Your Garden Will Never Be The Same

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hi Mom

Living so far from what used to be home means you don't talk to your parents that often. I don't know exactly why it causes constantly meddling to dwindle to an acceptable level but it does. Half a state away is less preferable than half a country. Maybe its the measurement of space and time. Instead of being easily accessed after a 3 hour drive the emphatic meaning sinks in when they have to drive for 2 days to see your face. After a few of those trips they seem to find better things to do.

Now its a pleasant surprise to hear from them. So it was the other day when Mom called.

She: "Hi honey, how is everything."

Me: " Fine. I've been meaning to call you but I've just been so busy trying to finish these huge projects."

She: "That's okay. I know you're busy. I just thought I'd call and see how everything was going."

From here the conversation covered her great granddaughters latest progress at learning new words and developing comical behavior. Aaah, but then it came to light the impetus behind her button pushing to connect with me. The world at my fingertips is beyond the perimeter of Mom's. Not that I mind, many is the goose chase she has had my computer and I go on for her. This time, things went far differently than before. In fact here was something that was totally opposite from frustrating if not irritating.

Her staunch refusal to get connected to the world of cyberspace begins with the notion that if she did that people can get into her computer. (Like they can invade her home or something.) She thinks it is a typewriter. The last one of those she had made her cry. Don't even ask me to regale you with the tale of the computer. Let's just say she has one and knows how to type and print an invoice on it.

She: "Say, could you look something up on the Internet for me."

Me: "Sure, what do you want to find."

She: "I want you to see what stores in Michigan actually carry Meier's Sparkling Grape Juice in stock. Is that possible? I can't find it anywhere I used to buy it. Its made in Ohio."

Me: "Is the Mej or Mey?"

She: "M-e-i-e-r. Not Meyer like Meyer's. I don't know where they are in Ohio. Somewhere. I want some for Thanksgiving. Dad has already been everywhere. I don't want to put you out or anything. Just if you find some time it would be nice to know WHERE to send him and well..."

Me: "Cincinatti, Mom. They are in Cincinatti. Did you want Cabernet Red, Spumante ... what flavor of fizzy juice is it that you desire to perfectly compliment the bird?"

She: "I DON'T want to know what flavors there are. I want Cabernet White. I just want to know where I can buy it because I can't find it anywhere around here."

Let me clue you in. Mom goes through at least 8 bottles of this stuff if not 16 over the course of holiday entertaining. I am on the company website where she can buy a whole case as simple as 1-2-3. She is still trying to find out what store in the several thousand square mile state of The Land of Many Waters to direct Dad's Cadillac toward to be the victor instead of the cause of irritation. Whatever you do, do not waste time. He can be as crusty as crust if you do.

Me: "Get your credit card. You can get a whole case and save time. You'll have enough for the whole season and then some."

She: "I think 3 bottles will be plenty there is just going to be 6 of us for dinner."

Me: "How long have you been looking for this stuff?"

She: "I haven't been able to find it anywhere for over a year."

Me: "Do you WANT Meier's Fuzzy Juice for dinner or don't you? You can order a case of it right now and it will be there in plenty of time for Thanksgiving dinner. The shipping has got to be far cheaper than sending Dad tooling all over the state to pick up some fuzzy juice."

She: "But how will I buy it if I don't go to the store?"

See what I mean, she is just not connected. I explain that if she would just get her Visa her beloved juice will be enroute to her the next day. It isn't the cost of the shipping or even the price of the case that is the issue. Its the fact that she doesn't understand shopping online. I got her over all those hurdles with the credit card number and a completed order once she grasped the concept. Now we get to the point of a confirmation number so she can verify how long the delivery will take. Time will stand still if it is not there and chilled for dinner.

Me: "Okay, here's your order confirmation number. Got your pen ready?"

She "Go ahead."

Me: "436652"

She: "Got it. Thanks hon..."

Me: "No there's more to your number. Dash 11 dash 14 Edward Charlie Dog ..."

She: "Edward? Do you mean E? Can't you just read me the number instead of all this fancy code stuff?"

Me: "E like Edward, C like Charlie, D like dog 25 44 period 321 dot ..."

She: "Slow down! I think I got confused. ECD2544 - did you say period? Then you said dot. Are they different?"

Me: "No, they are the same. I said dot because its easier than period and theres a lot more number to go."

She: "There's more! I'm running out of paper. ECD2544 dot ... what comes after the dot again?"

I won't tortue you through the next 5 minutes of this back and forth banter. I'll just type out the entire confirmation number. I'm sure you will understand why at the end of the complete recitation of the number I was out of breath and had tears streaming down my face. It was like something from a sitcom. Totally histerical.


If she had email this could have been over in seconds. But if she did, I would have missed out on a really good and beneficial moment of hilarity.