I mentioned recently that my sister Julesie gave me Season 1 of “The Muppet Show” for my birthday. One of the best sketches from the DVD set is one that most of us (all except for Jim of course, who, because of a childhood full of “wasteful” activities that kept him away from the television**–like playing outside and reading–does not have a brain that is a magnet for catch phrases, funny lines, or addictive tunes like the rest of us) have had stuck in our heads for two weeks now:

For about a week after we five sat in my family room on the night of my birthday celebration and watched it, the younger boy used to walk up behind me, singing “Mahnamahna…”, and then–just as sure as you’d reflexively ask “Who’s there?” to someone who said, “Knock knock!”–I’d sing back, “Doo doo doo doo doo…” And we’d continue on, laughing all the way. We’d stop and go on to other things, and then, there it was again, out of nowhere: “Mahnamahna…”

And so it went. While it drove me nuts that he did that, because I physically could not neglect to respond (and then the song would get stuck in my head for several hours), it was fun, and funny.

A couple of nights ago, Jim and I were sitting in the family room, our dinner plates set up on tv trays as they so often are when dinner is prepared later than the average time and we’ve got a show that the four of us enjoy watching together. The boys were finishing up in the kitchen, getting their glasses of water and their utensils.

And then I heard them.


“Doo doo doo doo doo!”


“Doo doo doo doo!”


“Doo doo, doodoodoo, doodoodoo, doodoodoo doodoodoo doo doo doo, doo, doodoodoo!”

It was such a nice moment in comparison with the usual, which is either silence between them, or sniping at each other.

Jim and I smiled, and of course didn’t tell them when they entered the family room that we actually heard them harmonizing while they were in harmony.

*I’ve always loved the full quote by Mark Twain: “Dance like no one is watching. Sing like no one is listening. Love like you’ve never been hurt and live like it’s heaven on Earth.”

**though he DID watch “The Muppet Show”.