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This is more of a question than it is a story. Some of my co-workers who are a couple of years younger than I am, and single, socialize outside of work. I have socialized with some of the individuals during dinner or small evening outings but they have large parties and go on weekend trips together. I have never been invited to these, which I don’t mind since I am married and drinking is not really fun to me anymore. The problem I have, however, is when they get back to work after the party or trip and ramble on about how much fun they had to myself and others who were not included. It has become quite annoying and I need advice on how to handle the situation. 0619-18

Is there something about their ramblings of how much fun they had that makes you wish you could have been there?   Otherwise I’m not  sure what is annoying other than it can be boring.

When I was in college, it was quite common on Monday mornings to hear fellow classmates describe their “awesome” weekend, which began on Thursday afternoons, which consisted of parties and getting profoundly drunk.   Getting wasted, being passed out and vomiting repeatedly were presented as the most fun people can have in this life.  No thank you.   If you are confident about your life choices, what other people do for fun doesn’t really shake the foundations of your soul or irritate it.  It’s boring more than annoying, imo.

How does one deal with a person or persons who talks incessantly about boring things? You change the subject of the discussion.  Or you say, “What an interesting weekend you had,” and leave it at that.

Or you can corral all the other married fuddy duddies who never get invited to these single adult parties and host your own party or outings that are more suitable to your tastes in fun.  Then on Monday when the talk starts of what the young, single crowd did for fun that weekend, you smile mysteriously and say, “Yes, we had a load of fun, too,” and say no more.

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This is a question for Ehellions. I’ll give the set up.

My siblings and I all had moved several hundred miles from home by the time our parents were in their early sixties. I lived the closest to my parents, at about 750 miles away. At the times of the visits I’m referencing, my parents were in their 60’s, then their 70’s (they died at 78 and 80). Our parents each had several younger siblings of theirs living in their area, ranging in distance from 10 minutes away to a couple of hours away. Four of my parents’ siblings lived 30 minutes or less from my parents, in three different directions. Every summer, our parents, who were retired, traveled to visit my siblings and me, spending two weeks with each of us at our respective houses.

My siblings and I would travel with our families to visit our parents on occasion, normally once a year or so. Due to school, work, sports, vacation day limits, etc., we usually were only there for about 3-4 days at a time. Since there is no airport near where my folks lived, we all always drove, and it was a very long day of driving each way for all of us. My siblings and I usually did not all come at the same time, as it taxed our folks to have us all there at once, plus our vacation times often just didn’t sync.

My siblings reported to me that they had the same remarks made regarding them that my husband and I had when we visited with my parents: namely, all of our parents’ area siblings, with the exception of the one who lived 10 minutes away, would always tell our parents, “Now when your kids get there, tell them we’d love to see them, and we’ll be home anytime they want to come by.” My mother would dutifully relay this message and ask if we wanted to go visit. Now, on a few occasions, my parents would organize a big potluck picnic at the park when a sibling or I was visiting, and invite the relatives over to join us, but sometimes that just didn’t happen in the time we had there, and we never had the entire family show up, anyway. Please note that all of these relatives were younger than our parents, and fully capable of going anywhere they wanted to, which they did, often.

Here’s the etiquette issue: my siblings and I, who had driven anywhere from 12 to 16 hours each way, usually with children (toddlers to teens) and spouses in tow, would refuse to drive around the countryside and visit these relatives. We always told our parents we’d love to see the others, too, but could they come see us at our parents’ house instead? (My parents had an open door policy with their family members at all times, so this was not imposing on our parents). The one family member who lived 10 minutes away always showed up at my parents’ when she heard we were coming, and we had a good time visiting with her, but she was the exception. My mother, bless her heart, after we’d refused to drive out for visiting, would then call the area family members to say that we would love to see them, and would invite them over for coffee and cake (she always baked a cake or two) so they could visit with us. Almost every time, those family members said they would try, then not show up. Then they would complain to our parents after we left, “Oh, we would have loved to see (name) and his/her family. Why didn’t they come see us? You know how much we wanted to see them! Goodness, they drove all that way to get here, what’s a drive of half an hour or so to come see us?” And my parents (usually my mom) always had to say something like, “They had such limited time here; it just wasn’t possible.” Which was true, actually.

So, were my siblings and I rude to steadfastly refuse to go all over that end of the state visiting, or were the relatives rude to expect us to come see them, and not take our mother’s suggestion to drop by for some cake and a visit? Were we all rude? My mom was the people-pleasing kind that if we had driven all over to visit, she’d have gone with us happily, but if they had come to us instead, she’d have been just as happy with that plan, in fact, probably happier, as she was a homebody. My dad would have done either thing, as well. Still, I always felt bad that this seemed to land in my mother’s lap, but they always contacted her and my dad, not us, before we got there and after we left. One time I answered when one of the relatives surprisingly called while we were there, and I issued an invitation to come see us (I had already discussed this with my parents) and got the reply that, “if we have time, we’ll try to make it, blah, blah, maybe you could come here….” And of course, they never showed. This ended when my parents died, and my sibs and I always felt the others were rude, but are we wrong? Could we have handled this better? What should we have done? 0215-18

When people say things like, “Oh, we would have loved to see (name) and his/her family. You know how much we wanted to see them!”, it’s best translated as, “I’ll say this to make it sound like I’m invested in family but I really don’t have the time to actually make that investment.”  I ignore these comments as nothing more than words in the wind because the value is in what they actually DO as opposed to what they say.    If they really wanted to see you, they would make the effort to do so and not guilt manipulate you into driving even more and be away from your parents.

