Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Army Day: The Celebration of Bad Puns


My mom and her father love puns.  They also play with their hair.  Naturally, my cousins, my sisters and I all play with our hair.  My sisters and cousins also indulge in the pun habit.  For the most part, puns elude me. 

I attribute it to being grounded in reality and far too literal, but I cannot effortlessly find alternative meanings in words.  At gatherings, over plates of brats and Grandpa's legendary potato salad, family would throw puns around like tennis balls.  I would sit quietly and muddle over a word in an attempt to come up with a tortured word play.  But before I could throw mine in the mix, someone else would use my word - only they'd use it better! The celebration of puns, however, is something I partake in with enthusiasm.

Grandpa started it.  On March 4th he and my mom would wish each other a "Happy Army Day!"  Do you get it?  March 4 = march forth = Army Day (I warned you it was bad).  After my mom moved out, she and Grandpa would call each other on March 4.  It became a joke between them to see who could call whom first.  When I was little, I thought March 4 was a nationally recognized holiday.  Obviously, one of the hazards benefits of homeschooling is growing up with your own holidays. 

Grandma and Grandpa

Being in Wisconsin (the other side of the pond), Grandpa had the disadvantage of the time difference.  One year, however, he outsmarted my mom and called her at 11:00 CST/12:00 EST.  It was funny until she answered the phone.  My mom does not take kindly to being roused from a deep sleep - even in the name of puns.  As my siblings, cousins and I have grown up and moved out, we too call Grandpa on March 4. 

Sunday, I saw the date and said, "Oooh, I have to remember to call my grandpa today."

"Is it his birthday?" Matt asked.

"Sort of,"  I said.

"How can it sort of be his birthday?" Matt asked.

It's not even close to his birthday.  But I don't call my grandpa on his birthday.  I call him on Army Day.


  1. How fun. Rebekah looks like your mom!

    1. Doesn't she? Rebekah and I were commenting on that when I posted it yesterday.

  2. What a great story! I have to admit, I read the title the other day and thought that I didn't know what the holiday was. Family memories!

    1. Most people don't know about that holiday - we're working on changing that. :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...