By Alan O’Brien

In the issue of October 3rd last year I wrote about some of our mother’s sayings that we grew up with as children. Of course, the sayings just didn’t stop there, and when we were teenagers we also received the benefit of her wit and wisdom.

There are seven children in our family and, given the gap between our ages, there was a stage when at any one time there would have been five teenagers in the house. What that did to our mother’s sanity I’m not sure, but I do know that sometimes she wondered why we  bothered to go to school at all as we “knew everything already.”

The television was the main cause of any angst in the house and whenever she asked us to do something for her the usual answer was, “Yeah, I’ll be there in a minute,” because we would have been watching something and couldn’t be disturbed. Invariably she would sarcastically respond by pointing at the television and say, “Oh, of course I forgot, that’s the fourth commandment.”  

We all had summer jobs during the school holidays but the money wouldn’t last through the school term so when one of my sisters would be looking for money to buy the latest fashion ‘must have’ and bemoaning the fact that someone they knew in school had one, our mother would quickly reply, “Well, if you want your style, you may go light at the table.”

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