I Haven’t Even Told My Husband This Story Yet

A few days ago Alex and I had to get out of the house in a hurry because some people were coming by with a realtor. I had been cleaning and scrubbing and vacuuming since about 7:30 that morning, so by the time we made our hasty exit at 11, I was a mess. My hair wasn’t fixed, I hadn’t taken a shower, I was wearing zero make-up, and I had on these gaucho-ish workout pants that are not attractive in the least but are as comfortable as all get out when you’re spending a morning up to your elbows in Pine Sol.

I didn’t have time to change clothes or, you know, bathe before we left, but I was so frazzled by that point that I really didn’t care. I figured I’d run through the McDonald’s drive-thru, grab some lunch, and then Alex and I would head to the park and commence with the killing of time. Plus, given the condition of my appearance, at least if we were at the park people might think that I’d been hoofing it on the walking trail just moments before I sat down at a picnic table to systematically demolish an order of McValue fries. And a cheeseburger.

As soon as we got to the park Alex noticed a lady who happens to work at his Mother’s Day Out, and all I could think was, “WELL, THAT FIGURES” because it never fails that I run into someone I know when I look my absolute worst. We made small talk for a few minutes, and in an attempt to explain why I looked like death warmed over, I offhandedly mentioned that oh, someone was looking at our house, we were in a hurry when we left as she could probably tell, ha ha ha ha ha, all the while hoping that she wouldn’t think I was some deranged mama who was unfamiliar with Why Good Hygiene Is Important.

In the meantime, a little girl who was probably one and a half kept running over to me, lifting up her arms, and trying to crawl into my lap. Alex was infinitely entertained by the fact that “the girl baby” wanted to play with his mama, and since the girl baby’s parents didn’t seem to object, I picked her up and let her play with the toy from Alex’s Happy Meal. She’d sit in my lap for a little bit, then jump down and run to her mama, then climb back in my lap, and so it went for about the next ten minutes.

When the little girl climbed down for about the twelfth time, I mentioned to her mama, who looked to be about my age, that I was flattered that her daughter seemed to like me so much.

And here is what her mama said to me:

“Well, you do look like her grandmother!”



I just sat there, stunned, trying not to feel offended, reminding myself that I’m not in fact getting any younger and that being a grandmother is one of life’s greatest blessings. Grandmothers are loving, they’re wise, they’re treasured – they’re the apples of their grandbabies’ eyes.

However, grandmothers are not, as a general rule, IN THEIR THIRTIES.

So in my head I tried to put a spin what she said, tried to remember that I didn’t exactly leave the house with a youthful glow that morning, tried to justify that maybe she meant the grandmother and I have a similar body type, or maybe the grandmother and I have a similar-sounding voice.

But at the same time, I couldn’t help but channel a little bit of Suzanne Sugarbaker and think, “Well, if I’d wanted to be insulted, I’d have stayed at home and waited for a crank call!”

And please don’t misunderstand. I have high hopes of being a Sassy Grandmama, as I know several of you are. But I’ve sort of envisioned my late 50’s / early 60’s as being the Sassy Grandmama years. Not, you know, NOW.

I mean, y’all. I can’t help but feel like I may need a touch of the Botox.

Perhaps the plastic surgeon will give me some form of senior citizens’ discount!

And just FYI: I’m considering changing the name of the blog to BooMamaw.

Consider yourself warned.

This post was originally published on October 12, 2006.

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  1. OH NO SHE DIDN’T!!!
    oh, I’m so so sorry!
    *but that’s really FUNNY!*

  2. I think I would have fallen over faking a heart attack. Or at least passed out.

    Maybe her grandmother is a hip 30 something lady who concentrates more on relationships than outwardly appearance.

  3. Boo Mamaw, that other momma obviously left her glasses at home. Don’t fret– you are lovely, fine and in your prime! And definitely not a grandma. Or mamaw.

  4. Oh girl, you make me laugh! What is it with you and the ladies at McDonalds? LOL Besides, you can’t fool me. I’ve lived in the South long enough to know that what y’all define as “unkempt” is Southern girl lingo for the cute tracksuit with no jewelry (and maybe lipgloss instead of lipstick). :)

  5. Oh I am so sorry. But you really are a riot. This post was hillarious.

  6. When I was a mom, 29 years old, with a new born in the pram a sales assistant actually said to me that having a baby must be difficult for me as an “older mom”
    I hadn’t thought of myself as old till then, surely old is having a baby at 50+ or is it at 22 years of age nowadays?

  7. The very IDEA! I hope you gave her a good swift crack in the shin with your cane, Boomamaw! Or maybe you were too stove up with yer bursitis?

  8. Well, I’m groovy AND I’m 43 AND I have 3 grandchildren…

    A few months back I got my hair cut. My beautician sighed contentedly, “I’ve been wanting to do that for a Looooong time” (She goes to my church and has to look at me every week singing in LIGHTS on the STAGE.) “You look SO MUCH YOUNGER now,” she cooed.

    From there I went to the bread store feeling all cute and young and sassy and…

    The clerk gave me the senior’s discount.


