Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Ch 1 Primo’s mom and dad don’t offer us anything to eat or drink, even though we are guests in their home and isn’t that kind of the standard? Houseguests arrive at your house and you ask if they hunger or thirst?

We arrive at Primo’s mom and dad’s house. In the car Primo rented. Because they won’t pick us up at the airport the WAY NORMAL PARENTS DO.

They do shake my hand. So there is that. 

But there has been almost no eye contact so far. I have tried to make eye contact with them, but they do not seem to be interested in making eye contact with me. It’s the weirdest thing. I keep trying – I even put my glasses on, so you know I am serious about seeing what was going on, and they will not look at me! People! I am not used to this! I am not used to being ignored! This is bizarre.

And unlike with my family, who throws[1] food at people[2], and even though we have been traveling since 7 a.m. our time and it is now just after lunch our time, they do not offer us anything to eat or drink.

Nothing! Not even a, “Would you like a glass of water?!” And for sure not a, “You must be starving! Did they feed you on the plane? It’s been a while since we have flown, but we expect that airline meals have not gotten any better. Here! Let us give you some food!”

Nope. They. Do. Not. Offer. Food.

I am hungry. I eat three meals a day.

OK. I eat three meals a day. At least.

Had I known they were not going to feed us, I would have insisted that we stop for lunch – because we could have because we rented a car – and I would have brought some emergency food with me. But I hate spending money on restaurant food (you guys, I am a very good cook) and it didn’t even occur to me that they would not offer food to us the second we crossed the threshold. Ha. Shows you how dumb and sheltered I am.

I just assumed the usual social niceties would be observed, but I was wrong.

When we arrive, I give Doris a small hostess gift – some fancy cornmeal I had gotten at an arts and crafts fair. Everyone likes fancy versions of everyday things, right? She thanks me and puts the bag on the kitchen counter.

As in – I gave them food. I gave them food. And they are not even asking me if I want something to eat.

After about an hour, I finally ask for some water. Is that rude? Did I wait long enough? I have never had to ask for water before. My people – we like to feed people.

Without even looking at me, Doris tells Primo to get me some water. I follow Primo into the kitchen.

Me: When are we going to eat lunch? I’m hungry!

Primo : They don’t eat lunch.

Me: What do you mean, they don’t eat lunch?

  Primo: They don’t. They have breakfast and they have a snack in the late afternoon and then they have supper.

What are the rules on this? My dad gave me a stern talking to once because I didn't have coffee in my house. "But Dad!" I protested. "I don't drink coffee!"

"Yes, but you might have guests who want coffee," he answered. "Like me."

So I bought coffee and a little Cuban stovetop coffee maker, which is called a cafetera in case anyone wanted to know, and used it for my coffee-drinking company.

Me: But I’m hungry! Aren’t you?

Primo : I can make it until supper.

He’s like a python – he can get by with eating once a day.

Me: I can’t! I’m hungry! And I’ll get a headache if my blood sugar drops. I didn’t bring a lot of migraine drugs with me. Imitrex is really expensive and it makes me feel crummy.

Primo : Let me see if I can find something for you in here. What about this?

Me: Cracker Barrel? Are you kidding me? That’s bad cheese.

Apparently, I have forgotten the part about Hungry Beggars Cannot Be Choosy and Demand the Good Cheese.

Primo : They don’t get the good stuff, but that’s what’s available. Want some? I think there might be some nuts in the cupboard, too. I’ll put together a plate for you.

Primo and I return to the living room with water and snacks.

Sly: It’s not snack time!

Primo : We haven’t eaten since breakfast, Dad. I made a little snack for Goldie and me.

This is the part where I wait for a horrified exclamation from Sly and Doris of, “What were we thinking? You must be starving! Please! Let us give you some lunch!”


It does not happen.

So I eat the cheese.

[1] Not literally. I mean “throws” as in “offers.”
[2] You have to tell my grandmother “no” at least three times to convince her that no, you do not want lemon pie or rhubarb bars or chocolate chip cookies or anything to eat at all, thankyouverymuch.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Ch 1 We spend money to fly to Florida and Primo’s mom and dad don’t even pick us up at the airport

Me: What do you mean, we have to rent a car?

