October is a big birthday month in my family. I decided to do a little post for some of the birthday boys and girls I know.
I’m combining these guys into one post for two reasons – 1, so that I can do the birthday posts in one week (which is much more soothing to my engineering-side than to have this in one week plus one day); 2, because they’re not immediate family. Sorry guys, I’m biased.
My grandma is crazy in the best way possible. She’s got an awesome sense of humor and has the classic grandma look down. Sweet, little lady? You betcha.
My senior year of high school my parents were going to be gone for a while on a trip to visit my sister who was then studying in Spain. They decided to have my grandma come stay with me for the duration of the trip. I have to admit I was not happy about this.
They had gone on trips in the past without feeling the need to have someone their to supervise me, and yet there I was, needing a babysitter. In retrospect they probably just wanted me to spend some time with my grandma, but I was too thick to see that.
Anyhow. Out she flew from Phoenix to Georgia. And off my parents went to Spain (those punks).
My grandma has always been a pretty healthy eater. As part of this she didn’t work with salt too often. Salt – a mystery food! Nevertheless, she wanted to cook us some nice food while she was there. One night this involved mashed potatoes.
They were, easily, the worst mashed potatoes I’ve ever eaten.
They had enough salt on them to satisfy 30 deer (like a salt lick … get it?). I took a bite and my face just about caved in. But I trudged on. And grandma, wanting this to be a nice meal, ate too. For her, a salt rookie, she didn’t know how much salt was the right amount and apparently thought more was better.
At some point during the meal she looked up and said, “this seems a bit salty.” I would’ve laughed but my face had dehydrated into nothingness.
Why am I telling this seemingly insulting story about my grandma for her birthday? Because I stink at compliments, and also because it shows that she was there, being kind, and trying to do something with me even though it wasn’t her bag of chips. (Her bag of insanely salted chips probably.)
If I could go back in time I would be less of a snotty teenage, and appreciate her visit much more.
Happy bday grandma!, and thanks for being awesome!
And no, I don’t want seconds.
Cousin G Pat
My cousin G Pat is an all-around nice guy. When I was in D.C. this past summer I got to spend an afternoon with him which was great. I hadn’t seen him in a number of years but I knew, and he has stated this, that it made no difference.
For G Pat family is family – and you look out for them.
G Pat and I talked a bit about work and it was clear he has himself a nice spot – he’s a guy who knows how to talk, and knows geeky stuff. (That’s more rare than you’d think. Usually it’s one or the other.)
The odd thing is, I think I’ll always associate G Pat with solitaire.
When I was younger I saw him on two different occasions. He was crazy for little handheld solitaire games (great for road trips). Each time he’d let me borrow one to play, and then tell me to keep it – he was too addicted to them anyway.
Apparently this is true because between trip one and two he’d bought himself a new one. I imagine if I had asked to see his phone when I saw him last I would’ve found ten different types of solitaire on it.
Although handheld solitaire games aren’t much it clearly illustrates (in my mind) the kind of guy G Pat is – that is, like I said before, all-around nice.
Thanks G Pat for grabbing lunch with me in D.C., the handheld solitaires (they killed many hours on a number of road trips for me), and being my cousin!