Sunday, December 14, 2008

Charlie Farley

I suppose this is as good a time as any to recount this story...

I think I was probably 12. It was Christmastime, and we were going through the same routine we always did at the end of the Christmas church service--picking up our brown bag of an apple or orange, bag of popcorn, and assorted candies. I didn't like popcorn at the time, wasn't a big fan of fresh fruit, and hated hard candy. Wasn't I a stinker? Anyway, my mom and I smiled and took our bags and headed home to prepare for other Christmas celebrations. We were driving around the square (about where the gazebo is, BJ), when my mom started spoonerizing words. She had just picked up this annoying habit, and was not as adept at it as she fancied herself.

I reluctantly opened a piece of Farley brand hard candy and popped it into my mouth, when my mother exclaimed with gusto, Well, f*** Charlie!"

The way she said it, Mom appeared to have a severe case of Tourette's syndrome. But that was not the case. In actuality, she thought it would be cute to spoonerize the name "Chuck Farley," which was an inside joke of its own...

Once when I was quite small, we had gone on vacation to Rapid City, South Dakota. Along the way, we passed a camper or RV or something that had the following painted on its side:

The Farley's: Chuck and Betty

So then, my dad started acting like he really knew these people, even though they were just random strangers on the highway. Hey, it gets boring in the Dakotas if you're not careful--have to find something to do to pass the time. Then my uncle's girlfriend, who accompanied us on the trip, started playing along. It was driving my uncle crazy because he couldn't figure out how his girlfriend and his brother happened to know a couple that he didn't.

Years later, whenever somebody would say something about Farley candy, my parents would chime in with some anecdote about Chuck and Betty Farley and their adventures. Even though it was totally fictional.

Fast forward back to my mom and me in the car, going around the courthouse square. Time had stood still while all this was transpiring. My mom slowly realized what she said (and believe me, my mom is not one for profanity). I couldn't believe she'd just said that, either, and we both laughed nonstop for 10 miles. I decided to spit out my Farley candy so I wouldn't choke. Eh, I didn't really want it anyway.


BJ Roan said...

Knowing your mother, I can't imagine THAT coming out of her mouth! I can see why you had to spit out the candy. Too funny!

gel said...

I already read her version. It's interesting to read your humorous recollections.