Friday, 23 July 2010
Dad’s dad, whose English was maybe his tenth language—and for most I suspect he knew just the functional words, the words you needed to survive—fascinated me. We saw him irregularly, maybe every three years or so.
In the KW style, he should have a nickname here, complete with capitalization. I keep coming back to The Hard-Scrabble Farmer, but that doesn’t tell the whole story by any means.
Anyway, one of my memories of his language ticks was that he would rub the cat’s belly and say, with what I came to realize was admiration, “You lazy bugger, you.”
As to behavior ticks, he cruised through the day with a small glass of plum brandy at his side as he read the newspaper, one small sip perhaps every half hour, whether he was sitting indoors or out.