Friday, August 10, 2012

He Said "Titty" At The Dinner Table!

 

              The fact is... I am inappropriate at times. It is something I have come to terms with over the last twenty years of suffering through awkward gatherings and social faux pas.

Before ellaborating further on this topic, I must first define the world, inappropriate.

Inappropriate, as defined by Merriam-Webster is:



in·ap·pro·pri·ate/ˌinəˈprōprē-it/

Adjective:
Not suitable or proper in the circumstances: "inappropriate behavior".
Synonyms:
improper - unsuitable - inapt - unbecoming - inept
 
 
 
 
 
My first experience with social gaffes came at the age of six. My grandmother and I used to listen to records frequently, and one of my favorite songs was, "Afternoon Delight" by Starland Vocal Band.

(In case you haven't heard this song, I have included the link to the video, and an excerpt from their catchy chorus!  http://youtu.be/tpGRdX5sUAs )

"Thinkin of you's working up my appetite
Lookin' forward to a little Afternoon Delight
Rubbin' sticks and stones together make the sparks ignite
And the thought of lovin' you is getting so exciting

Skyrockets in flight!
Afternoon Delight!
Afternoon Delight!
Afternoon Delight! "
So, with all of the wisdom I had at the ripe age of six,  I decided (during show and tell) I would sing this lovely little classic. I made it about five lines in and my teacher shrieked, with all the grace of a frantic, tea kettle, "THAT WAS BEAUTIFUL!!! THANK YOU, LUCINDA! YOU MAY SIT DOWN NOW!!!!"
Later, when I told my Granny what happened at school she laughed and said, "Well, I'm glad you liked the song and that is really all that matters, but...it's not really school appropriate. Not in mixed company, dumpling butt."
This was the first time I had ever heard the word, "appropriate".
 
 What did it mean?!
What were these new restrictions on things I could only do sometimes, but not others?
What in the fuck was "mixed company"?!
 
 
Of course, I learned the basic social graces as I got older:
  • Don't speak unless spoken to.
  • Please and Thank You.
  • No burping in public, even if you can say "Supercallafragalisticexspialidocious" while you're doing it.
  • Pooping is done at home. Period.
  • Napkin in the lap.
  • Elbows off the table.

You know, the basics. Here's the thing:

I wasn't a complete neanderthal, but I didn't hold out any hopes to be invited to the Emily Post House for etiquette anytime soon, either.

As I have gotten older, I have realized; my manners aren't terrible.
 My timing is.

Also, it isn't that I have a complete disregard for unwritten social rules, I just think that the world would be a better place if a large majority of the population would pull the proverbial sticks out of their butts, and just enjoy a good fart joke every now and again.

I have also learned, as time has passed, the reason I am viewed as inappropriate isn't necessarily because of the things I do, but because of the things I believe, and the things I enjoy.
 Mostly because they are things that go against societal norms.

Six-year-old-Lucinda (while shockingly intelligent) had no idea that the song she was singing in front of her first grade class was about having sexual relations with your beloved in the broad light of day.
Six-year-old-me didn't know the words "afternoon" and "delight" weren't simply just adjectives used to describe a particular time of day and an emotion synonomous with "happy".
When these two words are coupled together, they are practically an action verb! (Who knew?)

Hind-sight is 20/20, I suppose.

I just knew it was pretty, and I liked it. Looking back on it now, I still think it's a lovely song. A song inspired by something beautiful.

Love.
Many people say, "Well, you have children. Would you want your children to behave that way?"
As I am always ready to disappoint people, the answer to that question is a resounding, "Yes!"
Yes, I would.
Frankly, they already do.
I don't think I have ever been prouder of my daughter than the first time I heard her sing, in perfect pitch, at the age of four (she might be a musical genius, it's yet to be confirmed):
"It's just a little ol' bitty, pissant, country place
Nothin' much to see
No drinkin' allowed
We get a nice quiet crowd
Plain as it can be..."  http://youtu.be/1JbiKAIognI

 (If you don't tap your foot along with this...go to the doctor because you might be dead!!)
I guess the point to all of this is:

I have spent a lot of time trying to think a certain way, act a certain way and mold my life a certain way...and for what?

To be accepted by people who are so absorbed in an alternate reality that they don't have a freaking clue about anything beyond the facade that is masking the kind of people they really are? (That's rhetorical, no need for real answers...)

 When you adapt to these "norms" you lose yourself. When you inhibit your expressive thought, and your humor because "jokes like that shouldn't be told in mixed company"... you hinder opportunity to bring a little reality back to a world that is becoming pre-packaged and disposable.

Tonight, I sat around a table with three of my closest friends and laughed about all sorts of things. Mundane things, silly things and off-color things. The weight of my day lifted from my shoulders, and I looked around the table at the smiling, jovial faces and realized... this is the world where I belong.

The world that I have created, and the people I surround myself with...this is my place.
The people who do not scold me for speaking my mind.
The friends who care very little about social etiquette, but care a lot about the condition of my life.
The people that embrace every fart joke or funny story like it's sage, life-altering advice;

They are the reason I have embraced my ability to be wildly inappropriate.

We sat and talked for an hour after our dinner was gone. Laughing, telling stories...embellishing tales long forgotten. When we were leaving, we heard a man at the table behind us say in a shocked voice, "He just said "Titty" at the dinner table!"
We might have said "Titty" at the dinner table, but by golly...we had our napkins in our laps and our elbows off the table while we did it.





 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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