April's Real Blog

Sunday, February 24, 2008

2 Late 2 Order a Whole Other Life?

K, so I went in2 the kitchen and found that Mom and Dad had their old slide projector and were making stacks and stacks of slides. I heard Dad saying, "Let's put vacations in this pile...." and Mom saying, "OK, and I'll put pets over here." Then Dad was like, "Then we can figure out approximate dates by..." And I interrupted him w/"Whatcha doing?" And Dad sed, "...Trying 2 put our lives in order." I'm pretty sure I looked gobsmacked 4 sum weird reason.

Mom added, "The slides were all out of order, so we started 2 make sum stacks. She pted 2 the various stacks while saying what they were: "Liz slides there, Michael here, U over there, yr dad's folks, my folks, stuff from B4 yr dad and I were married, vacations over on the counter there, and pets here."

I was like, "Mom, I have this distinct memory from when Gramps was living here, and U guys dug out the old slides, and there were only Mike an' Liz slides, none of me. And when I asked Y, U told me that by the time I came along, U weren't doing slides NEmore. What gives?" Mom sed, "If U look @ that small stack of 'April' slides, U will C there are all from yr three summers @ the farm. Yr Aunt Bev and Uncle Danny still do slides." I sed, "Oh."

Then I sed, "How come U have more vacation slides than U have of all the other stacks combined?" And Mom sed, "Well, U know yr father and I luv our vacations." I sed, "Abt that. R U guys going 2 abandon me during March vacation again this yr?" And Mom sed, "W8 and C. MayB yr father and I will go 2 one of our favourite warm-weather locales, or mayB we will ignore March vacation al2gether." And I sed, "I noticed U did not mention taking me w/U on a trip sumwhere as an option." Mom laffed and then sed, "No, I did not."

Then I sed, "Y do U suddenly want 2 put all these slides in order NEway?" And Mom sed, "Sumtime in September, every1 will B reminscing abt our past, from their earliest memories of us, and they will B going in chronological order. We received a memo from the Johnston Institute saying we need 2 do this 2 help that process along." I sed, "Geez, September's going 2 start a dull era." And Mom sed, "Nonsense! Ppl luv our old memories! Especially since we'll B filling in sum details they don't remember, sum of which mayB never happened!" And I sed, "What, R we George Lucas?" Mom gave me a blank look.

Well, that's all I've got 4 now.


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  • At 1:48 PM, Blogger DreadedCandiru2 said…

    Great. Elly's dream is the nightmare of most people on the planet: a long, boring, pointless slideshow. If only Dante were writing the Divine Comedy nowadays. He'd be sure to include that sort of thing for the sinners in the Ninth Circel of Hell.

  • At 3:22 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    totally. i think that's one of the worst tortures i can think of.


  • At 9:11 PM, Anonymous liz patterson said…


    I got this message yesterday from the Johnston Institute, ordering me to report at 0800 hours to "make some new old memories" for our family, so I went to their office, they sent a dogsled to get me, and this pretty lady with long blonde hair started asking me all these questions, like, "What are some things from your childhood that didn't happen, but could have?" and "What would have been the funniest revenge you could have had on Mike for doing something mean that he never really did?" and "If there is one thing you wish could have happened in your life, but didn't, what would it be?" and I had a lot of ideas for that last one, I said all kinds of stuff, like, "I wish April was never born!" and suddenly this lady's voice came over a loudspeaker and said, "Me too, but we're out of luck on that one, try again," and I said, "I wish I were prettier!" and the voice said, "Sorry, no dice, try again," and I said, "I wish I dated more different people when I was in high school, so I could of had more choices of childhood sweetheart," and the voice said, "Forget it, you already had enough men as it is, you big whore," and I said, "That's not very nice," and the voice said, "Get over it," and then I said, "Well, what do you want me to say?" and the voice said, "How about we just show Mike picking on her a whole bunch more?" and the blonde lady nodded and started to draw, and they didn't even let me finish my cocoa before I had to take the dogsled back to Limbo.


  • At 1:00 AM, Anonymous michael patterson said…


    Formerly little sis. There are times when a man realizes that no matter how long he has been married there is something new he learns about his wife. It’s a part of the mystery I think that has kept my marriage so strong over the years, is that half the time, I have no idea where my wife is or what she is doing.

