Welcome to Throwback Thursday. This week I’ve chosen a book I’ve been delving into again off and on…it’s guaranteed to lift the mood.
If you’re at all familiar with Barb Taub’s blog you’ll have a very good idea about the contents of this book. It’s divided into sections with subheadings, each dealing with a different subject – kids, relationships, life, holidays, travel, pets, death and writing. You could read it in one go or keep dipping in and out. It lends itself to either. But whichever you choose, eating and/or drinking while reading is not advised, as several people have found to their (and their appliances’) costs.
The book includes material from newspaper articles, blog posts and life experiences, well put together and written with the author’s uniquely humorous take on situations and the events life has thrown at her. With intriguing headings such as Penis Envy Or The Revenge of Sixth-Grade Science Teacher…Won’t You Be My (CREEPY) Neighbor?…The Day I Killed MOM – A (MOSTLY) True Story, to name but a few, these anecdotes beg to be read and I’ve enjoyed doing so immensely.
One of my favourite sections is still from the extract I shared in my original post. Here’s a small part of the said extract when Barb and her husband decided it was time to get a puppy. After careful research to find a trainable and intelligent breed, they decided on a border collie who, as Barb says, turned out to only have two brain cells. So the hope that it would encourage the kids to spend time outdoors and give them a sense of resposibility didn’t quite materialise…
Now over to Barb…
‘I have heard that some Border Collies are able to guard and herd their master’s children. But I found out otherwise one winter day when I went to the bathroom. Of course, like all mothers, I did this with the door open to listen for sounds of carnage. If I had to close the door, it served as signal for every child and animal in a three-state radius to fling themselves against it, demanding to know exactly what I was doing in there and for how long I intended to do it. This particular time, I hadn’t been in there more than 30-seconds before I looked out the window and saw the barefoot preschooler and puppy (with the keenly honed herding instincts of generations of championship breeding) running down the street in opposite directions. I was momentarily tempted to let them keep going, but we did actually pay quite a bit for the dog.
In earlier years, we sniggered with amused superiority over stories of friends and neighbors who had to remortgage the house in the face of canine calamity, such as doggie surgical teams called in to remove a $1,200 tennis ball from the stomach of the family mutt. Thus the Hub and I agreed that we would never authorize the vet’s use of extraordinary measures (costing more than $50) to prolong our wallet’s hemorrhage dog’s suffering. But all of this was forgotten the midnight I was awakened by the dog being spectacularly ill. To my horror, I saw her foaming at the mouth. With visions of rabies shots for the entire household, I rushed her to the vet, wondering how much cash I could raise quickly if we sold off a few extra children.
This was the point when I discovered that the dog we had chosen for her breed’s intelligence had eaten every bar of soap in the house and was retching soapsuds.’
ONCE UPON A TIME…
Chapter 1. A California girl named Barb met her prince of a guy. He was tall, dark, and handsome. (Actually, he was a Republican. But he was definitely tall.) They fell in love, and got married.
Chapter 2. He brought her to his castle in England and they lived happily ever after. THE END**
**Luckily, 35+ years of living happened between Chapters 1 and 2, giving Barb plenty of material for this collection (in no particular chronological order) from her newspaper columns, articles, blog posts, and that time she killed Mom.
And that’s before Chapter 3 even starts.
“I have learned to put down the coffee and place breakable objects at a safe distance when a post from Barb Taub comes up. It is very hard to drink coffee and laugh at the same time without redecorating the desk…”—author Sue Vincent