowed. If one of us would say darn, mom would say, "you might as well say damn.", and needless to say we knew better than to say damn. Same with heck, "...hell...', gosh, "..God.." and so forth. We knew that there were things that were not to pass through our lips because any stupid dolt could cuss and we should be able say what we needed to say without swearing because we were encouraged to expand our vocabulary so we wouldn't need to rely on words such as those. I guess when I was probably 12, my baby brother (9) and our best friend and next door neighbor (10) decided we would make a list of all the cuss words we knew, which would probably have been several less than George Carlin's list. We wrote the words down on a piece of paper and stashed the list in our 'treasure box', a metal BandAid box. Then we decided we needed to make up a word that we could say that didn't sound like cussin' but we, and only we, would know what the word meant and we wouldn't get in trouble that way. How we came about this word I don't think any of us remember and it would be totally speculative for me to try to explain, but whatever the method of madness was the word we came up with was "peachabowfumee". If you just sound it out as it reads, that's how it sounds in my mind to this day. Now you need to understand that I'm one of those weird people who couldn't tell you where I was, oh for instance, when Kennedy was shot or when men walked on the moon. I know they happened and I was glued to the tube as soon as I heard about the president being shot and I was probably in school watching when the astronauts walked on the moon, but I remember peachabowfumee like it was yesterday. I don't remember if any of us tried to spell it or not but that it was one of those childhood secrets held near and dear and not to be shared with anyone else, but we would be the only ones who would know...

So if any of your children and/or grandchildren come up with some strange word that they use and then look at each other and laugh hysterically, you might think of this post and know that they are living a childhood that they will remember and smile about when they get old.

Oh, and yes, mom found the BandAid box, emptied the contents and left it on the kitchen cabinet for a couple of days... and she never said a word, because she knew that we knew she knew, and we learned from it. How cool was my mom?!!!

2 comments:

jojo said...

What a cute story! My mom didn't tolerate any such "rubbish" either, but I don't remember making up my own words. That is so cool...wish I would have thought of it. Usually I just swore in my head ;)

Have a great weekend.

Mama C. said...

Your mom was way cool... and your childhood was much more of an adventure to you than you give yourself credit for, if you remember the circumstances of creating your very own cuss word like it was yesterday.

We grew up learning respect and manners, too. And, at 45, I STILL don't cuss in front of my mother. Guess some things just don't change.