Tuesday, June 16, 2009

What Nancy taught me...

This was my speech at Nancy's funeral... I apologize for the length. I apologized then for the length, as well. I was told to keep it at two to three minutes. I knew that after 33 years of friendship, that just couldn't be done. Juanita, get the coffee!

I could say....
that I've known Nancy for 33 years. We met at age 18 in our sorority, thrown together as 'big and little sisters'. We were roommates three different times and were each other's maids of honor. Even our pets, Biscuit and Tweeter were best friends. Nancy's large yellow German Shepherd dog and my little gray kitty cat. They were best friends.

I could say....
that Nancy is incredibly organized. And that I'm not.

I could say that she is my Master Mind partner.

But I will say.... that Nancy is all about humor. And that's the direction I've decided to go with this. An attempt at humor.

So, here is what Nancy taught me... what I learned from her over the years:

Nancy taught me how to 'get rich quick.' We planned to open a cookie business. We called it "Kriflips." 'Kri' for Kris and 'flips' for Nancy Phillips. Kriflips. Did we get rich? Nope. We kept eating the inventory.

She taught me how to watch my weight. We tried the "beer diet;" the "all cookie diet" and she taught me that you are never too old to lick the bowl when you make cookies or cake.

Nancy taught me about "puka dogs", the greatest hot dogs on earth, found only in Hawaii.

I learned that all food must be eaten at room temperature.

I also learned that if you diet on Nutra Systems and you don't like the food, you can stash it in your pantry and if you haven't been grocery shopping in awhile, you can pull it out and make a meal of it. You can also serve it to your boyfriend, if you haven't been grocery shopping... and he'll never know. And I promised I'd never tell him.

She taught me to procrastinate. One time, when we moved in together, we didn't feel like unpacking so we played cards all night. That's probably when our Master Mind games were born.

Yes, we have played Master Mind for nearly 30 years. We would email each other 5 and 6 times a day with clues. I'm sorry if her boss is here today... we just would do that.

And we never minded long lines at Disneyland because we could play Master Mind in line.

Nancy did NOT teach me French. She taught me the language of Nancy instead. Nancy-isms, we called them. Just say any word, any time, and I'll understand it. Reindeer were called 'rainbows', you could substitute the word refrigerator if you mean't to say 'shoe.' And most recently, she told me she had to have her 'lunch' drained. She mean't 'lung.' See, we were always all about food.

Nancy didn't teach me French, but she did teach me Spanish. Everytime I used the restroom, she'd ask if I'd "lave'd sus manos."

She taught me that all pets have voices. Three weeks ago when I was here, my daughter had wanted to come, too. She wanted to hear Nancy do the pet voices... My dog and my own cat now have voices as well.

Nancy was 'hi-tech'. She worked for an appliance store and sold me my very first VCR. She said, "You HAVE to have this!" And we were the first on the block to own a VCR.

She taught me to tap dance in elevators. Elevators were mean't to be tap-danced in.

She taught me to share. One day I received an envelope in the mail with one lone Frito in it. I called her and said, "What's this?" She told me that she had had that for lunch and she wanted to share it with me...

She taught me to keep Chapstick handy because she might need it. Although she never needed it, because she was never without it.

She also taught me to be impulsive. She went out for ice cream once and came back with a new car... a Mitsubishi Tredia. All because she went out for ice cream.

I wanted to learn how to use the computer way back when and she taught me. I visited her at work once and she decided to show me how the whole thing worked... I came home that night and proudly told my husband that I could play FreeCell, Solitaire and I could look up anyone's social security numbers.

She taught me what a friend was. In 1997, my husband was very, very ill. I'd sit at the hospital with him day in and day out, talk to doctors all day, etc. Nancy said she wanted to spend the day with me, but I said, "I can't. I have to be at the hospital." She said that she wanted to spend the day with me there... at the hospital. And go through all that I was going through.

She also taught me to marry a man that will stick with you through everything. And she did.

Three weeks ago when I came out to visit Nancy in the hospital, I saw Doug there and he told me, "I am well liked at work, but Nancy is beloved." And he was right. You can tell by this room full of people.

I will always look at five letter words and wonder if they would stump Nancy. My current word is EMPTY.
E-M-P-T-Y. Five letters. We are currently in a Master Mind game... and, uh, Nancy? It's your turn.

No comments: