Yes, at this point, I have abandoned all attempts at writing a good intro. I’m terrible at them. You know it (at least, Anna does), I know it, we all know it. And I hate writing them, so why bother trying?
Look unto my example, kids. That’s a nugget of wisdom right there.
ANYWAY. Today, we’re going to talk about Mop.
(Please be informed that any and all stories I proceed to tell have been approved by the associated parties. Don’t think I’m randomly beating up on my mother without her permission. We have a strange relationship of mutually affectionate bickering.)
Mop is not a particularly fussy person. For the most part, she couldn’t give a rip. But every once in a while, she finds some menial task that has to be done EXACTLY THE WAY SHE WANTS IT, and by golly, she’s going to give you a full instruction book on how to do it, even if you’re already quite capable.
Which, you know, I’m totally fine with.
I would be fine with it. Really. The only thing is, her instruction book is never comprehensive, especially since she doesn’t half know what she’s saying herself. (We’ve all had someone do the “I want the…thing…” to us before.)
For instance: When Dad wants tea, he says, “Sarah, make tea.”
When Mom wants tea…
“Okay. Sarah. Get the kettle out and fill it up with water. Put it on the stove. Get a cup—you know where the cups are, right?—get a cup and put it on the counter, then take the tea basket off the top of the fridge and find the box labeled “Ginger and Turmeric Tea”. Get one of those and put it in the cup. And when the water boils—you’ll know because the kettle will start whistling like crazy—pour it in the cup and bring it to me and put it right here on the end table and turn the handle toward me so I can pick it up easily.”
I stared at her for a moment. “Sooo….you want ginger tea.”
“Yup,” she said, looking extremely pleased with herself. “And I need a spoon in the cup as well, because… Well, just ’cause. I might need to take the tea bag out at some point. And I need a spoon to do it.”
Then she spent at least six minutes trying to explain to me the kind of cup she wanted. Because… like, you know the Starbucks cups? It’s one of those, but NOT the ones with the red thingies on the side, but the one with the…you know, the… the thing… like, the green stripe going around the edge—NOT the blue striped ones, mind you, because I hate those—and yeah, and… you know what I’m talking about, right?
It didn’t help that we had no cup by that description.
However, I eventually was able to decipher what she was saying. These are the two cups that she was talking about.
Do you see what I see?
First of all, that green mermaid thing is not a stripe. Second of all, apart from having different designs…
THEY ARE EXACTLY THE SAME.
Same shape. Same size. Same weight. I pointed this out to her, and only received a vague answer for my trouble. Apparently, certain cups are morning cups and other cups are night cups. Whatever that means. She was very insistent about it though. She needed that green cup.
This is the sort of thing you should never tell me.
I decided to do an experiment. All in the name of science, mind you. I made her tea exactly the way she wanted it, EXCEPT that I put it in the red cup, which, to restate what was already previously mentioned, was exactly like green cup. After giving it to her, I proceeded to hide around the corner and watch the effects.
It took her a full ten minutes to realize she had the wrong cup.
And then. THEN. She stared at the cup for a moment before opening her mouth and letting loose this whimper.
It was the most tragic sound I’d ever heard. Turning her eyes upon me, she gave me the most pitiful, heartbroken, betrayed puppy-dog look this world has ever seen.
It was pathetic.
Like the terrible daughter that I am, I laughed.
However, a stray piece of shrapnel from her exploding guilt bomb may have wormed its way into my hard heart, and as such, I felt the need to apologize. Anna, on the other hand, who witnessed the entire thing, was not so affected. I could hear her in the kitchen, hooting her head off.
Mom went from betrayed to offended in record time.
As for me… Well, I’ve been reminded why it’s so dangerous to offend one’s mother. This happened three days ago and she’s STILL belittling me about it. Because apparently, I messed up the order of her morning cups and night cups, and she’s never going to let me hear the end of it.
It was still worth it though. Just for the look on her face.
She was heartbroken.
Over a CUP.