Here on the frontier, There are falling leaves, Although my neighbors are all barbarions…And you? You are a thousand miles away. There are always two cups on my table.

Posts tagged ‘Parent’

Family Wedding or Welcome To Fight Club

Another family wedding.

I don’t know about any other families but with ours….?

It’s not a picnic to put all the extended family together in one room.

There should probably be some law prohibiting it.

Between the mass alcohol consumption and the golden rare opportunity to finally tell Uncle so-and so what he did in 1986 that still has you making excuses.

Cousin Chris? Who married your girlfriend after you broke up but before you were sure you absolutely hated her, as he claims you did..

You just can’t resist revisiting that time can you.

For myself, honestly I hate having to remember who I told what to,

and who I told never to breathe a word about something…

but about what I’m not sure anymore.

It’s a regular Jerry Springer marathon event but with a seven piece band and eight course dinner.

The wedding is out-of-town.

My dear mother in law.

Who I really love, by the way, wants us to stay with her and Dad.

How do I politely tell her no thanks I’ll be hightailing it out of there before the,

“”so what are you up to these days…”

from my third cousin twice removed,

turns into,

“Did you hear Jen’s husband Bob is in rehab?”.

(“Uh, Jen is standing behind you, with Bob.”)


I’ll spend an hour trying to remember everybody’s kid’s names and ask the little darlings how third grade is treating them.

I’ll be patient and understanding when they cry out loud during the wedding ceremony and while their mom hustles them out to the hallway.

I’ll be okay when I go to the women’s room to find 3 adolescent girls in tears over a torn dress hem.

I’ll spend time with the ancient aunt who never fails to ask after the health of my dog Cujo but can’t remember my name to save her life.

I’ll hug my brothers and sisters. We don’t say much, foxhole buddies.

We leave feeling exhausted,

and mortal,

riding  the New Jersey Turnpike at 2 a.m.

I drive back to Baltimore with one of my children.

We will meet in the parking lot of the wedding hall.

I’ll probably share a smoke with Bart and a few laughs over something,

like dad pulling the cord on the band’s amplifier. Ha! He did warn them to turn that dang music down.

China and Silver will be waiting like sentries for everyone to be present and accounted for before we go. Silver sneaking short drags on his skinny cigars, like he knows he’s doing something wrong.

And on that night,

when two lives are bonded in the crucible of marriage,

I’ll pray that the younguns’  find some happiness in this complicated world of relationships.

I’ll pray that the husband loves his wife in the way mine loves me,

just as I am.

A hopeless non-conformist, sarcastic, cynical, talk too much, say too little.

A person so completely smitten with those people standing in the dark,

waiting by the car.

Those people whose jokes I get.

And always think are funny,

even when they are not.

Laughing too loudly in a tight little impenetrable mob,

The other guests  give them a sniffy wide berth.

But I walk straight into their midst,

and take my place.


This is gmom,

peace out.

Things We Say To Our Kids/ Dad And Momisms

10 Things I say to my children, and 10

things my mother said to me.


1. Call me when you get there.

2. Clean up, I am not the maid here.

3. You want to leave? Do you need help packing?

4. Wait until your father gets home.

5. You only have to be tall enough for your feet to reach the ground.

6. Don’t smart mouth me young man (lady).

7. You’re going to take an eye out with that thing.

8. You can’t take care of anyone else if you don’t take care of yourself first.

9. It doesn’t matter what other people think,you can’t control that.

10. Don’t tell me to mind my business, you are my business.


1. How do you know it tastes bad you haven’t tried it yet?

2. If you don’t have something pleasant to say, don’t say anything at all.

3. It’s for your own good.

4. No one said life was going to be fair.

5. What if all your friends were jumping off a cliff would you jump too?

6.  If I didn’t care, I wouldn’t say anything.

7.  It’s never going to heal if you don’t stop picking.

8. Be home before dark.

9. Put other people’s needs before your own.

10. Mind your own business.

Now which group of 10 were my 1950-1970’s mother and which are mine?

What do you say to your kids?

What did your mom say to you?

This is gmom,

peace out.

Bullies: How Did I Get This Mean

The Incredible Hulk #1 (May 1962). Cover art b...

I Heart Hulk

When I was a child I grew up in the safe streets of New  England.

When I got married I lived overseas and became used to being protected by the men in the community and a lot of military in the streets.

When we relocated  to the states, we lived in the haven of the midwest for a number of years.

