Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The time our sister ate green tuna

One of the perks of being me is that I have very witty siblings. When the four of us are together there is guaranteed to be laughter, no matter what the situation or setting. In fact, if you ever want to have some fun in a hospital waiting room, invite my brother Ron!
The back of the photo reads:
Timmy, Valerie, Ronnie & Debbie - 1984

It never fails when we are all together that the subject of our sister Valerie and her childhood follies come up. Oh, we have some really funny Valerie stories, and bless her heart, she’s a really good sport about it.

One story that always comes up is about the time Valerie ate green tuna. Now, the fact that she ate green tuna isn’t really funny at all. She had opened the can and grabbed a little piece of tuna off the top – chewed and swallowed it before realizing that it was spoiled and potentially harmful.

I remember at the time we were all pretty freaked out that she might die. Sibling rivalry and the normal fussing and fighting totally went out the door, and we clamored around and hung onto Mom’s reassurance that she’d be alright. Although, I remember Mom being really concerned too, so that made the whole thing even more scary!

It was a Wednesday evening when it happened, and my mom worked for the local drug store at the time. She called her boss, Mr. Wong, and he met her at the store so she could get some ipecac syrup to induce vomiting. I stayed home with Valerie, and our brothers both headed off to church to attend our regular Wednesday evening Bible study.

The funny part of this story is how our brother, Ron recalls {and embellishes} it. It always starts with, “Remember that time Val ate green tuna?” and we burst into laughter because we know what’s coming. He claims that during the church service the minister said, in a very solemn voice, “Please pray for Valerie N. She ate green tuna tonight…” and that he and our brother Tim sank down in the pews because they were so embarrassed.

Maybe it’s Ron’s delivery that makes the story so funny.
Maybe it’s the relief that Valerie didn’t die from eating green tuna that adds relief to our laughter.
Maybe just saying, "Valerie ate green tuna" is funny.
Or perhaps it’s just part of the bigger picture that shows how resilient
we are, and how we rely on laughter as a coping mechanism.
I’m going to credit our amazing mother for that.
PS: Every time I open a can of tuna I think of my sister, and I always check to make sure it’s not green!

PPS for Valerie: Thanks for letting me tell this story, and I'm super glad you didn't die from eating green tuna! xo


Jo said...

I'm being sneaky at work and catching up on my blog reading but this post just gave the game away, I burst out laughing! Great story and thank you to Val for letting you share it :)

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

I was wondering if green tuna was going to be like green eggs and ham! So funny :o)
PS Lovely to see a little sneak of Alison's FQ block on IG x

Ruth said...

Great story and photo = perfect scrapbook page!
Thanks to Val for allowing you to share the story.

Valerie said...

Very well written sis!!! I hate tuna to this DAY!!! Love you so much!!!

alexa said...

A lovely story of resilience and family togetherness :). And don't you all look alike!

scrappyjacky said...

It had me laughing as well.

Stephanie @ La Dolce Vita said...

Cute! and what a great family photo too! You look so pretty Deb!

debs14 said...

Poor Valarie! I'm pleased she can still laugh about it, and I'm not surprised she no longer eats tuna!

Audrey said...

Oh my gosh, that is hysterical....especially the part about the minister mentioning it during service. HA! Really sweet post!!! Valerie is such a good sport!

Karen said...

I can't imagine a can of bad tuna---so yucky! No wonder Valerie doesn't eat it. It's a great family story, though---and a great photo, too!

Karen said...

Your love for your siblings is so evident every time you write about them x

Sian said...

What a great story I'm glad Valerie survived! being able to laugh is a great gift. My family has used humour a lot to keep us going through some dark times over the years, and I'm very grateful for it.

oh, I love that photo, too - it just shouts 1984

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