mom tried to kill me this week....

…though she will swear she told me about the tire…

I borrowed my mom’s car to do some long-distance (for me) commuting this week. Her car gets better gas mileage than mine, and there were some logistics problems going on with my son needing my car for work…anyhow, I told her in advance I’d need her car, so she did all her shopping on Thursday. I use her car all the time…she’s over 80, and doesn’t drive much. She mentioned to me that the car was gong to need to go in for it’s 60,000 mile service, and that we needed to start thinking about when to do that. She also was obsessing about getting the lawnmower plugged into the charger, even though there was still snow on the ground, and rain predicted for a week. At no point did she mention to me a problem with the tires…

So I drive back and forth to work in Sandusky, 50 miles each way on the highway, going at least 70 mph most of the time. On my way back home on Saturday, I stopped at WalMart to buy something, and as I returned to the car, I noticed a large bulge in the sidewall of the front tire. I drive a few block more to my brother’s house, he looks at the tire, and we change it. He tells me I’m lucky it didn’t blow out on the highway, but we’re both glad we caught it early.

I go home, and I tell my mom that it’s a good thing she’s taking the car in this week, because of the tire, and I tell her it’s been changed to the spare. And this is when I realize she must really hate me…she tells me, “oh, it was just a little pimple on the tire last week, and that’s why I was concerned about you taking the car.”

WTF??? She noticed the tire bulging LAST WEEK and never mentioned it to me, or to my brother, who was over a couple times? I checked with my daughter, who comes over nearly every day to eat lunch with Mom…she never mentioned it to her, either. My sister calls that night, from Omaha, and I tell her about the tire adventure, and she says, “oh, Mom told me she thought there was a problem with the tire when I talked to her last week.” So she told my sister, who lives in Nebraska, for Christ’s sake, and never once mentioned it to any of the people who could actually do something about it! Or who might die if it blew out at high speed?

But she’s still planning on having me mow the lawn in a few days…that’ll probably be her defense in court! I know if I call her on this, she will swear that she mentioned it to me, but that I’m just always in such a hurry…yeah, right!

The problem is that my mom will never outright ask you to do something. It would never occur to her to say, “I noticed a bulge on the front tire when I came back from the store, could you go look at it and see if it will be a problem?” If she wants something brought up from the basement, she won’t say, “hey, could you grab a roll of papertowels from the basement before you go to work?” No, she’ll make some oblique comment about how she’s only got two rolls of papertowels left downstairs, and she should see who has them on sale this week, and whether she has a coupon. From that comment you are supposed to go look at the papertowel roll, deduce that it has reached that mysterious level that triggers her “it’s time to get another roll from the basement” meter, check to make sure there isn’t a spare roll already under the counter, where there usually is, and then go get a roll.

Yes, I know she’s old. That’s what everyone keeps telling me. And her vision isn’t what it once was. And she can’t get around much anymore…that’s why I’m living here, folks! But her vision is good enough that she actually saw the bulge in the tire long before I did, and since she usually takes the car out of the garage and parks it back in the garage, that in itself is amazing.

And now? She didn’t go to church yesterday because “the manual says you shouldn’t drive much on the spare”. She let me go out of the house twice yesterday morning without telling me she didn’t feel comfortable driving on the spare. I told her it’s perfectly safe, and that while you shouldn’t drive for hours in speeds over 50, the three blocks to the church would have been fine. She’s playing the martyr here, and will pitch a fit if I take her car to go to work (even though I would drive the side roads for the whole ten miles) because she can’t get it in to the shop until tomorrow. So we have had to come up with this whole convoluted schedule for using my car and my daughter’s car to get all of us to work and crucial errands on time today.

I still say she was trying to kill me! I definitely wouldn’t mow the lawn then! But she’s going to position herself as the long-suffering, put-upon martyr in all this…there’s a whole back-story about my son, and his use of my car, and her objection to his use of my car, that I won’t bore you with.

Who else has to deal with elderly parents who defy logic, even though they are perfectly competent mentally? Now I know what my dad would complain about, all those years ago, about Mom expecting him to be a mind-reader.

My grandmother will produce sentences like the following: “bring me the thing.”

We say “what thing?”
G: “from the kitchen!”
W: “what thing from the kitchen? Do you want the sharp knife, a chunk of ham, the fridge, should we pull the sink from its socket?”
G: “I speak for intelligent people! You know, the thing that I want!”

She’s been doing it for as far as I can remember, so whereabouts of when she was 55.

Whenever Mom or Aunt give us incomplete instructions, we say “:rolleyes: what, you talkin’ for intelligent people too?”

Mom and Lilbro came to visit over Easter and after a couple of particularly bad instances of talkin’ for intelligent people, Mom declared “well, I’m 66, so I’m going to speak as unclear as I want to! And you all just will have to put up with it!” Oh, great… excuse me if I avoid coming to visit, then.