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
226

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
255

Alarmingly Sweet

, , , , | Romantic | January 15, 2020

(I am a notoriously heavy sleeper, needing multiple cell phone alarms plus a digital alarm clock to help me wake up in the morning. My husband, on the other hand, wakes up well before his alarm and is often up an hour or two earlier than me due to his work schedule. One morning, I vaguely hear my alarms from the depth of my dreams and hear my husband stomping his way into the bedroom to turn them off. I bring it up with him later that day.)

Me: “Did me sleeping through my alarms this morning annoy you?”

Husband: “No, why?”

Me: “I heard you come stomping in the room like you were thinking, ‘All this f****** noise and she’s not even moving!’”

Husband: “No! I was rushing to turn them off because I didn’t want it to wake you up!”

Me: *staring at him in confusion* “You do… You do know what alarms are for, right?”

1 Thumbs
346

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
477

These Explanations Are Just Not Working

, , , , , | Friendly | January 15, 2020

(I don’t work. In this day and age, it’s a controversial choice. I’ve yet to find a non-awkward way to answer. Here are a few attempts:)

Them: “So, what do you do?”

Me: “Mostly cooking and cleaning.”

Them: “No, for a job.”

Me: “I don’t have one.”

Them: *awkward silence*

(Another time:)

Them: “So, what type of job do you have?”

Me: “None.”

Them: “Why not?”

Me: “I’m disabled.”

Them: *starts giving medical advice or alternatives to traditional work*

Me: *grins and bears it*

(Another time, with my partner:)

Them: “[Partner], you work so hard! [My Name], what do you do?”

Me: “Make sure she has a nice meal to come home to.”

Them: “You don’t work?! That’s very selfish of you!” *starts ranting*

Partner: *interrupts* “The last time she overdid it, she wound up in bed with a three-day fever. She doesn’t work. That’s fine. I make enough for both of us.”

(Unfortunately, this leads to us never talking to them again, because my partner hates them and they treat me like a leech. I really don’t know how to handle the job question.)

1 Thumbs
353