“Do you have any gum, Nana?” The pew was hard, the sermon dull, my right foot dead asleep.
Digging in her pocketbook, Nana pulled out sticks of Spearmint gum to occupy my sister and me for a few moments. I tried not to smack.
“Draw.A.Duck.” I mouthed the words silently and handed her an offering envelope from the pew in front of me. Offering envelopes were stored beside the hymnals and made good scrap paper in a pinch.
With one sweep of a pencil, Nana had this silly way of drawing a duck. Her signature artwork looked more swan or turkey-like than duck-like, which amplified the funny factor ten-fold during preaching, or during any serious occasion when laughing was frowned upon.
“That doesn’t look like a duck, Nana,” my sister murmured, trying to stifle her laugh which sent us, Nana included, head first into a fit of silent giggles, shoulder-shaking giggles, the sort often mistaken for sobbing—as though we could be wholly moved by Brother Brown’s boring message…
From the piano bench, Momma shot us the stink-eye, but she wanted to laugh too. Nana had that effect on everyone.
Grace Grits and Gardening
(When she wasn’t laughing or talking, Nana was whistling this song…)