The Norman Transcript

Opinion

May 16, 2013

Mothers today aren’t like early mothers

NORMAN — Early mothers were known for their ability and willingness to sew for family as well as friends and neighbors. When clothes needed mending or someone needed a dress or a jacket, many mothers could always come through.

“You have to stand still, Betty,” Mabel says. “I can’t get this pattern folded right with you wiggling so much.”

James, Mabel’s son, comes in.

“Going somewhere special?” he says to Betty.

“Party.”

Mabel sighs. She sits back in her chair.

“OK, Betty, you can go now. I finally got it pinned right.”

Betty rushes out the door.

“High school kids seem to be always in a hurry,” Mabel comments. “Will you be that way, James?”

Later, when his mom is sewing Betty’s jacket, James says to her, “Why do you sew for our neighbors for free?”

Mabel glances up.

“Just like your aunt, the neighbors need me to sew for them because some of them can’t sew.”

She looks back down and straightens fabric on the sewing machine.

“They do things for us in return. We help each other.”

Helping extended to the community. The party line brings busy news.

“We need a casserole or dessert for the Priestley family,” a familiar voice imparts the news. “The father is ill and can’t work. The whole family needs clothes. Help all you can.”

For more than a month, the women help with laundry, mending, carrying in food, driving to the doctor — until the father can work again.

They often brought food into the local church to feed workers with hammers and saws complete youth centers or make repairs.

“Bring your hammers and saws Friday evening,” the pastor tells the congregation. “We’ll start building rooms in our new addition. The concrete is dry and our ladies agree to feed us.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Improving children’s lives

    Social service organizations that have long-term debt for their headquarters and operating needs often spend much of their fundraising efforts meeting those obligations....

    July 29, 2014

  • Nutritional article should be accurate

    I read with interest the July 13 article “Are low-carb diets really healthy?” by Cassidie Day. Unfortunately, a number of statements in this article were incorrect. The first problematic statement was, “Carbs are an essential nutrient ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Hospital story headline was too sensationalized

    Editor, The Transcript: On July 18, The Transcript ran a front page article with the headline “Lawsuit filed against Norman Regional — Civil suit alleges improper billing practices by NRH and contracted physicians groups.” As a first page ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Congress should close gaps

    Of all of Edward Snowden’s revelations about electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency, the most unsettling was that the government was accumulating vast numbers of records about the telephone calls of American citizens. In ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Border obsession overlooks trade

    Texas Gov. Rick Perry made headlines recently by ordering 1,000 National Guard troops to the border. This bravado comes at a price: $12 million a month. Perry plans to send the bill the federal government. That’s one way to finance your ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Intercession badly needed in this world

    Yesterday was my feast day, or as the Italians call it, my “onomastico.” Since I live in the United States, it went completely unnoticed. If I lived in Italy, however, I would have been showered with cards and phone calls. That’s because ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Help better than commentary

    For the last seven years, I have helped run Hands Helping Paws, an animal welfare and rescue group that fosters Norman’s abandoned animals and advocates for spay and neuter initiatives to reduce our community’s problems with stray and ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Stick to the sports

    Editor, The Transcript: Why must we, especially us nice conservatives, be subjected to political commentary in a sports column? I hear/view Fox News routinely and find their coverage quite acceptable. I also hear/view CNN and MSNBC. I ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Corporation Commission should should evaluate quakes, fracturing

    Editor, The Transcript: Is your house at risk of being damaged in an earthquake because of fracking? Maybe. We’ve seen more earthquakes and tremors in Oklahoma seven months into 2014 than in the two previous years combined. At the same ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Norman can stop fracking before it escalates

    Editor, The Transcript: There are 163 fracked wells within Norman city limits. With growing attention to health and safety concerns, the city is considering changes to the existing oil and gas ordinance....

    July 27, 2014