Happy Friday everyone! I’m part of a Blog Hop today. It’s like bar hopping, only better. So grab a drink and enjoy the first ever Funny Blog Friday #FBF event. It’s a Blog Hop Party filled with funny posts and giveaway raffles. Drum roll please……today I’m giving away a FREE YOUTH XL (size 18/20) DEREK JETER REPLICA JERSEY to the winner of my contest below. *** But first (yes, yes, there’s always a catch) please READ on to find out some of my Family’s Dirty Little Secrets now exposed.
You’ll agree that this past weekend was a beautiful one. Perfect weather for anything outdoors. Anything! We were
doomed excited to stay inside. Our weekend plans were to revolve around my 84 year old Aunt. She’ll be leaving NY to be with my cousins out in NC. She’s not well, but it’s not as dismal as you think. For my independent and strong willed aunt, “not well” means that she has slowed down a bit and can’t scrub the tub, which technically defines ME now in my 40’s. There’s no way I’m reaching 84.
We trek from NJ to the dreaded Bronx. We safely squeezed 10 people into her 3rd floor walk up. Amazing, I recollect that as a kid being raised in a one bedroom apartment in the hood section of the Bronx, THIS house was my idea of a mansion. Now? Nope, not so much. You see, this house is more like a wannabe brownstone with each floor portioned out to a tenant, and my Aunt “The Landlord” has the 3rd floor apartment. Folks in the Bronx would love to call this a Condo. Sure, okay, let’s play along. We are all gathered in… “The Condo”.
We feed the four noisy kids and try to keep them secluded in the adjacent living room using television and handheld electronics as their shackles. This works brilliantly except when their darn bottomless pits keep them coming back to the dining room for more rice, beans and pernil. Damn all this interruption. This dining room is where the adults have always reunited to celebrate family time. My Aunt always takes the same seat, closest to the phone as if she’s anticipating a call, never fails. Everyone else has to fight for the remaining three comfortable chairs. The unfortunate others having to pull in the rickety seats from the kitchen.
As the night progresses, those poor kids are still banned. Occasionally I see one sneaking by to make their way to the bathroom. If they stopped eating they wouldn’t need to visit as often.
The adults yap and cackle catching up with each other’s lives. We sum up the present to quickly make our way back to the past. Going down memory lane has always been a form of camaraderie for us. This time though, we use this lane to dish out the unknown.
- We eat and drink like kings. Well, everyone else drinks while my Aunt bravely admits about how she has never taken a drink in the past 52 years. What?!!! She exclaims this as if it was some sort of badge of honor. We all bark out our sympathies as our curiosity peeked. “How drunk did you get 52 years ago that you had to deny yourself for a lifetime?” we tease. “Really, we need to know”. She shrugs this off. We know she heard the question. After poking and prodding for an answer, we have to respectfully let her slide. But soon we’ll have to come up with our theories, because… 52 years?
- One cousin declares that he JUST found out he was conceived out of wedlock. I mean, he’s now in his 50’s. He’s stunned to know that his parents never married. “Um, I knew that already” I mention with somewhat disappointment since I thought he was going to dish out something pretty juicy. This was juicy…for HIM. He was now even more shocked by the fact that he was the only one that didn’t know. “How did you not know this?” We all burst out in laughter and turn back to my Aunt to now banter her about her risqué lifestyle. She smiles but refuses to fuel the frenzy. Her lips are sealed. We’re going to have to slip something into her coffee. “One drink? Please? We’re here to protect you.” She doesn’t budge.
- The attention now takes a sharp turn from his moment of illumination to mine as he makes a mention of my father. “Well, he’s not really my father”, I confess. He’s shocked. “Wait, what do you mean he’s not your father?” Another person chimes in “Hold on to your seat for this one”. I take him through all the details about the fact that the person on my birth certificate was not my father, but actually the man my mother unconditionally loved. When he had left for an extended period of time due to ‘The Law’, well, she became involved with someone else. A friend. A friend with benefits. (Get your mind out of the gutter. The benefits were that he was an honest hard working business owner that offered her the world, a house and a chance to leave “the hood”. Shame on you!) Unfortunately, when the non law abiding love of her life showed up she welcomed him back with a clean slate. Damn it! Coincidentally she’s pregnant. Hmm, what a conundrum. (fine, the friend came with those benefits too). Of course her heart convinces her that this baby (that’s me) belongs to the love of her life. Long story short, I’m born, he gives me his name, he disappears again, forever (until I turn 30 but that’s another story), and I grow up in a single parent home….still, in the hood. But his abandonment never hardened her heart, nor did she ever stop loving him. (I feel a Nicholas Sparks movie coming on). All my life I heard amazing stories about how great this “deserter” was. I wasn’t convinced. Nor did I ever feel compelled to search him out, almost as if my intuitive self knew. (My audience is now salivating). Before my mother passed away, the truth surfaced. I confronted her with a hopeful heart. She confessed. I did a happy dance. Finally, what I had hoped for. You see….I remember that friend. As a kid he’d visit, spend time with me, taught me Polka music, and brought me bags of M&M’s. This friend passed away when I was still a kid. But finally I knew that I was part Polish and I’m darn proud of it. Everyone at the table now starts to make sense of how different I’ve always been. That’s because my dad was a man named Charlie and NOT some loser called Ramon.
