Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Case of the Disappearing Gramma

So I thought it would be neat to put a picture of my actual gramma on my blog, given that it's named after her. I thought it would be great to have her up there in my header, sort of looking down on my writing sternly, like a guide from well beyond the grave (she's been dead for 25 years...the word "blog" would have sounded ridiculous to her, and she would have had no patience for it, since it would have sounded vulgar, like "fart"). Anyhoo, I even knew how I was going to do it and change the header up a little and everything. I figured out how to work the scanner, and I, in all of my technical widardry, was going to scan her right into the banner. I eagerly went to my closet, got out my old photo albums, and even remembered one specific picture of her that I thought would look absolutely fabulous in my blog. So I opened up the albums, and...

Nothing.

By that, I mean there was not a single picture of my gramma anywhere in any of my photo albums. I looked fantically through all of them, wondering for a minute or two if she had even existed or if I had imagined her Winston-smoking self and made up an entire person that lived only in my own head, like Russell Crowe's character in A Beautiful Mind. Then I remembered...

Many years ago - I can't even recall exactly when - my mother requested (no, demanded, at the time) that I let her "borrow" my photo albums so that she could make copies of pictures in there, since they were technically her pictures and she had a right to them (and if that sounds like something a 7-year-old would say, then I wrote it so that it sounds exactly like I meant it to). So she took my albums for a while, and I remember being upset when she returned them to me that she kept all of the originals and instead gave me the blurry, low-quality copies she had made. It never occured to me to take an inventory of the pictures in there or to make sure that they were returned. But now that I finally (years later - forgive me, Gramma) realized that every picture of my Gramma has been removed from my albums, and remembering that at the time she borrowed them my mom was going through one of her (many) "your father can do no wrong and I will absolutely follow through with every ridiculous thing he tells me to do" phases, it becomes increasingly clear that my mother took every picture of my gramma. Every. Single. One.

I have already arranged for my sister to scan her pictures of Gramma and e-mail them to me, so I can use them. In the meantime, I have that piece of clip art up there. That woman looks nothing like my gramma, who did not have a bun or even white hair. In fact, she looks a little more cheerful than I remember my gramma looking. But she looks like she means business, so she'll do, for now. And she will be a reminder, for now, of my gramma.

That's all I got.

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