Towns where folks didn’t even lock their doors at night.

Moving to Maryland has been a culture shock.

Unlike Minnesota where you can say, “Hello good morning” to anyone you happen to see,

in Maryland you keep your eyes forward and a curt nod means you are packin’ heat.

Crime is rampant, seems like there is no respect for the law.

But how did I, a nice, soft spoken middle-aged mom get so mean?


It started with my husband  swaying toward my bed in the middle of the night.

“Are you okay?”  I asked

The man turns  and walks out of the room.

Fear turns to cortisol and fills your mouth with battery  acid when you realize your home has been violated.

That the man in your bedroom is not, in fact, your husband.

My  heart pounds in my ears,  I distantly hear our front door open and close.

“Someone is in the house, someone is in the house!!!”

Someone had broken into our home!

He took our keys and a camera.

(We have children not belongings.)

Most frightening was  he had gone into our 6 children’s bedrooms.

We hired an alarm company to come and turn our home into Fort Knox.

Every screen now armed, every door with a scary alarm voice warning intruders police were coming.

But I was still afraid.

Trembling at every sound I couldn’t identify.

Afraid to go out after dark.

Few months after the break in…

I was walking 2 of my babies into a shopping mall when a stranger altered his path to cross ours.

“The Hulk” inside me just beginning to take root.

I scream ,  “You better keep walking mister or I will hurt you!”

(Course I didn’t have a way to hurt anybody and I had 2 children with me but it worked!)

He cut me a wide berth.

What’s happening to me? Where did that scream come from?

Was I now the bully?

Some change was going on deep down in the tangled mess of my DNA.

Mean was taking root.

From then on, if anyone tried to take advantage of me or  mine I let the Hulk out.

I learned the distance between being bullied and being the bully is really quite small.

You can cross the line from one to the next without even realizing you are on the other side.

Years later.

I got attacked again just outside my house.

Physically assaulted.

Fellow caught me unaware and had me on the ground before I knew what was happening.

After that episode I was not only mean I was pissed.

My DNA stepped up in transformation.

Like The Incredible Hulk I felt the change deep down on a cellular level and spread out like wildfire.

Maryland has groomed this nice woman to not let herself get bullied no more.

I practiced my Hulk in front of the mirror, showing my angriest face and gesturing menacingly.

“Oh no you don’t, not again, not to me!”


I went to a used appliance store and bought a refrigerator.

I paid to have it delivered,  set up and my old fridge taken away.

2 black workman came to my house.

They wouldn’t bring the fridge into the house or remove the old one unless the owner  authorised it.

Never mind that I just paid for this service.

I said no problem let me call the store and I will clear this up.

The owner of the store gets on the phone and says no agreement was made claiming the charges on the contract were for bringing the fridge.

The workmen, seeing “The Hulk” rising up said aside to me,

“Mrs. you don’t want to mess with him, oh no ma’am you don’t he crazy!”

I  could see they were scared and I said so.

“You are afraid of him, why are you afraid?”

They shot each other a look.

“Guys are you aware that slavery ended some 145 years ago?

If this guy is threatening you there are people who can help you…”

(couldn’t they see I was the Hulk?)

Then their cell phone rang.

It was the store owner, the men left in a hurry without another word, the fridge sitting in my driveway.

I canceled my check to the store and waited.

Few days later the furious owner calls threatening me that I better get in to the store because now I owe  him for the canceled check, and the fridge, and some other charge for his trouble.

I yelled right back, “I have already called the district attorney’s office  and filed a complaint for breach of contract.

I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and my son who is a federal criminal lawyer is just itching to do his momma a favor.

You don’t know who you’re dealing with do you, I know what you’re all about with your men and I’ll see you in court and I’ll expose everything that’s going on in your shady business!!!”

I am not sure what that last part was supposed to mean but it kind of fit in with my modus operandi.

He never called again.

In the end I sent the store a check for the cost of the refrigerator.

(I’m nothing if not law-abiding.)   But that bad man store owner, intimidating his workers… he never even cashed the check!

The point is  if people don’t know what you are capable of then you just might be worse than they are.

When my brothers and sisters and I were kids we would joke that old people were mean.

Like poor eyesight,weird odors and aching joints, old people were all mean and crotchety.

I’m on the threshold myself now and I’m thinking…maybe not mean…maybe superheroes.

Be sure to read this link to an article about staying safe in your own neighborhoods.

This is gmom and family,

peace out.

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