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Aprons and More Aprons

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 8.07.50 AMAprons are not just for mothers and grandmothers, and a cook’s apron can tell you if you want to eat what’s on the dinner table. I thought I’d shared everything about aprons in a previous column, but some friends’ comments pushed me to write more.

When Kay’s son was a high school student, he asked for an apron for Christmas and he didn’t plan to cook. He put it on every school morning before he left home. All the crumbs from his breakfast that he ate as he drove, fell on the apron, not his clothes. I wonder if his football teammates knew he wore an apron. Do they tease him or wish they were brave enough to slip one over their heads?

One Christmas I surprised Son with an apron. He unwrapped his gift, saw bright orange fabric and said, “Oh, a Lickity Split apron.” LickitySplit – the convenience store that Husband owned when Son was a kid. Son stood, slipped the neck strap over his head, and then said, “Wow! This is great! It’s long enough.” The standard Lickity Split apron didn’t cover much of Son’s 6’9” frame. But when I cut the bottom off of one and sewed it onto another, that extra long apron was just right. On work mornings, he dresses for the day and wears his apron while making and eating breakfast with my Grand who awakes before the sun comes up. And Son is a grill master – the spots on his apron prove it.

My friends agree that a spotless apron means one of two things: it’s never been worn or don’t trust the cook. A good cook’s apron has stains. Squirts of spaghetti sauce, splatters of bacon grease, drippings from barbequed ribs, and blackberry purple blotches. If the cook’s apron is spotless, I say, “You know I’m really not very hungry. I won’t eat much.” Maybe the cook is wearing a brand new apron, but I have an out until I take a few bites and can decide that I’m hungrier than I thought.

A gardening apron hangs on a hook in my laundry room. Bib style made of heavy fabric and with big pockets along the bottom – perfect to carry a digging trowel and I’m not sure what else because I’ve never put a gardening tool in it. I discovered those pockets are also perfect for feather dusters, dust cloths, spray cleaner, and a few paper towels. I should wear it more often or give it to a gardener.

One of my favorite aprons is a waist apron with ties much too short to reach around my waist, but it’d fit one of my young Grands perfectly. It’s made of bright yellow cotton fabric and trimmed with decorative tape with tiny red and yellow flowers.  This apron has many deep narrow pockets, the perfect size for crayons, and two larger pockets. Crayons, scissors, and mucilage glue – that’s what was in the pockets when Mom gave me this little yellow apron, that she’d made, for my sixth birthday.

I’m told there are specialty job aprons. For welders, seed-sowers, chefs, waiters, potters, blacksmiths, artists. But somehow, when I think of an apron, the first one to come to mind is still a green and white one that tied around Mother’s waist. And it’s covered with stains.




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