Tuesday, November 8, 2016

"Fixin' to . . . "

I was born in Harlan, Kentucky.  On Friday the 13th, November 1953 I followed my twin sister Laurie into the world of light and noise and breath and cold.  Before my first 24 hours were done my dad and I were on the way to Baptist Hospital in Knoxville, TN.  The little hospital in that coal mining county seat didn't have good facilities for a newborn with a collapsed lung.
All my other siblings were also born in KY and we brought with us to our new home in Anderson, SC several habits and characteristics common to those Bluegrass climes: accents, interests, and especially turns of phrase.  Even my twin and I took on some of those "things Kentucky" despite leaving and living our childhood within a year of our birth somewhere else.
All the Brown siblings still use and understand  "fixin' to."  Fixin to go, fixin to stay, fixin to read, fixin to fix.  There was always a convenient ambiguity in its definition.  You could stop "fixin to" whatever and it simply meant you had changed your mind or that another course of action had taken the place of that which was being adopted.
More often than not, in our house "fixin to" was a buffer between immediate compliance and autonomous responsibility.  "I'm fixin to rake the yard like momma said" would give the potential raker at least another 30 minutes before real raking must begin or a better plan took its place.  "Fixin to," when announced left the fixer free from any other obligations or entreaties, as well.  "Don't ask me to . . . , I'm fixin to . . ." was a generally allowed use of the phrase.
As November surrounds us at the Church of the Advent we are transitioning into the season of Advent. This time has lots of "fixin to" in it.
We are fixin to:

  • Finish collecting pledge cards
  • Approve a budget for 2017
  • Remediate some Episcopalians
  • Get some of those folks confirmed, received and reaffirmed when Bishop Whitmore visits
  • Take next steps with Tim Pridgen and thank the PCOM for their prayerful discernment
  • Elect a successor for Gertrude Rainwater to serve with Mary McCauley in leading our Altar Guild
  • Nominate for vestry 3 "confirmed communicants in good standing who have made and kept a financial pledge to the parish budget in the year previous to their election."
  • Rearrange our Acolyte teams and ROTA
  • Search for a new organist

I'm sure there's more but suffice it to say that we are always "fixin' to."  We are always moving through compliance to responsibility, always creating buffers so that discernment and planning can happen, always on the way to better version of ourselves and our work in this part of God's realm.

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