I was going to do a bunch of things. I was going to visit friends, and weed the side bed, and buy a pot.
I need to buy a pot because E wrecked the perfectly serviceable one that my grandma bought my aunt in 1967 and then I inherited when I moved out. He started a grease fire in it while trying to make popcorn, and then I yelled at him. Quite a lot. It was almost as high on the Richter scale as the night he discovered that I liked John Mellencamp. That was a big fight.
The thing was, time telescoped. I saw him holding the pot on fire, and then I screamed, “Put the lid on! Put the lid on! DO NOT put water in that pot! SMOTHER IT!” And he seemed to stare at it for approximately three months instead of following my goddamn instructions. Because fire in my house? Turns out it kicks me into adrenalin overdrive, and every second stretches to infinity.
Of course, I apologized, eventually. But I almost killed him, I was so mad. Seriously. That pot was the best popcorn making pot, and it had a history in my family. I don’t know if I can find another popcorn pot as good. I keep looking at pots and wondering about their popcorn-making abilities. Because you can’t ask to test drive a pot. So it has to be just right.
And then I will be the only person to touch that pot. Or I’m breaking out the Mellencamp.
Do I go to my high school reunion or not?
I got the invitation a couple of weeks ago (on Facebook, natch) and I guess I sort of want to go. But not really. Could I be any more obtuse?
The few people I have talked to about it say I should go, because when I’m eighty I will regret not going. I don’t know. Will I care about any of those people more when I’m eighty than I do now?
If I go, I am not bringing E. He does NOT need to stand around and make small talk with a bunch of strangers from 20 years ago in MY history. That’s just unfair to him.
A few of my friends from back then appear to be going. They are all moms and married and grown up and stuff. I, on the other hand, live in sin, make fart jokes, and want a baby sloth. They moved to the suburbs-or to other countries-for floor space and real estate. I live in someone else’s basement. I wonder how much we have in common.
I am mildly curious about some of the people who have not signed up. Did that one guy ever get a girlfriend? Did that other one get his space epic novel published? Did that guy go to jail like I predicted?
Also, the anxiety. Like many kids, High School was a very anxious time for me. And now I have anxiety about the anxiety and that is too much anxiety.
What would you do? Go all Cowboy Astronaut like Homer Simpson? Go at all? Or stay home and drink wine?
I had my annual pedicure this week. Pedicures are not a comfortable experience for me, for several reasons. However, having ugly feet is not fun during sandal season, so I grit my teeth once a year and get it done. I could just have winter-callused feet and hope no one notices, but I notice other people’s feet. They’ll be looking at mine. Call it vanity. I still don’t like getting pedicures.
First of all, I am paying someone to touch my feet. I do not like feet. It’s not a phobia, but they are gross, stinky, utilitarian parts of us. They can be calloused, blistered, warty, and grubby. Why would I make someone do this? Someone who is often an immigrant, at that. How much are they getting paid to touch my feet? Is it a living wage? A pedicure makes me feel uncomfortably classist.
Then there’s the issue of what to do. It’s not really a relaxing treatment like a massage. Do I make small talk? Do I flip through magazines? Hum along to Enya? What do I say or not say? “Gosh, could you dremel the heels a little more?” It makes me uncomfortable.
Third, I have very ticklish feet. A pedicure inevitably has me shrieking and giggling, when she is removing dead skin. Then I am apologetic-probably too apologetic, but it really is embarrassing. I jerk around like a fish on a line, dug in with my hands and head, trying not to move. It makes me feel like a big old freak. Sure, the pedicurist may have seen worse, but I still feel bad for her.
I also end up tipping probably over-generously. I end up wondering if the pedicurist survives on tips like waitresses, or if she is sending money back home. And then I feel like even more of a classist chump, because what if all my assumptions are false?
On the other hand, my feet look great.
Today we interred my grandparents’ ashes. It was particularly hard for my father and aunt. As their children, it was up to the cousins and Bo and me to do what we could to comfort. I couldn’t help but notice that Bo and I score high in the ‘stoic and protective’ kind of comfort. Ah, family: It’s all dysfunctional on the inside.
It was a beautiful day, and I like to think that scattering their ashes in the Pacific Ocean is the right thing for Grandma and Grandpa. He can sit at the bottom and complain that things are certainly not as good as they used to be: You call that a crab trap? In MY day they were bigger. They lasted longer. And they caught more crabs. She can flit around the whole world, seeing stuff and wondering and having the kind of curious adventure she loved in life.
I have never understood how they got together, Grumpy Grandpa and Hippie Grandma. She was a peacenik who loved shiny things and he was a poker-playing Captain in the army.The things I have inherited from them reflect that. I got Grandpa’s poker chips and Grandma’s sewing notions.
And today, lottery style, my father doled out my grandfather’s collection of World War II daggers.Yes. I now have a dagger in my house that probably killed someone. Yuck. I tried to explain to my father that I didn’t want one, but in his head 6 grandchildren and 6 daggers = easy math. Now it’s on me to decide what to do with the giant chunk of bad karma I’ve got sitting here.
I’m thinking about selling it on Ebay and donating the money to the SPCA.
Here’s my backyard from the rooftop patio next door. Yes, it really is as overgrown and messy and confusing as it looks. We like it that way.
Why were you on the rooftop patio next door, Liz? I hear you ask. Well, it’s the front unit, not the fence-building control freak in the back. It was an open house. because the place is for sale. I couldn’t resist, because I am incredibly nosy.
It’s over a million dollars, and absolutely gorgeous. Of course, they had professional stagers come in, and that’s got to help. But if I mentally blanked the staging, I could just about see myself living in that house. Almost. But I’d have to be on my best behavior. It was an adult’s house, and I am not always an adult.
I went back with my neighbour, Upstairs Liz, who is from Nova Scotia and one of the nicest people I have ever met (Always judge people by their dogs. Dogs don’t lie!) and we almost decided to go to the bank and buy it ourselves, lounge around on the rooftop and make our men go out and work to pay the mortgage. But then we looked back to where the Control Freak lives, and thought, “Mmm. Not worth it.”
It was a close thing, but we like living with Mel and Barb in our soon-to-be-pink house, with its odd little angles and quirks, and ramshackle garden, where we don’t have to be adults all the time.