Greenland is shitty
When I was around four years old, my
grandmother told me that whatever you flush down the toilet goes to Greenland.
Being geographically challenged then, I thought that meant a small county over in England was being covered in urine, feces and toy cars.
It's not that bad looking.
Now, to be honest, I didn't know my
grandmother terribly well. I would be brought over there when no one was at home
to look after me, and instead of using this opportunity to get to know her, I
merely watched episodes of Thomas the Tank Engine and sat around her with
a hoard of digestive biscuits when she drank tea. Considering I couldn't
actually talk until I was 5, I suppose it made sense, but I became an asshole
then, and when visits to her became semi-daily a few years later when she
became bed bound with deteriorating health and lung cancer, I had the perfect opportunity to know
more about her. I could have asked her about her life's history, simply get to
bond with her, or anything, but instead it involved standing there awkwardly
with my brother and father, receiving a Kinder Surprise once or twice, both
times turning out to be some kind of window-sticker snail thing. We both hated
snails, so that was a delight and a half, and possibly the most I learnt during
this period. Eventually, she gave up the ghost and passed away in her sleep, and
we were all actually much, much more distraught when we heard the news that she
was unlikely to last for more than a year rather than when she actually did die.
Her funeral didn't exactly help in providing any details about herself; perhaps
it was because it genuinely didn't go into personal details, or I could merely
have been trying to be a hard man by not crying, which ultimately made me sound
like more of an asshole.
Seriously, he has this giant white coat and when children ask him if he's a doctor, he says "I'm Doctor Robotnik." Today's youth probably don't appreciate this much. =(
Several years after that, I gained an
interest in history and began to interact with my elders much more, and pretty
much learnt my grandfather's complete history, ranging from his experience in
the second world war when he was working in an aircraft hangar ("Oh, there'll be
a lot of people hurt in this!" someone commented upon relaying him the news) to
the million jobs he went through before eventually retiring, and then becoming
Dr. Robotnik. Seriously. My grandfather from my mother's side, however, is one
I've yet to learn much details about, aside from his time as a police officer
and losing an eye to a glass shard from a burning building. I can blame this on
him having a thick country accent I can barely understand and the fact he needs
to feel my goatee to realise which grandson it is he's talking to.
But my grandmother, I never got to know. She didn't like snails, she didn't like war, she didn't mind me crowding around her with biscuits to dunk in her tea and she had no complaints with Thomas the Tank Engine, even if one episode involves builders walling Gordon into a tunnel simply because he didn't want his new paint ruined with the rain, his rescue being omitted from the episode as "a tale for another time."
I never got to know what her life was like, but more importantly, I never got what the hell she was up to with the toilets leading to Greenland comment.
My grandmother wasn't alone in providing utterly insane comments when I was too young to make any "lol you on drugs" jokes, both with the aforementioned Dr. Robotnik and also one of my teachers in Primary 2. My two teachers, Ms. Bishop and Mrs. Brennon (which just so happens to be the name of a character from Father Ted. Coincidentally?), were two other people I didn't know too well, but is understandable considering I was a moody mothertruck back then. Ms. Bishop, if she's the one I remember correctly, merely shouted loudly and believing any child that was tired enough to yawn was bored out of his skull and therefore needed a shouting-at, while Mrs. Brennon gave a rather exotic explanation as to why old photographs and films are in black and white.
And this doesn't look so awful either; except for that one with the giant black splodge of whatever. That looks lethal.
Apparently, the world was once, actually, black and white, and normally you'd think this would just mean things were greyscale or two-tone, but it was somehow crazy enough to make ice cream grey. See, apparently the occupants of this black and white Earth were unhappy with it all looking the same, a child saying "I don't want to eat grey ice cream" being one of the complaints supposedly said. The others were more mundane and American-like ("I don't want to see black fire hydrants" is a bit redundant as I've never seen a fire hydrant outside of Spain), but eventually enough people complained for an artist to come along and through unexplained means, painted the world an array of tints. Ice cream was white, fire hydrants varied depending on your region, and the sky fluctuated on the time of day and weather, but colour filled the world! And people were much happier. Mrs. Brennon also explained why some numbers were even and some were odd by a bank queue type story where numbers got into a queue and arrived to be verified, doing it in a routine of odd, even, odd, even. Absolutely mundane stuff if it weren't for the fact that the numbers were given personalities. One of them was nerdy and another was demanding, but seven was described as cool and swanky for whatever reason. Being born on the seventh day of the seventh month, this was naturally pretty awesome, and seven suddenly became everyone's favourite number from then on.
My grandmother from my mother's side also said people explode if they get fat enough, traumatizing my brother considerably,, but that can be arguable if you consider fetish artwork to be a reliable source of real information.
Greenland being the destination of the world's waste wasn't the only toilet-related story my father's parents had to tell me. One thing
Robotnik my grandfather loved telling me was the many pets he had when
he was younger, ranging from the ordinary dogs and hamsters, to slightly less
commonplace hedgehogs, to a gecko. He kept this gecko in either a box or a
bottle, feeding it dead bugs and flies that flew into his room, and kept an eye
on it at all times; however, his mother was eternally wary of the little thing,
and never felt safe with it in the house. And then a neighbour pushed her over
The calls are coming from inside the house
He said that during the night, geckos will get out of any container they're in, go to a sleeping person and crawl down their throats, suffocating them. My general lack of knowledge regarding lizards can't help in confirming or denying this, and even without any I'm unsure why exactly one would crawl down a throat in room temperature; but that night when the gecko was assumed to strike, she plucked it out of it's container, took it to the bathroom, flushed it down the toilet and denied it ever existed in the first place. Just to humour my innocent mind, my grandfather claimed he could still hear the gecko down the toilet, pattering away against the tubes and the porcelain.
My grandfather also once said he was
born in a football stadium during a Liverpool match and that's why he supported
the team, so I think that's enough reason to say he's crazy. But I love him.
You know, Greenland being where toilet deposits go to could possibly be explained rather simply.
They didn't like their football team.
So much for seeking a profound answer. Could've saved me from calling myself an asshole numerous times through this writing, too.