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Monday, January 3, 2011

Lords of the Flies

My wife let the word "bullshit" loose at the dinner table at my parent's house last night, and my mother was hysterical with laughter.

"She's really one of us now," I said, and my mother laughed even harder.

"What?" Mrs. Apron asked, the picture of innocence.

"I've never heard you talk like that before!" my mother exclaimed, laughing still, in her gray sweatsuit-- her Sunday evening, don't-care-a-damn outfit.

"Oh, please," I said, "her mouth is as filthy as any of ours."

(It's thanks to me, of course.)

Mrs. Apron was born to a family where swearing was not tolerated. It is not tolerated by her mother. I recall a visit to her parent's house several years ago and her father made the mistake of telling his wife that he was going in the backyard, "to pick up dog shit."

"THE WORD IS 'POOPIE!'" Mrs. Apron's mother shouted with strained vocals.

The word, my friends, is poopie.

At my parent's dining room table, the swears fly like, well, flies.

"What the fuck is with all these goddamned flies?" I asked my mother, swatting the air in front of me, brushing aside yet another savage little black bastard.

"They're coming from the sink," my father said, "the plumber asshole is finally coming over on Tuesday."

"Does he have to come on Tuesday, for Christ's sake?" my mother yelled, "the baby's here on Tuesday!"

"Uggh, please! The baby is here-- who give a shit if the baby is here? We have to get rid of these fucking flies! The plumber is not going to be banging on pipes! FUCK!"


"Okay, I will tell him to come Wednesday. Jesus Christ."

Coming home can be entertaining at times, and, at times, it was entertaining even last night, but even I have to admit that it was kind of gross sitting around the dining room table, trying to enjoy sugar cookies and coffee, with flies in the air. You try to ignore them, or pretend that you didn't just see one on the wall by the door to the porch, or on the table, or on the floor, or on the fake plant in the corner. My mother poured my father a glass of orange juice and nonchalantly placed her hand over the top of the glass and held it there.

"Are you fucking serious?" I asked her.


"If you don't do that, is a fly going to kamikaze itself down there?"

"Well, would you want to find out if that were your orange juice?"

She then placed a paper plate on top of my coffee mug.

It was kind of gross. I mean, my parents aren't poor people. Last night, there were two Volvos and two BMWs parked outside. Admittedly, the BMWs are bottom-of-the-line, and leased, at that, but still, we do okay. We're not driving Oldsmobuicks anymore. And yet, last night, I felt like I was sitting around a table in Ethiopia. All of a sudden, my parents' dining room felt like a Sally Struthers commercial. I feel dirty even as I sit here, in my own home, devoid of all discernable vermin and pestilence. Filthy, in fact. I'm scratching my hair periodically, eyeballs scanning the air in front of me for any sign of a fleeting little bugger.

It's easy to picture us-- sitting around, cursing like pornography-peddlers or homeless troglodytes with big, steaming piles of doo-doo surrounding us as we scoop heaping spoonfuls of beans or fingernails into our hot, steaming swear-wielding gullets.

But that's not us. Swear to fuck.

1 comment:

  1. God. I didn't know you came over to my house the other night.


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