‘It's the way to do it, the proper way, the way I was taught.’
‘Yes, but why?’
‘Because it’s always been done like that.’
‘Yes, so you keep saying, but why?’
‘Well, it just is, that’s how I was shown, and by someone who knew a lot more about it than you do!’
She was getting upset, defensive, seeing it as only right that she would know more than me, would be the one to tell me.
But because she couldn’t give me a better reason, I was refusing to do it that way, insisted, stubbornly and with the arrogance of youth, the contrariness of my teenage years, on doing it what felt like a more logical way.
It was many, many years before I worked out that her way, the way my mother had been taught, was better, for the simple reason that to fold one quarter of a tablecloth back on itself meant it was far easier to spread it open across a table with a single flick.
Take it Away (Tuesday) It's the way...