When I was six, I had an older sister who I just knew was a goddess.Seven years older than me, she was thin and pretty like the girls on the cover of Seventeen Magazine.She had shoulder length brown hair that swung side to side when she walked, or whipped around her face when she was angry.I knew about the angry part because when I wasn’t considering how much of a goddess she was, I was tormenting her as only a six-year-old sister can do.Unfortunately for her, she was assigned the role of babysitter to my younger brother and me whenever our parents went out.This gave us occasion to use the well-worn phrase, “You are not our mother!” which we had down to perfection.
Once our parent’s car was out of the driveway, Goddess would immediately pick up the telephone and call her boyfriend to chat and my brother and I would commence our onslaught. Our first strategy would be to see how many chocolate chip cookies we could snatch from the old Lance cracker jar my mother used as a cookie jar.
Unfortunately for us, the glass jar had a metal lid, which clanged loudly each time you opened it, unless you pulled it straight up off the jar, like a game of pick-up sticks. I’m afraid we lacked the finesse needed to quietly open the jar and were caught each time, shoving chocolate chip cookies in our mouths before our sister could grab the jar lid and clang it back into place.
Of course by then she was agitated from having to get off the phone with loverboy and would castigate us loudly. Upon which time we would use the “You are not our mother!” phrase again.
By this time Goddess was getting perturbed. I imagine she pictured our parents coming home to an empty cookie jar and two youngsters with chocolate smeared faces and belly-aches.
So she put plan two into action. She placed us into two separate bedrooms and told us to amuse ourselves. Her plan might have worked if she’d actually given us books or something to do, but I imagine she was in too much of a hurry to get back to the phone and loverboy.
That was her second mistake.
Brother and I, having watched too many Batman episodes, knew that when you were separated from your super-hero sidekick, you used morse code. We immediately began rapping on the wall separating the two bedrooms. Knock, knock knock, meant, “Are you still alive?” Knock, knock in reply meant, “Yes, and my stomach is starting to hurt from all those cookies.” Knock, knock meant, “Let’s keep at this until we annoy her.”
KNOCK, KNOCK, KNOCK meant…and just then the door flew open and Goddess grabbed my arm in a not-too-goddess-like way. She proceeded to grab Batman also, and pushed us toward the open back door of the house.
In a voice not unlike the Wicked Witch of the West when she screamed “I’ll get you my pretty!” she announced through clenched teeth that we would now run laps around the backyard.
To which we danced around and shouted, “YOU ARE NOT OUR MOTHER!”
Whereupon, Goddess melted into a puddle of tears. Out of ideas to control us, she had resorted to every teenage girl’s best weapon. This took all the fun out of the game. Of course we hadn’t intended to make her cry, it was a lot more fun when she screamed in her wicked-witch voice.
Batman and I went and hugged the Goddess and promised we would be good, and ran out the back door to do our assigned laps around the yard. The End. And the moral of the story is: Two cookies do not a full Batman make, and every Goddess stands on a shaky pedestal.