It may have been unnoticed here, but it was fabulously acknowledged in real life. Bill threw a party, all my best friends were invited, and I was feted in a lovely manner. Although Bill had specified “no gifts” on the invitation, several people did bring small presents, including our orthodontist, Dr. H. I was happy to see a present from him, as I assume that means he regards me as a source of everlasting revenue, and not an overburdened mother who tries to squeeze too much orthodontia into too little time.
I grew up with his wife and finally persuaded her to come to Jazzercise where we grapevine together several mornings a week, and I suspect she was the brains behind this particular celebratory item.
Aunt Lulu was in town for the party, and the next day we were cooking dinner and opening presents while the bulgogi marinated. I got to the H’s box, which was tiny, opened it and pulled out a wad of tissue paper. I had just enough time to lift out a small piece of cotton and say,”Oh look! It’s a thong!” when we heard a scream from the backyard where the boys were jumping on the trampoline. I put the thong down and wearily got up to investigate.
Finn stomped inside, and said moodily, “I only pulled his hair really gently. Like, it wouldn’t have hurt a girl. I don’t know why he has to be such a baby about everything.”
Finn was followed by Porter, who came sobbing up the steps holding the side of his head, and wailing, “He almost pulled all my hair out by the ends! He always pulls my hair!”
Drew followed, oblivious to the others. “Do you have anything that needs chopping?” he asked when he saw that dinner was in progress.
I sent Finn and Porter to their rooms, asked Drew to chop scallions, and Aunt Lulu and I poured some wine, started the rice,then played with the baby.
I called the boys to wash their hands and set the table for dinner, and Porter whizzed in, laughing hysterically. He had my thong on his head like a hat. As soon as Drew and Finn saw him, they started yelling and screaming and ran to the dining room and got more underwear out of my basket and put it on their heads. All three marched around the kitchen singing, “We got panties on our heads! We got panties on our heads!”
Aunt Lulu was horrified. Her beautiful five month old hasn’t started fondling his penis yet, or picking his nose, and here she was watching the Ladies Underwear Parade like a vision of a future she didn’t want to experience.
“Guys, no one wears ladies underwear in this house except me,” I said. “Not on your head, not on your privates, not anywhere. Drew and Finn, take the underwear off your heads and put it back in my basket!” I yelled.
“Don’t you want them to put it in the dirty clothes since it’s been on their heads?” Aunt Lulu asked, wrinkling her nose.
“She’s right, take the panties to the dirty clothes!” I commanded.
When Aunt Lulu went to her room to change the baby’s diaper, I dashed into the laundry room and retrieved my panties and deposited them into my basket of clean clothes. I mean, the boys wash their hair every night, and it’s not like I’m drowning in clean underwear.
Porter had disappeared while I was dealing with his brothers, but he’d left some evidence behind. When I got ready to serve up the plates, I saw his panda bear, Bamboo, sitting on the counter. Evidently she’s forty, AND STILL HOT!