Friday, January 27, 2012

MOTB > Mommy-in-Law

Chaucer would have called me a modyr in lawe.
What’s a MOTB to do – after the wedding?  I’ve been thinking about that – over three months post nups now. The bride and groom have been pronounced  husband and wife, and the MOTB – has become an “in-law.”  According to Wikipedia, this now gives me a “legal affinity” to the groom,  whatever that means.  I haven’t gained a son; I’ve attained a son-in-law.  I wonder if there is an IRS form for that.
Chaucer would have called me a modyr in lawe. He relates a rather malicious modry in lawe story in The Canterbury Tales, told by a guy (it figures!) on route to the shrine of Thomas Becket.  I don’t remember the sordid details, though I do remember – verbatim -- the first fourteen lines of the Tales. Had to memorize them to pass a required college English course over forty years ago. Memorize and recite. A forgotten objective in today's school curriculums.
Practicing for days in my dorm, I found I could best remember the archaic yet mellifluous Middle English when I sang the words to the tune of Leaving on a Jet Plane, a John Denver song (most popularly covered by Peter Paul and Mary). After stumbling through a few Whan that aprill –s at my official recitation (you had to make a one-on-one appointment with the prof ) I asked her if I could get my guitar – which I had left outside the meeting room – just in case (no pun intended!).
Strumming away, I breezed through the fourteen lines.  Still can.
What tune can I rehearse being an M-in law to, I wonder. Certainly not its namesake song, which I wrote about pre-wedding. I want the lyrics to rate at least a 9, American-Bandstand-wise, and be easy to dance to.  

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