Let’s start this journey on the 24th. Mind you, we’re highlighting only the insane things that happened. Plenty of nice things happened, but there’s no fun in them.
On Friday afternoon, before we went up the road, Shmuppie was outside playing with some neighbors. Sometime later, JewelrySlut discovered her sitting on a curb. It seems the other kids had gone home and, rather than come home, Shmuppie decided to sit on a curb outside in the cold. That’s the Christmas Spirit!
We retrieved her and went up the road for Christmas Eve. At this time, the full story of the night before was revealed to us. After we left, SIL and C went up to the 3rd floor of the house and had a screaming fight. My mother, zonked out, missed this. My brother, Father and D all sat, uncomfortably, in the family room and tried to watch TV over the screaming from upstairs.
When my brother retrieved her to go to bed she announced, loudly, that she wanted a divorce. Good times! The following morning, she announced that she had no idea what happened and didn’t know why my brother was mad. Having told her the story, she asked him if HE wanted a divorce. MERRY CHRITSTMAS! My brother then made her go down the hall to apologize to my father. She had maybe 2 glasses of wine all weekend after that.
So, what did we learn? Not only is she a lousy parent, but she’s also a lousy drunk. Betting is open on how much longer they last.
It’s OK to have a dress fitting when the family is over. It’s apparently not OK to have your drunk neighbor come over. We all disagreed.
My parents’ neighbor is the widow of Dee Murray, Elton John’s drummer. She’s also a raving drunk who’s hooked on a number of prescriptption pills. She often just wanders over to my parents’ house to talk, lean on walls or beg for vodka. My mother, the fool, helps her out by giving her booze. Yes…this woman has no license because of multiple DWI’s, has been to “drunk camp” 3 times in the past 18 months, runs out of pills the day she gets them and is otherwise a mess. My mother gives her drinks. So, apparently she called on the 24th because “I’m shaking” and she needed vodka to tide her over. My mother left a drink on the front porch and told her she could not come inside. MERRY CHRISTMAS!
The rest of Christmas Eve passed in usual fashion; it was loud, there was too much food, the kids all scattered to their assorted video games, Shmuppie pouted and sulked.
We went back on the 25th.
This was the plan:
I’d start the prime rib.
We’d open gifts.
We’d go home.
We arrived and I started the meat. Shmuppie grabbed a bag of Cheetos and went up to my father’s office and sat on the floor. By herself. I just kept trying, in vain, to get the family to the 1st floor so we could do gifts. My hope was that gifts would keep Shmuppie occupied. HA!
Gift opening goes like this: My mother squawks and hands out gift bags. They’re never tagged and she can’t remember who got what. Meanwhile, my father was nowhere to be found. From my perch in the dining room, I could see him out in the kitchen, holding 2 dogs and whispering to them.
Dad…we’re opening gifts.
Nothing. I did, however, now see him at the kitchen table moving cheese around on a platter.
Again…nothing. He was hiding.
He’s hiding from us.
Now, it’s the thought that counts, right? That’s what they say, isn’t it? Well, what happens when you know damn sure that your gifts involved no thought. My mother went back to her old form this year.
I got an ugly shirt that’s a size too large and a horrible book. JewelrySlut got a very small purse. Great gift for a woman who carries a diaper bag instead of a purse! We also got a garlic bulb roaster “Because I knew you’d hate it” and a random, unframed, needlepoint. I held it up and actually asked “Was this for us?”
The kids got clothes. Shmuppie was not happy, tossed her clothes on the floor and walked off. We think that her recent trip to Disney was her Christmas present. That was implied in the card, but never told to her. So, as her 8 year old mind sees it, she got the shaft for Christmas.
We also think that Shmuppie’s trip to Disney was our gift too because there are few other reasons to explain why we got no gifts that we’ll end up keeping. Already, everything we got from them is in the Goodwill pile.
Snow was forecast for the Triangle, starting on Christmas evening. As the prime rib was finishing, the spinach was being saut‚ed, my father announced, with fury, that we were out of milk. He was going to buy more because “WE NEED MILK”.
Um Dad…nothing is open.
But we need milk.
Who needs milk? You have enough for coffee in the morning.
We need milk.
No…you don’t want to be here. Nothing is open.
He became furious and went somewhere with the dogs. We had to find him to bring him to the table, he criticized the prime rib and then fed the dogs from the table.
All in all, it was a fairly typical Christmas.
JewelrySlut decided that, next year, we’re going to Florida.
Happy Festivus everyone.