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friends would make fun of the demands of our parents, knowing damn well
that we would have to go along with them. But the way in which we
rebelled was to, you know, joke about it -- that which we could
joke about. But she was pretty hard taskmistress, in terms of things
which she considered important. And I must tell you, I respected her.
She had standards of behavior --
And I don't want to give you the impression that this woman
was restrictive. For some peculiar reason, she wasn't restrictive. We
did joke. We laughed about things, you know, and when I got about 12,
13, 14, we could argue about certain things, although once, I remember,
she got very angry with me, because I was questioning Jonah and the
Whale, among other things. And I really didn't realize that she was
going to be so literalistic and fundamentalist about the thing, and I
said -- I must have been about 12 or 13, because I was taking biology --
I just said to her, you know, that it was not likely that Jonah would
be able to stay in that whale without being digested. And we were
having dinner, and she threw a chicken leg at me.
That's the one time I remember her really being so threatened
by my increasing questioning of her beliefs, and what she was
trying to get me to believe.
Was she much of a Bible reader, then?
She was a Sunday School teacher. She was a Sunday School teacher,
and she believed certain things, you know, and thought they were important.
By the way -- my sister didn't get in these kinds of
debates or dialogues with my mother. My sister, who pretty much shared
my position, was of course wiser, in the sense that -- well, she was wise
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