Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Define Normal

Remember how I told you earlier this week I got a flat tire somehow on the way home from dropping Kitten off at work and I didn't realize it until about 20 minutes before I had to be at my job? It was pouring down rain and I was pretty sure my life couldn't suck much more than it did in that moment? Normal neighbors came to the rescue. I think I mentioned that. They saw I was in distress and the guys came over and changed my tire for me so I didn't have to mess up my work clothes. Very chivalrous, right?

I had promised them if they told me what kind of beer they liked I would totally go get them some as a way of telling them thank you. I don't think they believed me. While I was relaxing that afternoon, getting ready for my night shift at work the girls ran up to the gas station to fill up the air in the tires and they picked up some beer for them as a way of saying thank you. I didn't know this until I noticed that the truck was back in our driveway and they were nowhere to be seen.

Turns out they were making friends with the normal neighbors. They got a full round of introductions and how everyone was related to everyone. They got stories about babies and grandbabies and children and the whole nine yards. I think we are now able to recognize who is who when we see people coming and going. I always thought that they had a lot of friends. Turns out they just have a really, really big family.

Tonight we were sitting on the front porch watching the stray cats wrestle over the food we had put out for them when Mrs. Normal Neighbor and her daughter, Fate, came by. Fate had her newborn with her so we could coo over how cute he was. Actually, for a newborn he was pretty adorable. I think most of them look like aliens, but he actually looks like a little person. She laughingly showed us how his hairline is already receding (poor little dude). We also got a rather strange story about how the baby sucks on your lip if you give him kisses. It made me giggle.

Mrs. Normal neighbor started talking to Kitten and Oscelot about something, I don't know what. I think about her auto detailing business. Fate pulled me aside to ask what kind of flower my hollyhocks were. I was explaining to her about them, then she obligingly let me lead her around the front yard, telling her all about the flowers I was planting and the ones I wanted to plant. I told her about our plans for the house, like repainting it and refinishing our porch by the end of the summer.

Somehow we got onto the topic of our crazy neighbors. We aren't too fond of them. Turns out she isn't either. We were talking about how the houses two and three away from us were a mess. It was funny. We talked about how we cant seem to get a normal set just next to us to save our souls. I confessed I had hoped for a nice couple, or an old lady or maybe (because we saw some) another pair of lesbians. That would have been really nice.

Fate got on a tangent about the house three down from us. They have a fenced in front yard but its like a chiken wire type fence, not a chain link or anything decent. Their front yard is full of crap. Now, I can understand some kids toys but their yard is piled with them. I don't mean there are a lot. I mean they are literally all over on top of each other. Plus the yard is full of other miscellaneous junk like old tires and holiday decorations never put away. Honestly, its an eyesore. (one of the three renters left on our block too- suprise!)

While we were talking about it she told me this story about a house she had lived in before in another part of town. Apparently their neighbor was a hoarder. You know, like the ones you see on television? She did that, and apparently this stuff spilled out of her house and onto her front porch. Fate said that she had no room for trash so she just threw it in her back yard. She and her roommates complained to the health department, but nothing was done about it. The house continued to become more filthy and Fate got to where she felt like it was a health and safety hazard to allow it to continue.

Now, I must preface this with: I in know way condone what she did next. I do, however, think that it was hilarious. Fate went to the health department, snuck one of tehir complaint forms home, scanned it into her computer and made some sort of fake order of inspection. She got all dressed up, grabbed a clipboard and put a bunch of papers underneath her fake order and then went to this lady's house. She gained entry to the house under the auspices of being a health department official! This lady actually let her in! Then she "inspected" the house and told the lady it had to be fixed or there would be all kinds of pentalties, including her possibly being evicted from her house. It worked. Now, it was pretty mean, but honestly, I thought it was rather clever, and funny too. Of course, that's my sense of humor, I suppose.

