Thursday, September 24, 2009


My Mother wore an apron. Always. She did take it off to go to church & go to town, but other than that, it was attached to her like a security blanket. It seemed that she couldn't function without it - it was like Superman & his cape, but lower. It was a wonder that she didn't slip into a phone booth to put it on. Maybe she did - I wouldn't know. I never saw her put it on, it just was automatically always There.

I was an obnoxious early-teener when I became aware of her curious attachment to her apron. I tormented her unmercifully about it. I'd start out with 'Why do ALWAYS have to wear that grubby old apron.' She'd dismiss me with: 'Because I do.' Now if she would have just come up with some story why it was necessary in her world, I most likely would have let it drop and moved on to something else. But oh no, she'd get very defensive & would clutch it it when I'd bug her to 'Take it off. Try it... take it off.', so I kept it up. Whenever I walked past her, if her back was turned, I'd undo the apron strings & if I was quick enough, I could be off with it as she chased me through the house, yelling 'Give me back my apron, you silly ass.'

There are some things that I made a conscience decision to steer clear of because my Mother did it ... like saving things 'for good'. And things that were perhaps unconsciousness - like never having worn an apron - probably ever. In the image of my Mother in my mind, she is always wearing her apron. That's not a picture that my kids would have of me.

It's not all that bright though - I have ruined countless shirts & sweaters & pants and even pajamas by spilling & splattering & wiping everything ... food, paint, ink, stain. I do have to admit, aprons actually are a very good invention.

On Monday, I came across one here - whose it is, I have no idea. It's one of those chefy things with the bib. I slipped it on. That's when all the memories of my Mother & her apron came rushing back.

Well, I've worn that apron every day. Four days into it, it's no longer pristine white - it has some wonderfully colourful permanent ink spots, which may not delight its rightful owner should they ever come to claim it. But but more than saving my clothes, I have found it to have a much greater function. Indeed, when I have donned that apron each morning, I have felt that I mean Business. I have stayed focused & productive. I don't go flitting off in every direction - like over to my cabin to have a wee 'sit', or out to the hammock to have a wee snooze. I'm Working. And the best part was, when someone dropped by unexpectedly, there I was in my apron, obviously looking like like I was working and that's why the house was upside down - not because I was slovenly and out having a sit or a snooze. I was feeling like I had a Real Job and that was my uniform.

Yep ... my mother might have had something going there. And I do believe, after all these years that I just may start to wear an apron every day. Well, every day that I want to look like I'm working. And I'll send her a little chuckle as I know she's up there feeling pretty smug about it all.

(These are some of the inked tiles that I've been working on ... so you can just imagine how pretty the apron is now:)


Rosella said...

Love your apron story!!

Rosella said...

Love your apron story!!

Sheryl Parsons said...

Love your story Ev! I do wear an apron on occasion now, because of all the stains. I've gotten into collecting vintage ones, and they are lovely, some of them at least. It would be so fun to have the history behind them, don't you think?

Oh, your tiles are gorgeous!

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