or whatever that saying is… I generally stop listening to any conversation that involves boogers. Anyhoo, we all know it — The Saga That Is the Family Vacation. Allow me to set out our cast of characters:
HoodyHoo: Our intrepid heroine
Dear Sweet Mama: Best supporting actress as long as she plays her cards right
Dear Sweet Mama’s Concubine: Unfortunately raised by wolves (i.e., above the Mason-Dixon line), she is guaranteed to piss off at least one of us G.R.I.T.S. (Girls Raised in the South) through simple cultural misunderstanding. Examples: Tarzan, Jodie Foster as “Nell,” Mowgli the Jungle Boy.
East Coast Aunt: As opposed to West Coast Aunt, who lives in Oregon, ECA lives in Charlotte along with her husband, my cousin and his wife, and the cousins’ 2 kids. This is generally considered proof that she is dangerously insane.
East Coast Aunt’s Backup: ECA’s best friend who travels everywhere with her… probably because she is in charge of the tranquilizer darts.
Cousin’s Wife: She is either the smartest person I know, having convinced ECA to take over a majority of her childcare duties… or she’s on A LOT of Xanax.
Tiny Second Cousin (C2) : 6-years-old and raised in the longstanding Hoo Family tradition that children should be treated like small adults until they prove otherwise (and terribly spoiled by ECA, as grandmothers are wont to do), all one can really say is… she runnin’ this bitch.
Detailed incident reports to follow… but for now, a brief plot synopsis:
Hoody annoys the Concubine, the Concubine annoys East Coast Aunt (usually by not showing proper worshipful attitude toward Tiny Second Cousin) and C2 annoys EVERYBODY, generally by being six years old. Hoody finds this hilarious, because C2 is not Hoody’s actual responsibility, so the cycle resumes again by Hoody annoying the Concubine in the hopes of deflecting her attention onto ECA by way of C2.
Now, some ground rules in case you ever find yourself
tricked into invited on one of these excursions:
1. Always volunteer to take out the trash. This guarantees you will be able to get away from the drama AT LEAST once a day. If you go with me, you can be my assistant and we can bitch about everyone else.
2. Start drinking beer (or weak liquor) no later than 11:30am. You’re not after drunk here, you’re looking for a steady intake that will allow you to view the madness from a comfrtable fuzziness.
3. Kick in the hard liquor just before or during dinner. It’s about to get worse.
4. Your cousin’s wife for some reason becomes your responsibility when he is not present. She wants onion dip and chocolate sauce, and you will get these for her despite the fact that she trapped you into sharing a room with ECA’s Backup who snores like a lumberjack. Refrain from gluing the legholes in Cousin’s Wife’s underwear together… you’re bigger than that, Hoody.
5. Being sweet to Tiny Second Cousin costs you nothing… but pays big dividends when you’re the only one who can get her to do what she’s told.
BONUS: The beer-before-liquor rule? Is BULLSHIT.
BONUS BONUS: When you finally do snap (and you will), remember: Yelling does no good unless you say your piece and WALK AWAY. If you stay there, the yell-ee is guaranteed to say something ELSE that will force you to yell some more.
More to come, same Batshit Time, same Batshit Channel!