Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Raising Aristotle... (Part One)

I have a story to tell. Read on....

Thing 1 calls me, out of the blue, the other day...

"Mom," she says, "I'm not sure I want to go to law school. I've just been so upset, because I know it's what I've planned for so long, and I owe student loans and shit, but I just don't think I want to be a lawyer! I shouldn't pursue a career that isn't going to make me happy!"

My first thought was, Oh God help me Jesus, she's wanting to get married. I'll fucking KILL her.

"Wha-What are you wanting to do?" I manage to choke out, dreading the words I know are coming. And I'm going to have to fly all the way to Italy to kill that little fucker she's wanting to marry. Shit. I don't have enough money to fly to Italy. I don't have TIME for this. I'm getting more angry by the SECOND.

"I think I want to get my master's in Philosophy..." she says.




Relief pours over my body in waves. She DOESN'T want to get married! She's not leaving the country in a fit of passion and moving halfway around the world where I can't get to her! Oh, thank you God! Thank you, tiny little eight pound eight ounce baby Jesus!! But wait, what was that she said? She wants to get WHAT?

"Thing 1, what the FUCK did you just say to me?" I demand.

Immediately, she becomes defensive, as if I had said something BAD to her!

"Mom! Goddamnit! Just listen to me! You want me to be happy, don't you? You want my life to have meaning? I don't WANT to be an attorney anymore, I'm so STRESSED!"

"But... but... but... what the hell are you going to do with a degree in PHILOSOPHY? What CAN you do with a degree in philosophy, THINK?"

"Goddamn sonofabitch," says Thing 1, ever eloquent. The degree of her cursing and the apparent LOWERING of her intellect is directly proportionate to how pissed she currently is at me. "You can do LOTS of things with a degree in philosophy! Lots and lots of Goddamned things!"

"Name one then! If there are that many, just name ONE!"

This, then, is when she begins to lose her HUMANITY, and she begins to GROWL at me. "Well, I can't Goddamn Mother-Fuck-Ing THINK of one right now, but there. ARE. LOTS. OF. GODDAMNED. THINGS!"

Her voice is so deep, and the growl so completely GUTTERAL, that I pause for a moment to wonder if this is how it would be to talk to a dog... And wouldn't it be interesting if Vincent-the-Saving-Dog could talk to me? A conversation with Benny (don't ask... it's a nickname... try saying "Here, Vincent-the-Saving-Dog! fifty times a day and see how long it takes you to find a nickname) begins playing through my head:

"Benny! You're talking! Incredible! Say something to me!"

And Benny would say: "Something TO me! Ha. Haha. Waka, waka waka!"

"Benny, this is amazing! There is so much I want to SAY to you! But first, I have to know... you DO love me as much as I love you, don't you?"

"What, are you KIDDING me, here? I follow you from room to room, sleep beside your bed, lick your face when you cry, starve myself when you're gone, and stand perfectly STILL while you cut clumps of hair off my WEINER, and you want to know if I freakin' LOVE YOU? No, it was always about the KIBBLE, baby!"

"Oh, Benny!" I say as I throw my arms around him... "You DO love me! You DO!"

"Mom! MOM! Goddamnit Mom!" Benny screeches in my ear... But... But wait. Benny wouldn't screech in my ear! He LOVES me!

"Goddamn MOTHERFUCKER! I'm hanging up this Goddamn phone, because YOU never listen! Because you don't CARE!"


It's HER.

The Spawn.

"I am SO listening," I shout. "I AM!"

"Well, what did I just say, then?" she shouts in my ear.

"You said I never LISTEN! You said I dont CARE! Which is a complete and total lie!"

"Before that! What the motherfucking hell did I say before that! When you weren't Goddamn LISTENING TO ME?" she growls at me again.

Oh, I am fucking getting tired of this. So, I do what I always do in this situation. Because, believe me, we have this situation a LOT.

I hang up.


Sweet, sweet silence. The sound of peace. The sound of nothing....

And any moment now she will call back, and she will apologize... and I will pout a little, but ultimately I will forgive her, because she is my baby, and even though she is some kind of weirdo freak with the gutteral language and the growling... she is still MINE.



Yep. Any moment now, she'll call back. Maybe I won't even pout this time...












