not quite the final installment, but tomorrow's post is the rest of this story, as is the saying I SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST . . .
CHRISTMAS BLOOPERS, 3rd INSTALLMENT,
#5, THE POEM ADDITION:
|I don't have a photo for|
this post, but because
we'd been looking through bins for Star
Wars guys, Curly surrounded my water
bottle with some spare
figures Christmas morning.
When I was gathering info to insert into the poem, I totally forgot that the stay with my family is a SURPRISE. It's how we are celebrating Mom's 80th b-day in March. Oops. My sister, Ann, organized it and we all made our individual reservations back in May or June (eternity ago) for June '22, then chipped in towards my folks' room.
|Not the best example, |
but see how the lights
don't reach the end of
the porch, by like 2 feet?
It looks like this caption.
Once I paid for my part, I checked it off my list and moved on with
chaos central life, completely forgetting that the reason we were going there was to surprise my mom. I was in WHAT DO I NEED TO DO mode and once done, failed to register the details.
I was out shopping with Ed on the 22nd and my sister, Ann, texted me:
First of all, I'm surprised Ann read my poem. Around 7 or 8 years ago during Christmas dinner, my SIL congratulated Coach on getting his fellowship. Ann was baffled. WAIT, HOW COME I DIDN'T KNOW THAT? Um, you didn't read my Christmas poem. Then she shared that she felt it was weird to send the poem anyway as it was too long and probably something no one would read.
Sometimes in my family you must read between the lines to hear the very subtle: Merry Christmas, I love you,.
|Example B: See the gap? I referred|
to our weak lights
in an earlier post or
comment, so I thought
I'd demonstrate. I'm fine
with it, but it is a little
underwhelming when you
drive up to the house.
Well, technically their mailman put the poem in their mailbox, but SHIT. I went weak in the knees. Is there anything quite like a bossy older sister who berates your every move and then has something real to be upset about to make you feel like you're 4 all over again?
I really don't mean to downplay my role in this. Honestly, I screwed up. I felt terrible. I gripped Ed's arm and said I'd done it again. Landed in deep doo-doo. Ann, in case you don't recall, is the most controlling person alive. God help the fool, aka me, who derails something she has worked on. Even getting in the way of a small thing that she wants or expects can get her crazy fired up. This was a biggie.
I called Coach. Begged him to help me.
Coach: WHAT DO YOU WANT ME TO DO?
Me: I DON'T KNOW. I GUESS CALL. FIND OUT IF THEY'VE READ IT OR NOT. THEN GO TAKE IT FROM THEM IF THEY HAVEN'T READ IT?
Coach: OK, HANG ON.
When I got home from the store, Coach re-enacted how the call went:
Dad: UM, SHE'S JUST READING IT NOW.
Coach: TAKE IT FROM HER.
Dad: HUH? NO SHE'S READING IT. (the surprise-blowing lines were on the back, we still had a chance. It's a legal size page poem, sp Ann is right - it is LONG)
Coach: THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE POEM THAT SHE CAN'T READ JUST YET, TAKE IT FROM HER. DO IT NOW!
Dad: WELL, THIS IS THE SILLIEST CONVERSATION I'VE EVER HAD. NANA, GIVE ME THAT (sound of dad lunging from his seat, grunting, a scuffle in the background), COACH? OK, I GOT IT FROM HER. (sounding winded).
I still chuckle at the visual of my mom sitting down at the end of a day cleaning house (she's obsessed, proof that I'm adopted) and making food for my dad and possibly still wrapping the HUGE pile of gifts she buys before looking at the cards that arrived that day.
My dad answers the phone. Then, despite his old 81 year old age, he starts wrestling rather inexplicably with her for the letter in her hand.
I know, I know, you all wish I was part of your family because I make stuff happen, keep things lively and fun. (Ann might disagree). It's OK to be jealous.
Once home, I grabbed another copy of the poem and tried to sharpie over the two 'revealing' lines. Curly was looking over my shoulder: YOU CAN STILL READ IT. I grabbed the scissors and cut out the lines. I wrote the lines from the front that were included in the redacting on a small note and included them. Then Curly and Tank drove to my folks' house and swapped the tell-all letter with the cut up version. Merry Christmas.
I called my mom to let her know they were on their way to swap out the uncensored poem with a redacted version. Ann was texting me for updates. Did Dad now know? I hadn't even realized that he didn't know in the first place, but Coach said he hadn't told him and that Dad seemed clueless. Rightfully so. This was a confusing ordeal.
Tune in tomorrow for how the surprise ended up no longer being a surprise. NOT MY DOING, PROMISE.
So let me know if you'd like to me join your family around the holidays to liven things up. I'll see what I can do. Want me to draft a Christmas poem for you and share your true feelings about how irritating your Uncle Frank is? I'm here for it.