For every single embarrassing story I could tell about a member of my family, they could tell two — at least — on me. Even so, David McMahon wants to know if I have any embarrassing relatives, and I’m going to answer him. I’ve thought and considered and I’d have to say, I found my relatives much more embarrassing as a teen then I do today.
My father insisted on talking with my dates. They had to come in the house, sit on the couch and chat with him for 15 or 20 minutes before we could escape. Whenever I protested, my dad would ask me why I persisted in dating boys I was too embarrassed to introduce to my parents ….
If a young man called me on the phone and my father answered, much the same process ensued, though it usually only took two or three eons for dad to surrender the phone. I used to tell my dates, “If you call and my father answers, hang up the phone!” But none of them listened.
One Sunday after church my cousin and I were trailing after my grandmother and my aunt in the grocery store. My aunt said something about needing to buy new clothes now that she’d lost so much weight — and seconds later her half slip slipped to the floor. She calmly stepped out of it, scooped it up and put it in her purse. My cousin and I died of embarrassment right there on the spot. Fortunately teenagers can die of embarrassment eight to ten times per day without it having any ill effects on their health.
Wearing her bright orange swim suit, with her hair in curlers and zinc oxide on her nose, my step-mom used to sunbathe in the front yard. I don’t know why she couldn’t have done my step-brother and I a favor and chosen to do so in front of any other house on the block.
And then there’s my sister who
sang sings, Mary Had a Little Lamb, as though it were a grand operatic solo.