As we were sitting around the table Sunday night enjoying my daughters birthday meal, one of our guest commented to our Korean exchange student, “Have you ever done the “mashed potato” dance?”
After looking at him rather strangely due to our inability to make a connections with where his brain got that one from, the only thing we could puzzle out is he was thinking of “The Monster Mash”. (The meal did in fact consist of mashed potatoes, so we did figure that part of it out.)
Although a “monster mashed potato” dance does not exist, I could not help but wonder what it WOULD look like. Just a couple of thoughts on the subject…
- Is the potato so huge it would be called a monster potato OR is it a monster smashing the potatoes? The answer to this question would greatly influence the dance. Is it a monster smashing to potatoes or is it an all out scramble to smash this many-eyed, starch laden wonder into digestible form?
- What appendages are available? The “monster” option is either the hands smashing with a madness or the feet being used to stomp with reckless abandon. If an imaginary massive tuber is a part of the dance, it would seem teamwork might be an effective way to reduce the potato to a smooth, semi-creamy consistency.
The older I get, the more memories I seem to have available for all of the random paths a dinner conversation may take. I love it when some comment, noise, or random thought can serve as a catalyst for a completely different trajectory to an otherwise “normal” communication. I love it that I don’t have to take full responsibility for providing these catalyst. My kids (and exchange kids) are confident enough in themselves and comfortable enough in their environment that they can be willing to throw out the obscure quote/fact/observation. If it takes the conversation no where today, it may reappear in a future conversation.
Some of our best standing jokes have been over dinner conversations. And, some of our best laughs have been while eating dinner. Whatever mistakes we have made as parents, one of them was not failing to eat and dine around the table on a very regular basis. The quality of the food has improved over the years and the dialogue has matured. The kids have brought various friends to the the table to share meals with us. When they left/leave the table, we hope their hunger is an ancient memory and their only real thought is “Did we eat dinner, too?”