The OB&C and I have just survived the double trauma of his hernia repair and the visitation of my sister, Shalleaux and her husband Duhl. She is a professional flake who also goes by the name “Aziza,” Tibetan for Narcissistic Dope. Duhl is a lapsed lawyer who has the charisma of the Rain Man but less personality. Shalleaux has traveled the globe for thirty years conducting “workshops.” No one in the family knows what she teaches in these workshops because no one cares enough to ask. But apparently there is an endless supply of gullibles willing to pay for her sage advice on life. Duhl, a Boston Brahmin long ago ditched his expensive ivy education to build sub-standard houses in New Hampshire.
Her annual visits always start with a call on hermit brother Joey. Several years ago he somewhat oddly declared that he should be referred to as Joseph I. I suppose at the tender age of forty he decided that he wasn’t getting enough respect and a name upgrade might change that. Who wouldn’t respect a middle aged guy who blew off his education, hasn’t worked a day in his life and has spent most of his adulthood in an isolated house drawing doodles and taking care of his cat.
But let’s not forget the OB&C’s hernia! Last week he had a colonoscopy, which you would have thought was a heart lung transplant. A hernia was like manna from heaven, akin to a case of ebola. Having Shalleaux and Duhl in residence was an added burden which you might have thought they would forgo, considering, but the lure of free room and board was too tempting. However Shalleaux assured me that they would be “quiet as mice.” I don’t want mice either.
Yesterday was St. Paddy’s day and I cooked corned beef and cabbage. Shalleaux bounced into the kitchen and asked what I was cooking. When I told her, she was totally bewildered, “Like corned beef hash?” No, corned beef brisket, which I held aloft. From the look on her face you would have thought I was braising a side of hippo.
Upon returning from their day foisting themselves on other relatives Shalleaux inquired as to how my irish stew was coming along.