Still Too Soon…

, , , , | | Related | May 19, 2018

(I’m picking my sister up from the train. She just finished her final exams at university. She’s a history major.)

Me: “Hey! How are you doing? You look exhausted.”

Sister: “Hello, hey. I’m glad to be finished, truth be told! I started crying when I was looking over some dates yesterday because Abraham Lincoln died.”

Me: “You know what, I’m just not going to ask. I’ll get your bag.”

(Some time later, en route home, I look across and she’s got tears in her eyes.)

Me: “Hey, what’s wrong? Aren’t you happy you’re done?”

Sister: “I was thinking about Abraham Lincoln again.”

Refuses To Give Up The Bounty

, , , , , , , | | Related | May 18, 2018

(My mother is helping me sort my son’s clothing to donate anything he has outgrown. I have really small feet, so I have to shop in the kid’s section for footwear.)

Mom: *holds up a small pair of Boba Fett socks* “I think [Son] has outgrown these; shouldn’t we donate them?”

Me: “Those socks are too small for him, but they are mine, so it doesn’t matter that he can’t wear them.”

Mom: “You are a grown woman, and you have Star Wars socks?”

Me: “Does being an adult mean I shouldn’t have Boba Fett socks?”

Mom: “Yeah.”

Me: “I feel a sudden need to do away with such silliness.”

Mom: “The socks?”

Me: *grabs socks* “No, adulthood.”

The Colors Aren’t The Only Thing Clashing

, , , , , , | | Related | May 18, 2018

(I have zero aesthetic sense, especially for colors. It’s not color-blindness; it just doesn’t make sense to me. Colors other people find ugly or reminiscent of disgusting things, while never my first choices, have no effect on me and seem perfectly acceptable. I do know unusual colors by sight and can make the same connections. Both of my parents know this, but my mother cannot comprehend that it never developed over time. It’s resulted in a few needlessly drawn-out interactions between us, but nothing has ever trumped an incident that occurred when I was 13. My parents and I have just moved into a new house. Unlike my old house, this house is multi-floored and bedroom is on the top floor. Due to the increase in elevation, two new problems are immediately apparent: the bulb of a streetlight is visible from my window,and the neighbor’s house no longer obstructs direct morning sunlight. As a result of these two, I have trouble sleeping. I attempt to turn my blinds around, but the height renders that a no-go as well; if I turn them, people could look into my room from the street, which my parents will not tolerate. In order to solve this problem, I spend my first Friday in the office searching the Internet. I find a place that makes blackout curtains to obstruct the sun and outside light, and by good fortune they are having a sale this whole month. We can order online or go to a physical store about an hour away, but either way we need the measurements of my windows. I check with my parents, and they agree to let me have the curtains put on in place of my blinds. Just as I go upstairs to measure my windows, I’m stopped by my mother.)

Mother: “[My Name]! What color do you want?”

Me: “You pick.”

Mother: “It has to be something you’ll like.”

Me: “Do you want it to go with my room?”

Mother: “Yeah!” *looking at me like this should be obvious*

Me: “Then I’m the wrong guy to ask; I can’t coordinate colors. If you want me to pick it, how about you select a few colors that’ll match, and then I’ll make the final pick?”

Mother: *sighing* “Fine.”

(I head upstairs, measure my windows, and give the paper with the measurements to my mother. Before I leave:)

Mother: “But what color do you want?”

Me: “You made the choices already?”

Mother: “No, just tell me what you want.”

Me: “Mom, I can’t match it to my room. You want it to match. So, you need to give me some choices to pick from, or you have to pick it.”

Mother: *sighing* “I’ll take care of it. Just go.”

(Assuming this is all said and done, I go back to my room and kill time until I fall asleep. The following morning, I return to my room from a shower to find my dad at one of my windows.)

Me: “What’s up?”

Dad: “Measuring your windows for the curtains.”

Me: “I did that last night.”

Dad: “You did?”

Me: “Yeah. I wrote it all down and gave it to Mom.”

Dad: “She told me she needed the measurements.”

