Many years ago my son and his friend Jarro had the boxing gloves on one night and they were sparring in my son's room. After a few rounds my son fell backwards, hit the corner of some furniture and developed a small goose egg on his head.
Now I know many of you reading my articles have never heard of a goose egg, so let me explain. Goose egg is just another term for a knot. I'm beginning to meet more and more people who haven't learned to speak our south Texas language yet, so I thought I’d better explain. Many people don't know to pronounce Kuykendahl, how to spell Hufsmith, or how to say Rudel so I felt an explanation of a goose egg is in order.
My son came down stairs and showed us the goose egg and my mind immediately began to think of my Grandma Osgood.
My grandma was born Lurena Marie Scherer and later married Grandpa Osgood. My grandmother's family helped settle the western part of Tomball, just a short distance outside of the current city limits. They came from a German lineage and, as the youngsters of all of our families, we had passed on to us a longstanding history of folklore and homemade medicinal remedies.
When I speak of folklore, it is usually a polite way of saying ‘fisherman's lies’. I can remember one big tale my grandma always told about her own father.
The story goes that during the mid to late 1800’s her dad was fishing along Spring Creek, just about where Spring Creek Park is now. He had set out some lines baited with big perch and he caught a catfish in excess of one hundred pounds. In fact it was so big that he had to have his horse help him drag it up the bank of the creek. As he tied a rope to the tail of this fish and began dragging it up the bank, a smaller catfish of about fifty pounds fell out of the mouth of the first one. Once he tied the first big fish to the underbelly of his horse, he went back to retrieve fish number two from the bank. As he picked up this fifty pounder, a smaller fish of ten pounds or so fell out of the mouth of the first one! When he picked up the third fish, the original perch he used for bait was spit out by fish number three intact! Wow! What a fisherman's tale! For many, many years I challenged grandma on the validity of this story, but she never wavered.
Medical remedies, like recipes, were passed on too. Do any of you remember when you were taught to put a slab of butter or grease on a burn? Well the reason the knot on my sons head made me think of grandma is because when we would get a knot on our head, grandma would run get a kitchen casing or butter-knife and chase us down trying to press out the knot before it got too big. She always said it was better to flatten it out and many of the old timers insisted a real silver knife helped the healing process! Well now they tell us it's better to have a knot on the outside than to allow swelling on the inside, but for as long as I can remember I could see grandma coming at me with the flat side of a kitchen knife!
Maybe that's why people think I'm crazy! It's all my grandma’s fault! She pushed all those knots into my brain and I really should be known as The Knotty Professor!