08.03.04 | 2:53 p.m.

One-Way Calling

My Mother doesn’t hear so well, which is just a crumb in the giant sponge cake that is our relationship. She talks, I listen. That’s pretty much how it has always been. Because if I talk, she usually cannot hear or understand anything I have said (hence, she cannot listen).

This is further complicated by the fact that she, like myself, is stubborn. She refuses to admit she has not heard a word I have said, and in return, I refuse to even try to talk louder, or clearer.

A sample phone conversation might go something like this:

Mom (in a decibel loud enough for me to hear with the phone resting on the floor): “Did you do anything fun this weekend?”

Me (all mumbles): “I went to a bar.”

Mom: “What’s wrong with your car!? You just got it! There should not be anything wrong with that car. Did you tell your father.”

Me: “I said ‘bar’”

Mom: “Well, I hope you weren’t drinking and driving… did I ever tell you about the time your father and I drank mixed drinks, vodka something-or-other, out of a thermos on the way to a concert and your dad almost got in a fight with this guy over a parking spot and then the guy ending up sitting next to us! What are the odds!?”

Me: “Nope.”

Mom: “That was not very smart of us.”

Me: “(no comment)”

And that is pretty much how our phone conversations go.

Well, my Mom just called me at work from my Dad’s cell phone in a rental car in Florida where they are vacationing for a few days.

Mainly she talked about how busy she was going to be when she got home and then she shrieked, put down the phone and all I heard was a lot of car horns honking.

Pause one whole minute.

My mother is back on the phone, “I’m sorry, some truck pulled out in front of us and a little old lady in a car cut us off! The old lady is laughing at us!”

I am still contemplating hanging up because this conversation is going nowhere, as evident by my silence.

“Are you busy?” my Mom asks?

“Yes,” I tell her.

“Well, then! I will let you go.”