Sunday, November 29, 2009

I Ate Crow AND Humble Pie This Weekend

Greetings all. I am back, ensconced once again in my cog-ly apartment. The cats have forgiven me by now and are snoozing next to me on the couch. It was quite loud with all the angry meowing there for a bit. I am rebelling against my to-do list by not cleaning anything, even though the cats certainly dirtied things up over the weekend.

My nieces and nephews are certainly growing up, although some of them had relapses into tantrums as if they were in grade school, which really undercuts the argument that they are maturing. Ah well. I restrained myself and did not get involved, which was good as both my brother and sister-in-law jumped all over them and there was much shouting in the kitchen. (A niece slammed a drawer shut --- accidentally, I'll note --- on her brother's finger and there was a meltdown on both sides. The chocolate fondue my nephew was supposed to be stirring started to burn during the fight so I tried to shut everything out except stirring it. Luckily, the chocolate was saved. And isn't that the message of the holidays?)

Later, I sat there and took it while my dad yelled at me and pried into my financial arrangements. This time, when he insisted I get emergency health care coverage and that he would loan me the money for payments (to be paid back in punishment rather than just cash --- the rates being completely arbitrary, variable, and subject to change without notice), I did not protest and did not refuse him. I kept my expression as respectful and bland as I possibly could without meeting his eyes. I made strenuous efforts not to stare at the check out in front of him, tried not to eye it like a hungry dog with a bone.

And I'm sure that by this time next year, if they repeat their commands to get rid of my cats and move back into my childhood bedroom, I will do it because I am strapped and desperate, and evidently no different from my pothead friends from high school who wasted their lives and never moved further than their parents' basements. My parents just had a longer leash for their reprobate daughter.

That check isn't going for any health care either; I need it to cover rent.


Clio Bluestocking said...

What a nightmare! Power to you, and may you NOT be in your childhood bedroom next year.

Anonymous said...

Get rid of the cats?! Oh, hell no. We will set up the Save Cog's Kittens Fund before we let that happen.

There's just not enough ways to say how much this process sucks but I am really hopeful that you will be in a much better place (financially and otherwise) this time next year. Cash the check but reject the guilt!

Belle said...

Well, you are just amazing. I'd have had a couple of teary meltdowns just to be spiteful. If Christmas is to be a rerun, I'd advise a polite beg-off. I dunno, you're coming down the plague and the swine flu or something.

I'm good with the SCKF too; my critters are the most loving family I have. Keep 'em. And we'll all do a Yoda thing for you and will you into a better place really really soon.

squadratomagico said...

Oh no, Sis! I'm sorry your Thanksgiving involved financial manipulation from your parents. That sucks. Your situation is unfortunate, but completely normal for a recent PhD. Don't let them make you feel like you're the daughter who "wasted [your] life," when that is so self-evidently untrue. Every one of your readers can see the intelligence and wit that perfuses your writing, and we all know you will succeed in this business!

Fie upon this quiet life! said...

Nothing like cash with straps (in my family, that's money with strings the size of beef jerky attached). Good luck landing some great interviews!

Bardiac said...

I'm sorry to hear things were so unpleasant. My fingers are crossed for good things on the job front soon.

My capcha is: "catic." That seems significant!

Dr. Crazy said...


Historiann said...

I know you won't believe this now, but: someday we'll look back on this and it will all seem funny. It's amazing how quickly things change and you forget about the suck of grad school and un- or underemployment.

I remember breaking down in tears about 13 years ago this winter, as I returned to my apartment from the crap laundromat downstairs from my apartment, because I discovered that my two "good towels" had been stolen out of the dryer. I feared always living in a crap apartment, in a crap neighborhood, with no washer or dryer and only a crappy laundromat full of towel thieves.

And then I got a job, and a house, and my own w/d.

Anonymous said...

Are you going to spend Christmas with them as well?