Just to Warn You

On May 25, 2007 by Eden M. Kennedy

Okay, so my dad died and gone with him is the knowledge of how to use three different remotes to make the Dish TV work. To be fair, my brother, Chris, got it up and running last week and it only took him about fifteen minutes. I felt bad turning it off ten minutes later but there was nothing on. Now I’m afraid to ask him again.

ITunes, however, let me download the last episode of 30 Rock. It was $1.99. Whatever. Am I supposed to forgive Alec Baldwin for something? Being a dick to his daughter? Has he had his public flaying yet? Am I free to like his show again? Merciful Tina, let it be so.

Wednesday my mom tried to introduce me to my brother, Tim, like we were meeting for the first time to change her sheets. She was so polite about it.

Then, today, as Tim and I were wading through the sea of useless crap that covers the floor of my dad’s office, Tim found a box of chocolate Christmas cookies that my dad had either forgotten or chosen not to open. “Who sends cookies to a diabetic?” asked Tim, chuckling. I thought they still looked pretty good, but Tim said not to eat them.

So I went out and bought some chocolate cookies.

Anyway, I’m interested in the thought process of the iTunes movie downloads chooser. Both Capote and Breakfast at Tiffany’s are there; all eleventy-hundred Star Trek movies; some Wes Anderson; a chunk of fifties Westerns; and I was this close to downloading Chinatown, it’s only $9.99 and it’s perfect, I am never not in the mood to watch that movie — but I already own it on DVD back in California. So I ended up buying Stick It. Seriously, I spent $14.99 on a gymnastics movie that took three hours to download onto my laptop.

Another thing I did today was spend $10 on one of those eye shade things that you strap onto your face when you’re trying to nap. I forgot how the sun blasts right into my old room at 7:00 a.m., which is brutal, seeing as how I can’t seem to get to sleep in this place before 1:00 or 2:00 in the morning. I stay up late reading old Doonesbury comics.

I also bought some drugstore reading glasses. Those Doonesbury strips are tiny.

My new thing after dinner is to drag a chair up next to my mom’s hospital bed and goof off with the Internet while she reads library books.

She’s using an old valentine from my father as a bookmark.

My brother, Chris, who’s been living here full-time for years taking care of my parents, now spends entire days in chat rooms thanks to his new best friend, DSL. So just to warn you, if you’re on Match.com, you might run into him, but I don’t think he’s using his real name, and I’m pretty sure he’s pretending to be a woman.



29 Responses to “Just to Warn You”

  • She’s using an old valentine from my father as a bookmark.

    I absolutely love that.

  • She’s using an old valentine from my father as a bookmark.

    I love it too… but it breaks my heart.

  • Oh God Eden I had no idea. I’ve been so out of touch as my parents computer is also powered by a hampster. Your posts have made me sob and laugh giant snot bubbles out of my nose. If I’d have read these whilst in the UK I think my heart would have exploded.

    Take care. We’re all gutted for you.

  • Hey.
    I lurk too but in and out.
    And tonight I lurked into your world. And I just wanted to say, I’m sorry.


  • I’m right there with you on the Alec Baldwin thing. 30 Rock rocks my world right when I need it to. I just think about some of the lines from it and laugh my ass off, which makes me seem a little insane.

    My mother-in-law keeps a note on her bedside table. It was the last note ever written to her by her husband who died of ALS over 10 years ago. He’d lost the ability to speak, and his handwriting was pretty shaky. It says “love you good wife.” It always makes me tear up.

  • These last few posts are a better portrait of you than I think we’ve ever seen. You’ve told your stories before, but these are so raw and sad and beautiful all at once. I hope you’re holding together and I hope it helps a little that we’re here if you need us.

  • I have no idea what to say. ‘I’m sorry’ seems trite, but there it is.

    I am glad you are there with your Mom, even as she introduces you to her brother.

    Hope you are as well as can be.

  • Life in the surreal griefy zone. I understand.


  • Eden, i’m so sorry.

    Your writing has been so touching and beautiful throughout this.

  • This is like a really great novel of a post – how do you manage to do it? I understand it’s the best revenge and all, but wow.

  • All I’m saying is, I, having never met a cookie I didn’t like (old or new) would have dove in. But that’s why you are a better person than I. Can I blame it on being a Jew? We like cookies.

  • Match.com sometimes works. But only if you play it right.

  • Now that I think about it, he goes on match1.com, which is different. I don’t know, he explained it to me but I was afraid to pay close attention.

  • TV is good in these times. There’s something very sweet and sad about your mom’s introduction of you and Tim.

  • Stay strong and wonderful. Your ability to share these moments has encouraged me to call my folks more often. They can be annoying, but hey who isn’t?
    Crap, now I’m tearing up thinking about the valentine.

  • i watched stick it on tv a while ago and it was not all that horrible, which i’m a little ashamed to admit. it somehow juggled the really dumb script well (up until the last 1/2 hour which was more than a little unbelievable).

    but hey, it was worth watching if only for the dude’s impromptu vault scene

  • My father introduced me to my Grandmother one time, and to his sister another time. It was funny, but sad.

  • Just want to echo the sentiments of some of the others; your writing is beautiful. Keep at it and stay strong.

    Stick It Sucked.

  • Man, you thought it sucked? I liked it. I’m totally in dumb teen movie mode, of course, and most gymnasts aren’t known for their acting skills, but the direction was great and c’mon, The DUDE went flying off a trampoline! Good times. More wine, please.

  • i SO know you don’t get into this kind of stuff, but i lit a candle for you today. i also lit one for the boyfriend who’s treating me like crap, so don’t think you’re ~special~ or anything.

    and the valentine makes my throat choke up.

    and i think my new phrase of derision is going to be “Stick It!” And the irony is that my derisee will think i’m being all 80s “stick it up your a$$” when in reality i’m referencing a mediocre teen movie.

  • Trampoline scene ASIDE (I do enjoy slapstick) I kept waiting for the funnies to start. Someone had compared it to Bring it On, which I thought was pretty good, so I was expecting more bitchy hi-jinx. Alas.

  • Valentine Bookmark, so sweet.

    I did it and DSL is mine and my kids new BFF too! Not so much doing the chat but Flicker used to take 20 minutes, now it is like 2.

    Hugs to Mom and Thanks to Dad and Daughter.

  • Hooray! The Internet will now do your bidding.

    Bring It On probably is funnier, but Stick It has an awesome protagonist who the filmmakers had enough faith in that they didn’t feel the need to hook her up with a boy to give it a happy, heteronormative ending, which I liked. Even though her two male pals were keeyooot.

  • We must simply agree to disagree Mrs K.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I must go watch Wedding Crashers again.

  • lisa, your story about your mother-in-law is unbelievably sweet. I love the rawness and the simplicity.

    Before my dad died of ALS, one of his parting comments to my mother–conveyed via a kind of Morse code of blinking we had developed and then scribed by me on a blackboard–was, “I hope God punishes you the way you have punished me.”

    My mother didn’t save that note.

  • Deb, talk about raw.

  • just keep checking back and thinking of all you are going thru and wondering when i will have to go thru it……

    so much love to you and know you are inspiring in your strength.

    thanks for sharing, the writing is so worthy.

  • I love this line: “She’s using an old valentine from my father as a bookmark.”

  • oops, just read the comments. Apparently I am not alone.