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Say Goodnight Gracie

April 22, 2009

Alright. the perfect story of the overcommitted working mom, wife and person with a parent living in their home. Sometime during the day my husband managed to pull out his back (of course he has to do a ridiculous amount of physical work tomorrow, a job for which he only gets paid if he works; no benefits no sick days). This happens occasionally for no particular reason and he is then incapacitated. In this particular case he tried to stop a two thousand pound roller from running over another human. Why he thinks he can stop two thousand pounds is something of a mystery. but he continues to think he is physically invincible and he mostly is. Anyway, I digress. My boss is here from South Florida, the day is passing in a blur of projects, crises, e-mail and phone calls from licensing authorities all over the country. There is a corny event I would like to see at the Temple tonight at 7, I think my dad would like, a little lecture/film thing on Burns and Allen. But I don’t normally get off work before 6 or so. I work about 20 minutes from home. At 4:38 I get a call from the boy wonder who has stayed at school to meet with a teacher and needs a ride home (fifteen minutes in the wrong direction!). As a diabetic struggling to do the right thing I know I have to eat because I can’t wait until 8:30. So I call my dad who has always been a great cook but now he is very very very slow, and sometimes confused. I ask him to slice and marinate the beef I took out for stir fry and maybe slice an onion. I should have given him several hours warning but didn’t. After quite a few phone calls we got it straight what is needed. I blew off my boss at 5:30, raced to the high school (had to call my son on his friend’s phone because of course he forgot to charge his phone), picked up the kids, dropped off the friend and got home about 6:10. I heated up the wok, threw in the beef, at which time my dad starts telling me why my recipe and method is wrong. He gets out a tool and starts flinging food around, complaining that I am boiling his Japanese food (which is not what I was cooking?!) At this point my son, having been ordered to set the table, is asking “salt? pepper? what do you want to drink? knives? bowls?” and my dad is muttering “why are you boiling that? too much liquid. use this tool to take it out. what do you mean you’re not taking it out? who’s recipe is that?” My head is about to explode. We sat down at 6:39. We know my husband isn’t going, he is groaning on the sofa. We know my son isn’t going, he is way too cool. My dad just doesn’t eat that fast. I say, its ok if we don’t go. He says no, I’m done let’s go. So we end up at the Temple, spend an hour with Burns and Allen (I think my dad went for the cookies which he knows they’ll have) and come home. Laughter is good. I am in bed by 9:13. All I can say is Goodnight Gracie.

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