Thursday, August 04, 2005

Big Fish


bigfish
Originally uploaded by Bloomington Girl.
Jack fishing in West Virginia on our recent McGary Family Reunion vacation. We stayed at a resort in Wheeling. I am encouraging my husband to move us to West Virgina next, if only so I can have fresh material for our Christmas card this year. The pressure is really on this year, folks. Hard to know whether to work in shotgun wedding or not. Hmm...what would Miss Manners say?

Back to the family reunion. It was actually quite a delightful time. The resort was perfect for any age and I must say that I am pretty fortunate in the in-law area. Chris's family is enjoyable to be around I have three sisters-in-law and I like every one of them. I love my mother-in-law and father-in-law. I truly do.

But, having said that, let's be honest. ALL families are sort of nuts in their own way, right? I used to think that mine was the only one that was crazy and that everyone else had perfect parents and siblings. As I get older and (I hope) more observant, I can see that there isn't a family on the planet that doesn't have at least one pattern of interaction that is sort of insane. In my family, there are about a hundred insane patterns. Some families have only one or two patterns. But, no family is perfect. Prove me wrong. Just try it.

Now, this is a roundabout way of getting to the question on my mind lately as I contemplate more writing. Just how do these "tell all" authors get away with it? How does a person trash their family in print and face said trashed persons ever again? I can't imagine writing a book about my family and revealing everything about them I think is so crazy, and in a twisted way, funny. They would just be crushed. And pissed. On the other hand, I feel that I have so much great material. Like the time I broke the news to my my mom that Megan was pregnant. It was early on, when I was still very upset about it.

My mom: "Kids! I don't know what they're thinking'. What's going on these days with all these kids having kids? Aren't you worried about the baby?"

Me: " Of course I am. Believe me, I am not happy about this."

My mom: "Joni, why didn't you talk to her? Aren't you worried about what is going to happen to the baby?"

Me: "Ma, I did talk to her but she obviously didn't listen. I did everything I could to prevent this from happening. And of course I am worried about the baby, but what can I do?"

My mom: " But Joni, aren't you worried about the baby?"

Me: "Ma. I said I was, but what can I do? I clearly have no influence over Megan."

My mom: " You should talk to her. Aren't you worried? I would be worried. You know, there was this young girl here in Herkimer who got involved with a colored guy." (Colored!?) "And he got her pregnant. Well, he was on the dope and one day he babysat for the kid when the girl was at her job and he strangled the kid."

Me: "MA!!"

My mom: I don't know about these coloreds."

Me: "MA! You aren't making me feel any better. Besides, Abram is a good guy. He doesn't take drugs and you will be happy to know he is white."

My mother: "But Joni, aren't you worried about the baby?"

And on it went until I had to go. And, now I have to go once more. Off to bed to dream of how God will punish me for writing this. My mother always told me that God would punish me when I did wrong. Hmm. I guess I didn't listen now did I?

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