I lost my grandma’s whereabouts for almost a year. Then my sister, Aunt Neicee, found her–but that’s a blog for another day. So, Aunt Neicee wanted me to appease her by joining her on a road trip to visit Grandma Pearl.
She planned to go the same day I have tickets for my very first ever regular season professional football game where my favoritest team of all time, the Pittsburgh Steelers, will play the Tennessee Titans in Nashville, TN in a televised Thursday night game where our seats are close enough to clearly see the now fairly compensated referees flag James Harrison for making scary faces at Titans players.
Whew! I know “favoritest” isn’t a word, but that’s how giddy the thought of this game makes me.
I grew up in a family so dysfunctional we’d make the Griffins of “The Family Guy” look like the Cleavers of “Leave it to Beaver.” The last time I saw Grandma Pearl was 1991 when The Eldest was 18-months-old.
During that visit, we hugged, kissed, and pinched baby cheeks before sitting down for about an hour’s visit. We laughed and caught up on the years gone by, and then sat picking our nails for the next fifty-eight minutes. Periodically, Grandma Pearl would remark how much The Eldest looked like her friend Ethel’s grandson. My father finally said, “Well, go get a picture and show her!”
Grandma Pearl toddled back with an open photo album. She held it before me and declared, “See?” The resemblance was uncanny—mostly because it was a picture of The Eldest that I had sent her a month before.
“Grandma Pearl, that is The Eldest.”
She turned the album, looked the picture over and said, “No wonder he looks so much like Ethel’s grandson.”
So given Grandma Pearl’s current age and the twenty years it’d been since I’d seen her, there was only one answer I could give Aunt Neicee.
“Sorry, can’t go.”
I can’t appease everyone.
Now hold up before you call me the antichrist. I told The Eldest he and I would make the trip. “We’ve got to go see Grandma Pearl before the game. I’d never forgive myself if she permanently logged out of LifeBook while we were busy throwing back overpriced stadium beers and hugging strangers to celebrate Steelers touchdowns.”
So we visited Grandma Pearl in her nursing home. We hugged, kissed, and pinched bearded man cheeks before sitting down for about an hour’s visit. We laughed and caught up on the years gone by, and then sat playing with our smart phones for the next fifty-eight minutes.
Grandma Pearl, in what can only be described as a “Twilight Zone” déja vu, started in again with how much The Eldest looked like Ethel’s grandson. She opened a drawer in her bedside table and pulled out a photograph. “See?” she declared again. The resemblance this time really was uncanny—mostly because it was a picture of The Eldest from my wedding that I had sent her a month before.
“Grandma Pearl, that is—” I said with a pause “—amazing how much he looks like Ethel’s grandson.”
Sometimes you just have to appease family.