Some days, there's not much to write about, unless you consider this morning's frost. Delicate ice crystals on cobwebs laced more intricately than tatting. Dainty strokes of nature's artwork carefully engineered by a perfect balance between air temperature and moisture painted on canvases of branches and berries, windows and wind chimes.
Some days, there's not much to say, unless you care to know the squirrels are eating all the bird food I set out for the cardinals, blue jays and chickadees. It's too late now. Word's out all over the squirrel community, "Buffet at the Damon's." Those poor birds hardly have a chance at a decent meal.
Some days, there's not much to talk about, unless you want to know what I heard at the mall the other day. The miniature holiday train with its horn sounding "All aboard, all aboard!" was making its rounds up and down the broad aisles of the vast indoor shopping center.
Spotting the bright red, green, blue and yellow cars, a young girl, age eight or nine, promptly pointed and said with a shrill, "Now that's what I want to ride!"
The adult at her side quickly quipped condescendingly, "No, you don't. You're too big for that."
"Not so," the young one whined. "Not so!" she insisted.
Shuttering at the thought of squelching a child's playful spirit, I sided with the girl but kept that to myself.
Some days, there's not much to talk about, unless you care to go round and round over the prolific use of the "F" word in today's vernacular. It's become so commonplace, you might as well call it the "Oh, darn!" of the twenty-first century.
A friend shared with me that in her school district, one elementary student's excessive use of that expletive prompted the teacher to call the child's parents. After the teacher explained the problem, the parent replied, "What's wrong with that? We use it all the time at home."
Stories like that make me worry about how adults speak to children. Like at the store, when I overheard a grown-up say nastily to a misbehaving child, "I'll step on you!"
Some days, there's not much happening, unless you consider Shelly's Christmas surprise. I don't mind telling you that no sooner had she plopped down beside me at Christmas Eve service, did she start in about her adult son's refusal to attend church with her that evening.
"For Pete's sake, it's Christmas," she griped, shaking her head in exasperation. "It's once a year. How much easier does it get than that?"
Not sure how to console her, I simply said, "Well, I'm glad you're here."
"I can't blame him," Shelly admitted. "I only started back two years ago and look how old I am. I should give him a break."
Just minutes before the service began, the unbelievable happened. A young man in his late twenties came up behind Shelly, with gusto squeezed her shoulders and kissed her on the cheek.
"Merry Christmas, Mom," he said in a loud whisper, his honeyed face beaming.
Shelly whipped around in her seat, slapped her son's arm with her worship folder and then proceeded to reprimand him with Christmas joy, "Why, you stinker!"
She then stood to embrace her boy, repeating, "You little stinker," while patting him on the back.
All the while, I could tell Shelly was content by the way her eyes lit up and how the corners of her mouth curled into the sweetest smile you've ever seen. That night, a priceless Christmas gift came walking right in on the shoulders of a son's love for his mother. Content indeed.
Some days, there's just not much to write about.
Not so. Not so.
2012 © Copyright Paula Damon.
A resident of Southeast South Dakota, Paula Bosco Damon is a national award-winning columnist. Her writing has won first-place in competitions of the National Federation of Press Women, South Dakota Press Women and Iowa Press Women. In the 2009, 2010 and 2011 South Dakota Press Women Communications Contests, her columns have earned eight first-place awards. To contact Paula, email boscodamon.paula@gmail, follow her blog at firstname.lastname@example.org and find her on FaceBook.