Have you ever noticed that some children have a look on their face that tells you that they are a comedian at heart. I didn’t know my Uncle Wayne Byer when he was a little boy, but I have no doubt that he was a child comedian, because it was written all over his face. Uncle Wayne as a child always wore a mischievous smile. That smile, and the mischievousness that went with it, have never left him. In fact, I think they are one of the most endearing qualities Uncle Wayne has…to me anyway. When I think of him, I remember all the funny things he has done and how much he made us all laugh. What a great legacy for a person. A legacy of laughter. There are few things that make a person more memorable than the ability to make people laugh. Uncle Wayne has that.
My mother, Collene Spencer was the middle child in the family, and the middle child between the only two boys. In my mind, they were like the three musketeers. Where one was found getting into mischief, the other two were not far behind. That’s how it is with siblings sometimes. Different groups of siblings are closer than other groups, even if it is only during their childhood. My mom and her brothers probably drove my grandma crazy with their antics. My mom, aunts, and uncles used to get together once a month to have lunch, visit, and talk about old times. Sometimes, I would like to have been a fly on the wall while they told those stories.
Of course, time changes things, and kids grow up and find different things to spend time doing. My uncles used to go hunting with their dad to help supply food for the family. Slowly, childhood days slipped away, and Uncle Wayne, like all kids became an adult, has a family, and worked a job until it was time for him to retire, but he never lost his sense of humor. I think too, that the antics of the three middle children was a source of much laughter in conversations when the siblings got together is their adult years. Uncle Wayne is the last of the three musketeers left now, and that makes me very sad. I can still hear the laughter when all the siblings got together, and I really hate the fact that four of the nine are gone. I’m glad we still have Uncle Wayne though, and his great sense of humor. Today is Uncle Wayne’s 79th birthday. Happy birthday Uncle Wayne!! Have a great day!! We love you!!
When my grandson, Caalab Royce was a little boy, he was obsessed with being “older” than me…or anyone else for that matter. He would often come up to me or other people and say, “I’m older than you.” It was always such a funny thing to have this little tiny, under five year old boy telling me that he was older than me…his grandma. It always made me smile, and maybe that was his plan anyway. He is, after all, a comedian…always had been. Not everyone was happy with his little joke, especially his older sister, Shai Royce. She was living behind the age eight ball anyway, because she was a Leap Day Baby. So the reality is that by the time he was one, he technically was older than she was. It was a source of contention, until I finally told her that she might only be two at eight, but she would get to drive when she was four and her brother and cousins would have to wait until they were sixteen, so it all evened out in the end.
Caalab has long since ceased to be that little boy trying so hard to be older, and I haven’t heard that funny little comment in a long time, but the story lives on in my memory files. Now that he is going on twenty years old this summer, I guess being older is not so important anymore. And, at almost twenty one…or 5¼…Shai is no longer bothered by such comments. I think that I just assumed that those days of hearing the comment, “I’m older than you” were over. How wrong I was.
Flash forward now those eighteen plus years, to my niece Kellie Hadlock, who is also a serious comedian…if that is possible, and you have Kelli calling me, my daughters, Corrie Petersen and Amy Royce, and most of the rest of the girls in the family, Little Baby Caryn…or whatever their name might be. That is because Kellie is 6’0″, compared to my 5’2″. Kellie likes to hugs us and lift us off our feet at the same time, to make a point that we are vertically challenged. Today in church, where Kellie, her mom, my sister, Allyn Hadlock, and I are all backup singers, Kellie greeted me with her usual, “Hi, little baby Caryn.” I called her little baby Kellie, to which she giggled, “I don’t think so.” I told her that since I am older than her, she will always be little baby Kellie to me. Then, straight out of the past, came the sentence I thought I was done hearing, when Kellie said, “I’m older than you!” The shock must have registered on my face, because my sister said, “That would be ok!” I had to agree, because since I’m sixty and Kellie is almost twenty seven. I could handle being twenty six…or, maybe not, but it was a funny blast from the past.
