Furbabies Are Babies, Too!

, , , , , , , | Related | April 17, 2020

I am Facetiming my sister and my niece who is about four months old. I have yet to meet her as my sister lives eight hours away, I’m in school full time and work, and this takes place during the quarantine.

I’m notorious for not being good with kids and not being super affectionate towards them. My sister has her daughter up to the screen so my mom and I can see her when I finally start talking.

Me: “Hi, baby girl, how are you? Aren’t you so pretty?! I love you so much!”

Sister’s Husband: *Overhearing me* “Holy s***, did a switch flip in her brain and now she suddenly likes the baby?”

Sister: “No, I think the dog just came inside.”

She was correct.

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When Mom And Dad Are Scarier Than The Dentist

, , , , | Healthy | April 17, 2020

I used to work in a children’s dental clinic. One of my jobs was to contact the parents to remind them of their child’s appointment. One afternoon, I dialed a number and it went to voicemail. This is what I heard:

“Death waits for all of us. It casts a shadow before the young and dances on the back of the old. It comes whenever it will: in your sleep, while you eat, while you drive…”

There was a pause.

“Hmm, maybe even in a voicemail message. If you are brave, leave one.”

Then came the beep.

I’ve never left my message so quickly. And it was for two kids!

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Long-Distance Relationships Before Social Media

, , , , , | Friendly | April 14, 2020

In college in the late 1980s, I had my own private phone line set up in my dorm room. However, I guess the number was close to a couple of others because I kept getting phone calls for Mark, Rick, and Mike.

They were always on my answering machine, but that meant they weren’t actually listening to my message because it was, “Hello, you’ve reached [My Name] at [Phone Number]. I’m sorry I’m not here…”

I eventually got tired of the wrong numbers and changed my message:

“Hello, you’ve reached [My Name] at [Phone Number]. This isn’t Mark. This isn’t Rick. And I’m sorry, Melissa, but this isn’t Mike. If you wish to speak to one of them, please hang up and dial again. If you wish to leave a message for [My Name], please do so after the tone.”

Melissa called. It seems she had finally paid attention to the outgoing message, as she left me one, and I could hear her trying to keep from laughing the entire time.

“I’m sorry, [My Name]. I didn’t realize I had been leaving all those wrong messages. Maybe one of these days, I’ll get on out to California and I can finally meet the wrong number.”

However, finals week was upon us, so I changed my answering machine message to indicate that I was going to always be studying, so people should leave a message and maybe I’d get back to them sometime.

Melissa called again. It seemed she liked being called out on someone’s answering machine and I guess she called so she could show it to someone. Again, she was trying to keep it together on the phone:

“[My Name]! It’s Melissa. What happened? Don’t you love me anymore?”

I think I still have that cassette tape somewhere.

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Moms Will Be Moms

, , , , , | Related | April 10, 2020

I’m a 34-year-old man living on the opposite side of the country from my friends and family. I’ve always been kind of a loner and have found it hard to find people I’m really comfortable around. I also don’t go out much and work weekend nights only, so I usually spend my time by myself.

However, I’ve met a college student here who I have a lot in common with and we’ve formed a friendship. It’s an unusual relationship given that she’s only 19, but we appreciate each other’s company. We have lunch together once a week and sometimes she hangs out at my apartment where I cook for us and we play my video games.

It’s entirely platonic and neither of us is interested in a romantic relationship, but as a couple of loner gamers, it helps us both to have someone with whom to socialize.

I recently broke up with my long-term girlfriend for various reasons and I’m talking to my mother on the phone after having made lunch for my friend when she visited earlier that day. I sent my mother a picture of the steaks I made with my friend sitting at the table.

Mom: “I saw the picture you sent me. That looked like a nice meal you made for her. Are you two dating?”

Me: *Sigh* “No, Mom, I told you, we’re just friends and we’re only going to be friends. She’s not looking to have any relationship at this time and I’m not looking to start a new relationship since I probably will be leaving Michigan in a few months. Besides, she’s almost 15 years younger than me.”

Mom: “[Aunt] is fifteen years younger than [Uncle].”

Me: “Yeah, but [Aunt] was 29 when they met. They were both adults who were well established in their lives. [Friend] and I are in two entirely different stages of life.”

She saw my point, but she still isn’t entirely convinced that our relationship has zero romantic potential. I know she really wants me to find someone I can happily settle down with, but if I do, it will be with someone who can legally drink at our wedding.

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Not Worried About Geography

, , , , | Related | April 5, 2020

Several years ago, I had planned a vacation to Romania and Bulgaria. At the time, Sarajevo had had a devastating flood, and Ukraine was in the depths of their civil war. My mom called me the day before I left. 

Mom: “Aren’t you worried about the flooding?”

Me: “That’s in the Balkans, Mom. I’m not going there.” 

Mom: “Okay. What about the war?”

Me: “That’s Ukraine. I’m not going there, either.”

Mom: “Okay, well, just be careful.”

Me: “If you didn’t worry about these things, you wouldn’t be my mom.”

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