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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Ah, Homicide...

My aunt is visiting from Australia.

This doesn't happen very often, because Australia is very, very far away. If your aunt lived in Australia, chances are, she wouldn't visit you very often either.

While my aunt is visiting from Australia, she isn't from Australia. She was raised in Israel, but, of course, she isn't from Israel. She was born in Iraq, like my father, and his brother. I'm pretty sure their youngest sister was born in Israel, but that's where she killed herself seven or so years ago-- so we don't talk about that, or her, very much.

While my aunt wasn't born in Australia, and while she wasn't raised there, she is, however, unabashedly convinced that everything is better there. My father took her to the zoo, only to be told that the zoo "is better in Australia." Same with the postal service, medical care, sidewalks, bicycle laws, Chinese food (?), and, probably, American food. I'll bet that blogs written by sardonic nephews are better in Australia, so we won't tell her about this one.


I'm not trying to be mean by writing this blog, and I think she's a rather entertaining little woman, it's just that everybody in my family wants to kill her.

"Hi, Mummy," my father said to me after calling me on the phone at around 6:20am a couple days ago while I was on my way to work.

"Hi, Daddy," I replied dryly, "how're things going?"

"Oh, fine, fine, sveetie, fine, fine. Things would be going a lot better if I had a gun, but, you know, otherwise fine, honey. Fine, fine."

I went over to pick up an Ireland tourism DVD from my parents' house and my mother answered the door.

"Hi, how's it going with her?"

"Oh," she said, smiling, "you know, great-- hee hee hee!" My mother then bared her teeth and pointed her index finger to her head and mimed pulling a trigger. I could hear my aunt in the living room, screeching about the "bleck" people with whom she was on a tour of Tel Aviv a few weeks ago.

"Dey were so hend-some! End so smah-rt! Dey eesked such wan-da-fool qvestions!"

And so on.

Everything with her is a critique ("Oh, vy deed you hev to make pa-stah! Eef we are going to hev carbs, I would rah-tha hev bread!") and I suppose it's a good thing that a.) my parents don't have guns and b.) she's not staying with them in their house, though I'm sure it feels like it because, for someone who doesn't especially seem to enjoy their company, my aunt is over there constantly.

And they haven't killed her yet.

I don't really mind her very much. When she says something that pisses me off, I just smile wanly and say something like, "Oh, really?" or "Mm, that's interesting," in a tone that clearly indicates that it isn't. Passive-aggressive? Sure. Do I care? Nope. Because, as my mother so astutely observed a few days ago, "Look, in a week, she's going back to Australia, either in an airplane seat or in a box, so what difference does any of it make?"

And she's right, of course, in that charmingly homicidal way of hers. It doesn't make a bit of difference, not one bit. She's old-fashioned and racist, and she's also 4'10" and jiggly old woman forearms and a high-pitched voice and she loves to hug. She's not the devil, though, the first time I saw her on this trip, she was wearing black pants with a rendering of flames shooting up from the ankles.

"I hate to be the one to tell you this," I said upon walking into the dining room where she was drinking coffee, "but your trousers are on fire. I thought you'd want to know."

I volunteered to douse the fire on her pants with her coffee, and she laughed hysterically and seemed to hug me for the next fifteen minutes. No, I won't let those big, bad parents of mine kill her.

Unless she gets really out of hand.

1 comment:

  1. And on the ultimate positive note ... odd visiting relatives make for great blog fodder :-)


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