Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Families... Who’d have ’em?!

This morning, before getting down to some work and all that other dull stuff, I had to pop into town and pay some money into the bank.

On the way I get a text from my mum. I'd texted her last night to say that the gift cards she'd mailed us for Christmas had arrived safely. Here is the text I got from her:

Now, call me old-fashioned if you will, but aren't there some types of news that warrant more than a text message? Doesn't the announcement of an engagement deserve a phone call to your first-born son? If not a phone call, at least have the decency to give it a new sentence. Or even a fucking exclamation point, as Seinfeld's Elaine would demand. (Click the link to see what I dreamed last night.)

No. Instead my mother went for the rambling non-sequitur. "Slip it in at the end of a sentence and he'll never notice," she must have thought. A bit like the classic, "Mum, Dad, I'm gay, can you pass the salt please?"

I was quite dumbfounded, truth be told. I kind of couldn't speak for a few minutes. That said, I did sort of know it was coming. Unofficially. The rumour mill in my family cannot be trusted, though, so you never really know what to believe.

Still, while in town I did buy them a congrats-on-your-engagement card. I couldn't quite bring myself to get the one that said "You two are made for each other", though. Maybe they are, but since I've said the sum total of about seven words to this guy, I'm not really in a position to judge. I hope she'll be happy.

Oh, yeah, and I posted a review of Last Days over at Such As They Are, too. It's my longest, most in-depth review to date, I think. Enjoy.


Blogger Evil of Dron said...

You pay money INTO the bank?

20 December, 2006 15:26  
Anonymous candyminx said...

Oh good grief, your mum pulled something my parents would do. That is hilarious right up there with Brittany dumping FedX by text.

You know, I love technology, and it's so great...but it is also a vehicle for people who really don't know how or don't want to...communicate.

I mean even at the least, e-mail the news. I am laughing so hard.

Just because soemthing exists as a form of communication doesn't mean it should be adopted for ALL contact.

I now really picture your mum's style of communication and her personality to a large degree. I imagine your compassion would have to interpret this as she isn't really able to communicate, and quite likely has the idea that her engagement is as important as an errand or something. Interesting.

Don't take this personally...I think some modern older generations just are too into their own ways. I also think it says more about her engagement and coming nupitals and relationship...than it says about you and her.

Maybe it's not a big romantic deal?


Maybe she is being casual with you, because she might deep down find it distasteful to be making a fuss about a love relationship in front of her grown son? She may not want to be offputting in some guarded Freudian manner?

In some ways, she is being rather polite and not all crazy sucky romantic in front of you...which may be a blessing.

My parents have been married more times than I've dated. I really found it hard to "get it up" by a thrid marriage etc ya know? It was like, sheesh, why bother dear parents? It just seemed so unbecoming or something...

20 December, 2006 16:02  
Blogger Karen said...

Your mum could also have been so excited about it that when she got your text she just threw it in at the last minute without realizing. Certainly not the best way to hear the news but at least she told you. It's not as though she ran off and got married and then said, "oh by the way...".

Is texting a big way for people over there to communicate? I don't know anyone over here that texts each other. They usually will email or call if absolutely necessary. As such, I don't really know what the texting etiquette in these sorts of situations would be. There are, however, some situations and news stories that do rate a phone call. Wedding invites, birth/engagement announcements, deaths, etc. And text msgs/email should NEVER be used for breaking up with someone (believe me I know...I was once dumped in an email).

20 December, 2006 16:12  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Evil: Yes, I do. Splendid, no?

Candy: You raise some totally valid points that I hadn't considered, to be honest. I was too busy being rendered speechless! I'll try to call her later tonight to congratulate her anyway, and maybe to get some insight into her crazy actions. I love that your folks have been married more times than you've dated. Priceless!

Karen: I don't know what she was thinking, to be honest, mad woman that she is... Don't talk to me about texting. I hate it so much. I only do it when absolutely necessary, and I'd texted her about the stuff arriving because I said I would and because I had only called her the day before and I didn't want to end up talking to loverboy again. But so many people over here seem to do nothing else but text people. I don't think my mum has e-mail access anyway, though I don't know for sure. Some news does deserve a call, doesn't it?!

20 December, 2006 16:32  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm with you, it warents a new sentence and possibly a smiley face or exlaimation point..

20 December, 2006 16:33  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My mum would never speak to me again if I tried something like that.

