Ya know what I hate?
I hate leaving the farm.
For almost any reason.
Leaving the farm means that I’ve gotta get in my CAR, take it on the ROAD, and go somewhere there will most likely be PEOPLE.
I hate that.
Because people, as a general group, and I have not a whole lot in common nowadays.
There are times that I am thrust into a social situation where what I do, and how I do it, down on the farm are just not considered normal. Now, on most given days, I consider that an excellent gauge of whether I’m on the right track or not—the farther from “socially normal” I am, the closer to my ideal.
But there are those few times, luckily, no more than several a year, that I must, for whatever reason, pick out a Sunday-Go-To-Meetin’ dress (no pantyhose, I draw an indelible line there) that covers my tattoos, find a pair of shoes that has NOT seen the inside of a chicken house, paint on the L’Oreal Soft Fern eyeshadow and the Naked Ambition lipstick (yep, got it just for the name), and break out the Dressy Velvet hair scrunchie. Once all gussied and at whatever social event merited such foolishness, I then have to be SOCIAL. With PEOPLE.
Here’s where the problem starts. Because apparently, “normal” people talk about things like going to the gym to workout, the merits of different imported coffees, and the latest sale at the mall. There are two main themes to the conversations—acquisition and self-improvement.
Well, that’s not quite fair. Sometimes they also talk about their children’s’ acquisitions as well as their carefully planned and supervised free time activities.
For a while, this bumpkin was at a loss at these types of social functions, having nothing considered of value to say and all, but now I actually look forward to them. I’ll gracefully slide on into the midst of the group and wait for someone to politely ask me what WE’VE been up to?
“Oh Sugar (sweet smile) we’ve been so frightfully busy what with the Alternative Lifestyle Implementation since as you may know we’ve located our domestic headquarters in the financially advantageous Rural Renewal area.
We recently traded up on that minivan and got a fully loaded, recycled, multi-purpose vehicle with cargo room to spare, custom seat covers, and the convertible RV option.
The house is a wonder, and there’s no denying that. It has a full flow thru ventilation system, a rooftop-based, whole-house-humidifying feature, and more than ample storage in the open-air basement.
Naturally, security is always an issue, and we have installed the best in home guardians. For a minimal outlay in expense and upkeep, our personal crime deterrent will patrol the entire fence line a minimum of once per hour, sound an audible alarm if it senses any movement within it’s range, and as an added bonus, it even keeps track of the children.
And it was such a HASSLE driving all the way to the gym, that we now have our own (yes we DO) right in the backyard. It’s so convenient to put on my workout clothes, head to the yard, and be able to finish a whole body routine without leaving home. Aerobics, resistance training, stretching, powerlifting, the whole nine yards, honey. And as an added benefit, I can do my tanning at the same time.
Of course, you can’t be fit outside without being fit inside as well—you KNOW it’s true, it was just on Oprah. And good eating requires that you use only the BEST foods. Thanks to our seasonal produce incubator, we have fruit and veggies that are fresh as can be and sometimes even enhanced with important trace minerals! And we have the latest technology for producing and keeping our milk and eggs at their peak freshness thanks to individual climate-controlled storage units that manufacture and hold these commodities till just before we use them.
There are times when we have just TOO MUCH food, if you can believe it, and then we employ our antiseptic pressure edibles sealer, which is absolutely fabulous since we can control the fat, salt, and sugar amounts in the finished dishes, not to mention how darlingly festive all those pretty jars are lined up on the kitchen shelves.
And our son is simply thriving in this environment!
We decided not to enroll him in public school and he’s enjoying the luxury of one on one tutoring. I KNOW, it seems a horrible extravagance, but it’s such a joy to see him blossoming with lesson plans that are authored specifically for him.
Well of COURSE he is involved in organized sports—every day after lessons are finished, he joins up with other kids in the neighborhood and participates in non-age-level-specific, cross-cultural execution of a variety of casual competitions that encourage team play, foster both leadership and listening skills, as well as emphasize lasting friendships over short-term victory.”
By this time, my audience is usually frozen with professionally whitened teeth exposed and drying out by their “polite smiles”, framed with their carefully painted and pouty lips. Their eyes (expertly lined and lashed with extensions) gaze at me a little glazed, and I can tell they are not sure how to respond.
Since timing is everything, I never wait for their response. I’ll wait till just before the silence gets plumb uncomfortable, smile even bigger and more sincerely than THEY smiled, graciously tell them how WONDERFUL it is seeing them again, how they simply MUST call me soon and come out to visit, and beat a hasty retreat to the food table (if there’s anything left that’s still edible) on my way out the door.
Between the door and my car, my shoes will be off.
Once in the car, the makeup gets rubbed away before it suffocates my face.
Home is calling me, and I hum a little ditty as I maneuver through the traffic towards my old Bubba truck with the gun rack, drafty old farmhouse, loveable serious Pyrenees in the yard, barnyard full of building and repair projects, vegetable garden, dairy goats, laying hens, old trusty pressure canner, and my beloved homeschooled boy who’s playing a never-ending constantly shifting set of hybrid sports with the neighbor kids.
The public relations guys are right.
It’s all in the Spin.