It’s very hard to keep a secret especially when your mother thinks she’s a crime-solving sleuth like Agatha Christie, intent on getting to the bottom of the caper. However, with just two days to go until the big reveal, I think I’ve been able to avoid detection by the elderly Nancy Drew.
It’s my mom’s blankety-blank birthday. No, I’m not blurting out cuss words, I’m simply not revealing her age since she gets very defensive when I put it out there for the world to see. I’ll just leave it that it’s somewhere over 29 – way over 29.
Anyway, I had the bright idea that I would get my wife and mother the exact same gift for their birthdays. My wife’s birthday was just a couple of weeks ago and my mother’s is this Friday. It’s a really cool gift in my humble opinion and I figured both would enjoy receiving one. The problem with the plan was to keep it a surprise for my mother. After all, there would be no surprise if my mother found out what my wife was getting since she is getting the same thing. In hindsight, which is always 20/20, perhaps I shouldn’t have told them they were getting the same present. My bad.
Complicating things further was I decided to buy the gifts during a recent trip to Murfreesboro – you know – the town where I rage at the traffic every time. Now, before you talk about me, saying I should have shopped local, there is no one here who carries the item as far as I know.
So, after I dropped mom off at her favorite shopping place to buy some sparkly dresses, my youngest son Henry and I headed over to the blankety-blank store to pick up the gifts.
“Whatever you do Henry, you can’t tell granny or momma what they’re getting,” I swear him to a solemn oath as we stand outside the store with gifts in hand. “If you tell, it will ruin the surprise. Understand?”
The red-headed 11-year-old nodded. “I won’t tell,” Henry replied. “I promise.”
With that, I put the gifts in the trunk and picked up mom. It takes all of two seconds for the inquisition to begin.
“Where’d y’all go?” she slyly asked.
I shook my head at Henry. “It’s a trap,” I cautioned. “Don’t tell her a thing.”
A few minutes later we pulled up at a store where I had to run in for something.
“Henry is going to stay in the car with granny,” my mom declared, obviously planning to grill the fifth-grader on what he knew.
I reluctantly ran into the store and was back in like five minutes.
“I didn’t tell,” Henry bragged as I slid behind the wheel. I looked in the rear-view and could tell by my mom’s face that she hadn’t been able to con the information out of him.
The secret even held through my wife’s birthday party, which mom attended. She played along and refused to show mom what was in her gift bag.
Just two days to go and I will be able to give mom her new ….
Standard reporter Duane Sherrill can be reached at 473-2191.