Doesn’tHaveSpaceToBackup

, , , , , | Related | August 19, 2018

My mother was always open to computers, but by chance, one dies when she’s touching it — it’s still DOS-era — losing all files with no back-up. She is absolutely convinced she caused it and hasn’t touched a computer since. Eventually, we manage to convince her to get a cellphone — pre-Internet — but she will only use it for calling, not texting.

It’s finally time to upgrade to a new phone, one that can do Internet, but nope, she still won’t use it for anything more than just calling. She reads text messages, but never responds… until she goes on a trip to France, and realises that texting is a lot cheaper than calling.

This is the very first text-message she sends me:

“alliswellweatherisnicehavingagreattimebutcantfindthespacebar oh i found it”

(All is well, weather is nice. Having a great time but can’t find the spacebar…)

She hasn’t stopped texting, apping, and googling ever since. She also owns a laptop for photo-editing, but makes triple back-ups of all her work now. And I made sure I saved her very first text message.

An Army/Navy Family

, , , , | Related | August 18, 2018

(As my grandmother has gotten older, her memory has unfortunately started to get worse. Whenever I visit, I ask her to tell me family stories or look with me through memorabilia she’s collected throughout her life. This is to help jog her memory, but also so I can write things down I think the rest of the family would like to remember. One day, we’re looking through a photo album together, and we come across a photo of my grandfather in his Army uniform.)

Me: “Wasn’t Grandpa so handsome?!”

Grandma: “Oh, yes! This was the picture he gave me before he left to fight in WWII.”

(We flip a few more pages, and a wallet-sized photo drops out from between two pages. I pick it up, and it’s of another young man I don’t recognize, dressed in a Navy uniform.)

Me: “Grandma, who is this? Is this Grandpa’s brother?”

Grandma: *squints at the picture* “I haven’t seen that in years! That was [Man]. He was a Navy man, you see?”

Me: “Was he a friend of yours and Grandpa’s?”

Grandma: “Sort of. He was the other young man I was dating at the time.”

Me: *trying not to sound too surprised* “What?!”

Grandma: *shrugs* “You know, girls always dated more than one fella back then, unless someone asked us to go steady. It was very casual. Why you young folks want to go steady with someone you’ve only had one date with is beyond me.”

Me: *trying not to laugh* “I’m assuming [Man] went to fight in the war, too?”

Grandma: *sighs* “Yes, he left right after your grandpa did.”

Me: “So, what made you choose Grandpa in the end?”

Grandma: “Hmm? Oh, because he came back first.”

Me: *now I’m losing it* “Grandma! That’s the only reason?”

(She just smiled at me before putting the Navy beau’s picture back in the album and going to make us some tea. While I hope this other man made it safely back from the war and lived a full life, I’m also grateful she chose my grandpa because, you know, I’m alive thanks to that decision. Funny how life works, isn’t it?)

Otto Be Punished For That

, , , , , , | Related | August 17, 2018

(My husband and I are at his parents’ place. We all recently received invitations to a gathering of “descendants of Otto von [Mother-In-Law’s maiden name],” and are discussing it.)

Mother-in-Law: “So, all of Otto’s descendants will be there, but his siblings’ families have their own. Apparently, he came to America, established himself, then went back to get one of his brothers, and then another when they had established themselves, until he’d brought his whole family over.”

Father-in-Law: “Sounds like they Otto be grateful to him!”

(He and my husband cracked up; my mother-in-law and I exchanged a look.)

Build A Psycho Factory

, , , , | Related | August 17, 2018

(I am with my daughter and three-year-old granddaughter, taking her to a children’s store where you can build your own stuffed teddy bears. Part of the process is to pick the “heart” of your bear.)

Employee: *to Granddaughter* “This is the heart of your bear.”

Granddaughter: *eyes wide* “Ooh.”

Employee: “You need to give it a kiss, before we put it in your bear. That way your bear knows that you love him.”

(She kisses the “heart,” and then it’s placed into the stuffing in the bear’s chest. It’s then sent off to be made, with all the customised eyes, noses, clothes, etc. Later, we’re home, and my granddaughter comes over with her new bear.)

Granddaughter: “Heart.”

Me: “Yes, darling, your bear has a big heart.”

Granddaughter: “I want my heart.”

Me: “What do you mean, darling?”

Granddaughter: “It’s my heart.” *thrusts bear at me* “I want it.”

Me: “Oh, no, dear. The heart stays inside the bear. That’s how he knows you love him. He needs it to stay inside him.”

