Don Bauder 7:49 p.m., May 22
I speak on the phone with my Mom on average 5 times a day. I know that sounds excessive but she’s incapable of using other normal, modern day forms of communication, like email or text messaging. She reacts to an incoming text much in the same way one would to a bomb threat. She will literally throw the phone across the room if it makes any sound other than your ordinary, non-threatening “ring”, so it’s a good thing that she refuses to upgrade her phone from the current 1998 version; that thing is an impenetrable brick with solid steel durability. It’s probably giving off enough radiation to be categorized as a nuclear weapon, but it’s the Superman of cell phones nonetheless.
When I was in college, my mom was my instruction manual for working foreign objects: washing machine, coffee maker, etc. Now that I am a self-proclaimed household chore and duty guru, I talk to my Mom about random things usually when I’m bored and/or idle at work; with her help I can kill about 45 minutes of approximately 7 and half unoccupied hours. One of our latest conversations was about eccentric baby names. Sounds innocent enough, right? I mean we’re talking about babies, how heated can the discussion get? I was describing to my Mom the bizarre baby-naming frenzy taking place at work and I was proudly pontificating on my belief that while it is one thing to screw a kid up during the childrearing years, it is entirely unacceptable to socially ostracize a blameless, unborn child with a wackadoodle name like Snoopy or Cumquat. Kids are people too and despite their behavior to the contrary, not fruits or cartoon characters. I can only reason that my Mom hadn’t spent enough time with my Dad that day because evidently, she was feeling quite quarrelsome, so much so she resorted to telling dirty, rotten lies, “You know, when you were born Nana wouldn’t tell anyone your name for the longest time because it was so….weird”.
Stunned silence followed by the defensive stating of the obvious, “But, but….well that doesn’t even make sense because my name is magnificent and perfect!” “Well, what names do YOU like for your hypothetical children?” “Actually it’s funny that you ask because lately I’ve been seriously considering “Mimosa”. But only for a girl.”