After we had laughed over that and how she was contemplating doing that to the neighbors down the street, we switched over to relationships. We were leaning against my truck looking up at Kitten and Oscelot and she asked me how many people we had in our house. She thought four. (why did she think four? I'mnot sure. Kitten postulates she thinks its the Lifeguard. I thought maybe she had seen Black Magic coming and going while she still hung out with us. I didn't have the nerve to ask...As it is, neither of them have been over in a month or so...) Anyway, I corrected her and told her that there was just the three of us. Then she asked if any of us were dating, or if we all lived together or what. I tried as best I could to explain the nature of our relationship. Fate just kept nodding her head. She was all "that's so cool," which I thought was adorable.

Then she launched into a story about how she used to date girls. I got the whole rundown about her being a bisexual and how she had been with eight (wow, she keeps track) women and how she thought the emotions were way different with a woman than with a man. I agreed on that one, but I also told her it can be totally crazy. We laughed together over my description of our household when all three of us are on our cycle. Its pretty bad sometimes. She continued, telling me all about this girl she was with, number 8, and how she was totally crazy about her and she had ditched her long-term boyfriend to be with her. I got all the gory details. Then she told me about how Number 8 had cheated on her, with a gay guy no less, and how she caught them cheating at a tanning salon. (another reason I am so never going to a tanning bed in our town, outside of the ill health effects!) Anyway, she told me that after that episode she decided she'd rather be with guys because there's less emotion involved, and she doesn't have to worry so much. As she put it "I can go to any restaurant in town and pick me up a nice tube steak- but finding a great girl...that's real hard" I tried not to goggle, because I'm sure even in the twilight it would have been obvious.

I tried to cover up my discomfort by looking upwards. She noticed, and pointed out to me the big dipper and the little dipper. I was actually kind of impressed she could find them. Its hard enough to see the stars in the middle of the city, finding constellations takes talent. Then we got on the topic of lunar and solar eclipses. She postulated that if the world ends, she figures it will either be the sun or the moon crashing down on top of us. We won't even have time to worry. Then we were joking about how we were preparing for the zombie apocolypse (btw- if you come to our house, the password is brraaiiins...I mean, raspberry jam). She laughed and said she thought that would be fun, because we could toally like shoot the zombies in the head or get them with axes and no one would care. The police (she said) would be looking on, all "Good job. That was a nice shot. Get that machete back."

Then there was a very abrupt change to the topic of how fucked up her family is (her words, not mine). I won't go into a lot of detail, but you know, her family is almost as messed as mine is, in its own way. I was trying not to laugh a couple of times. I think my favorite quote was "You know, my sister makes me cry all the time. She's always talking about how hard she has it. But she has a job and a car and a house and everything. She's got a boyfriend, even though he's a douchebag, at least he helps her. Here I am, wanting a job and not able to find one, my car broke down, and raising two kids by myself while living with my mom and dad! Who has it bad? You tell me!" I did respect her more after that though, because she does want to do well for herself, she's trying. She's just not succeeding.

After that Mrs. Normal Neighbor came over with a phone call for her, and we bade her goodnight. When we got inside I was regaled with tales from the girls about Mrs. Normal Neighbor. It was definately interesting.

I will say this, though, I am grateful to have at least one set of friendly, normal-ish neighbors. They want to get along. They're polite. They wave hello and goodbye. They don't get all up in our space if we don't want them too. I mean, chances are they are at home right now talking about their crazy lesbian neighbors and how all three of us were dating each other all at once. I'm sure they think we're a little odd too. At least we keep our house clean, try to keep the grass nicely mowed and we don't do stupid shit like break into other people's houses or driving our cars top speed into the phone poles on our block. (that happened last summer. Not fun)

So that's the story on our Normal Neighbors.

