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Conversations I Never Had Before Becoming an Aunt

"Is there a yellow engine?"


"On that living insurance nightmare known as the Island of Sodor."

"Oh.  I don't know."

"How can you not know?  You're the uncle.  You're supposed to know.  You do the trains.   I'm the aunt.  I'm  in charge of cookies and the occasional manly craft like leather tooling."

"I'm not sure there's a yellow engine."

"There has to be.  I think its name is Spencer."

"Is there a Spencer?"

"I could swear there's a Spencer."

"Wait, I'll look it up on Wikipedia."

"Good.  Let's be definitive."

"...Okay, according to this, Spencer is silver-colored, and also, apparently, an a-hole."

"Well, which one is the yellow one?  I know there's a yellow one."

"It says here that the yellow engine is named Molly."

"...Oh, the one with low self esteem."


"I thought Molly was the green one."

"No, you're thinking of Emily."

"Oh, okay, Emily's the engine with the Mary Tyler Moore hair."


"I am going to drink now.  Please alert me when the children become interested in fantasy football, at which point I will begin to drink even more."

waking up at:  mbe@drinktothelasses.com

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Reader Comments (13)

[...] Beth can’t seem to keep her engines straight, but has an excellent solution. Share and [...]

December 21, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterToot | Morning Works Media

If I had a dollar for every damn dollar I have spent over the years on Thomas toys...wait....

December 21, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJohn B

At least you have missed the horror that was My Little Ponies.

December 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterstarnarcosis

Thank the Lord your nephews are *not* into Pokemon! ;)

December 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterred pill junkie

In no way. I had myself a righteously tricked-out stable back in The Day. Unless the new generation is in fact a horror, which, given the new iteration of Hungry Hungry Hippos, would not surprise me in the least.

December 22, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB

I'm rather frightened that there is a Thomas the Tank Engine Wiki. It's not the four year olds that watch the show that are writing it.

I would suspect that those wikies were written by charitable parents ,who wished to spread their hard-earned wisdom of all things fantasy locomotive, to any distressed new uncle/dad/prospective boyfriend :)

Incidentally, it's interesting how the hobby of model railroads was very popular with our parents, but has waned as of late. My dad had a thing for model railroads, but he never collected any; my dad hadn't a thing for acute tool dexterity... and has an explosive temper... so that should explain it ;)

December 22, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterred pill junkie

Yes, but you were the RECIPIENT. You had TIME to keep track of which ponies you already owned. You never minded if you stepped on one at 6 am in the shower.
At my house, it's not "I gave birth to you, you owe me", it's "I sat through 'My Little Pony: The Movie' for you, you owe me."

December 23, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterstarnarcosis

Happy Holidays, MB! Thank you so much for all the laughter you have provided this year, past years and for years to come! You are a truly gifted woman!

Sara N

December 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSara N

Oh-- okay. Yeah, I never subjected my parents to The Movie. You win.

I did not think of putting one in the shower. Maybe I'll sneak one in my parents' bathroom for old time's sake, seeing as they missed that little treat.

December 23, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMB

Thank you! You improved my mood.

December 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterzith

Oh yes: Feliz Navidad to you guys !

And hope you have a... well, if not 'prosper' new year, at least 'adequate' or 'smooth', does 'smooth' work for us? "2010: the year that passes smoothly" ;)

December 24, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterred pill junkie

Isn't there another yellow engine? Isn't it Duncan? Wait, wait: I can go check in my son's room.

My way of saying that I feel your pain.

By the way, my husband always observes, somewhat snarkily, that Sodor has an awful lot of industry for such a teensy island. And what's with Sir Topham Hatt and his insistence that everyone be so useful all the time? As a friend of mine once said, that reeks of the worst sort of utilitarianism.

Oh well. It's still better than Disney Princesses.

December 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGinny
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