Humor has a way of creeping into my brain at the most inopportune times. I like to think that I display appropriate behavior most of the time, but on at least one occasion, I embarrassed myself and my daughter with uncontrollable giggling. In order to understand how a visual memory made me look like a fool, I have to share a story.
My husband and I were visiting my brother and sister-in-law in Georgia. On a whim, we decided to visit Babyland General Hospital, the birthplace of Cabbage Patch Kids, in Cleveland, Georgia. Yes, there really is such a place, complete with nurses, doctors and orderlies.
The dolls born in this unique location are hand-made of cloth. They have fat faces and and wide-opened arms. Some are born bald and some have curly or wavy heads of hair. They originate in a large cabbage patch under the Magic Crystal Tree. When a family decides to adopt one of the kids, a nurse announces “Cabbage dilation; all staff on standby.”
The contractions are timed and when the birth is imminent, a doctor appears and listens to the cabbage with a stethoscope. He or she then injects it with “Imagicillin”, yanks the nude baby from the patch and cameras flash, recording the remarkable event. (Really, I’m not making this up.)
The newborn birthed on our visit that day had exaggerated dimples, much like the Pillsbury dough boy, and a full head of bright, red hair that looked as if someone pressed their fingers firmly on the baby’s head to make ripples that were evenly distributed on both sides of the head. The bizarre and funny experience apparently burned an image in my subconscious only to manifested itself later.
Fast forward a few days after vacation. My daughter, in the process of selecting a realtor to sell her home, invited me join her when a potential broker made his pitch to her. I stood in the living room when Laura answered the door to let the agent in. In walked an adult version of the Cabbage Patch Doll birthed during our visit to Georgia. The man had plump, peach cheeks with huge dimples and red wavy hair split down the center of his head.
My mind immediately revisited the process of his head being yanked out of the cabbage patch. I felt the strong urge creep from my stomach and nearly escaped my mouth before I excused myself and rushed to the bathroom.
I turned on the water in hopes that it would drown out the uncontrollable laughter. I tried to compose myself with little success. After five or ten minutes, I exited the bathroom and took a seat next to my daughter as she sat listening to the man explain why the company he represented should list her home.
Unable to look directly at the realtor without losing control, I tried to focus on a picture hanging on the wall, sucked in my cheeks and clenched my jaw in hopes that I would not repeat my inappropriate behavior. The second the interview was over and Laura escorted the man out the door, I fell to the floor in hysteria. To this day, I cannot think about the face without breaking into unconstrained laughter.
I’d like to think I am not alone in having such an embarrassing moment. Sometimes humor takes control and can’t be quieted. I’d love to hear from you if you can relate.