Wednesday, May 24, 2006

M is for the many times she did not kill us

* I know, it's been forever, and now I'm recapping the last few weeks all bass-ackwards. Please accept this belated Mother's Day paean to my mum, and I'll cover the nuptials of Mr. and Mrs. Sis in my next post.

A little Interweb research suggests that the Sheila E. song "The Glamorous Life" came out in about 1984. I would have been fourteen or fifteen at the time. (And how deeply distressed am I, to have Googled it and located its versecraft on Holy shit, that's cold.) Man, how I loved that stupid song, and Sheila E's mad drumming skillz. I found the song's anonymous lead sex-ay and sophisticated--as much as a ninth grader would, anyway. She swans around all year in a mink coat! And a big brown Mercedes sedan! She don't need a man's touch! (Particularly empowering, that last, as I was not getting any real romantic action in World Geography or Algebra II.) I think I also labored under the impression that she and her paramour Made Love IN the brown sedan, which DIRTY! And glamorous indeed!

Anyway. Okay, picture in your mind youthful, teenaged, dork-ass Kim. Probably I am wearing a ski sweater emblazoned with little hearts, or bears, or Scottie dogs; probably my hair is in a long French braid with a droopy ribbon tied to the end. Whether I am faring stylistically better than eleven-year-old Sis is debatable, as she is no doubt sporting a pastel-striped rugby shirt and her Stevie Nicks poodle perm. We think we are Hot Shit! Ssssssssssssssss of hissing steam! We are in fact enormous goobers, but let's not spoil it for the girls, hey? We're young.

I don't remember the event we were supposed to attend, that evening. In all likelihood it was something FOR us--a Parent Night at school, an awards banquet or something. At any rate, Mom had to run an errand before chauffeuring us wherever. She instructed us to get ready while she hurried out; she'd return, pull into the driveway, honk, and take us to our important, time-sensitive destination. She left; Sis and I set to primping, with the Big Stereo in the living room blasting accompaniment...and Sheila E. came on.

We cranked it. We got down with our bad selves, Sis and I, wielding the AquaNet and the Dippity Do, air-drumming furiously, the windows vibrating in their frames. We needed a man's man, baby! Diamonds and furs!

Now I will describe the crux of the action in screenplay form.

EXTERIOR. NIGHT. MOM pulls into the driveway below and honks the horn briskly.

INTERIOR. KIM and SIS dance spastically to the very loud strains of Sheila E.

EXT. NIGHT. MOM again honks, more insistently.

INT. The girls apply mousse, gold eyeshadow, etc. Still rocking out.

EXT. NIGHT. MOM leans on the horn. From this angle she can see the silhouetted forms of her daughters in the window, doing the booty bump.

INT. More Sheila E. funk jam antics.

I don't know how long Mom sat down there fuming. I just remember the part where the door EXPLODED open, rebounding off the wall with a crash. If Mom could have kicked it completely off the hinges, I'm sure she would have. She was scarlet with rage, apoplectic, pop-eyed; her voice, when she spoke, fell somewhere between "Hulk smash!" and possessed-Linda-Blair:


Which of course we did--probably sulking and sneering and GOD, mom, CALM DOWN, you don't have to have a total FIT. I still don't remember where we were going, but I am sure my mother laid a patch pulling out of the driveway to take us there.

That was, and is, the angriest I have ever seen my mother. In the intervening twenty years I have known her giddy with laughter and wracked with grief; she's been proud of us, happy with us, hysterical at the girls staggering in their giant shoes on Top Model. She's been weary, and furious, and blissful. But that's the only time I have ever seen Mom go entirely berserk with rage, driven to lose her entire mind simply by the fact of having teenaged daughters...with a little added magic from Sheila E.

Point is...that's a pretty fair average. Borders on sainthood, really. Once more, Happy Mother's Day, Mom. Thanks again for not sending us away to military school!


Sis said...

Yeah, Mom was pretty mad at us then. But I seem to recall her being pissed enough to call her friend with the newborn down the street and ask for a fresh soiled diaper, pick up said diaper, walk back down the street collecting dog crap along the way, and smear said diaper all over the front and rear windshields of the random City Light Worker who'd parked ON TOP of her car bumper that morning; requiring Grandpa to STAND on Mom's bumper while she inched forward to release her car from the grips of the large Ford truck behind her. Oh yeah, she was super pissed that time. But not as pissed as the random City Light worker was when he returned. That was classic!

Anonymous said...

O.K. Girls...I don't even remember the Shiela E incident! I do remember the parking rage I went into though. Ahhh..those were the good old days!In my memory however, the most angry I ever was had to do with shower order and a wonderful night sleeping in the tub!What a good night's rest will do for calming one down!!Thanks for the Mother's Day wishes and all the memories though, and I do love you both more than life itself. Also...I'm still hysterical when I think about the big shoes on Top Model!! That was truly a fine t.v. moment