Monday, March 06, 2006

I know, it's been almost a week. I'm digging out. Bear with me. Sometimes I feel a bit foolish going public with emotional downswings, sometimes I want to delete a post that looks bitter or weepy in hindsight, but I try to uphold the law of No Regrets here. So the pity party's over but I'm not getting rid of the evidence. (You sweet blog people who wrote to see if I was okay -- thank you so much for asking. I am feeling much better.) Little Mary Sunshine will be back with you shortly. Thank you for your patience and please enjoy some fresh snark while you wait. It's on The House.

I've spent the last six days at my family's home, making sure my 15-year-old sister didn't get knocked up or burn the place down while Mom and Dad were on vacation. It's been said (again and again and again) that you can't go home again. And you know, it really is true. My parents live in a beautiful house with a gourmet kitchen and big-screen TV, huge laundry machines, buttery leather living room sofa, my beloved piano... luxury upon luxury that my cozy little apartment could never hold. And you know what? I'm uncomfortable there. Really uncomfortable. The beds are unforgiving. The water takes an eternity to heat up and the pressure is weak. (My shower in the city will wash your nipples off if you forget to face away from the stream; back in the 'burbs it takes the better part of an hour to wash my hair.) The cats are annoying -- one of them shits on the doormats and the other is too neurotic to sit in a room by himself. The kitchen's overwhelmingly large and I don't know where the coffee filters are hiding. And it's FREEZING in there. I think there's something wrong with my family, they're like pod people -- something's just a little bit off... Who the hell keeps a house at 67 degrees? It isn't right, people. I'm telling you, it's just. not. right. Normally I'd touch the thermostat on pain of death, but I figured there wasn't much Dad could do to me from Florida (though he might just be anal enough to sense the temperature shift from 1,000 miles away and send a neighbor to enforce the law). I bumped that baby up to 70 degrees. That's right! Try and stop me! Anybody need help with a dirty deed? Scamming your dealer? Robbing a bank? Get me while I'm hot! I made sure to drop the temperature back to Arctic Tundra before I left the house this morning; maybe I should've left a window open for good measure. I don't think my father will know what I did. Y'know, until he reads this, or gets the gas bill, whichever comes first. Then I'm Dead Meat. Which is no big deal, really, 'cause they can hang me up pretty much anywhere in that house and I'll keep for a month at least.

18 comments:

Veronica said...

Wow. Very powerful. Very strong. Deeply felt, well translated. Awesome delivery. I love the way you write.

Vixen said...

Welcome back to your neck of the woods. It's all good to feel whiny...I'm doing the same on my blog right now:) Blogging helps take the emotional surges, it's like your own personal dumping ground, I love it!

Janet said...

You can never go home. I've already left though I haven't. Home is where the heart is girly bob... I'm happy to hear that yours is within yours.

I-66 said...

Ah see...

Now that's more like it :)

Moving the thermostat was always a risky proposition at my mother's. It was always so warm in the house and I'd move the thing a degree and some 30 minutes later I'd hear about it.

Reya Mellicker said...

Little Mary Sunshine? When in your life have you ever been little mary sunshine, my ascerbic, ironic, wry marvelous friend?

Are you home now? Welcome home.

Phil said...

Good post, AW.

It is true. My old room resembles something of a funeral parlor now. Very old, sterile furniture. Not inviting at all.

Velvet said...

We have the same joke about my dad, he and my mom spend the winters in Florida. My brother and I were staying in their house in CT and we made the house warmer, and my brother said, "Dad just woke up out of a deep sleep."

Big Sis said...

What though the radiance which was once so bright Be now for ever taken from my sight, Though nothing can bring back the hour Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower; We will grieve not, rather find Strength in what remains behind;

Be it ever so frigid.

Kristin said...

Enjoying the fresh snark and awaiting Little Mary Sunshine. Now, that should be interesting...

SMR said...

You'd be surprised how good a nipple wash might feel if you tried it...

East-West Girl said...

There was a woman at the synagogue near my University who used to proudly and loudly (literally) tell everyone, every time they spoke, that she kept her home at a comfortable 64 degrees, all year round. 'I'm a tough cookie' she'd say. 'Who needs it to be tropical all year round?'

Did you know it can get down into the 40s at night in LA? It's just not right. And there's no damn thermostat for the city! I can't even tamper when no one's looking. Boo.

Barbara said...

I loved this! It is so true that you can't go home and feel at home once you have your own home elsewhere. Do you pay your own utility bills in your condo? I think that's what swings the thermostat down to the arctic zone. I'm sure your parents were happy to have you around to "house" sit at whatever cost to their heating bill. I hope you cut your sister some extra slack!

Dora said...

The thermostat issue is reversed with my family. I can be comfortable with the temperature between 65 to 72 but my family cannot be content untill it's a sweltering 80-85. Normally when I go home I open the window in the bedroom to let in the night breezes and close the heating vents.

Dad said...

Dead meat? How about dead giveaway, too! Yep, that [temperature-] deviant perp “always” leaves evidence behind, ripe for the forensic folks to collect and analyze.

Years ago it was empty beer cans and liquor bottles “hidden” (unwrapped) in the trash can in the garage -- mute testimony to a proscribed party that was hosted anyway while mom and dad were away. Now it’s more subtle -- and thankfully less serious -- but still easily discovered. Don’t be surprised if a future episode of CSI or Law & Order seems eerily similar to this, her latest escapade:

•Detective enters residence and observes programmable thermostat set on “hold temp” [couldn’t find the “run program” button, could you?];

•Detective enters garage from laundry room, almost stepping on cat poop (thankfully frozen) on sisal floor mat [poor kitty, locked and forgotten in a frigid garage all night];

•Detective peers into refrigerator and finds (speaking of dead meat) the ultimate victim of crime -- the leftover meatloaf. At first the detective thinks this grayish and seemingly shrunken food item has lost its color and size due to extreme aging in a low-humidity environment. Closer examination in the adjacent [kitchen] laboratory, in conjunction with information obtained from a witness at the scene (alias “little sis”), reveals the true fate of this hapless victim: savagely stripped bare of its entire tomato-based top skin and hacked to bits around its edges, leaving a ragged peripheral gap between the “body” and its surrounding glass enclosure. The weapon used to commit the crime is subsequently found in the adjacent dishwasher, soiled with dried bits of the victim’s flesh.

The indictment will comprise three counts (subject to enlargement if evidence of additional crimes is uncovered): (1) Tampering with an environmental control device; (2) Animal neglect; and (3) Mutilation of a corpse.

The punishment, if convicted, may include a fine (mandatory return of the unspent cash we left you, and a contribution to our next gas bill), imprisonment (in our house again, maybe in the frigid garage), or both.

Great blog, as usual. Thanks again for looking after the house, little sis, and at least one of the two cats. And remember: you can (and will) come home again, quite readily, if only to use our “huge laundry machines” and store furniture, clothing and other stuff in our basement that won’t fit in your cozy apartment.

always write said...

I guess you're never too old to get spanked.

Kayla said...

Dad = awesome.

Velvet said...

It seems that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Dad is a great writer as well.

Rhinestone Cowgirl said...

Your dad is SO awesome. :)

And FWIW, I have the same issue with my family. The thermostat is set at 68 degrees; I creep it up incrementally while I'm home, to the point that it's almost bearable when I leave.