It's not what I have[.] It's what I have to give. A blog about resources--gaining, giving, and sharing.

28 May 2011


4:49 PM Posted by steve flores , No comments
I’ll never forget playing football across the street from my house during my Junior High years.  I had friends who lived across the street and their two front yards made one amazing football field for me and my brothers!  When it was time for dinner, my mom would yell our names out of the kitchen window.  “Jeffrey!”  “Steven Ray!”  “Tommy!”  I don’t know why she chose to use my middle name, but she did.  Usually we’d scream back, “What?!” She never liked it.  She decided to put an end to “what?”   

She told us, “If you scream back ‘what?’ I’m going to embarrass you.”  Mom never made false threats.  She continued, “If I’m calling you, then that means it’s time to come home. Don’t ask, ‘what?’”  I don’t know why I chose to test the threat. 

Unlike any other summer day, my brothers and I were across the street playing a pretty intense game of football.  It was a close one.  As we were advancing the ball and a comeback seemed inevitable, a voice was heard.  “Jeffrey!”  “Steven Ray!” “Tommy!”  Immediately, my brothers left (Wimps!).  I stayed as if I never heard my first and middle name. 

I don’t know what I was thinking.  I wasn’t.  At that age, we think we’re invincible.  My mom must have realized, “Hmm, there are only two boys I gave birth to in this house.  When I look out this window, that middle son of mine better be walking across this street!”  I wasn’t.  I was in full on rebellion. 

She screamed, “Steven Ray!”

With frustration, I sighed and then, replied, “What?” (I know what you’re thinking, “No, he didn’t!”  I did.)

She retorted, “STEVEN RAY!”

I yelled back, “What?!”

I don’t know why I continued screaming.  I guess I thought she would say, “You know, he’s proven his point.  I can see he’s in the middle of a game.  I’m sorry I even bothered him.”  But that’s not what happened.  Frustrated and giving me a final warning of the embarrassment to come, she yelled back, “Steven Ray, you better not say ‘what’ one more time!”

And in a gutsy, stupid, move I screamed even louder, “WHAT?!”

Believe me, I wish I could have taken it back.  I think our screaming match formed a curious crowd of people looking and listening from their screened windows and doors.  They must have thought, “This can’t be good for that little boy, but it sure is entertaining!”  I’m sure my brothers were wondering how it would end – probably more curious than concerned. 

Then, she made good on her threat.  She embarrassed me.  She shouted with incredible clarity and intense volume, “STEVEN RAY, COME HOME, NOW, AND PICK UP YOUR DIRTY UNDERWEAR FROM UNDER THE COFFEE TABLE!!  THEY SMELL!!”

Yes, she went there.  For a teenage boy, mentioning the unmentionables around friends, by your mom is a cardinal sin (I believe).  I turned red from anger, but mostly embarrassment that my friends and neighbors had a far worse mental image of my dirty, soiled underwear than it actually was.  Game over.  My friends were laughing, hysterically, while rolling on the grass.  Without saying a word, I walked over and into my house; there I found my brothers laughing uncontrollably!  My mom?  She had a grin as big as Texas. 

Have you ever been embarrassed by your parent(s)?  I’d love to hear it.