Tuesday, 8 January 2008
The Invincibility of Innocence
I’ve mentioned before that my sister lives in a remote village in the very far north of Scotland. Over the years she’s become deeply involved in the running of a drop in centre for the local elderly. Each day a lively assortment of old ladies gather there for lunch. These senior St Trinians are a chipper bunch.
A couple of days ago one of her fellow volunteers, a vigorous woman in her early eighties, phoned my sister. Apparently she was supervising the daily lunch club when things got rather racy.
The discussion had somehow got round to swear words. The ladies were trying to decide what makes a swear word such a bad thing when many of the words are to be found in the dictionary. The talk at the table ranged far and wide until, Gee, my sister’s friend, gradually began to realise she didn’t know the meaning of many of the words that were being so gleefully discussed.
On arriving home she decided to look them up in the dictionary.
“And do you know,” she told my sister in a shocked voice over the phone,
“Many of the words were marked with the word taboo and most of those words are to do with sex!”
My sister, glad that this was a telephone conversation, struggled to control her smiles,
“Yes” she agreed, she believed that was true.
Gee continued conspiratorially,
“I told my husband about those words and what they meant, and he was so shocked he threw his bible at me.”
Such is the invincibility of innocence.
I guess it isn’t only miles that separates her world from mine.
The photo is of some of my sister's other neighbours.