Sunday, June 9, 2013

Quietly and in a nice voice

Boy, yesterday was quite a day.  Much too hot, which sort of drew a veil over everything, you know what I mean.  I still ended up enjoying myself, but it was iffy for awhile there.

But I am not going to tell you the whole saga of the day, because that will be boring and uncomfortable.  Instead I will tell you one brief story which happened right after class.

I was hurrying through Albertsons, looking to grab a pint of whipping cream and get the hell out.  I was headed to Dina's for dinner that night, and was making a banana cream pie.  As soon as I came in through the automatic doors, I heard the noise.  Like a distant piece of machinery or a freeway, or something.  But as I went down the aisle, it became clear.  It was a very familiar sound in grocery stores -- a child, about two, crying loudly and with forethought.  This one was a girl, who was making herself cry, and at great volume.  She wasn't hurling herself about in the grocery cart seat, or grabbing at things, or any other destructive behavior, but she was shrieking and crying at length and LOUDLY.

When I came into view of her, I saw that her parents, who were both there, were quite young, maybe 22 or 23, and were talking quietly to one another and entirely ignoring their steam-whistle daughter.  They were also ignoring the dirty looks they were getting from older patrons, who, I'm certain, were thinking that these young folks nowadays were just so used to this behavior that they couldn't even hear their poor little baby girl, who was just crying her eyes out, besides upsetting all the decent, responsible customers who had raised their children right.  None of this yelling carry-on.

As I was rounding the corner away from them, the little girl began to speak, all at the top of her lungs, and through her sobs.

"I wanna say I'm sorry!" she howled, at top volume.  "I wanna say I'm sorry -- I WANNA say I'm SORRY!  I wanna say I'm SORRY...!"

Her mother leaned in towards her scarlet face.

"Yes, sweetie, but there's a rule about saying sorry, isn't there?" she said quietly.  "Do you know what it is?"

I was down the next aisle by now and couldn't see her any longer, but the volume was turned up to eleven, so I didn't miss a note.

"Qui-Et-Ly!"  the small girl bellowed.  "And in a nice voice!"

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Me? Or The Mother?

Oh, boy -- I don't know where to begin this story.  Perhaps like this: I still don't know where being a mother and being me intersect or overlap, and when the one has to give way to the other.  I still feel guilty when Me wants to take over from The Mother.  Last night was a good example of this.

(By the way -- this has all been apologized for and tempers have calmed -- so I am not holding it against anyone.  I know that my son has a volatile and very big subterranean lake of rage waiting for anything to drop in so it can erupt.  And while I do not enjoy this, I can understand it.)

I got home and found my apartment very unwelcoming.  Joe was shouting angrily, the standard fan was lying in pieces on the floor, it was hot and there was food and bags and what-not strewn here and there, and Catt, Joe's girlfriend, was on the couch in tears.

The reason for all this was a contretemps with Joe's bank, in which a deposit he had made, and for which he had the receipt, was being denied to have ever taken place.  Several checks had bounced, as a result of this, one of which was his insurance payment check.  And he had a court appearance the next day, in which he was supposed to show proof of insurance.

Those are the bones of the situation, but I had to hear over and over the fury that had resulted, the hopelessness of Joe's position, the manner in which he needed to assassinate the bank manager and any other people who might get in the way, and how he was not going to be incarcerated for their incompetence.  Why hadn't someone let him know this was happening?  Why hadn't anyone at the bank or the insurance agency or any of the other check recipients given him a call?  Now he was going to be jailed for 90 days because the bank had stolen $480 from him, and there was nothing he could do about it in time for his court appearance, which was the next morning at 9 am!  And so on, and on, and on.

Now, my first, and immediate, and strong reaction was to get him OUT of my house -- out, out, out!  I do not like yelling, or threats, or cursing -- if rage is being expressed, it had better be expressed in a reasonable way, and even then, I don't like listening.  That is Me.  But The Mother -- she has to show sympathy and support and affection and assistance.  I mean, right?

So this went on for awhile.  Catt calmed down, Joe spiraled up and down and up and down for awhile, but as I was starting to lose my patience, the next thing happened.  Joe had begun looking at his court paperwork to make sure of his scheduled time of appearance, and saw that it had been scheduled for that day, not the next day.  So he had already missed it, even though he had been behaving himself so well, and planning to attend, and getting ready for it, and all -- because he had been thinking "the sixth" instead of "the fifth" he was now well and truly screwed.  A bench warrant had been issued for his arrest, and he was headed for jail.

Merciful Heavens.  The uproar.  I fled before it, and went to my room, where I sat on the bed with a book, and Catt wept in the living room, and Joe shouted and stormed up and down the hall.

So now, after Joe has calmed down and apologized, and become cheerful, and made some sort of plan, (don't know what it is, and my phone has died, so cannot text him a question) I am still feeling guilty and secretly unfit to be a mother.  If I were a decent mother, I would have flown to the defense of my child, and whipped up a plan to smuggle Joe out of the country to my contacts in Mexico, right?  Instead of which, I just wanted him to stop yelling.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Broker's Instructions

Oh, snicker-snee!  Sometimes Eye am not the one who failed to follow-through!

I just got a call from Corporate, saying that a certain check had come in for a certain sale, and they needed a copy of the Broker's Instructions to Escrow, so that they could process it, and write a check to the agent.  I looked in my file -- no Broker's Instructions.  I called Nameless Agent, and, very apologetically, told her this, and asked her for a copy of her copy.  She yelled and swore and whined and was pretty annoyed with me for "losing" it, and then said,  "Why don't you call escrow and get a copy from them?  I'm away from my desk, and won't be able to get it to you 'til tomorrow.  But call Fidelity and ask for a copy!"

I agreed to do this, and did it at once.  The assistant knew immediately which sale, agent and file I was talking about.  "Oh, Nameless?"  she said.  "Yeah, we don't have a copy of those, either.  Broker's Instructions to Escrow, right?  We asked her repeatedly for those.  Finally we just sent the check with standard deductions.  Can't help!"

My, my!

I called Nameless back.  The silence that fell when I told her this was pretty complete.  Then she said, (I kid you not)  "No, sir!  They do, too!"

"Well, they don't think they do,"  I said.

"If they didn't, they would have told me!"

"They think they did!"  I said.

"Ohhhh -- damn it!  I'll get them to you in the morning!"  she said crossly, and hung up.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Three Pinkish-Gold Mountains

This past weekend, I went up to Ocean Park to spend the weekend with Mom and Dad, as I do the first weekend of every month, wind and tide permitting.  But this time was different, because I went with my dear sister Ruth and her dear husband Tom.  So not only did I have beloved company along the way, but I was not driving, and so got to spend my time looking out the window, which one cannot do when driving.  The down side of this is that we were in their little Scion, which was designed for people with very short legs, and I was pretty damn uncomfortable by the time we arrived.

However,  as we passed through the outskirts of Portland, and Linnton, I caught sight of Mount Hood, lit by the pinkish gold rays of the setting sun, and called everyone's attention to it, so pointy and distinct.  And then we saw Mount St. Helens, also clearly delineated and touched with pinky-gold.  You could see clearly the slanting angle to the top, where two cubic tons of mountain were blown out when her volcano huffed and puffed and blew her house down.  I was commenting that if it were only clearer weather, we might be able to see Mount Rainier, which would be right about --- and there it was!  We could see all three in the same shot, and if we had only pulled over, I would have taken pictures to prove it!  All three of them were standing out sharply, in spite of the hazy sunny afternoon, all three were pinky-gold, and all three were RIGHT THERE!  How often does that happen?  Only one other time to me, that I can remember, and that was on a plane!