I often fancy myself lucky to have such an…eclectic…grandmother. She provides me with hours of entertainment, volumes of advice and enough crazy talk to make me the cool kid at the water cooler. I used to think that Nonna was the only crazy grandmother who kept childhood jewelry making kits cast aside by her grandchildren for use one day (fyi – that kit came in handy this weekend when Nonna repaired a broken necklace) or threw shoes at her children/grandchildren as a means of discipline (also handy as I still stick to my 9:30 pm curfew at Non’s house), and then…I met “Mama.”
Yes, friends. When I marry fiancee Chris…I will be marrying his very own Nonna.
Let me tell you all a little about Mama. Mama is a 4’10, abuela who has more energy than her great-grandchildren. She possesses an unbelievable amount of love, sass and comes complete with her own broken-English dialect. Like Nonna, she watches telenovellas (and often gives relationship advice based upon the plot lines) and loves to be around her children, grandchildren and GREAT-grandchildren (especially when they perform for her…we love a good kareoke/dance marathon during family gatherings).
And…while Mama and I love eachother (obviously)….she too has a very special granddaughter she likes to lend some “special advice too.” Since I began this blog, Fiancee Chris’ cousin Jackie and I have traded war stories. For every outrageous Nonna story I have, she has one equally as outrageous. These stories include, but are not limited to: Mama refusing to remove a 2ft x 2ft Crucifix from the wall over Jackie’s bed (and Jackie discovering the crucifix could not be removed absent practically an exorcism), Mama returning Jackie’s recently disposed rain boots (complete with holes) from the garbage back to Jackie’s room, and Mama constantly commenting on how beautiful and wonderful (and handsome) Jackie’s brother Le (or…as we like to call him, Be) is. However, recently, Jackie shared with me a story that I just needed to pass on…I will interject commentary as needed, but it really needs no explanation….nor can Jackie or I lend it to you…
As most outrageous stories go…it begins with an innocent comment
Jackie: I’m going to be 25 soon. You know, by the time you were 25 you had 3 kids
Mama: Big Mistake.
Jackie: Yeah? I’m thinking I’ll wait til im at least 30
Mama: No. You get too old. 29 you have the kids. 30 is an old lady.
Jackie: Well, I have to find a boy first.
Mama: You dating anyone?
Jackie: Well, yes.
Mama: What he is?
Jackie: I’m not sure what that means.
Mama: He is a respectable boy?
Jackie: of course
Mama: He is educated?
Jackie: Would I date an idiot?
Jackie: Well thanks. but yes, he finished college.
Mama: He has blue eyes?
Jackie: What? Why would you care? No he has brown eyes
Mama: He has blonde hair?
Jackie: These are weird questions. No, he has dark brown hair.
Mama: He looks like Leandro? (Jackie’s brother)
Jackie: Are you high?? Why would I date someone that looks like my brother? (Jackie is (like me) dying of laughter)
Mama: Well, you brother is very handsome
Jackie: To people who are not related to him
Mama then took break to nap…(and concoct more questions for her interrogation of Jackie). After approximately two hours, she wakes up, sits up, and looks over at Jackie and says-What he do?
Mama: You friend. The boy. You know, the boy to friends with.
Jackie: you mean what’s his job?
Mama: He don’t have no job?
Jackie: No of course he has a job. He’s in human resources
Mama: so he titi Alba? (Chris’/Jackie’s Aunt)
Jackie: Well, not exactly but I’ll go along with that for your sake
Mama: Where he live?
Jackie: In the city. (Note, Jackie and Mama live in NYC)
Mama: What city?
Jackie: THIS city..obviously. Manhattan you crazy woman
Mama: He live alone?
Jackie: No he has roommates
Mama: You go to his apartment?
Jackie: Yes, sometimes
Mama: You go there alone? (Side Note: LIE JACKIE LIE)
Jackie: Sometimes…sometimes people come with me…
Mama: Other people be in the apartment when you there?
Jackie: This line of questioning is getting a little ridiculous
Mama: Hm…Why you no see him this weekend?
Jackie: well its the holidays for him and he’s sick
Mama: Holidays? He’s jew?
Mama: His mother hate you.
Jackie: Thats not necessarily true.
Mama: You know his mother?
Jackie: No, I haven’t met her yet
Mama: You mommy meet this boy?
Jackie: Nope not yet
Mama: You know, the jewish mother they no like they son to date a catholic
Jackie: ((sigh)) Mama i’m not going to worry about that just yet
Mama: You say he sick?
Jackie: Yep. I haven’t seen him in almost three weeks
Mama: THREE WEEKS? What he have??
Jackie: Well he was on a cruise for a while, and when he got back he was sick. he has mono
Mama: Mono? Where he get that? (Note – Mama used to work at a hospital…you can’t get one past her…)
Jackie: I don’t know
Mama: You let him kissin other girls?
Jackie: Me: No! Of course not!
Mama: He kissin other girls on the cruise you know. You no have mono
Jackie: Mama, he didn’t kiss other girls on the cruise. He had to have had it before he left.
Mama: Before he left?? His roommate is gay?!
Mama: He kissing his roommate?! You know, maybe he get mono from him!
Jackie: NO! His roommate is not gay. and no, he doesn’t have mono either. and NO he has NEVER kissed his roommate or any other boy for that matter.
Mama: How you know?
Jackie: I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t be dating me if he was screwing his roommate.
Mama: screwing? hm.
Jackie: I think this conversation has once again gone down a ridiculous route.
Mama: Well, you never know.
Two days after I had this conversation, Jackie called me to inform me that Mama now believes Jackie’s boyfriend has AIDS. I mean, I am not one to take the AIDS virus lightly…but I am pretty sure the kid’s doctor did not confuse mono with AIDS…in the mean time, Jackie is strictly forbidden from kissing or visiting with the kid. Who knows, he might have the ebola virus.
Now the real question is…who wants to sit at THEIR table at my wedding? I could probably auction off seats on Ebay.