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Next time I’ll take as many photos of my mom as I do of phalluses

November 12, 2010

My mom came to visit recently and we zoomed all over scenic New England in autumn, starting in Massachusetts and venturing to Vermont and Rhode Island, too. Because yes, I’m a 30-year-old single woman who lives alone with cats and vacations semi-annually with her mother. You probably could have inferred most if not all of that from the name of this blog.

Because of a weakened immune system, she’s forced to pass on plane rides and instead drive the 10-plus hours on Interstate 90 from Cleveland to Boston. She’s become more germ-phobic over the years, and when we’re in public places and someone sneezes or wheezes or so much as takes a breath too labored for her liking, she yanks up her shirt over her nose and mouth and wears it like a surgical mask to completely mortify me.

Mom always insists on sleeping in my bed. With me. Together. Even though it’s only a double. And I own a perfectly good futon. And the cold, hardwood floor would be an acceptable alternative to slumbering with a parent. Despite my objections, she gets her way. Which means the only person who has shared a bed with me in almost five months is my mother. Oh, self-esteem, how I wonder what it’s like to have you.

Unfortunately, every time she makes the trek to my town, I end up coming down with a cold. Working in a newsroom teeming with bacteria that predate cable television, ratty stacks of newsprint and actual rats, I’ve built up a robust immunity and typically never get sick – except when she’s here. It’s been suggested that my symptoms are psychosomatic. I tried to subdue my sniffles, but by mid-vacation, fear of illness overpowered her warped maternal instinct to bunk with her adult daughter, and she booted me and my virus to the futon. Even my mom won’t sleep with me. That came out wrong.

We didn’t so much as bicker during her weeklong stay, and the only disagreement we had was actually after she returned home. After spending the afternoon shopping and lunching in Coolidge Corner, she gassed up her SUV, burst into tears saying goodbye and headed back west. We spoke a few more times that day, and in the evening I told her I wouldn’t be able to call again because I was having dinner with my ex and her partner, followed by a phone date with the future stepmother of my cats my pen pal in Canada. Because I interact only with people sexually off-limits to me thanks to established or international boundaries. These were, however, not good excuses for not calling.

The next time we spoke, Mom was at first standoffish and then I got an earful. “You didn’t call to make sure I got home safely,” she said curtly. And I was all, “I told you I couldn’t call because I’d be on the phone with someone else. That’s how phones work.” She huffed, “I could have been lying dead in a ditch on the highway, and you wouldn’t have known.” And I was like, “If you were lying dead in a ditch on the highway, you wouldn’t have been able to answer the phone.” So she seethed, “The police would have picked up.” “But you wouldn’t have known I called because you’d be dead,” I argued. And she was all, “Well, you wouldn’t have known I was dead unless you called.” I was like, “I think I would have found out eventually that you were dead. Dad or the hospital or a nearby woodland creature that came across your blood-spattered cell in the middle of the road and pressed and held the 1 button with its hoof to quick-dial me because I’m No. 1 and you love me more than your other child because I’m better would have let me know with words or somber bleating. And no, I don’t know why Dad bleats all the time. You’ll have to take that up with him. BUT YOU’RE NOT DEAD BECAUSE WE’RE TALKING NOW.” “That’s not the point, Jessica Anne.” I thought it was.

I’d post a few photos from our adventures, but we totally forgot to take any except for this one I snapped with my iPhone at the chichi Simon Pearce glass gallery in Quechee, Vt. During our second stop there in two days, as Mom, a tireless shopper, was pestering the sales staff while trying to make a Sophie’s Choice between a clear centerpiece and a frosted bowl, I was busy contemplating how much these candlesticks look like dildos.

I mean, right?

P.S. Andrea, one of the bloggiest babes I know who writes Crazy with a Side of Awesome Sauce, needs our help. Her cat Jete was recently diagnosed with cancer, and the cost of surgery and treatment will be in the thousands. You can read about Jete’s plight and prognosis here, and while you’re over there, perhaps you can send support, scratchy-tongue kisses or spare cash via PayPal her way. Also, all proceeds from her uber-cute Etsy shop go to fund Jete’s care. It would mean a lot to me. And Teva and Isabel, too.

38 Comments leave one →
  1. November 12, 2010 6:55 AM

    she yanks up her shirt over her nose and mouth and wears it like a surgical mask

    I actually read that as SKIRT, not shirt.

  2. November 12, 2010 8:28 AM

    if you took photos of your mom with the dildo-candlesticks? that’d be supremely f-ed up. you should do it next time…

  3. November 12, 2010 9:12 AM

    The calling to make sure she’s ok…Next time turn it around on her and tell her to text you when she gets home safely. And then, when she forgets to text you, let her have it: “Mom, I thought you were in a ditch somewhere!”

  4. November 12, 2010 9:50 AM

    My mom always wants to sleep with me when we travel, too! WTF is that about!? It’s dangerous! It’s been so long since I’ve had any action who know what sort of sleep-assault I’m capable of!?

