I apologize for the lateness of this latest look at how the characters of my unauthorized liographies are doing but given the recent messy weather in the area where the Pattersons live, I hope I’ll be forgiven:
Dear Diary: As I write this, I’ve just now cleaned up from Christmas dinner at my humble little abode in the ‘insignificant’ prairie town of Calgary. I wonder what Mom would have said had she known that I decided to ape Tony Stark and the gang and have shawarma for the big meal. While I'm pretty sure that Grandpa Jim would have approved, my ‘defying tradition’ might have been the only thing that would gotten her to speak from beyond the beyond. How like her to obsess about the little things when the big things are more important. As by way of example, I think that it’s true what they say about Christmas when you get to be around the big three-oh like I am. When I was a kid back in the early nineties, the day was pretty much about what was under the tree and less about who was there at the time. I realize that I’ve become April Patterson, Walking Cliché Dispenser here but as the years go on, I find myself noticing gaps in my social circle which tend to loom larger than whatever getting is being got. The biggest hole blown through the tapestry of my life was, of course, occupied by my parents. The sad thing is that as much as I miss being able to have the chance to finally make things right with the people who raised me, what happened seven years ago leaves me with a rather sad reality to deal with: the sheer impossibility of getting anything through their thick skulls. It’s hard to believe it but it’s been seven years or so since what some people in the Toronto area have come to call the Black Christmas of 2013. It’s, sadly, less hard to believe that Mom and Dad were as prepared for their nine or so days in the dark as they were for pretty much any other sort of emergency. This is, of course, to say that they were racing around like idiots screaming about nothing and doing all the wrong damned things. I mean, HONESTLY!!! Here I was doing the old busman’s holiday thing at a rescue farm when the headline “Elderly couple treated for carbon monoxide poisoning” shows up in my inbox. I hoped and prayed ‘elderly couple’ was NOT the parents only to be disappointed. As you could have expected, Mom complained less about the ‘almost dying’ part and about the 'elderly’ part. Rather than flat-out gutpunch Train Man for bumming a Honda generator offa someone and hooking it up wrong like Bio-Dad Doctor Ted wanted to, Mom stupidly complained about the ‘inconvenience’ of being thought of as a victim of stupidity than as a victim of Nature's Ravages. That wasn’t the only thing that Mike, Dee, Liz and Anthony shrugged off as being What Had To Be Done that they complained about, God, NO!! What finally killed their rep was not that they bitched about how stingy the province was in replacing Christmas dinner but that they made ugly fools of themselves complaining about being reduced to using warming centres like they were nobodies. God. About the only good thing about that is that it helped pave the way for Mike and Liz to do something I did long ago. Odd how it took an ice storm to get them to start to mentally disentangle themselves from fealty to the twisted values of idiots who thought that the world owed them a living.