How ’bout them Red Owls

redowlsHere it is. I dunno, dooya think there are any sports teams out there who go by the Red Owls? Up there in Sault Ste. Siberia, we were the Blue Devils. “We are the devils, the mighty mighty devils. Da da da da da-dah…” I used to love going to feetsball games and cheering for the Blue Devils. And marching with my piccolo* in the Sault High marching band. Snow anyone? Lose your shoe in the mud? So much fun. That was all before I became jaded about high-profile team sports though. I couldn’t care less nowadays.

I have two main memories of the old Red Owl grokkery store. One was when Radical Betty used to take my rather eccentric great aunt (RB’s aunt) out to buy grokkeries once a week. Great Aunt, who was quite religious, would spend some time inserting little religious papers into greeting cards. Radical Betty, who was definitely not religious, would hang around and wait for her to do that. We would all laugh (in a family-type good-natured we-love-this-person) way when RB told these stories.

My other memory is when the then mom of teenagers, aka The Commander, locked bumpers in the parking lot with “an old lady”, as The Comm called her. It was *not* The Comm’s fault and she was *steaming* when she got home. I fergit what happened after that but now that that teenager is a baggy old kayak woman and The Comm is dead, I remember the few vee-hickle escapades she had the last couple years of her life. I will not detail them here. They were (mostly) pretty minor two mph parking lot kinds of things and I know how embarrassed she was.

What did I do when we (mom and I) lost (in her house) the driver’s license she obtained legally when she turned 90? I scared up enough documentation to prove her identity, took her over to the Secretary of State, and helped her get a new one. Did I let her drive again? No, I did not. Did I let her have a set of car keys? Yes, I did, and a Dillon Street garage door opener too. But I locked her car in the cabin garage where she couldn’t get to it without help. This was before there were efforts afoot to keep people from voting without an ID but I won’t go there right now. I do know who The Comm wanted to vote for in the 2012 elections but she wasn’t able to vote by that time…

I was not the best mother but I read to my kids (and anyone else who would listen) constantly and I did Dark Walk with my Mouse. I think both of those things cancel out all of the fluorescent orange Mac ‘n’ Cheese boxes I cooked for my kids as well as the times I yelled at them, etc. I was a pretty horrible daughter for the most part (except for the grandchildren) but I tried to be respectful of The Comm’s dignity as she declined.

Not sure how I got here but g’night and Go Blue Devils. Go Red Owls too, if you exist somewhere. Or not. Fun archaeological stuff at work today!

*The piece o’ shit school-owned piccolo that my parents actually PAID out of their own pocket to send away for repair. Thanks, Jack & Fran.

2 Responses to “How ’bout them Red Owls”

  1. Margaret Says:

    It’s so easy to look back and criticize ourselves, but we did the best we could. I have regrets too–mostly about stressing myself out about SMALL things. 20/20 hindsight would sure be great.

  2. Pooh Says:

    Go Blue Devils! I wear a Soo Blue Devil sweatshirt to the Maplewood-Richmond Heights Blue Devils game I occasionally attend.