  9. One of the funniest stories ever! I love that you used the phrase — ‘death warmed over.’ My dad use to use that phrase. He also used ‘death eating cornbread.’ Feel free to use that as need be.

  10. LOL! This is too funny! Obviously, this young woman needed GLASSES! I have to share, my grandmother was a grandmother for the first time at age 38. How about “death on a cracker”. My husbands uses that phrase all the time.

  11. Janet (aka JT) says:

    I think in parts of Arkansas and West Virginia, grandmas are typically in their early to mid 30’s.

    And before anyone gets offended by that, let me just say that NO ONE has been more hillbilly than I have lately. I bit into a sandwich the other day (a very soft one, by the way) and my permanent bridge, which is at the FRONT OF MY MOUTH (I never had permanent teeth form on either side of my front teeth) came right out. So there I was, barefoot and pregnant and missing several teeth. If that’s not a reminder of my hillbilly heritage, I don’t know what is.

    Had I gone to the park with you, I may have reminded her of her great-grandma.

  12. You poor THANG! What is wrong with some people’s ability to think on their feet in a reasonable way! I’m sure it was her eyesight, not your looks.

  13. I had a similar experience at the pool.The little girl’s momma told me that her mother has a similar swimsuit and sunglasses like I did. I was wearing a one-piece bathingsuit, but still…

    And to add insult to injury, the next week, I saw the grandmother by the pool. She outweighed me by at least 75 pounds.

    Anyway, I chalked it up to being such a wonderful person that I reminded a little kid of her favorite grandmother. (And you should too.) Cause afterall, being the favorite grandmother is about as good as it gets in a little kid’s eyes.

  14. Was this woman a result of a teen pregnancy? I just can’t believe she said that!

  15. That was a horrible thing to say but oh so funny. Did you have a poker face on or did you look like you were choking? Maybe she realized how awful that sounded, saw the look on your face and is laying awake at night agonizing over it all. LOL

  16. ROFLOL- tears in my eyes. That is so funny. Mainly because it happened to you and not me.

  17. It’s just all so sad…I just don’t know what to say. No witty comment…or anything. Just S-A-D. You poor, poor thing. It’s just W-R-O-N-G.

  18. BooMama – this is my first time posting but I wanted to say that I can so relate. I am a 37 year old mother of 3 who was at a retreat at a local church with my best friend who happens to be 29.. They asked us if we were MOTHER and DAUGHTER.. oh yea – my bf had her 8 month old with us too!! I about died and just graciously said no we are just friends. Do I look old enough to be the mother of a 29 year old is what I thought but then I said to myself.. NO way.. Holly still looks 18 – yeah that’s it!!

  19. Bossy has one word for what happened: Oy Vey.

  20. Oh my. Somethings should just go unsaid! She had to be a transplant from up north! Any good southern lady KNOWS you NEVER make a comment like that! But boy did it make for a good read!

  21. That’s a great one….:-D

  22. Hope you are feeling better! I hadn’t read this post and I am glad you ran it again, because I must say it was very funny! Thanks for the laugh today.

  23. Clearly she meant that you look like the girlbaby’s grandma did when SHE was in her thirties.


  24. Oh this reminded me of the time one of my kids’ playmate told my son “You look like your grandpa” and my son freaked out! He shouted “Don’t you insult me!!!” and then I freaked out “what do you mean insult you – do not talk like that about your grandpa (my dad)” – Now, my hubby has to sort it all out and explained each one’s side of the story. My son does “look like” his grandpa in terms of “features” and the playmate didn’t mean to insult”; my son does have a point that he does not look like his granpa right now because granpa is all wriknly and tootless and he’s not, and I being very close to my dad reacted to my son the wrong way without looking at it from his point of view…

    SOOOOOO … you are not all wrinkly (and I know you are not toothless) – maybe just the features my dear Boomama… just the features looks like grandma. Maybe she’s just the “pretty smiles” or “the pretty eyes” like you do ;)

    Have a nice day!

  25. Oh NO! But it’s flat funny! I’m sorry cause it’s not…..but it is…… teehee!

  26. Great story… I have never been accused of being a grandma, but at 38, a second marriage and four step children who are in their 20s, I am a grandma to an 8, 4, and 2 year old. Of course, they are NOT allowed to call me grandma. The greatest thing is that I get to send them presents and my hubby (pa-paw to them) gets really upset that I am spoiling them. :) I spoil my nieces and nephews too. I am an equal opportunity spoiler.

  27. No need to worry, there’s a simple explaination. She had obviously just had recent eye surgery (within the previous 10-12 minutes) and her vision had not restored to it’s normal condition. And boy is she gonna feel silly when it does!

    Although, I should mention I have close friend that is only 3 years older than me and she is currently a Grandma. That just blows my mind!!! But, then again she was 19 when she had her daughter (she was married at 18 and not knocked up prior. We are good southern Baptist girls!). And her daughter is only 22 (got married 2 years ago). I didn’t marry until I was 25 and I was 30 when I had my first child. Personally, I think she’s got the better end of the deal. She’s young and cute and her kids are raised and out of the house. I’m old and frumpy and I still have 10-14 years of kids in my house. I knew I should have gotten knocked up when I was 20!

