Friday, November 1, 2013

42; the Answer to Life, the Universe and Everything

My cell phone rang in the supermarket this morning. Finally brilliant-computersis, who has been very busy, called. I told her that I would have to call her back when I left the store which was not long after we hung up. Now as I have told everyone before, I do drive and talk on my cell phone, but I use a bluetooth device, an ear piece. It’s a safety issue. No I do not hold my cell phone as I drive. You need two hands on the wheel. I know, I know, I probably shouldn’t talk and drive at all, but sometimes its the only time of the day when I can have a real conversation without being menaced by the at-home hordes.

So as I pulled away from the market. She begins to regale me with a story about my two wonderful teenagers. She told me that they had a very interesting conversation. Now that can be taken one of two ways, interesting or obnoxious. Now in this case not so much interesting as typical (slightly obnoxious) for the boys. Actually it was a better conversation than usual for the three of them. She actually talked to them for a few minutes. They tend not to have too much patience for her. Maybe because she is an extension of me and patience for mom just isn’t in the stars at the moment.
So the story goes:

Collegeman answers the phone. "Hey aunt mom’s not home…"

She tries to begin a conversation, but then he, without putting her on hold or mute, begins to yell at highschoolboy for not answering the phone.

Highschoolboy retorts why should he since collegeman has already answered it.

"I am not the only one in the house, so you can answer the phone.." Therein ensued a 5 minute fight replete with name calling and door slamming dealing with the injustices of a having a lazy younger brother and an a-hole older brother. The end result being that highschool boy was the one stuck with talking to Aunt.

"What" he so kindly answered her. Now unbeknownst to brilliant-computersis highschoolboy has undergone a dramatic pubescent change. He no longer sounds like a little boy, he is a hairy, hormonal beast complete with mood swings  and a baritone voice. (No highschoolboy’s bodychanges and functions are not what we sisters usually talk about, so she really was unprepared.) She actually thought it was still collegeman and even challenged highschoolboy on his identity. Needless to say, this did not endear her any further to her already disgruntled nephew. She may not have been able to see the body slump through the phone, but she definitely heard the "my aunt is an idiot tone in the voice."

"Sorry," she said trying to make amends and attempting to interact with her younger nephew. How are you"


"How is school?"


"Anything new?"


Now, not to be out done by a teenager,  brilliant-computersis sensing the disdain that her teenage nephew had for her interruption of his activities, decides to torture him a little longer.

"What are you doing?"

HUGE SIGH, "Homework."

At that point she felt that it was time to abide by the Army Field Manual in dealing with captive combatants and left him off the hook.  Of course, if asked highschoolboy would probably accuse his aunt of CIA like torture in having to talk to her. In fact, what occurred between them was probably the fastest goodbye in the history of western civilization.  By the way, collegeman never did get back on the phone. He had pawned off his aunt to a less powerful humanbeing and he wasn’t about to give up his dominion to anyone, especially his brother.

I started to laugh really hard. I thought it was great. She thought I was nuts. Collegeman never had time for her on the phone and even the fact that he argued with his brother about talking to her, acknowledges that he knew someone should, well as long as it was not him. At least he had an incling of the appropriate form. Of course the fighting while she hung on the phone may not be found in Emily Post  but it wasn’t like they forgot she was there and walked away leaving the phone on the kitchen table. That highschoolboy having been forced to make conversation actually did even if it was in a rather teenage sort of fashion is pretty good. Why brilliant-computersis thinks I get more out of either of them in a conversation than what she did is beyond me.

The whole conversation reminded me of highschoolboy’s favorite book, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. In the cosmos you never know what to expect and you never really get an answer, just like talking to a teenager. But it is all part of the cosmic game which is played out in our daily lives. We search endlessly for answers to earthly questions concerning "life, the universe and everything" and then when given the answers they make no more sense than the number 42. But for some reason you are overjoyed that you have the answer. Just as you are happy with a conversation no matter how rude, and obnoxious from your teenage aspies because you know somethings are just the way they are supposed to be.