In other news, I told my mom about going back to school today. I got just about the response i thought I would. First she asked if I even thought they would let me in. I told her I was already admitted. Then she asked if they would let me take classes since I was in default on one of my student loans. I told her yes, as long as I made payment arrangement, it was fine. Then she asked how I thought I was going to pay for it. I told her I qualified for some grants, and some loans and also, the classes were inexpensive enough that if I chose to go part-time, I could make payment plans (Local CC calls it E-cashiering) and it would be fine. Then she asked me if I was just going to quit my job and leave Kitten and Oscelot to support me, and how unfair was that, and didn't I think of anyone but myself and I was going to end up leaving my household destitute. I couldn't work and go to school, of course I couldn't, I would flunk out. Just like I had before.

I didn't bother explaining that this time I wouldn't have to work 40+ hours to support my partner, because my partners are good people. I didn't explain that I failed because I was starving and my life was coming apart at the seams (this would imply she didn't notice the last time). I didn't explain that I actually can balance work and school because I had managed to do it for four semesters before the one bad one I had. seemed like a waste of breath.

I have, sometimes, this disconnect from reality. For some reason, I thought she would be happy for me. That she might say so, especially since up until now she has made it a point to nag me about going back to school every time she sees me. I thought maybe she would tell me that it was great I had two loving, wonderful partners who wanted to help me. Even a "you can do it, I have faith in you" would have been really nice. I kick myself for wanting it, because I had discussed telling my mom with the girls last night and we all agreed that she was going to be unsupportive and probably critical of me going back to school. Why, oh why, my friends, do I still insist on thinking I'm one day going to wake up and have a sitcom mom who wants to cheer for me and wants the best for me?

I told Mrs. Boss about it today. Her and Mr. Boss have been really supportive and happy for me. She ahs already offered to accommodate my schedule as much as I need her to (I don't, I'm taking classes on my days off. I'll have all night on my work days to study, since she already gives me a fantastic schedule.) Mrs. Boss says she thinks its sad that my mom feels like she has to keep me down because I want to achieve more than she has, more than Punk has. She says if she were my mom she'd be fighting tooth and nail to make sure I had every possible opportunity to make something more of myself than she had. I thought it was really sweet. I told her so. Honestly, even though she's only ten years older than me, I feel like she does the stand in mom thing a lot. She's a good boss to have, because she actually cares about her employees lives, and wants us to be happy, successful people.

It does, though, irritate the hell out of me. I mean, honestly. My mom sings Punk's praises every time she talks to me, even though I don't want to talk about him and I've told her so. This last time she was telling me how proud she was that he is holding down steady employment (he's had the job for a month). I mean, he's 28 years old. This should hardly be an accomplishment worth cheering for. Especially since he is still using her as a banker. She pays his bills. He doesn't even have a place to live. he got rid of his last apartment when his roomies moved out and he's couch surfing right now. I get frustrated. I remember when he got his GED, she asked me what I was going to get him. I told her I was planning on sending him a card. She asked how much money I was going to put in it. She was shocked when I told her I wasn't. Her response was "You got money when you graduated high school." Yeah. When I was 17, and going off to college. Not when I was 26 and not doing anything but living off my mother. Maybe I'm mean about this?

Sometimes I think that my resentment of Punk clouds my judgement. Don't get me wrong, I think its great he has a job. I was glad when he got his GED. I just- - I'm not sure its something that should be counted as a major life accomplishment. I feel bad sometimes because he's sold himself short. I know that you know I am a smart girl. I'm not kidding when I say Punk is way smarter than I am. His IQ higher. He always tested higher than me in grade school. There's no reason he couldn't have been everything he wanted to be. The thing is, Punk choose to be nothing instead. He's made a ton of bad choices, many of which contribute to me not wanting to have him as a part of my life. But, I don't know, I've mentioned it before, i harbor a little bit of anger towards him because despite of all of his bad choices my mom treats him like he's the better child. I know for a fact he's her favorite. It bothers me. Its not even that I want to be the favorite, so much as I just wish she treated me with the respect Ifeel like I've earned as an adult.

I'm whining, aren't I?

I should stop.

So that's me tonight. A talk with normal neighbors and a rant about my family.

Same ol' same ol

Have a good one friends.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so glad you have people like Mrs. Boss in your life. *HUG*