Tuesday, March 1, 2016


We're sitting at the table having dinner, and I notice the title of one of Belly's library books stacked on the island bar stool.

Me:  Hey, Bell.  Your book is called SEVEN MINUTES IN HEAVEN.  Do you know what that means?

Belly:  Yeah, it's one of the PRETTY LITTLE LIARS books.  They're all named after games they used to play when they were younger.

Me:  Like, HOW young?  I mean, aren't they teenagers in the books?  Is there one called SPIN THE BOTTLE?  Because Seven Minutes In Heaven is a make-out game.

Belly:  EEEWWW.  That's so gross.

Me:  You aren't making out with anybody, are you?  I mean, obviously not right now because you're eating dinner, but I mean, in general.  BECAUSE YOU AREN'T ALLOWED TO MAKE OUT WITH PEOPLE UNTIL YOU ARE 18.

Belly:  I'm not making out with anybody, Mommy.  Boys are stupid.

Me:  We'll still love you if you're a lesbian, Bell.  But you still can't make out with anybody until you're 18.


Me:  So, I can't remember how you choose your partner-- maybe you spin a bottle in that one too?  But whoever you land on you have to take into the closet for 7 minutes and kiss and stuff.  YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO PLAY THAT GAME, BELLY.

Belly:  I DO NOT want to play that.  But you know what we COULD play?  Tonight?  SPIN THE BOTTLE, HUGS EDITION!!!  It's a family game!

****We all excused ourselves from the table and immediately abandoned Bell.  Don't nobody want no SPIN THE BOTTLE, HUGS EDITION, yo.  

Lesson:  I love verbal sparring, and I usually win.  But I'll admit, I was bested on that one.  Bell shut me down with Spin the Bottle, Hugs Edition.  I concede my defeat.  I hate hugs.


B and I are hanging out in my sitting room, watching tv before bed.  Please note that nothing regarding ancestry or bloodlines was any part of what we were doing.  We were watching "The Walking Dead" for God's sake.

Me:  OH MY GOODNESS.  Did I tell you that I found out, like, two years ago that I'M NOT IRISH?  I'M SCOTTISH?  I think I forgot to tell you.

B:  (Completely unperturbed):  How do you know?

Me:  Because I researched my last name and family line.  My line of McCoys doesn't come from Ireland, we come from Scotland.  AND I DIDN'T EVEN KNOW.  But then I called Zach (my brother) and said, "ZACH, WE AREN'T IRISH," and he said, "Yeah, I know.  We're Scottish." AND NOBODY EVER TOLD ME.

B:  Okay.  (Trying to un-pause the tv.  I block him.)

Me:  Don't you even know what this means?

B:  You're Scottish?

Me:  Yes, but you're Scottish too.  WE MIGHT BE COUSINS AND NOT EVEN KNOW.

B:  Maybe.  (Still trying to watch tv.)  Probably not.

Me:  And I don't even want to BE Scottish!  I hated being Irish, and I wasn't even Irish!  But I don't want to be Scottish either!  I want to be a Viking.  Vikings are BADASS.  You see them on tv in their tiny Viking boats with the waves splashing on them and they're rowing like total BEASTS and then they go pillage and steal shit and kill everything in their path.  EVERYBODY respects a Viking.

B:  (Contemplating, but clearly wishing I would shut the hell up)  Scots are badass, too.  Haven't you ever seen "Braveheart?"

Me:  YES, I'VE SEEN "BRAVEHEART,' WE OWN THE DVD.  But blue face-paint and a goddamn skirt is NOT the same as stealing an entire town's livestock and then burning it to the ground after you rape all their women!  Didn't you notice how nobody was afraid of Braveheart until he put on the face paint and proved himself in battle?  People feared Vikings FROM THE BEGINNING.  They didn't even need face paint.  They just rolled up and people were like, "OH SHIT, IT'S THE VIKINGS."  The Scots were nearly wiped out by the English on several occasions, and when they weren't getting killed off in British civil wars they were starving to death.  THOSE THINGS WOULD NEVER HAPPEN TO A VIKING.

B:  Because they weren't in Britain.

ME:  No, because they such badasses.

B:  (Manages to resume tv despite my mad blocking skills.)

ME:  I'm definitely a Viking in spirit.

Lesson:  Nobody wants to argue history with me after I've had a couple of glasses of wine.


Walking along the trail by the Savannah River next to Sutt, enjoying the lovely spring weather.

Me:  Hey, Sutt.  If I wanted right now, I could totally hip check your ass right into the river.  AND NOBODY BUT ME WOULD EVER KNOW.

Sutt:  Yes, they would.  People would notice I was missing.

Me:  NOPE.  When T or C came to the door looking for you, I would tell them you were at N's house.  Then when N came, I would tell him you were at T's house.  Then when they all came together, I would tell them you were playing video games upstairs and didn't want to come outside.  NOBODY WOULD EVER KNOW.

Sutt:  That part's probably true.  But you couldn't do that anyway.  I'm too fast.

Me:  (Hip checking him lightly, to prove my point.)  See.  I just did.  YOU DON'T EVER WANT TO CROSS ME, SON.

Sutt:  (Moving to my other side, where there is much more trail between him and the river.)  There, now you can't.

Me:  I can.  I hope you know how build a raft.  And it's going to be tough to do while you're flailing your way downstream in the Savannah River.  You'll need sticks and cordage.

Sutt:  Actually, bamboo would work better.  And I already know about the cordage from watching "Naked and Afraid."

Me:  I hope some random kayaker sees you out there and rescues you, or you'll be toast.  How are you at fire-building?  You're gonna need a fire on your raft so you can boil your river water to drink so you don't catch river dysentery while you're waiting to get rescued.


Me:  You say that now, but once you start having explosive diarrhea from river dysentery, you'll be wishing you had listened to your Mom and started a fire on your raft to boil your water before you drank it.

Sutt:  (Deep sigh.)

Me:  Aren't you glad I'm your Mom and have so much good advice?

Sutt:  (Shakes head.  Rolls eyes.)

Lesson:  "Naked and Afraid" is an important survival tool.  I just saw where the season premiere is March 13.  Discovery Channel.  You're welcome.