(My granddaughter ponders this for a moment, and then smiles.)

Granddaughter: “Okay!”

(She then wanders away. I follow her and see her looking around the kitchen.)

Me: *thinking she wants a snack* “What are you looking for, darling?”

Granddaughter: “Scissors.”

Family Isn’t Quite Dripping With Consideration

, , , , , , | Related | August 16, 2018

(This story happens during a one-month holiday in Vietnam, where we are staying with my mum’s side of the family. I’m about twelve, and skinny as a twig, despite having a bottomless pit for a stomach. My mum has become convinced that something is medically wrong with me. After seeking some medical advice, she brings home an IV drip that is somehow supposed to bring me to a healthy weight. To this day, I have no idea where she got it from. I don’t know if she went to an actual doctor, or some kind of alternative, “holistic” medical practitioner, but she makes me lie down and get fed by the IV drip for several hours. I’m very uncomfortable throughout this whole ordeal, but finally it’s over and I think that’s the end of it. Cut to the next week:)

Mum: “Okay, time for you to lie down again. You need some more of the medicine.”

Me: “What? I’m not doing it again! Last time was awful!”

Mum: “If you don’t get the medicine, you’re not going to get better!”

Me: “What’s even in that thing? Do you even know?”

Mum: “It’s just nutrients; it’s good for you! Stop being a baby and lie down!”

Me: “How many more times do I have to do this?”

Mum: “Just this one time, and that’s it!”

Me: “You said that last time!”

(At this point, my entire family decides to get involved. My uncle and my nanna side with my mum and try to convince me to move from the bedframe I’m sitting on to the big bed where the IV drip is. My mum is being as vague and contradicting as ever, which does nothing to allay my suspicions. I don’t know how much my dad knows what is going on, but maybe — I’m hoping, anyway — he is okay with it all because he knows that the contents of the drip are harmless. In any event, he ultimately gets very flustered with the argument that’s becoming more and more heated, so he comes up and grabs my arm.)

Dad: “Come on, [My Name]. It’ll be fine and it won’t take long.”

Me: “I don’t want to!” *struggles and falls*

(I fall off the bedframe and somehow land VERY awkwardly, with my left arm hitting the floor first. As I get up, I immediately feel a pain in that arm.)

Me: *holding my arm* “Something’s wrong. It hurts.”

Uncle: “Now you’re just being a baby. Quit whining and get on the bed.”

Me: “My arm hurts!”

Dad: “Okay, enough. She really doesn’t want to do it; she doesn’t have to.”

(There is some protest from my family, but my dad will hear no more of it and they finally leave me alone. An hour or so later, the pain in my arm has not subsided; if anything, it’s gotten worse.)

Me: “Dad, I think something’s really wrong with my arm. It’s still hurting. I think it might be broken.”

(My primary school bully broke my other arm once before in grade four, so I know what a broken arm feels like.)

Dad: “Are you sure?”

Me: “It really hurts.”

Uncle: “She’s just wanting attention and trying to make us all feel bad for earlier. If it was really broken, she’d be crying.”

Me: *angrily* “I’m not lying. It actually really hurts!”

(My dad looks worried, and there is another short argument between my family, but ultimately we all pile in a car and drive to a nearby hospital. The entire trip, my uncle rolls his eyes about it being a waste of time, and says I’m just being manipulative, but my dad believes me, and even my mum is worried enough that she wants to make sure. We get to the x-ray room and I get my x-ray done.)

Me: *explaining to the x-ray technician* “…so, my dad tried to pull me up off the bed, and I ended up falling off and landing on my arm. I think it might be broken.”

Uncle: *scoffing* “She’s just trying to give us all a scare. It’s all for attention—”

Technician: *interrupting him* “Well, according to these x-rays, you have a break in your upper arm, right here. See?” *points to x-ray*

Me: *glaring daggers at uncle*

Uncle: *shuts up*

(My entire family is very quiet on the ride home. My uncle in particular makes a point of avoiding eye contact with me. My dad quietly apologises to me once we get home, and I tell him it wasn’t his fault.)

Mum: *muttering* “Well, maybe if you had just accepted the IV drip, your bones wouldn’t be so weak, and none of this would have happened, anyway.”

Me: *incredulous stare*

(For the remainder of the holiday my arm was in a cast, but I never had to endure the IV drip a second time, for which I was grateful. Said IV drip was never mentioned again; it was removed as quickly as it appeared, and what “nutrients” it contained, and from whence it had come, remain a mystery to this day.)

Page 1/1,70412345...Last
Next »