The other day I sent Pone grocery shopping. There's this woman cashier that I normally go to if her lane is open, when it's time to check out. So while Pone was checking out he got to overhear her telling the bagger that she has a room in a boarding house. In that room there is no bathroom, so she explained that she uses a bucket. She went on to say: "And in the morning, boy is it full." Pone was horrified. When he told me, I was hysterical. He couldn't believe that the woman ringing him out, and touching all of our groceries had a routine that included dumping a full bed pan every morning.
Yesterday, we went grocery shopping together. When we were getting ready to check out, I saw that she was working. So I turned to him and asked him if he would rather go through the self-checkout or go see his old friend "Betty Pans." He hates me now.
Pone has a 93 year old grandmother that we all call "Nana." Nana is the best! She is a Massachusetts native, and from the generation where everyone still gets dressed up even if they're going to the grocery store. Nana gets her hair done every Thursday, and is the type to have the fancy living room that no one is allowed to sit in.
The first time I met Nana, she was telling a story about how she and Pone's grandfather (Papa), were driving through town on their way out to dinner, as they did every night. At some point in the conversation Nana was describing how they were about to get on the highway and some "Cuntita," cut them off. I wasn't expecting her to rock the "c-bomb." I mean here's this adorable, little old couple sitting at their kitchen table all dressed up. She's got her hair done, her nails done and wearing a nice blouse and slacks, sitting across from her husband that's wearing a dress shirt and tie. There's white carpet in an untouched living room around the corner. So the word "cunt," could not have been further from my mind. It was at that moment that I knew I loved Nana, and pulled my chair closer to her, so I could hear more of the story.
Nana and Pone's mother were concerned at first that I was uppity or something, because I didn't swear in front of them. Pone explained that I was just trying to be polite and that I actually start off most sentences with the words "well shit," or "what the fuck is this?" They told me that I didn't have to censor myself around them, which was a relief. Then Nana showed me that she has really bad arthritis, but a lot of time uses it as an excuse to flip people off.
I love seeing Nana interact with the family, and lovingly call them "asshole." One Christmas she truly touched my heart by looking right at me and telling me that Pone's sister was "a real pain in the ass." However, my favorite term that she uses is the word "Touchhole." I had never heard it before, but it's a word that's synonymous with the word asshole.
I began using the word freely. One year for my birthday Pone even had a custom shirt made for me that said "touchhole," on the front and on the back, there was a picture of my dog's touchhole with eyes. So it looked like a face, with eyes and a mouth. But really you're just staring into a dog's asshole. It's always been one of my favorite birthday gifts.
A few weeks ago, I was on Twitter explaining the word "touchhole," in reference to a presidential candidate. My Twitter handle is the same as my blog address and is read as "I'm a touchhole too." In talking about Nana and the way we used the word, I decided to do a Google search for "touchhole." At which point, I found that a "touchhole," it is a small hole in the breech part of a cannon. As I continued my research I pulled up something from the Urban Dictionary which said that "touchhole," is an Irish slang term, used predominantly by an older generation, from western Massachusetts. Also, the word "touchhole," is a more derogatory insult than just being called an asshole. I was floored! I ran to tell Pone who was dumbfounded, because a word that he just assumed his grandmother made up, was in fact a real word.
I was so proud of my findings, I felt like a little kid turning in a research paper or a science fair project. Only I'm 34, and sitting on a computer blogging about touchholes. Which totally makes me a touchhole. Queen of all touchholes, maybe. But I guess I'd rather be called that than have some touchhole refer to me as "Betty Pans."