Some moments, on some days, what I find most baffling in life is exactly what I love about Monty Python: It’s all so surreal, all so reductio ad absurdum, with all its stuff and nonsense taken to the wildest logical extremes.
I often think of that restaurant sketch in “Monty Python’s the Meaning of Life” — when the humongous Mr. Creosote, having gorged and puked through several courses, is approached by a waiter, aka John Cleese, bearing an after-dinner mint. Mr. Creosote grumbles “no.” The waiter insists: “Eet’s only wahffer-theen.”
The scene ends with Mr. Creosote, aka Terry Jones in an inflating fat suit, exploding his voluminous undigested stomach contents around the restaurant while the waiter bolts for cover.
This is life, isn’t it? I don’t know about you, but I’m always one wahffer-theen stressor away from egesta-heaving overcapacity and detonation. Time gets eaten up by work, by my children’s needs, by the scratching and pecking and blogging I do in my “off” hours (ummm…), by calls to the cable guy, by trips to doctor, by making dinner and tidying up (and by “tidying up” I mean “flinging dirty dishes into the sink from across the room, to hell with it if they break”), by paying bills and juggling whatever other sharp objects and obligations rain down upon me in a frenzied whirlwind.
Like, for instance. Anytime any offspring of mine brings home a form for me to fill out and/or sign and/or append with lengthy vaccination records, I know that three things will happen. One, I will panic and say, sometimes inwardly, sometimes aloud, OH CRAP OH CRAP OH CRAP, followed by I DON’T HAVE TIME FOR THIS RIGHT NOW, I’M FIXING THE @#!$%!! DOORKNOBS, followed by STICK IT OVER THERE ON THE TABLE, NEXT TO THE HORSE (and by “horse” I mean “cross-legged equine salt-and-pepper holder purchased at the Schaghticoke Fair”). Two, I will then postpone the filling-out and signing and vaccination-appending of this form until the last stupid minute, i.e., right when we’re all trying to get out the door in the morning. And three, I will spill coffee on it.
But, you know. It goes. The forms find their way to school. I find time to gas with friends, squawk on the violin or watch old episodes of “X-Files” with my son. (We loved that one about the self-elongating mutant who crawls through air ducts and eviscerates people!)
So the whirlwind carries me and all of us day to night to day, and then another night and another day, and somehow, employing some everyday magic of motherly prestidigitation, I and my offpsring make it through the week without exploding. And if anything else falls onto my plate, it’s only wafer thin.