About 30 years ago, concrete geese started appearing on the porches of the small Ohio town where I grew up, many of them wearing affiliate or seasonal clothing: a Reds baseball jersey, a witch’s hat and cloak for Halloween, etc. When we moved to our current home, my mother gave me a lawn goose and a few outfits as a housewarming gift.
Wisconsin weather has not been kind to the goose’s everyday clothes, and many are only memories. The holiday get-ups, being exposed to the elements for only a few days each year, have done better, and this year I remembered her Uncle Sam costume in time for Independence Day.
About an hour later, I was inside near an open window when I heard the rattle of a stroller on the sidewalk, followed by a squeal from a toddler. “The goose is all dressed up for Memorial Day!”
The mom explained that the costume was for Independence Day, and gave an age-appropriate explanation about what that meant.
I had flashbacks to being the mom who took her kids on walks to neighborhood landmarks: the Big Rock, the parking garage, the bakery. It was a bit startling to realize I’d become the neighborhood lady who dresses up a concrete goose that the next generation of children visits on their walks.
I accepted the awesome responsibility. That very afternoon I went on Etsy and bought two new goose outfits for everyday wear in summer. An audience is a powerful motivator.
© 2015 Anne Bingham and Making It Up as I Go