: grandma got run over by the hired help :

Not by the reindeer of song, but by the housekeeper in a Chevy. And that was big news in my little burg.

My sister and I spent that particular afternoon at my grandmother’s while my mother played bridge. It was one of the days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, when first graders such as I were entertaining visions of sugarplums and go-carts. That’s what I wanted, a go-cart with a fast, noisy engine.

As I daydreamed, Viola the housekeeper waved goodbye and left for the day. My grandmother followed behind, to help her navigate around a car blocking much of the driveway. Grandma sized up the situation then motioned for Viola to back up, more, to the right, stop, forward, come on, okay, stop, STOP! Confused and flustered by the wild hand signals, Viola pressed the accelerator instead of the brake and mowed grandma down. Unbeknownst to us.

Viola came bursting into the house, babbling ‘What have I done now? Oh, my Lord, what have I done,’ as she dashed to the linen closet, snatching blankets and pillows and more blankets. Then again with the, ‘what’ve I done?’ I wanted to answer, ‘you tell me,’ but thought better of it. My sister, being older and smarter, went to the window and saw what Viola had done now. My mouth dropped open at the sight of grandma in a snowdrift.

Within minutes an ambulance arrived and so did Big Red, a roving radio reporter in a brown station wagon. Big Red commenced broadcasting from the driveway, reporting the accident in detail to all within signal range. My mom, on her way to pick us up after bridge club, heard the news on the car radio. She headed straight for the babysitter’s house. The babysitter, listening to the radio in her kitchen, donned her hat and coat and waited on the porch for my mom.

In the meantime, my sister and I waited at the neighbors, where we’d been whisked. They plied us with cookies and chattered manically. Big Red finally signed off and left to chase another ambulance. By the time my mother arrived, babysitter in tow, the chaos and excitement had fizzled out. She thanked the nice neighbors and hustled us to the car to take us home, then went to the hospital.

In the end, my grandmother had a dislocated hip and plenty of deep bruising. No serious injuries, no permanent damage. She was back home in a couple of days, stiff and sore and bearing the unmistakable imprint of tire treads on her upper arm. I was morbidly fascinated with that imprint, begging to see it again and again. It was like a tattoo. With raised edges. On my grandma. How cool was that?

Grandma failed to see the attraction.

The End

Copyright © Publikworks 2011.

12 responses to “: grandma got run over by the hired help :”

  1. Oh my! This made me chuckle! Not the part about granny being run over, mind you, but the part about the tire tracks! Poor Viola! I’ve been this close to running over people who attempt to direct me in the past. Nowadays, I just back up until I hit something! :)


    1. Hi, Bella! I’m so glad you got a chuckle. Those tread marks lasted for, gosh, maybe twenty years? For sure fifteen. I love your approach to backing up; keep going until you hit something. That’s wonderful! :) Thanks for stopping in, I enjoyed hearing from you.


  2. Holy cow, that is awful! And yet a really great story since it all turned out okay :)

    Down with Big Red.


    1. Hey, Angie! It did. We all lived happily ever after. Even that horrible Big Red.


  3. That is dreadful and dreadfully funny at the same time, but what happened to Viola? c


    1. Isn’t it?

      In their investigation, the police discovered Viola wasn’t a licensed driver, which came as a surprise to no one. But my family absolutely refused to press any charges — heck, she’d been with them longer than I had. She stuck around for another 25 or 30 years and was the sweetest woman you could ever hope to meet. I believe it was easier for my grandmother to recover than it was for Viola.

      There was a happy ending for everyone involved. Thanks for asking, cecilia.


  4. My grandmother failed to see the attraction I had in her under arm flab. (I know – I’m going to get struck down for mentioning it.) As a kid, when I was sitting next to her – if she raised her arm, I flapped the the under part. OH MY GOSH!!! How HORRIFIC of me. As an adult, admitting such a rude behavior – I am so embarrassed.

    Anyway, tire treads beat flab. I am so glad your Grandma was OK. Wow. Scary story.


    1. That’s not rude, not by a long shot. In all honesty, the tire impression was in her arm flab. She had it, too. Boy, that was the softest, most flexible skin — like Play-Doh.

      And she was fine, but never did see the humor of it all.


    1. She was fine, really. And I’m really glad you see the humor.


  5. I read this whole post with “Grandma got run over by a Reindeer” running through my brain.



    1. You’re welcome. It was playing in my head, too.


%d bloggers like this: