The Battle Of The Brides

, , , , | Related | January 21, 2020

(My now-husband and I get engaged in 2010. We know we want to wait at least a year until we get married, for several reasons, and we end up choosing a wedding date two years in the future that works best for us. Everything is planned early, and I send our save-the-dates out a year in advance, with invitations to follow about six months before the wedding. We are probably the most relaxed bride and groom any of our friends and family have ever seen. Ultimately, we just want a fun day with everyone, nothing crazy or too fancy. About a month before our invites go out, my older sister is at our house helping me with the handmade favors we’ve decided to give to our guests.)

Sister: “So, have you heard from [Cousin] lately?”

Me: “No, but you know she and I have never spent a lot of time together outside of family stuff. Why?”

Sister: “You know she got engaged a couple of months ago, right? Well, [Aunt] told Mom that [Cousin] is determined to get married before you do.”

Me: “Why? We’ve never been competitive before.”

Sister: “Maybe it’s because you two are the youngest grandchildren and she doesn’t want to be the last one to get married?”

Me: “That’s silly. But she’s welcome to it if she can find a venue and everything else that quickly. I’ve had two years to plan and that was hectic enough.”

(Two months later, a month since our invites went out and five months before our wedding day, I get an invitation in the mail to [Cousin]’s wedding. She scheduled it for the same date AND time as ours, at a venue on the other side of the state. I immediately call my sister.)

Me: *laughing* “[Sister]! Did you get an invite to [Cousin’s] wedding today?”

Sister: *also laughing* “Yes! I can’t believe she scheduled it the same day as yours! She’s known your wedding date for almost a year.”

Me: “You know who I feel bad for — the relatives that will have to choose between the two weddings. There’s no way anyone would be able to go to both, like if they were closer together and at different times.”

Sister: “Wow, you’re right. Well, we already know Grandma is going to be at your wedding. That’s really going to p*** [Cousin] off.”

(My sister is right. Our cousin is furious at all of the relatives that choose my wedding over hers. Then again, I only invited the relatives that I’m actually close to and talk with, whereas she invited EVERYONE, even people she’d never met. In the end, our wedding is so much fun! It is a relaxing day and everyone seems like they have a good time. About three months after we return from our honeymoon, I get this call from my sister:)

Sister: “[My Name]! Mom just called, and guess what?”

Me: “What?”

Sister: “[Cousin] is pregnant! She’s apparently going on and on about having kids before you do. Blah, blah, blah.”

Me: *bursts out laughing* “Joke’s on her, I guess!”

Sister: “I know! You don’t even want kids!”

1 Thumbs
434

Sometimes You Have To Put Your Mouth Where Your Money Is

, , , , , , | Related | January 20, 2020

(Every year, my brother and I go home to our parents’ farm where we grew up, and every year, I hear jabs about my education. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts; my mother has a PhD, and both my dad and brother are engineers, my brother with an added Ivey business degree. They have nine years, seven years, and eight years respectively, while I only attended university for three years. Once again, my lack of education is brought up and I finally snap.)

Me: “I make over $8,000 a month in my chosen field while [Brother] hasn’t used any of his education and needs you guys to pay for his plane ticket home to visit.”

(They were genuinely shocked, as I’d been hiding my income so as to not stand out from them who had all always struggled for money. They had been so derisive of my artistic line of work that it never occurred to them that chasing my childhood dream wasn’t a bad path to take.)

1 Thumbs
529

The Mother Of All Anxieties, Part 3

, , , , | Related | January 17, 2020

(My mom has anxiety issues when it comes to things going according to plan, and she loses perspective on the feelings of others and becomes incredibly inflexible. When I am 25, I volunteer to bake a flourless chocolate torte for Passover. I am home baking the cake when my mom calls me.)

Mom: “You don’t need to bring the flourless chocolate cake anymore. [Aunt] went out and bought a chocolate layer cake from [Store].”

Me: “Why did she do that? You knew I was making dessert already.”

Mom: “I didn’t know she was going to do that, so I never told her about your cake.”

Me: “Well, it’s too late; I’m already baking it.”

Mom: “No, don’t do it. [Aunt] is bringing her cake. There’s not a lot of people coming and we don’t need two chocolate desserts.”

Me: “I am currently standing over a bowl of batter that is almost ready to be poured into a pan. What exactly am I supposed to with this thing?”

Mom: “Just enjoy it yourself? I don’t know, but you can’t bring that to Passover.”

Me: “This is a fresh homemade dessert. Tell your sister not to bring her cake; she’ll understand.”

Mom: “I can’t tell her that! That would be rude!”

(Why it wasn’t rude to tell me not to bring the dessert I sacrificed study time making is a mystery to me, but I ended up finishing it and bringing it into work. My coworkers loved it. The next Passover, I successfully brought my dessert to share with my family and it was a big hit. My aunt regretted bringing her store-bought cake the previous year because she thought mine was much better and it became the traditional dessert of our family’s Passover seder until I moved away.)

Related:
The Mother Of All Anxieties
The Mother Of All Anxieties, Part 2

1 Thumbs
360

Cubic Confusion

, , , , , , | Related | January 16, 2020

(It’s no secret in my family that I’m very good at mental arithmetic. As a result, I’m frequently used to calculate any number of things going on in their lives under the pretense of “save me from finding the calculator.” Usually, it’s just a minor inconvenience in my day. Then, my dad says the magic words.)

Dad: “So, it measures 7 feet, by 7 feet, by 4 inches. How many cubic feet is that?”

Me: “16 1/3.”

Dad: “No! That’s too small!”

Me: “You said 7 feet, by 7 feet, by 4 inches, right?”

Dad: “Right.”

Me: “And there’s 12 inches to a foot, right?”

Dad: “Right.”

Me: “So, 4 inches is equal to 1/3 of a foot, right?”

Dad: “Right.”

Me: “So, 7, times 7, times 1/3. That’s 16 1/3.”

Dad: “No! You have to convert it to cubic inches first!”

Me: “Really?! You’re making me do it that way?”

Dad: “Yes, that’s how you do it.”

(Groaning and shaking my head, I do this considerably longer calculation.)

Me: “That’s 28,224 cubic inches, so… 16 1/3 cubic feet. Again.”

Dad: “What?! How did you turn 28,000 into 16?!”

(I grab a pencil and paper and walk him through every step of my work. We arrive at 28,224 just fine, and then we get to converting.)

Me: “So now we divide by 1728.”

Dad: “No! There are only 12 inches to a foot!”

Me: “It’s a CUBIC foot, Dad. That’s a cube measuring 12 inches, by 12 inches, by 12 inches. That’s 1728 cubic inches to the cubic foot. Or are you going to tell me that you think the answer is 2352 cubic feet?”

Dad: “You did something wrong!”

(He storms off, right towards the calculator. Meanwhile, I’ve pulled out my phone and found a source that proves there are 1728 cubic inches to a cubic foot, just in case I still need it, which I do. By the end of this encore of a needless conversion, we have, once again, arrived at 16 1/3.)

Dad: “THAT CAN’T BE RIGHT!”

Me: “Why don’t you show me what I’m calculating?”

(He leads me to the backyard and shows me a big, rectangular hole.)

Dad: “This is for the shed. I dug it out, and I just need to smooth it out. Tomorrow, I’m going to fill it. I need to know if I’ve got enough bags of cement. If it’s 16 1/3, I’d only need one bag, but I’m definitely going to need more like 30.”

(I see one of the bags he has out, and I start reading it to make sure all of his numbers are right. The bag says it’s good for 20 cubic feet of concrete, so by all outward appearances, my math is sound. Then, as I ponder why my dad insists he’s going to need 30, the gears in my head start winding.)

Me: “Dad, you are going to use concrete, right?”

Dad: “Yes!”

Me: *realizing how poorly I phrased my previous question* “Walk me through it. You empty this bag into the… whatever, and then?”

Dad: “Then I add the water until it’s the right consistency.”

Me: “That’s it?”

Dad: “Well, then I pour it, smooth it out, and build the shed.”

Me: *facepalming* “Oh, my God.”

Dad: “What?”

Me: “You don’t know the difference between cement and concrete, and you’ve done work on this house.”

(At least now we knew what the problem was. Now to figure out how many of his fixes around the house have to be redone.)

1 Thumbs
303

This Name Survived The Third Reich

, , , , , , | Related | January 15, 2020

(I’m at my boyfriend’s house for dinner. I am meeting his parents and his siblings for the first time. I also have an unusual name.)

Boyfriend’s Sister: “So, what’s with your name?”

Me: “It’s a name.”

Boyfriend’s Sister: “Yeah, a stupid name.”

Boyfriend: *laughs nervously*

Boyfriend’s Mother: “[Boyfriend’s Sister]! [My Name] is a guest!”

Boyfriend’s Sister: “With a stupid name.” *looks at me smugly*

Me: “Actually, I was named after my great-grandma, who was in a concentration camp in the forties. She survived, but she later died from lung problems brought on by the terrible air in the camp.”

All: *silent*

Boyfriend: “Guys, I told you not to make fun of her name. I told you there was a reason for it. Now you’ve made yourselves look like jerks. Come on, [My Name], I’ll take you to [Fast Food Place]. You like the chicken nuggets, right? 

(Later on in the week, I got an apology letter from my boyfriend’s sister and it was signed by his parents, as well. Apparently, the girl got into a heap of trouble for making fun of my name.)

1 Thumbs
534