Primo: To get from the airport to my mom and dad’s.

Me: They aren’t going to pick us up?

Primo: No! It’s an hour drive!

Me: So? I had a two-hour layover in Denver once and my mom drove up from Colorado Springs just to hang out with me.

Primo: They don’t like to drive that long.

Me: So you have to pay to rent a car?

Primo: They think I am made of money.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

In which Primo wants to tell Ted how awful Ted has been so that Ted will see the error of his ways and apologize

I know.

I laughed, too, when Primo proposed this. Primo is so sincere and honest and will bend over backwards to help his friends.

Ted is a jerk.

If Primo tells Ted that Ted has upset Primo with all the jerky things Ted has done, Ted will, I guarantee, get super defensive and will then attack Primo.

Although if this happens, maybe it would make it easier for Primo to shake the dust off his shoes about Ted. I am fine with Ted never being a part of our lives again.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Chapter 1 part 2

My sister thinks I am uptight

Me: Jenny. Have you ever taken a boyfriend to mom’s and shared a room with him?

Jenny: Are you KIDDING me? Which mom are you talking about?

Me: Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Jenny: Why?

Me: Primo is taking me to meet his parents—

Jenny: It’s about time. You guys have been together for more than a year.

Me: Yeah, well. They live in Florida so it’s not exactly easy to get there. Anyhow, Primo told his parents that I want to sleep in a separate room from him--

Jenny: Wait. He had to tell them that?

Me: Yes. I guess it’s not the default for them. He says his parents “pride themselves on being hip.”

Jenny: I’ve stayed in the same room with a boyfriend at his mom and dad’s. I never even thought twice about it.

Me: But what about taking a boyfriend to visit mom?

Jenny: That’s totally different! That is not how mom rolls! Mom does not pride herself on being hip.

Me: No kidding.

Jenny: So they just assumed you guys would be in the same bedroom?

Me: Yes.

Jenny: Are you guys sharing a room now?

Me: Umm. Yes. But at his place or at my place.

Jenny: I thought you weren’t going to sleep with him until his divorce was final.

Me: Yeah well that resolution didn’t last very long.

Jenny: Homewrecker.

Me: Hey! He had already moved to Austin and filed when I met him. It’s been six years since he split with his ex-wife!

Jenny: She’s not his ex-wife. Legally.

Me: You know what I mean.

Jenny: Yeah, whatever, you homewrecker. When was the last time you visited a boyfriend’s parents?

Me: Probably not since I was in my mid-twenties.

Jenny: You are old now. Nobody cares. Maybe they’ll ask you to smoke pot with them.

Me: Nope. They hate drugs.

Jenny: It’s just sex they are hip about?

Me: I guess so. I am not getting a good vibe about this. I didn’t think it would be a big deal, but I guess it is. I have never slept in the same room with a boyfriend at his mom and dad’s and hadn’t even thought about it, but then Primo mentioned that they will put us both in the guest room.

Jenny: That is a little weird that you don’t want to be in the same bedroom with him.

Me: No! It’s that I don’t want to be in the same bedroom with him at his mom and dad’s! That’s the weird part. When we stayed with his friend Doug last year, Doug didn’t want us in the same room. He said it would be a bad influence on his kids. Primo said if we couldn’t be in the same room then we weren’t coming. I didn’t care about that. It’s just in front of parents that it feels wrong.

Jenny: Call me when you get there. I want to know what happens.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Maybe the first chapter? Or part of it?

Raise your hands: How many of you slept in the same room as your significant other the first time you went to his parents’ house and stayed there overnight?

Yeah. Me neither.

Every single time I have ever visited the parents (1), I have stayed in my own room and the boyfriend has stayed in his own room.

Anytime I have taken a boyfriend to my parents’ house, we have had separate sleeping quarters.

It never even occurred to me that it would be any other way – that parents would expect their child, even their adult child, to share a room with his SO.

But then, I have never met Primo’s mom and dad before.

“They pride themselves on being hip,” he tells me when he explains that they are very annoyed at the idea that I would not be comfortable sharing a room with him under their roof.

Wait. “Annoyed” is probably not the right word.

