Hi! It's R. Eric Thomas. From the internet?Hi!This week: a meeting that should have been an email that should have been an ascertainment. My mother tells this story about my father’s father (Adelita’s husband, for those of you who read that post, #185). Before my parents were married, my mother would go over to my grandparents’ house to hang out. She said they were so full of energy, zipping and zopping about, that she’d leave exhausted. Knowing my own parents and knowing the way I zip and zop even on Zoom hangouts, this all checks out. I come from a long line of nervous energy and these dishes aren’t going to wash themselves. One afternoon, she was sitting on the staircase with my grandfather and he pointed out the wallpaper that was peeling beside them. He started complaining about it, telling her how you just couldn’t find good work anymore and how he’d hired a young brother to do it and he couldn’t believe that the man had let him down. My mother, in the telling, looks up at the paper and notices that it’s started to yellow and, as my grandfather continues to complain about poor craftsmanship, she starts to wonder. “Pop,” she said when he paused for a moment, “how long ago did you put this paper up?” He replied, “25 years ago” and then continue to harangue the work of this “young brother” who was probably in his late-40s by that point. My mother always says that when he told her how long the wallpaper had been up she just got right up and walked out of the house, leaving him sitting on the steps complaining.
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