Get The Picture? By Sherry Hopkins

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 21, 2009


Her mother’s daughter: she exaggerates

I come from a family of exaggerators. A couple of my Mama’s favorite expressions were “old as Methuselah” and “umpteenth time.” She made up adjectives and adverbs freely to really catch the essence of what she was trying to say.

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I tend to exaggerate situations like the following: “How’s your day going?” asks Dear Don when he calls at lunch.

“ Well, I nearly took my arm off on the crepe myrtle tree while cutting grass. It’s 1,200 degrees out there and the humidity is higher than that. I’ve been outside since before daylight and I still have acres to go,” I rant in response to his question.

Now in reality I scraped my arm a bit on the crepe myrtle, it was hot but only in the 80s with the humidity being normal for August. I had only been on the mower a short time (well after daylight) and since we only have one acre I had little left to mow.

But that story in its truthfulness did not convey my discomfort in the heat or my dismay at the combative crepe myrtle tree. I don’t remember wanting Dear Don to feel as though I was martyring myself in the task at hand, but that’s just how it sounds, doesn’t it? Like my experience is far worse than any other is. I hate to admit it but I guess I’m a bit of a drama queen. That’s probably not going to be news to Dear Don.

I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that Dear Don had a dream Tuesday night about me trying to euthanize him with a bright green substance. We have been having major debates at the Hopkins household about suicide, euthanasia and what our government’s intentions are towards the elderly. I lean toward the left and Don toward the right, leaving a pretty big gap dead in the middle. Our arguments are passionate and funny and we always leave it with “we will have to agree to disagree.” This time around we left it with each one admonishing the other that we would NOT be in charge of the other’s care if we are unable to speak for ourselves. Thankfully we have moved on to other topics that we can discuss amicably.

On a funny note, after sitting in a doctor’s office for more than three hours on Monday, and (this is not an exaggeration) feeling fit to be tied, a kindly old lady looked down at my flip-flop clad feet and declared, “Your feets swells up like mines does when you sits for a long time.” That was just what I wanted to hear. I looked down at my feet in dismay and promptly slid them under the chair. Next time I’ll wear feet-covering shoes.

Now I too need to move on. I have a thousand household chores to do today plus a trip into town that will likely take hours. The laundry is piling up as we speak and I have no clue what to feed that man of mine for dinner. There is more to do than I can even give credence to.

You get the picture.

(Contact Sherry at