Friday, June 11, 2010

Can't Buy Me Love (part 9 - by Margaret Ullrich)

    Ma just ignored Aunt Demi.  This was something new.  Ma had always deferred to her sister-in-law.  Aunt Demi was older.  She was louder.  

    But Aunt Liz had asked Ma's - not Aunt Demi's - permission for me to type for her bowling club.  Aunt Liz was the new Aunt on the block.  If she played her cards right with Aunt Liz, Ma could be the bossy older sister-in-law.  That suited Ma just fine.           

    I don't know if Aunt Liz was impressed by the work we were going to put into our traditional Mother's Day feast or if she was afraid that Charlie would be expecting something similar for Father's Day.  She just smiled and said,  “Why, that’s quite a job.  Wouldn’t it be easier to join us at the Club Safari?”  

    Yeah.  The Club Safari.  Great idea.  Barbara and I turned and nodded like a pair of donkeys at Ma, hoping she’d give us a break.  

    No luck.

    “No.  They’ll make what I said.  Exactly.” 

    Liz looked at Ma with greater respect.  The family honor was saved.  Ma shot us, her stunned daughters, a warning glance. 

    Ma had finished preparing a light snack for the men.  “There.  It’s ready.  Demi, you can take it out to them.  Tina, help me clear the table, now.  Barbara, take Aunt Liz to your room and show her the picture you’re making.” 
    Barbara and I did as we were told, all the while praying that Ma wouldn’t come up with any more traditional ideas before Aunt Liz and Uncle Charlie left. 

    Something really changed in our family that Easter.  Easter had always been a major holiday in our family.  Everyone was cleaned up, dressed up and on best behavior.  Not this year.  This year Easter had turned into just another day compared to the wonder that our first American Mother's Day was going to be.

    Barbara and I were terrified.

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