We’ve all done it — said the wrong thing at the wrong time to the wrong person, bragged about something and then had to prove it was true, said we weren’t going to ever do something or that we would do it differently when it was our turn – and then had to eat our words – or as is often said – we have had to “eat crow“. Over the years I have had to eat a lot of crow, because being a typical human being – I just don’t know when to keep my mouth shut and my opinions to myself. Crow does not taste good. It is tough and hard to swallow – no matter how big or how small the crow might be. Plus, you never get to eat crow in private – you always have an audience when you eat crow – and that audience is usually enjoying your comfort a lot!
I’ve eaten little crows. I know how to ….. [fill in the blank] – but of course, I don’t and then I’m asked to do it and have to eat crow. These are little crows because everyone has made these types of small, misleading comments – but they usually have my attributes and are not a comment on someone else’s inability to do something. So I count these as little crows — small lies which must be eaten.
I’ve eaten medium size crows. I’m never going live in a house like that. I’m never going to drive an old car like that. I will never get out of shape like that woman. All medium size crows that although I may never have said them out loud to anyone – I thought them – and it didn’t make the crow any tastier.
I’ve eaten big crows. These usually hurt a lot going down – in addition to leaving a bad taste in your mouth. These are the ones where you make a judgment about someone (usually not a nice judgment) and you are proved very wrong. For instance, I met two of my children’s friends — one was very well dressed and polite. The other was dressed rather slovenly and wouldn’t look me in the eye when I talked to him. I made the judgment that the polite child was a pretty good kid and the other one was not to be trusted. You can see where this one is going – right? That was a big crow to eat because the kid who couldn’t look me in the eye turned out to be a sweet kid who usually spent his time keeping the polite kid out of trouble. Why couldn’t he look me in the eye? Because the polite kid was busy telling me lies and he was embarrassed by the whole situation! Yeh — that one was a very big crow – and my child who had told that I was wrong LOVED watching me eat that one.
I’ve eaten an entire flock of crows. Every thing I have ever said about raising children is part of this flock. My children are never going to act that way in the grocery store. I’m never going to let my children go in public dressed that way. I’m never going to let my children eat junk food. I’m never going to let my children watch TV. I’m never going to let my daughter/son date a person like that. Oh – it goes on and on and on. This was a flock I created before I had children of my own. Even after you have children, the flock doesn’t get any smaller – it just gets replacements – you eat some and make more! I’m sure my mother loved watching me eat this flock – and I know that I will enjoying watching my children eat their own flocks.
There is nothing you can do to make eating crow tasty – you just have to do it quickly and try to learn from your missteps. However, I’ve learned that this doesn’t seem to work — because you forget what crow tastes like, you get careless and then – poof — there’s a crow in your mouth and you are chewing away and trying to swallow that tough old bird!