STG Books

THE JOYS OF WHITE TRASH

I’m going to just say this: there is no advice, tips, or tricks in this post about being a mom. This post is about being a good friend and finding humor in the sadness.

My friend Jane was losing her house. There was no way around it. They had a foreclosure notice posted on their door and seventy-two hours to leave. The only home they could afford was a single wide rented trailer in a trailer park.

Jane had lived in a trailer park. She married a man who had lived in a trailer park. Their dream was to buy a house in a neighborhood with other houses. They had achieved that goal and were ecstatic. To start back at the beginning was devastating. Jane felt ashamed, abandoned, and alone. Her church family supported her and her friends uplifted her, but she still felt she was a failure. Enter me, her best friend.

I went to my local convenience store (I don’t want to say the name of the store because I don’t want anyone to think they are less than. Let’s just say they offer value priced items). I picked up the very things Jane had told me through the years reminded her of her years in the trailer park.

I put them all in a large gift bag with tissue and proceeded to her home. Her husband’s mother and brother were visiting the new trailer as well. Please don’t think I am disparaging people who live in trailers. I just want to say for a family of four, this trailer was much smaller than the home they had been evicted from. Not to mention, they had aspired to live in a house, and had lost the house because of financial difficulties. They felt they were going backwards. This is why the following situation became so hilarious.

Jane pulled out the first item from my gift bag. “Oh my”, she exclaimed, “pink fuzzy slippers!”. You see, Jane had told me she remembered her mother-in-law going to the grocery store in pink fuzzy slippers. That same mother-in-law remarked how much they looked like the ones she had at home. Jane giggled.

The next item up for discussion was a plastic vase with fake flowers and scented liquid in it. “Oh, a Smell Um Good!” Jane’s mother-in-law exclaimed. “You should put that on your TV and the heat from the TV will make the smell go all over your home!” Jane and I both nodded in agreement and smiled at one another.

Next was Cheez Whiz and Ritz Crackers, except I bought the knock off brands in the convenience store. That didn’t stop the brother-in-law. “Hey! That looks good! Could I have that?” Jane passed it along willingly, starting to smile and even laugh.

Next was a can of Spam. Brother-in-law almost wept for joy. “Hey! You’re not going to eat that right? Can I have it?” At this point Jane was literally laughing. “Of course Bubba! Please do! Could you all excuse us while I show Jann the rest of the trailer?” We exited Stage Left and ended up in the master bedroom closet with as many doors closed as possible while we rolled in laughter. Jane thanked me again and again for making her night. I need to say that I meant it all as a joke-I bought those items because they unfortunately prejudice people who live in a trailer park. They were all meant to make Jane understand that it doesn’t matter where you live-it only matters where you’re going. The fact that her in-laws embraced the gifts and used them in everyday life was something to just be funny. Again, I apologize if I offended anyone.

I try to find a lesson learned in all my experiences. Oh goodness I have to say I would do it all over again! I made my friend laugh and feel better about her station in life and that’s a good thing.

Please comment and let me know how you’ve made your best friend feel better.

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