‘Quality Time’


There was no point to us going, really, except to say that we did some kind of activity together in between eating meals. My father paid $45.00 in admission so we could all have backaches within fifteen minutes from doing that slow museum stroll and looking up really high at seventy six different dead Italian guys’ versions of Jesus on the cross. After that, it was really just a battle of the wills to see who would admit they wanted to leave first.

There were two fun parts of the whole day. We were looking at the recovered fragments of Egyptian Statues, and one of them had a crumbled-off penis, and I said to my parents, “If he can see that now, he’s pissed”. Then later on we were looking at the fancy blue bed of some French King and my dad goes to me, “I dare you to lay down on that and when the security guard comes over, ask him where the remote is.” If we’d just stayed home and watched Best Week Ever on VH1 we could’ve laughed even more and not even had to use energy making the jokes ourselves.

My mother crumbled first. We were looking at the Impressionist paintings when she goes, “How you holding up, Marla? You wanna get going pretty soon?”and I said, “Oh, it’s up to you guys,” (which in every situation, from house party to wake, means, “Oh god, yes! I don’t want to say it because I feel bad for any number of reasons, but please just get me the fuck out of here.”). We both looked back to Monet’s stupid French flowers and tried to hide our mutual excitement at figuring out that the end was near. When my Dad joined us a minute later, Mom said, “You wanna hit the road pretty soon?” to which he replied, “I could stay or leave.” (“Get me the fuck out of here” version 2.0).

I think everyone sighed with relief when my Mom said, “Well, I think I’m ready to go. I’m hungry. I’m so hungry that I’m getting a headache.” The good thing is, even though these cultural events are usually my mom’s idea, I can usually count on her to get some kind of ache or pain that lets us leave.

Then we went to the Cheesecake Factory for lunch, which is what we all wanted to do in the first place, but we digested our food much better knowing that we’d completed a group activity beforehand.