    For example, just the other day, I was walking through a room I thought I knew and there was this little door on the side of the wall and it was opened. I looked through it expecting perhaps to see elves or leprechauns or some other kind of little person; but instead there was my wife, Deanna. I said to her “Deanna? What are you doing in the crawl space?” I called it a crawl space, because she was crawling in it. It seemed like a catchy phrase to me.

    She replied, “I found a bunch of stuff in here!” For a moment there I thought she might have uncovered the thing that we hid in the house that you remember we found back when you were about 6 years old and we swore never to tell anyone about. Fortunately it wasn’t that. Deanna shoved out two boxes, one taped shut and the other opened and said, “This box hasn’t been opened in 20 years!...There’s baby clothes and Christmas cards…” I know you are probably wondering how my wife knew the box hadn’t been opened in 20 years. Possibly she had the box carbon-dated, or she counted the number of rings in the dust; but the truth of the matter is that our mother has the habit of putting dates on everything to the point of excess. So, the label actually had the date when the box had been sealed.

    However, looking at the baby clothes and Christmas cards in the other box, I was struck by this sudden realization. I said, “But, my folks had a yard sale!” Then I remembered that mom had said she planned to have a yard sale with all her old stuff in it, and if she had included 20-year-old baby clothes and her old Christmas cards, then no one would buy those, even if they were Christmas cards sent to Pattersons. Naturally, Christmas cards sent from Pattersons are the ones which carry value. I also noticed a distinct lack of dust on these items. If a box had not been opened in 20 years, you would think there would be 20 years of dust on it, and yet both boxes and my lovely wife, were completely unperturbed by any appearance of dust. Could it be that my mother was such a neatnik that she dusted boxes she had in crawl spaces, or could it be that my mother couldn’t sell these items in a yard sale, and so she decided to store them in our crawl space, or could it be that my wife has a natural force about her which repels dust? Any of those answers are plausible.

    My wife was not putting these things together and went enthusiastically back into the crawl space saying, “I guess nobody looked beyond this rock.” I think she was saying something related to the phrase “leave no stone unturned”, but who knows? She was too busy pulling out one box after another to ask. Eventually we had quite a pile of cardboard boxes, and some sealed food containers, which I fear is food with which my mother held some sentiment (last pastry made by Grandma Marian and things like that), an old coffee pot, and some books. I suddenly began to realize that there was enough room in that crawl space for another office or another bedroom, and my mind immediately raced to that possibility.

    Whenever I see a big, messy pile of things; my natural tendency as a Patterson is throw out some words of condemnation. It’s just a reflex action, eh? I said, “Man, how come people collect so much JUNK!!” I realize, of course, that these words of condemnation were aimed at my parents and you; so they were foolishly uttered. The only thing I could do to compensate was to put my hand in my right pocket and thrust my hip out, in a sort of pseudo girlish repentance.

    My wife put things in perspective for me. She said, “That’s not junk, Michael…That’s OURS!” As she said this a mysterious bag of things appeared in front of the junk. I decided to switch pocket hands and gave the cameraman a look which was intended to say, “My mom has scammed me by hiding all this stuff in the house, so now I have to get rid of the junk she couldn’t sell in that yard sale.” That’s the conclusion I came to anyway. When Deanna was initially drawing a comparison between the words, “Junk” and “Ours”, I had thought there was some kind of pun in there. I immediately thought of words similar in meaning to “Junk” in the hopes that one of them would sound like the word, “Ours”. My mind raced through: clutter, collateral, debris, filth, hogwash*, litter, miscellany, offal, refuse, rubbish, rubble, rummage, salvage, scrap, trash, waste, bits, crap*, detritus, dregs, dross, fragments, garbage, offal, pieces, refuse, remains, rubbish, rubble, ruins, shit, trash, waste, wreck, wreckage. I couldn’t think of a single one that would work; so I was forced to accept the fact that my wife Deanna had not actually made a pun, but made it look like she was making a pun.

    And there you have it, formerly little sis, the new thing I learned about my wife: She fakes puns. It’s sad but true.

    Michael Patterson


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