Alex joined me and the fam at a restaurant straight from work the other day with a "shit eating grin," I believe the youngsters call it, spread across his face. He could barely contain his excitement, announcing to my family he had "the best gift ever" for me. We giggled and pleaded for details but he yielded none, sending us into an anticipatory delirium.
Later that night, Al hid a smallish box under my pillow. How exciting! The moment had arrived! So I opened the box and out came a little velvet bag. Alex bounced beside me like a little puppy, urging me to, "Open it! Open it already!"
So I opened the velvet bag with quaking -with -excitement hands and out slid not jewelry, not some culinary delight, not keys to an Italian villa, but... (trumpet fanfare) .....a mouse. And not even the cute furry kind. More the my-husband-is-a-tech-geek kind, the kind that sits alongside your computer and aids in humdrum matters such as cursor moving and left-and-right clicking.
Oh, but this is apparently not just any mouse, my friends. Alex, in a high pitched near shriek of a voice, then explained to me that this was the best....mouse.....ever. Next came a presentation of the extreme functionality of this mouse, how it could work on any surface (you know, for the next time I want to write my blog in the bathtub or outer space or something) and a laborious explanation of all its bells and whistles. Best gift ever, right? Right?
When my family asked the next morning what the big surprise was and I told them the honest-to-goodness truth, four faces fell in unison followed by a "Huh?" from my mama. We are in agreement that, perhaps, as great as the mouse is, he oversold it a little bit.
But wait! There's more! After a few blissful days with the mouse, I came out to my computer one morning to find the mouse gone. Gone, that is, until I looked over at Al and saw him packing it into his laptop bag as quickly as he could. Bastard stole my mouse.
I don't know what to make of it all but am coming to terms with the fact hubby Al is the worst gift-giver in history, not necessarily because of the gift itself but because he doesn't let you keep it.
I am also coming to terms with the departure of my family from Paris. As I write without the aid of a mouse my family is sucking down peanuts on a flight bound for home. I miss them. Without their constant chatter, this apartment that houses Lucien in the middle of the busiest neighborhood in Paris actually seems quiet for the first time ever.
My family is funny. They don't always know it which makes it all the more so. I suspect they may also all be slightly nuts. Now understand -- I am allowed to say that, but if anyone else says that, I will most likely go apeshit on their rose bushes with a pair of hedge clippers.
So don't kid around about how my mom says things to waiters such as, "Deux spoons, please," then chuckles as he walks away and says conspiratorially to me, "Let's see if he understands THAT one..." or the fact that my Dad likes to be at the airport ten hours early (only a slight exaggeration) just in case they encounter the longest airport lines in recorded history, or that my brother bought a tacky Eiffel Tower statue, or that my sister is a sadistic tour guide who is interested in seeing things such as where Edith Piaf once took a poo (only a slight exaggeration again).
I can make fun of all that because Lord help me I adore those people, but if anyone else tries they will face the wrath of MJ, which unfortunately from what I hear from those I've tried to inflict it upon in the past is not all that wrath-like.
(In a similar vein, if we're out together and I say something like, "My husband is a jerk," and you reply, "Yeah, totally," I will throw my drink in your face, possibly stab you, and stomp off. Are you catching my drift here?)
I'm now guessing no one wants to go out and have drinks with me anymore.
This post has absolutely nothing to do with Paris.
I am sad, sad, sad today, mon chou,