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Drowning In A Flood of Gimme Pigs

I am expecting my first child next month (February) and I made the decision/Choice/mistake of joining a couple of “Due date groups” on Facebook. These are groups for expecting moms only, who are due in the same month that year. Like any group of people of social networking there were a few bumps (debates of vaccinations, basic safety issues like crib bumpers etc). And while I noticed several postings before the Christmas season about baby showers there weren’t so many that it really piqued my interest.

A little backstory. My husband and are in the uniquely blessed position of having waited until we were a little older to start our family. I am 31 and he’s 41, and as such we’re financially, relationship wise, and career wise much more stable for having waited to start our family. We did this as a conscious decision. I acknowledge that puts me in a different position than many of the women I’m seeing in these groups, I feel lucky for it, but I made my sacrifices too in deciding to wait.

Now that we’re all getting with 2-6 weeks of our due dates many more women are holding showers and well…freaking out about registries. I see daily meltdowns in these groups as women bad talk family who promised them expensive baby items and then couldn’t follow through due to financial problems, friends who refuse to brave severe winter weather to attend, small gatherings not up to their expectations, family who won’t plan events and on. Especially discussed is anger over people not buying off registries, disdain for gifts received, and constant monitoring and updates of how many gifts have been purchased off their registry leading up to the event (while bemoaning how few items have been purchased).

I can’t stand showers as it is. Something about them sets my teeth on edge. I dislike being the center of attention in that manner. Throwing my best friends baby shower a few years back threw me off the entire celebration all together. I offered to throw her a shower, and we’re close like sisters. Close enough for me to make the offer to hold it in my own small home, and for her to know of my fear/discomfort with large gatherings. Imagine my shock when she gave me a 50 person guest list…for a baby shower! Add in her in in laws large group of grandchildren that I’d be expected to entertain, and this shower would be bigger than my 50 person wedding. I gritted my teeth, rented a clubhouse, and used my polite spine to put my polite foot down and insist that this was an adult event and that I would not host it if children were invited. Yes there was heartburn and a few people did not attend, but hosting in and of itself is in a way a gift to the guest of honor, and the hostess has some say in how that gift is presented.

Now I’ll have nothing to do with showers. I won’t attend them and I refused all offers and demands for one of my own. If I receive an invitation to one I will send my regrets and happily send a gift. Is it getting worse, or has Social Media just made me more aware of this flood of gimme pigs? 0110-18

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Feel Good Friday – A Lawful Lip Sync

“The Norfolk Police Department was challenged by the Corinth Police Departent, Texas to a lip sync battle and we gladly accepted. As you can see we all had a great time filming the video, which we have to point out was done in one take.”

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“Move That Ambulance NOW!”

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-stoke-staffordshire-43104314

Woman writes a scathing note and leaves it on an ambulance parked in front of her house (they were at the neighbor’s) to MOVE THEIR VAN NOW…

We’ve reported lots of this sort of stuff on E-hell but this takes the cake, plate, server, and topper. 0218-18

 

A snippet from the above linked article…

A woman left an abusive note on an ambulance dealing with a 999 call, ordering paramedics to “move their van”.

The writer said she did not care if “the whole street collapsed” and the crew had “no right to be parked here”.

The hand-written message was left on an ambulance in Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent, earlier.

Operational manager Mike Duggan said the paramedics also received verbal abuse.

He shared an image of the note on Twitter saying he was “very angry”.

Paramedic Katie Tudor tweeted Staffordshire Police asking: “Is there anything that can be done about this? It’s becoming a regular occurrence.”

It takes a special kind of snowflake to insist that an ambulance is violating her space and must be moved.   It’s short -sighted, selfish and represents a character deficiency …almost sociopathic, in my opinion.

A member of my extended family is a paramedic and, oh, the stories this person can tell.   Once he and his partner were trying to resuscitate an elderly woman who appeared to have had a heart attack.   Two of her grandsons, both adults, threatened to kill them if they were unsuccessful in saving her.   Both paramedics promptly stood up, left all the equipment there, walked out of the house, locked themselves in the ambulance and called 911 for police assistance.   At least in the US, there are certain things that, if said, automatically triggers a required response from the first responders.   Death threats said in the heat of emotions is number one on the list of things you do not say to the EMS or paramedics.  The elderly woman died, btw.

 

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