    Georgia Mom

  28. From the mouths of babes. Thanks for the laugh. You don’t look a day over 18. My mother was a grandma at 42. She had her last baby also at 42 and my sister had her first child while in high school. How weird is that?

    My little sister was an aunt at age 6 months. How crazy is that?

    Chin up you really don’t look a day over 18.

  29. Unbe-dang-lieveable. BooMamaw – love it!

  30. :) Well, I hope you have never returned to THAT park. :)

  31. The thing that made this funnier, is that it’s a YEAR OLD!! This happened when you looked one year younger!! Oh my!

    Clearly the woman was wacko. You do NOT look old and I’m basing that on CURRENT photos (when you were blessed by the Hair Wizard) so unless you’ve had a drastic face lift since last year, the woman was just plain wrong. And rude!! Yikes!!

  32. Out of the mouths of babes! I’ve been blessed with a student this year who is trying every ounce of patience in my body. Today was especially difficult. One thing led to another and in my calmest voice I started walking over to escort him out of my room. Realizing he had the attention of the whole.entire.CLASS…he says, in his loud voice…”What do you want fat lady?”. Well, no I am not as skinny as I want to be, but I don’t waddle when I walk : )

  33. I discovered your blog from some other blog while I was reading another blog and so on and so on. I must say you made my day! Mainly because this is also I how I left my house today, hoping to be “undiscovered”! You are sooooo funny! Take it ALL in stride, take it all in stride.

  34. Clemntine says:

    Boo, IT’S. THE. SOUTH. Mamaw’s are born every 15 to 17 years. My stepmother was a mother at 16, a grandmother at 33, a great-grandmother at 48…

    However, if it had been me, I’m afraid I’d have inquired as to the nature of the girl baby’s visual disability. In the nicest possible way. Bless her heart.

  35. I’m just aghast. I can’t even come up with a witty response. I just can’t.

  36. Oh TOO funny!

  37. I must’ve missed this one when you originally posted it.

    Sorry to hear someone compared you to a grandma.

    I’m with you, I’d love to be a grandma…someday, but just not now.

  38. Boomama,

    I’m 42 with a 21.5 yo, 18 yo, 9 yo, 7 yo and a (SURPRISE) soon to be 3 yo. I’ve given birth in 3 different decades and 2 different centuries. Oh, yes I have.

    Although I delude myself regularly into believing my dewy complexion belies my abundant years, the same situation happened to me recently. So I join you in a moment of melancholy laughter.


  39. soooo funny. but you know — i have several friends from the cold white canadian north and they are 28 and 29 yr old and guess what? unbelievable but they are grandmothers!!!!!!

  40. Bravo, my dear! You deserve nothing but kudos for your amazing RESTRAINT! By all rights, that woman should have been beaten to a bloody pulp and the fact that you were able to NOT do that, makes you a hero in my eyes. Or was your arthritis acting up and you just couldn’t get your arms up high enough or your fists clinched tight enough? lol,lol,lol Just kidding, Mamaw! Yeah, I know. I’m a granny, fighting old age every step of the way and taking far too much delight in seeing another person be mistaken for someone who is…well, just like ME. Sorry. I’m hanging my head in shame, if that helps. (But I’m still laughing!)

  41. That was hilarious, I love reading your stories, they always have me cracking up out loud.
    We just went through the moving experience ourselves and all that huffing and puffing trying to get a house ready is enough to make you wanna forget about the whole thing.

  42. I literally just blurted out loud and my husband said “that was the strangest sound!!’
    You crack me up to no end!!
    Oh and I have no idea what you look like but I am sure it is not like a mamaw!!
    Much love,

  43. I’m loving these old posts! When I get some time on my hands, I’m determined to go back and read through the rest. I love your blog. :)

  44. I haven’t laughed that loud in a long time. This is my first time at your blog and I thank you for the laugh. Love your blog!


  45. It reminds me of a time when I was NOT pregnant and took my two oldest kids to the pool. And, because going ‘swimming’ with two very small children really just means you carry them around in the water, naturally, you would also wear proper swimming attire.

    When we were done, a lady said “there are some things a bathing suit can’t hide!”
    Me: “huh?”
    She repeated it again, “there are some things a bathing suit can’t hide!”
    Me: “I don’t understand!” (Questioning look)
    Her: “Are you expecting?!!!” (FULLY anticipating my answer was going to be “Yes!”)
    Me: “Uh, no…”
    Her: “OH! I’m soooo sorry! …I thought I saw a belly.”
    Me: “Um, I’m sure you did see a belly. But, not that kind, though.”

  46. lol! I emphatize with your plight, but this is hilarious!!!

  47. I am rolling in the floor laughing at this! Bless your heart! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog! I needed a laugh and you have sure filled the bill! I will be back! PS – I am a southern lady too! Visit me sometimes!

  48. oh that is just too funny – and yet I CANNOT believe that woman said that!!!

  49. hilarious. :P um, but at your expense, so um… sorry about that. yeah. THE NERVE OF HER!

    have a great day!