Putting my brain on hold, i packed up Mom and Studley, and we headed out to the wedding celebration for my brother, T, and his new wife. As you may recall, my sister S had decided this would be the perfect opportunity to introduce T to a half-brother he’d not known about, and had taken the liberty to invite this half-brother to the wedding reception.
As we were driving toward The Park, Mom was reminiscing about what a complete asshole her second husband had been…
Mom: Cletus was married once before me. They had a child together and then he went off into the Army. Well, his wife took up with another man while Cletus was gone, and had another baby – that was Dave. When Cletus got back, he never acknowledged that Dave was his son…
daisyfae: Wait… What? You mean the newly discovered half-brother may not, in fact, be related to S and T at all?
Mom: Cletus never treated Dave like his own son, and never took any responsibility for him. Cletus had two sisters who disowned Dave, too.
daisyfae: Can…. Did…. Anyone in the family actually do the math? Has there ever been genetic testing done?
Mom: Well, S says he looks just like Cletus.
daisfae: [white-knuckle grip on steering wheel, head explodes] GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
Studley: [laughing maniacally from backseat]
Despite my exploded head, we arrived at the party. Wheeling Mom up to a table, we joined my sister, S, along with her possibly half-brother, Dave, and his wife, Pam. There was another woman at the table, who was introduced as Imogene, Pam’s mother. When joining any table, i do a quick triage on seating – trying to optimize conversation for all, with the least amount of annoyance for me. Studley quickly worked the same social math, and had perched his arse on the back of an adjacent sofa, claiming the prime vantage point to watch the fireworks, without getting hit by shrapnel.
i placed Mom’s wheelchair next to S, who was sitting next to Dave and Pam. i dropped into the seat between Mom and Imogene, who proceeded to tell me her life story. A charming woman, Imogene had just turned 91 years old. Full of spark and playfulness, she wasted no time in sharing her annoyance at being dragged to a party where she didn’t know anyone, as well as pulling out pictures of her dead husband. i was able to get her chatting with Mom, and made a break to
inhale a vodka tonic grab a bite to eat.
Studley found me by the barbeque meatballs, shaking his head in astonishment. “Wow.” My brother, T, and his wife, K, were having a grand time, making the rounds and introducing family and friends. They’d stop briefly to chat, then move on to the next group. A nice collection of humans gathered to celebrate a wedding…
Eventually i returned to the table, and Imogene got going again. Very sweet, very funny, and inquisitive. She wanted to be introduced to Studley, thinking he was my husband.
daisyfae: No, we are a couple, but not likely to ever marry. We’ve both done that, and are pretty happy as we are…
Imogene: Well, he’s a handsome man, and a real sweetheart! You better hang onto him before he gets away.
Mom: I’ve been telling her the same thing.
Studley: [smiles, raises eyebrow, posts his trademark ‘hey, baby’ look]
Two days later, Studley and i were floating in my pool… doing retirement financial planning – sorting out whether i’ll have sufficient resources to retire early and move the fuck overseas to get as far away from The Park as possible. He has repeatedly assured me that i have more than enough to live such a life, and should really stop worrying about it.
We also did the “after action report” on the previous weekend, which is partly why i needed to go over the retirement financials again. As an afterthought, i reminded him of how much those senior ladies adore him…
daisyfae: You can write your own ticket with the old broads! Between Imogene, and those ladies at the women’s league luncheons, you oughta find yourself an old bat with a lot of cash. Get yourself a Sugar Granny…
Studley: [grinning] What makes you think I haven’t? [dives for safety]This babe found here…