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MY LOUSY WORLD: Mom knows I'm brutally handsome

We're all aware that Sunday is Mother's Day, but unaware of other, lesser-celebrated holidays. It seems like every month I learn of another obscure holiday on the books. Had I not stumbled upon it in my Daily Bread study page for April 30, I'd have never known last Friday was “National Honesty Day.”

Author M. Hirsh Goldberg established this day in the early 1990s as a way to “honor the honorable and encourage honesty.” He said April 30 was selected because “April begins with a day dedicated to lying (April Fool's Day) and should end on a higher moral note.” Truth be known, I couldn't agree more.

I've always hated April Fool's Day and the sadistic pranks it encourages.

Doctor: “I'm sorry to have to tell you this over the phone, Mrs. Snotgrass, but our initial diagnosis was incorrect. I'm afraid your skin condition is the early stages of leprosy. You need to check into a suitable colony before the disease progresses and your limbs start falling off.”

Mrs. Snotgrass: “But, but…you said it was just a heat rash. I'm only 27 and the mother of eight … my children need me!”

Doc: “Well, I don't know what to tell ya, except for… APRIL fools!

Since National Honesty Day is the opposite of April Fool's Day, why not a few other opposite holidays? A month after Christmas, we'd celebrate “Stiffed-us Day,” when we can take back one gift given in the past. On Jan. 25, anyone who has disappointed, insulted or betrayed you might be in for a rude awakening.

Bob: “Hello Myrtle. I'm here to pick up that leather jacket I gave you last year. Break up with ME, will ya?!”

“Nary a Stitch Day” would encourage revelers to walk around naked. On Halloween, we all dress up; on this new holiday, we don't get dressed at all.

“Complaintsgiving Day” would fall soon after November. Family members would gather for a dinner of pizza and beer and bitterly verbalize all they don't have to be thankful for. Envy and covetousness would rule the day.

Friday the 13th is already in place periodically to balance Good Friday. My own beautiful mother, Naomi, died at 91 the day before Good Friday this year. She was so faithful and Christ-like, it would have been fitting had she lasted one day longer. Sadly, she didn't rise again three days later … at least her physical body didn't.

As Jesus suffered his final hours on earth, he cried out, “My God, why has thou forsaken me?”

A few hours before Mom gave up her spirit, my little sister Joy heard her cry out, “Help me, God!”

Joy works at the nursing home in Pennsylvania where Mom died, and she told in her eulogy of Mom being very restless and distressed earlier that night. Hearing Mom's plea to God in that darkened room, Joy prayed that if Mom had to go, she would go quickly and comfortably in her sleep.

Mom grew quiet, and a few hours later in the wee hours, someone from the home called Joy and said Mom had died peacefully in her sleep.

Mom lived every day of her life like it was National Honesty Day. I honestly believe she never told a lie in her entire life. Well, possibly when I was a kid and she told me my teeth looked just fine and my ears weren't pointy (my seventh grade friend Scott Berkeley had called me “Spock”), she might have been stretching it a bit. But God told her to, because I was a sensitive lad, and Bugs Bunny was a popular cartoon then.

So I've never been a big fan of the fib either. I still shudder though remembering a time in sixth grade when Mom sent a note to school to my teacher saying something to the effect, “One thing Doug would never do is lie.” Well, I can't remember the details, except that I was lying like a rug and was guilty as charged. It still bothers me that Mom's unconditional faith in her little buck-toothed boy was betrayed.

Thus, lying is one thing I won't do as an adult. I might “jerk your chain” a bit for comedic purposes, but will never lie to ya. So don't ever lie to me and try to tell me my ears are pointy or that my mullet doesn't look sexy.

This Sunday will be the first Mother's Day ever that I didn't call my Mom. But I'll definitely talk to her, and I might hear her reassure me one more time, “Those boys are just jealous because you're so handsome!”

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