Primo: My dad is having his shoulder replaced.
Me: Hasn’t he already had a hip replacement?
Primo: Yes. And he needs both knees replaced.
Me: He is becoming the bionic man. When is he having it?
Primo: Next week.
Me: Do you think you need to go down there?
Primo: I don’t know. I didn’t ask.
Me: And they didn’t ask you?
Primo: No. They don’t want to ask for help.
Me: What are you talking about? Every time you go there, they give you a list of chores.
Primo: OK. But they think I should ask them what they need, not wait for them to ask. When I was little, my dad would get mad at Nancy and me for not volunteering to help around the house.
Me: They wouldn’t ask? They didn’t tell you?
Primo: Nope. He said we should know what needed to be done and offer to do it.
Me: But kids don’t know that stuff. That’s something parents teach them. There was no doubt in my house what my chores were because my mom and dad told me. There was even a list on the refrigerator. We kids were responsible for cleaning our bathroom, setting the table, drying and putting away the dishes, feeding the cat, and cutting the grass. And of course for keeping our rooms clean, putting away our laundry, and making our beds. Plus other duties as assigned. If my mom had waited for me to ask her what chores I could do, she never would have heard me talk.
Primo: Ted did offer to fly down and stay for a few days to help, but they told him that it was too much trouble for him.
Me: They could have had help but turned it down?
Primo: Well, really, they just didn’t want him around. When I am there, if Ted calls, my dad goes like this – (Primo motions a “no” signal with his hand). He does not want to talk to him.