I do know someone who went to Vegas on holiday with his girlfriend and got married while they were there. The first his family knew was when the postcards arrived! "Having a wonderful time, weather great, got married."

20 December, 2006 18:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ooooh, I know it might be a bit painful...but it's dreadfully funny too!

Dem kids with their new-fangled toys! Dey got no respect I tell ya!

20 December, 2006 18:56  
Blogger Tanya said...

Wow.... And I do agree with you that there has to be some decorum about certain announcements. My sister told me by email in 1999 that my grandmother had died. I screamed at her down the phone that night. I guess some people feel easier typing things out. In a conversation, people could possibly challenge your decision or you would hear something in their voice you'd rather not. Personally, I think texting important things ("I'm leaving you", "I'm pregnant" and "Dave's just died") is an avoidance tactic.

Still, I really do home your mum is happy and that she and the new man have a good life together.

21 December, 2006 09:49  
Anonymous candyminx said...

Yes, I think Tanya is insightful...that sending email and texting significant events is an avoidance tactic. Tanya said it so much better than I could have.

Karen and *, texting is HUGE in Toronto, and I see it ALL the time on public transit here. Frankly, I prefer that than hearing someones boring effing phone call when I am riding the subway.

*, on return here to this post...I am stuck by something else rather funny...your mum sounds more emotional about the cards than the engagement. It's making me laugh all over again.

"relief" is a pretty intense word to use for the arrival of a CARD.

I am more and more of the mind that the texting was an avoidance tactic...but not for evil. Is your mum divorced or widowed? Either way, she may be feeling very self conscious about being gushy and excited in front of you...or the marriage may be a mostly finacial convenience...

I wonder if you will know more after you called her last night?

Waiting with baited breath...just HOW excited or cooly chic is *'s Mum....?

We wait,

21 December, 2006 10:30  
Blogger apositivepessimist said...

I guess you'll be saying more than seven words to him now.

21 December, 2006 10:58  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Snowc: I know!

Martino: I often think that way, like how would she feel if the boot was on the other foot. But I guess not everyone does. Grrr... Oh well.

Lee: Yes, this post has generated more laughter than I had anticipated, truth be told! I didn't laugh much, but I can see the funny side, deranged and perverse as it is.

21 December, 2006 12:02  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Tanya: Decorum, yes, exactly that. I mean, obviously I hope she's happy and all that stuff, but use a little decorum, y'know!

Candy: And you just keep on laughing it up about this, huh?! That's fine. It makes me laugh that people find it so funny. I guess it's a touch close to home for me to find it quite so amusing, but when you point out that she's more excited about the cards than the engagement I can't help but laugh! To be fair, the relief about the cards was that there was like $100 worth of gift cards in there, and it had been sent by normal, uninsured mail. So I can see that being fair enough. Despite repeated calls, I haven't been able to get hold of her yet...

APP: Well, yes. In fact I said quite a lot to him on the phone last night...

21 December, 2006 12:06  
Blogger Suze said...

Asterisk, I guess you will be spending a bit more time chatting now! I hope everything turns out fine and you all have a good Christmas. :)

21 December, 2006 14:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow...I had a girl break my heart once with a quick email she wrote before work...but your takes the cake...

21 December, 2006 16:20  
Blogger Karen said...

Oh Shea, you and I both (although my email was from a man). But the effect was the same.

21 December, 2006 16:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow... i don't know what to say. 'cept, i agree... news like that should definitely be given (at the very least) over the phone

did you talk to her about it?

21 December, 2006 18:51  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Suze: I guess so! Or at least maybe I ought to. Seems lots of stuff goes on when I'm not looking...

Shea: That's one cake-taking motherfucker, huh?

Karen: Oops, that's not ideal, is it?

Martha: I think a phone call was in order, wasn't it?! Yes, I spoke to her today, some 28 hours after getting the text message. She sounds very happy, so that's cool. I didn't mention that I thought she could have had more decorum, though. I'll save that for one drunken evening... In vino veritas, and all that.

21 December, 2006 18:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

feel blessed that she can actually text! my parents STILL have trouble with the microwave! god help them with the stereo we've got em this year!

22 December, 2006 08:57  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Cappy: Well, it's a double-edged sword, isn't it? If she couldn't text, she might have called...

22 December, 2006 10:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ah, now you see i never thought of that!

23 December, 2006 11:33  

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