They are pissed.

Primo: They just don’t want to clean the spare room. And, like I said, they pride themselves on being hip.

Me: Parents are not supposed to be hip. I can promise you that when we go to my mom’s house, we will be in separate rooms. My mother is not hip.

1. I have multiple data points on parental visits. Not with the guy in grad school whose parents, it turned out, didn’t even know I existed. That, my friends, is a red flag that should not be ignored. I ignored it. But that’s a different story.

Friday, April 7, 2017

In which Primo is called a rabble rouser

You guys, you know I don't always agree with Primo about politics. And you know he can talk LordHaveMercy can he talk.

But he is not rude. He is not disruptive. He is not impolite.

The other day, he was at a local party meeting. There were about ten people there. He got there too late to eat any of the pizza the other people had ordered, but he bought a beer. It is rude to use an establishment as a meeting place and not pay some sort of rent.

He encouraged the other people there to go to the town halls our congressman and our state representative are holding. Both the congressman and the state rep are of the other party.

Primo has run against both men. He has met both men in person. One time, he was on a flight back from DC and ended up sitting next to congressman, with whom he had a very nice conversation - congressman knew who Primo was and that Primo was running against him.

State rep, the first time Primo ran against him, made a point to seek Primo out to introduce himself.

Primo writes to congressman all the time. This congressman signs all of his constituent letters by hand. When he sees that the letter is to Primo, he crosses out the "Mr Digger" and writes, "Primo" in its place.

At state rep's town hall last week, state rep sought Primo out afterwards, said hello, and asked how I (we have met) am doing.

State rep and congressman have never been anything but gracious to Primo. They understand, as Primo does, that there is nothing personal about their disagreements.

So Primo was very upset to learn that a local talk show host had talked some trash about him.

Someone else at the local meeting had overheard Primo and had called the talk show host, saying that Primo, the "leader" of the group (he is not) was trying to "organize protests" (um no - Primo has attended protests but going to a town hall meeting and respectfully asking questions of one's elected representative is not "organizing a protest"). Not to mention, BlessHisHeart, that Primo is not an organizer. He is a thinker - he analyzes issues deeply and has ideas about how to fix them, but he is not an organizer. At all. I live with him. I know.

Primo wrote this on facebook:

Here's some entertaining news: I was mentioned by [local talk show host] yesterday! (Listen to this podcast starting at 13:55.) He read a report from an unnamed listener describing me as "the leader" of the Drinking Liberally [our city] group, which I am not, and accusing me of "organizing protests against [other party] elected officials at their town hall meetings." Pretty much everything he said about our discussion was incorrect, including that we were not buying food or drinks at the business. I was simply mentioning the upcoming town halls and suggesting that my [of the same party] friends should try to attend. I'm confident that both [state rep] and Congressman X would say that I participate respectfully in their meetings.

If someone had called Primo an ultra-his party who believes in A, B, and C, he would have smiled and said, "Yes." But to be accused of bad behavior that you have not committed? That hurts.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

In which I try to convince Primo that a neutral third-party as trustee for the grandkids might actually be better for them and would not be a sign that Primo was betraying his nieces and nephews

Niece #2 wanted money from the trust for a car.

Primo already disbursed funds to Niece #1 for a car.

Stephanie's boyfriend of several years sells cars. He found a car for N2, but there was some weird stuff in the contract about how he couldn't waive the commission and that bothered Primo A LOT.

Me: Either you are going to have to be super involved in this kind of decision or you are going to have to let it go.

Primo: But what if Stephanie's boyfriend* is scamming N2 on the car?

Me: It's her money. She's an adult. And now, your parents are winning, because they are pitting you against the rest of your family. Why else would they designate you as the trustee for their grandchildren's money instead of the children's parents?

Primo: I hate doing this.

Me: Then resign!

Primo: But I would feel guilty - like I had abandoned a responsibility.

Me: If a lawyer were the trustee, he could ask all these questions about the commission and even if it makes the family angry at him, it does not affect the rest of their relationship. The kids might be better off with a neutral third party who does not have to balance family ties with the trust.

Primo: Maybe.

* Who is a lovely man and who has not given us any reason to believe he is dishonest