Anybody remember Brett Butler? How about her sitcom (on ABC?) a few years back? Anyshow, she had a catch phrase from that show, said in a sassy, Southern way, that simply said “Don’t you judge me.” (Update: My hubby informs me that the catch phrase came from her appearances as Earl’s mother on “My Name is Earl”. Um, whatever.)
The show’s long gone, but the phrase lives on – at least for me and hubby. Usually, it is said when one of us goes back for another piece of pie or one more cookie. We look the other dead in the (condescending) eye and say low and fiercely, “Don’t you judge me.” That ends all comments or ribbing.
Well, in truth, judging is something that I’m jumping into, albeit it doesn’t involve overeating. I’ve been interested in the work of MaryJane Butters for awhile and I’ve enjoyed her writings on doing for yourself and making do. MaryJane runs a farm in Idaho and is the head hen of the “farmgirl movement”. She stresses slowing down, going organic when you can and the importance of community.
One of the ways that the farmgirls learn long lost skills and teach others is through earning merit badges. Ok, now bear with me. It’s been awhile since I was a girl scout, but I remember the pride when I received a badge for advanced chemistry, underwater basketweaving, or whatever else in which I demonstrated proficiency (sadly, I remember the pride but not the actual badges).
Now, being considerably older and less willing to wear all green as an ensemble, I am jumping back into merit badges for the kind of skills that I find important. I’m ready to demonstrate my work in crochet, embroidery, apron sewing and entrepreneurial spirt – four badges, baby! I’ll be diving into the tatting, gardening, community service and public service badges next.
Is this corny? Corny as Kansas, as the song goes, but so what? In the end, I’ve learned new skills, brushed off old ones, met new friends and accomplished something that makes me happy. Not too shabby, if you ask me.
I guess, when you get down to it, “Judge me, please” sounds less guilt ridden and defensive than our previous catch phrase, if less tasty than that second piece of pie.
I’ll update my progress, for those who care, but I do promise not to hit you up to buy any cookies. Promise.