Between A Rock And A Hard Place
That is precisely where I was the other evening at my SIL’s barbeque.
We were all sitting with my SIL’s lovely Irish neighbor and the neighbor’s Mom, who was visiting from Ireland and reminds me- personality wise- of my dearly departed Nana, and we were all discussing culture differences between Middle Eastern, Irish and Western men in general terms. More specifically the whole ‘Mama’s Boy’ issue and also care/responsibility of the elderly between different cultures.
Hmmmmm. You know this was interesting and awkward, now wasn’t it? Yes indeedy.
It was one of those instances where if I had said what I really wanted to (ie: hello? Hypocrites?? Stop acting for the benefit of the neighbors.) it would have resulted in a knock down drag out battle where I most likely would have been dog piled on by my husband’s respective family members. So I bit my lip, then tongue, and dug my nails into my palm in an effort to keep my thoughts to myself. But damn me it was a close one.
Although I admit, to some extent, it STILL cracks me up just thinking about it.
I can’t stand hypocrites. I do my best not to be one in fact. So much so that when my daughter brings home the odd C in Math and her dad is telling me to “Say something to her about that!” I say, “Well, I really can’t I rarely did much better than that…. EVER in Math.” (yeah, and here I sit working in a bank. That is hilarious, don’t you think?) So when the conversation switched to where parents should go to when they are O.L.D, that Nana jr said “well, I assume I will be in an old folks home at some point like most others, even though it is my understanding that things are different here in this part of the world.”. To which everyone (yeah, you know who I’m referring to.. the whole damn lot basically!) showed proper horror and disgust saying “well in this culture, it is a sign of respect to take your parents in once they are old, and everyone takes care of the parents needs, etc..”
I listened to this ever-increasing load of complete and utter BULLSHIT with complete astonishment while trying very hard to control my usually very expressive face. I came so close to saying-and embarrassing the lot of BIG FAT LIARS- “oh, and none of you do jack shit for your mother, and YOU in particular, Ms. Showoff “I’m-stinking-rich-now-and-always-said-that-once-I-became-successful-I would-take-care-of-mom-and-get –her out-of-your-hair C&Z-and-get-her-her-own-apartment-and-a-full-time-maid-nurse-and-driver-to-take-care-of-her-but-that-was-also-a-complete-load-of-shit-because-now-she-has-to-nag-for-TWO-FUCKING-MONTHS-for-me-to-send-my-DRIVER-cause-I-can’t-be-bothered-to-take-her-myself-to-buy-her-some-bread-and-veggies-to-shut-her-nagging-ass-up-for-a-day-or-two,but-have-no-problem-flaunting-my-new-$30,000 diamond watch (has her eye on a Chopard one that costs $90,000,btw)-and-new-$5,000-dollar-diamond,gold,ruby and turquoise-chandelier-earrings.” (Are y’all gagging and retching by now? Oh Goooooood. I have company at the porcelain throne. Uh-huh. Fab.)
More horror and disgust at the way “westerners” take care of their elderly by dumping them in a ‘home’, etc ensued to which Nana Jr said “well, in some cases, the parents don’t WANT to live with their children - she went on to put everyone in their respective places, so I felt she had it well in hand at this point--They prefer somewhere else, or a home where they can get proper medical attention. Also, usually they go live with the eldest son or child.” To which some at the table STUPIDLY said “oh yeah, they usually do that here too, so that’s alike.” I made sure I stared at EACH ONE IN THE EYES.
Did I ever mention that Z is the second youngest of 7? Yes, I said second YOUNGEST. Uh-huh.
This became a very uncomfortable conversation because… well, for obvious reasons.
Then they moved on to the Mama’s Boys topic. Heh. It’s better I not even consider joining in this conversation. But you know something? The Irish ladies noticed my silence because I had been extremely animated and talkative until then.
Did I ever mention that Z never knows where ANYTHING is in the kitchen? Or his bureau drawers? Or his wallet for that matter. Ok, basically anything, anywhere. Good thing some things are attached, huh? Yeah.
What I really wanted to say was “Honey, the Irish have NOTHIN on guys here!” and both Irish ladies, particularly Nana Jr. were looking at me wonderingly.
I don’t think I’ve been this uncomfortable in a coon’s age. Can you blame me?
I can just imagine the comments I’m going to get on this. Oh yeaaaahhhh. Anyone gonna help me out from this boulder?