My Aunt is squirming in her seat, not pleased about these conversations. I tell her that her problem is that she won’t have a drink. If she did, she’d see how entertaining all this really is. I get “The Look”.
- Another cousin dishes out how her grandfather wasn’t much of a catch either. “Polito had dealings with the Spanish Mafia when he was younger. He had a very successful bookie business and refused to keep to his own territory”. My Aunt interrupts to add her details to this story. (Oh, so now she has something to say when it’s not about herself). She corrects it by stating that he had a successful “floral business” and refused to sell it to them. Sure, okay. Cousin respectfully continues the story about how he got kidnapped for a week and was later found dead with 2 bullets to the back of the head. Surely he wasn’t killed because they were threatened over the growing success of his “flowers”. Silence due to all the dropped jaws at the table. “Pass the Jack please”. He was mourned by practically every woman in the Barrio. That probably explains the 26 kids. Well, at least the ones they know of.
- Same cousin continues with another tidbit that although her parents have been divorced for over 20 years, her father is still in love with her mother. “Didn’t he remarry?” one cousin asked. “Yes, but he’ll quickly leave his wife if my mother would have him back”. The pandemonium of laughter at the table. Here’s the thing… her mom lives in a nursing home, and well, her dad is reducing away under the evil powers of her step mother. Comments start to fly across and around the table. Her parents were doomed to be apart, but made to be together. “Can you imagine rekindled love in a few years once they hit their 70’s?” More laughter. Maybe it’s the alcohol. “And have you SEEN his wife? I’d go back to my Ex too”.
- We all laugh about these dysfunctional cohort decisions of mafioso’s, drug dealers and cheating communists of our senior generation. That’s right, I said it, cheating communists!
It was after a mention of the latter that the old lady had enough! She slowly stands up, next to her walker, assertively leans over her side of the table and scolds us for dishing out family secrets. She’s raining on our parade. After her emotional rant, I explain, with a chuckle that “hey, it’s all still in the family. No harm, no foul”. That definitely didn’t make it better. So I quickly compensate with the fact that we honor those no longer with us even through their mistakes. That was a part of who they were and we loved every part of them. We all come together to celebrate the craziness of this family. All of these off-the-wall, hard to believe, would make for a great best seller mistakes remind each of us here that we’re not all that bad, mistakes and all. Honestly, our kids in the next room will have absolutely NOTHING juicy to talk about. And for that, we all have another glass of wine (or Jack & coke).
Well, all except for my Aunt. Honestly, we should have slipped her something, anything.
Now that you’re almost like family, click on the link below to enter my contest. I’ll contact you as well as post who the winner is by Sunday! Thanks for stopping by! (I apologize if this giveaway takes you off my site. But please still enter! The Jeter jersey is worth it).
A Rafflecopter Giveaway – Enter Contest Here
Here are the other amazing blogs participating in the party…it’ll be worth your time to check them out! Don’t forget to take another swig of your drink.
Funny Bloggers involved:
Victoria of Angst Anarchy
Alanna of White Girls Be Like…
Jamie of Fits of Wit
H.E. Ellis of H.E. Ellis
Jessie of Jessie Reyna
Alice of Alice at Wonderland
Ben of Ben’s Bitter Blog
Jenn of Properly Ridiculous
Lisa of Buddhaful Britt
JC of JCS Bloggery
Sarah of No Cry Babies
Elke of The Pretty Platform
Jack of The Things I see Up Here
Chicks A & E of Too Funny Chicks
Charly of Crazy Life
Kevin of Trailer Trash Deluxe
Karilin of That Nameless Color
Arthur from Pouring My Art Out