Most little boys are hungry enough to eat a horse most of the time, and my son-in-law, Travis was no exception to that rule. If his family was having meat loaf, they would have to make 2 meat loaves. One for the family, and one for Travis. They came up with this plan, because after each person had taken a slice of meat loaf, Travis would take the rest of the meat loaf. Travis wasn’t being selfish, he was a growing, hungry boy, and he really needed the food.
Many boys are like that. My husband, Bob was called “hollow legs” by his grandmother. My nephew, JD was another hungry boy. I don’t remember what he was called, but he could easily eat a 5 pound bag of potatoes by himself. Other boys have been called a “bottomless pit”, “the stomach”, or some other such thing. Most boys have been given one of these names, or something similar in their lifetimes. Then they reach adulthood, and of course, the uncontrollable appetite goes away. All kidding aside, Travis did outgrow the need to eat constantly, and isn’t among the bottomless pits of the world anymore.
One thing he never outgrew, however, was his unique ability to be a comedian. Travis is definitely a show biz type. He is a big kid in many ways. He has a great personality and quick wit. His son, Caalab takes after him in that. Together they are two of the funniest guys I know. His career as a radio personality is so perfect for him. I am very proud of his accomplishments. Travis does many of the commercials for his radio station, and is the program director. He has a knack for detail, and yet doesn’t seem the type.
He most recent endeavour as a part of a band. They have started to have a presence in our area. The band, IndiSoul plays independent/rock/blues music. That is not the type of music I listen to, but I have heard some of his music, and the band is very good.
Travis is not a typical 35 year old husband, dad, son, and son-in-law, but then, if he were, he wouldn’t be normal…for him. Travis would seem crazy to many people, and I have to admit…sometimes I think he’s crazy, but it’s in a funny, goofy sort of way…the comedian coming out again, I suppose. But the truth is that he can make people laugh at the drop of a hat, and that is not a bad thing. It makes for a happy home…one where the family laughs often…not a bad idea. Happy birthday Travis! We love you!
It seems like every family has a comedian or two in it. My grandson, Caalab definitely falls into that category. He is constantly coming up with new ways to be silly and to make other people laugh. And believe me, he is pretty good at it. From the time he was little, he could tell a joke and never forget the punch line. Or he would make up his own funny stuff, and it was really funny.
The other day, he was helping me scan pictures onto my computer, and as we were finishing up for the day,he said, “Would it be ok if I scanned my face?” Now we have all seen the jokes where people copy their face on a copier, but I hadn’t seen a scanned face before. As crazy as it sounded, I couldn’t exactly see a problem with it, so he scanned his face several times.
Of course, he had to try several different looks to see what might be the funniest, and then he wanted to make sure the scans were saved…for some future joke, I’m quite sure. As I have looked over pictures for my blogs, I have come across these scanned pictures of my silly grandson, and laughed about them every time. It is amazing to me that even without trying, he has figured out a way to make me laugh.
The really funny thing is that once Caalab has created the funny thing, the moment for him is over, and he can walk away, leaving you with the memory of the funniness. He will now save it in the archives of his mind, bringing it up at some later date to see your reaction over and over again. The cool thing is that he doesn’t overdo the whole thing either. It just comes up once in a while and then as quickly as it appeared, it is gone again. He’s good that way.
Our comedian grandson will always be that way, because being a comedian is as much a part of him as his great smile. It is part of his wiring, if you will. Everyone is crafted differently. We all have our strong suits, and our weak ones. Everyone excels at something. And most of us have several things we are really good at. Caalab is no exception. He plays the guitar…and is getting quite good, he loves dogs…of every kind, he has a good heart…filled with kindness, and he is a funny guy…a comedian. Yes, Caalab is always coming up with some new and very funny way to make people laugh. You might say he is…Scanning the Possibilities!!