(Since I have already thrown on a t-shirt and jeans, I walk down to the office. The note I wrote isn’t sitting on the desk, so I have to search a little. I find it in the recycling bin. Evidently, since I didn’t put a color on it, my mother decided it was useless. I take it up to my dad and show him, confirming the measurements he’s already taken. The misery continues, however, as my mother then tells me she has decided to go the location an hour away. Given that online shopping is kind of a new thing at the time, I don’t question it. However, I should be questioning the fact that all three of us have to go, given that my dad will bring absolutely nothing to the situation. In the middle of the drive, my mother looks at me through the rear-view mirror.)

Mother: “So, what color did you decide on?”

Me: “I haven’t! You still haven’t given me any choices!”

Mother: “Just pick whatever you like.”

Me: “You said it has to match!”

Mother: “Well, yeah! But you can do that! Just pick something!”

Me: “I can’t match colors!”

(Her only response is to shake her head and continue driving. Once we get there, my mother proceed to lead us around the store wordlessly. After we cover the entire store twice, taking up over 30 minutes, she turns to me.)

Mother: “So, what did you like?”

Me: “Which ones matched?”

Mother: “Just pick something!”

Me: *finally fed up* “I DON’T CARE!”

Dad: “Then let’s go home.”

Me: “What about the curtains?”

Dad: “You don’t care about them, so we’re going home.”

Me: “I want the d*** curtains!”

Mother: “Then pick a color!”

Me: “I don’t care!”

Dad: “Then let’s go home.”

(Despite me trying to find different ways of saying, “Let’s just get this over with,” and clarifying that only the curtains themselves are important, while the color is inconsequential, the cycle repeats for a few minutes. In hindsight, I can say with absolute certainty that my dad doesn’t enjoy my mother forcing him to tag along for something she or I could have done ourselves, and just wants to go home as much as I do, but he can’t figure out that him butting in is the big detriment at this point. Eventually, I give up.)

Me: “Fine.” *pointing to one I am drawn to immediately* “I want that one.”

Mother: “No. That doesn’t go with your room. Pick something else.”

Me: “You asked me what I wanted! That’s what I want! If you don’t like it, pick something yourself!”

Mother: *sighing* “Fine. I guess we can paint your room.”

Me: “You’re not painting my room!”

Mother: “It has to match!”

Me: *fighting the urge to beat her to death* “I’m going to give you two options: either we get those curtains I picked, and we don’t paint my room; or you pick out curtains that go with my room, and we don’t paint my room. The bottom line is I’m getting curtains, and no one’s painting my room. This ends now! No more days for this project!”

(Thankfully, my dad was on my side for that fight, but my mother still refused to pick a color and still insisted we were painting my room. The saving grace of all of this came in the form of the woman who took our order, who demonstrated to me the one I picked wouldn’t help with the light. The more on-point substitute wasn’t the same color — she claims they didn’t have my color choice for this model in stock at this time, but figured this would work since it was only for a demonstration and was kind of like the color I chose — but it, too, was a very appealing color, and my mother said it matched. They were ready within a week.)

Death Of A Sale(sman)

, , , , | | Related | May 17, 2018

(Around the time I was born my grandmother and grandfather got divorced. Some years after this, my grandmother decides to change back to her maiden name instead of keeping her married name. This ends up causing some confusion. One time in particular, with a phone salesman…)

Phone Salesman: “Is this [Grandmother’s Old Married Name]?”

(My grandmother, not thinking through what she’s saying:)

Grandmother: “There isn’t any [Grandmother’s Old Married Name] anymore.”

Phone Salesman: “Oh, sorry! My condolences!”

(My grandmother didn’t bother correcting him, and she was quite happy with not getting any more phone calls from them.)

Potty Training Is Very Demanding

, , , , | | Related | May 17, 2018

(I’m at a family holiday gathering, playing cards in a circle with my sisters and some cousins. One of my cousins has a young toddler who is sitting with us and watching, until she suddenly looks to her mom across the room, and bellows with amazing articulation:)

Toddler: “Mommy, I’m pooping!” *points her finger* “And I want you to change it!”

(The group of us collapsed into hysterics, and my cousin admitted that if her daughter was old enough to demand her personally for diaper duty, it might be time for potty training.)

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