Friday, May 7, 2010

Can't Buy Me Love (part 4 - by Margaret Ullrich)

    Ma gave me one of her 'Don't Lie to Me' looks.  I gave her one of my super innocent 'What, Who Me?' looks.  Satisfied that she was still in charge, Ma went back to being the good Maltese hostess.  She just wanted to clear the table in peace and bring another damn holiday to an end.  Without a major blowup.  

    This was turning into a really nice Easter.  I was going to be able to earn money to go to the Beatles concert and marry George Harrison.  Ma was happy with the idea that Mother’s Day was a holiday with no extra cooking.  That was enough for her.  But Aunt Liz wouldn’t let her get off so easily. 

    “Annie, you do know about Mother’s Day, don’t you?  In May?”
    “Sure, sure.  Mother’s Day.  Special.  In May,”  Ma said as she carried the loaded tray to the kitchen.
    Not missing a stitch, Aunt Demi muttered, “Hmmph...  We came to this country.  We have to pay taxes.  Alright.  We don’t have to have more holidays.”


    Ignoring Aunt Demi, Aunt Liz decided to make sure we were celebrating holidays like real Americans.  She thought she'd get the truth from my kid sister.  
    “Barbara, Sweetie, you’re too little to treat your Mom to a fabulous Mother’s Day Brunch at the Club Safari.  But, of course, you’ll do something extra special to show your Mom how much you love her.”
    “I’m making something at school, Aunt Liz.  It’s a secret,”  Barbara announced proudly.

    Yeah, Barbara was still a kid.  She didn’t realize that Ma would react to her gift the same way as she did the year before.  With total indifference.
    “Oh, you can tell me,” Liz said and gave Barbara a hug.   

    When Ma returned and saw Liz questioning Barbara, she was terrified. 

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