I look at my phone, check to make sure it hasn't died. But no. Phone's good.



And she doesn't call back.

She. Doesn't. Call. Back.

I flirt with the notion of calling HER, but decide to wait. I'm at work, she's probably on her way to class, I'm sure she will call later. She can't just fucking change her whole life PLAN without discussing it with me. She'll call.

Except she doesn't.

It's been a week.

It's been a fucking week.

She called me one time, responding to a text I sent her about Anny-Banany (the cleaning lady, and believe me, we will discuss THAT shit in another post) and when I said to her, "Thing 1, I need to talk to you about these decisions you are making," she said, "I cannot talk to you about this," and hung up on ME.

I have been thrown out of the loop.

And I don't like it, not even one little bit.


Avitable said...

I can tell you, as someone who went to law school and never practiced, that you can do plenty of things with a law degree. It opens many, many doors.

Just forward her this email.

Amy @ Milk Breath and Margaritas said...

Hiya. I'm out of my 19 yr olds loop too, except when she calls me to ask my advice so she can shred and reject it.

I have a philosophy degree. I am a publishing executive. It's not the end of the world - a good employer will value a solid liberal arts degree.

Dory said...

*gutteral growl scarier than hers* Thing 1, you listen to your mother! *stomps and wags finger*

the planet of janet said...

just send her to me. i'll straighten her out.

philosophy degree, my ass.

baseballmom said...

Hehehe, I love the part about Vincent. Our dog's nickname when we were kids was Benny or BenBen, and she was a GIRL! I totally wonder what my dogs would say, and I sometimes can imagine it by the looks on their faces!

Bina said...

Oh my. I don't even know what to say to this. WHY do you have to make this stuff so freaking funny? I KNOW I shouldn't laugh. I KNOW it's killing you and it's your daughter, but damn, you MAKE it funny!!!!

And yea, the degree? I have NO clue what you can do with that, except teach other people who want a phylosopy degree. Fuck. I spelled that wrong.

Mitchell said...

Well look at it this way, at least she can say fuck and goddam. Teach her to excede her spending limit past income and she will be a chip off the ol block. PS. I knew about this three days ago. Seems like she told the blogger world about her decision first. Oh wait a minute she is a chip off the ol......

Miss Anne Derstood said...

Mitchell, honestly, you are an insufferable ass.

If you will note at the beginning of the story, I said she called me a few days ago.

You did NOT know it before me.


mitchell said...

define infusable ass

Tom said...

insufferable: not to be endured; intolerable; unbearable

ass:1. a long-eared, slow, patient, sure-footed domesticated mammal, Equus asinus, related to the horse, used chiefly as a beast of burden.
2. any wild species of the genus Equus, as the onager.
3. a stupid, foolish, or stubborn person.

That's what you get for hitting on Dory, Mitchell.

If it's any consolation, a philosophy degree will actually prepare her for a career in just about anything except things like Law and Medicine or anything that takes a license. They are actually a sought after because the degree teaches the students to think and reason. That's something that high school and even college doesn't really teach them to do.

Just my opinion, and we all know that everyone is welcome to my opinion.

Loved your poem, even if it was a little dark. Very well written.

MITCHELL said...

Is this the same TOM from my space that shines a light in the mirror?
I know you kicked me out of there but why have you followed me to my sisters blog ?
Hmm... a foolish wild horse like beast... NEIGH WINNY.. I love it.

Did you see that HBO special where people dress up like horses and trot around smelling each others ass? Wish i was there, nothing like the smell of a good ol horses ass.

Any way thanks for taking up for miss anne

Miss Anne Derstood said...

Oh, how I adore the men in my life....

*waves* Hi Tom!! hahahahaha

Mitchell, For shit's sake, I have no choice but to love you... :)

Tom said...

No, Mitchell. I didn't kick you out of MySpace. That was the other Tom, He got to it before I did.

Horses Rule! I work around a couple of people that I think are horses asses, but if that's what they smell like, I don't want any thankyouverymuch.

Miss Anne Derstood said...

Now, this is getting out of hand. Boys, put your wieners away. The pissing contest is over.... Good boys...

eric said...

Howard Cosell had a law degree