On more than one occasion, I have opened the packaging for a product I have bought and found a small slip of paper imprinted with variations of the wording “Inspected by….,” which I guess is to reassure me that there is some sort of quality control on the items the company has manufactured and shipped to the retailer.
Mothers often put their own version of an “Inspected by” on their children before they leave the house to go someplace where their appearance matters. One doesn’t want to be embarrassed by one’s child being dirty or poorly dressed, or whatever. Giving the kid a “once-over” to make sure the little darling hasn’t gotten into something between the time he or she was dressed and the time to leave or making sure the kid is wearing something halfway presentable.
I imagine mothers’ spit has cleaned up quite a few dirty faces down through the generations.
Now the problem I am facing is, “Who inspects the mothers?”
It was a lovely, warm evening. Richard decided to wear his Bermuda shorts and a light-weight shirt my sister had given him, and I decided to wear my pull-up jeans, the sort with an elastic waist and a fake fly and a fake snap, because they are comfortable, and a top my sister gave me that still fits, and so we hoisted ourselves into the truck off we went.
And as the sun was starting to get low in the sky on the night of the biggest full moon of the year, we journeyed out into the country and up a very rough driveway to the top of a hill to celebrate the birthday of the guy who fixes our computers.
We sat around on lawn chairs with a small group of other well-wishers and ate and were very careful about keeping an eye on our plates, which were being carefully watched by several of the Great Pyrenees dogs that she breeds and shows, as we watched the gorgeous moon rise up above the trees on the ridge.
Then I got up to go to the picnic table to get something else to eat, and for some reason, started to stick my hand in my pocket and discovered, much to my horror, that my pocket was not where it was supposed to be.
I had put my pants on backward.
And so I sauntered into the house, took my jeans off and put them on again the right way, and rejoined the party, feeling very silly indeed.
I hope nobody noticed.