December 05, 2005

la vaca

i come from a long rich line. rich in humor, wealthy only in wit. we get it honestly. my grandfather was a merciless joker.

for instance, as children we would send our grandparents our school pictures. my grandfather would call me each and every year and say, "oh thank you so much for the pictures! we put them out in the garden and we don't have rats anymore." thanks, grandaddy, glad i could help.

my grandfather was a cattleman. days before i was born, a calf was born on his farm. knowing what i was to be named, he named the new calf "chou". when my mom called with a progress report, he let her know the good news. a new calf was born, chou be thy name. so in the family line, i was technically named after a cow, however beloved. my grandfather forever fought to make it a point of pride for me.

i found this picture in his desk drawer this past weekend. the back of it says in my grandfather's handwriting, "Chou, Nov 25 1971, weight 355 lbs." proof of his ongoing brag war with my mother. just look how big his baby is growing, they do grow up so fast.

the joke never tired. all through the years, when ever my name would come up, my grandfather would pause in his silly pensive way and sigh, "she was the kindest heffer i ever knew, gave pure sweet milk that one."

can you imagine a less feminine fate? i may have been raised a city girl, but damn it, i'm livestock down deep. what's in a name, you ask, dear friends? this one's all about small west texas towns and red dirt and laugh lines, oh, and the ability to eat and shit yourself at the same time.

Posted by shoe at December 5, 2005 10:02 PM | TrackBack