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No matter what

December 17, 2006

The bows, the dreaded bows on the fucking christmas tree. There is a flurry of baking, candy making and christmas music–mostly the tape I made with the high school musical group I belonged to. Usually I would return from work on a Saturday soon after Thanksgiving to find that my bath mat had been replaced with one shaped like a christmas tree, a fuzzy red toilet seat cover where there had been none before and a see through shower curtain with a large, slightly obscene/cheeky picture of Santa naked in the tub taking a bubble bath. All of our pictures and regular chotckes are gone and replaced with red, green and white candles, holly wreath rings and wispy pine needle branches. Our usual mauve table cloth underneath the glass top is replaced with a green 2 layered deal that has a holly leaf motif. A permanent scowl will take up residence on my mothers face when she is at home baking, literally, about 40 dozen cookies, dozens of pumpkin and cranberry/orange loafs and lots of drop candy and mints. I avoided the kitchen until christmas morning when it would be my duty to make breakfast while my mother actually sat and just existed for a few hours after weeks of working her elfin ass off.

She did not seem to enjoy any of the preparations she put herself through but when I mistakenly asked her one winter day why she did all of this if she was miserable she screamed at me, “I am not miserable! I am busy. Either you can help me, or get the hell out of my kitchen! THIS IS FUN FOR ME. I LIKE IT.”

Hm-mm.

I enjoyed the cookies and she made the best chocolate chips even though she just followed the chip bag recipe. She had lost one of her beaters on her mixer, although I still don’t know how that happened because we did not move very often or take the mixer out for a good time, and proclaimed that was the secret—one beater on the mixer.

I liked to save decorating the tree until christmas eve because usually there was nothing else to do except sit around and look at the tree which was great for her because she smoked a lot of pot but not so great for me. When this became a regular thing my mom decided that it was my duty to decorate the tree since I wanted to wait. And I had to do it according to her specifications. One year she wanted fabric bows tied on the ends of the tree. She had pre-cut about 100 small lengths and instructed me to tie them all on, by hand, one by one by one AFTER I had put on all the other bulbs and lights—I was the tallest one in the family at 5’3″.  I pitched such a fit about the damn bows —well into February of that new  year that she had wired them for the next year and it was slightly more convenient to attach them.

She was Martha-ish before Martha herself. She was pretty, talented, crazy, obsessive, stoned, grumpy, silly, petite and she loved me. Now she is dead.

I still have the magic beater although the mixer is long gone.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. December 20, 2006 11:41 pm

    A Christmas shower curtain?! Now THAT’S dedication! Too funny. I’m so lazy we barely put up a tree.

    I’m sorry you’re missing your mom.

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