  5. November 12, 2010 10:57 AM

    Dildos? I think they kinda look like bongs. ….dual purpose maybe? Though ew. Like, EW.

  6. November 12, 2010 12:09 PM

    Ah a Mother’s guilt….how I do miss it.

  7. November 12, 2010 12:10 PM

    Quechee? There’s a place called Quechee? How is it pronounced? I’m struggling here because my inner ear wants to hear kee-chee, which sounds WAY to much like shee-shee which it the command my elderly grandmother used to give her toy poodle, Bubba, to relieve himself when they went on walks.

    Although, I don’t think it’s spelled shee-shee, I think it’s spelled shi-shi, although since I think my grandmother made it up, who the hell cares HOW it’s spelled? All I know is there’s a town in Vermont that I won’t be able to antique shop in, even if they have THE BEST dildo candlesticks because I won’t be able to stop snickering and imagining peeing poodles.

    Thanks for that.

  8. November 12, 2010 1:51 PM

    I’m sorry, anything interesting or funny I might have right has been canceled out in my brain after looking at the candlesticks and your implication. I feel like I have a happy afternoon of daydreaming ahead of me at work.


    (Or am I?)

  9. November 12, 2010 2:48 PM

    OHHHHHH! thank you so much, sweetie! that really means so much!! I’m all blushy and teary and grateful over here. so much love to you and Teva and Isabel. *MUAH*

    I think I’m sending you a handkerchief for your mom to wear over your face instead of her shirt. and then she’ll just look like an old-timey bank robber. much more cool.

    my fam has a rule that the traveling person checks in when they get home. so you worry if it takes too long or whatever. doesn’t that make more sense?

    also: love your face!

  10. November 12, 2010 3:15 PM

    The idea of those candlesticks as dildos scared the fuck out of me. But then, I never have sex anymore, and that could be what dildos look like these days. Hard to tell.

  11. November 12, 2010 3:19 PM

    What is it with mothers and always using ones full name when they give out? Full kudos to you to spend have a whole week with your mum and not bickering though…I normally manage to last 2 days when I see my mum. I revert back to a 14 year old in a very short time when I go home to see my parents… sigh.

    Scary candlesticks. The dinner conversation could be interesting though having them on table…

  12. November 13, 2010 12:30 AM

    That’s hott.

  13. November 13, 2010 2:17 AM

    “Sombre bleating is always the most sensitive way to inform a distant child of a parental highway death.”
    Ettiquette, p. 5, “Woodland Creatures Guide to Human Roadkill, 5th Edition, with revised recipes index”.

  14. November 13, 2010 2:32 AM

    Please don’t use those candlesticks as a dildo – I’m worried they could cause serious vacuum

  15. November 13, 2010 5:36 AM

    I nominate we all chip in for an airfare for DeGendrews to cross some international boundaries in order that she may cross a couple of personal ones. It’s not that I’m voyeuristic or anything – I’ve just never been one to enjoy sweet anticip……….pation.

    • November 14, 2010 2:38 AM

      Brilliant. I don’t know why it never occurred to me to take up a collection to fund my international dating escapades.

  16. Obiwan Ben Buckley permalink
    November 13, 2010 2:29 PM

    No, they actually look more like anal beads.

    If you have to ask, just never mind.

  17. saidblacksmith permalink
    November 13, 2010 4:15 PM

    Um, isn’t it dangerous to talk on the phone while driving? She should have called you when she was safely home and able to call you. You would have been endangering her life *even more* if you had called her while driving.

    (And those totally look like glass dildos!)

  18. November 13, 2010 9:38 PM

    I am again quite jealous of you because I ALWAYS beg my mom to sleep with me, and she never will. She grosses me out because she never washes her pajamas, and I still beg her to snuggle with me and tell me bedtime stories.
    But I can’t get my mom to sleep with me either. Sick or not.

    AND you’re still talking to that hot Canadian.
    Dammit, Jessica Anne, you win again.

  19. November 14, 2010 2:48 AM

    Wow, Mommy troubles. It’s odd, I’ve noticed that atleast here girls grow up hating their mothers but when they move out, they suddenly can’t live without them. What’s up with that?

    It’s definitely a dildo. Though the implications of what would happen if it shattered while being utilized are too painful to even imagine. Then again, the ER might have some cute doctors.

  20. November 14, 2010 11:09 AM

    Those look like the scariest and most painful dildos I’ve had the pleasure of seeing.

  21. November 15, 2010 2:48 AM

    this is too funny (and toooo familiar!)… but, so, tell me this… your mum is afraid when the strangers cough and sneeze and such in public places, but she is happy to share a bed with you even if she doesn’t know what cold or flu you might be carrying or about to come down with!? i just know that in MY family, everyone is like terrified to eat off the same silverware or share a drink (and by “everyone,” mostly i mean my mom)… i guess she raised us, so she knows what filthy germ-wielding virus carriers we are!

  22. November 15, 2010 8:01 PM

    There is way too much for me to comment on here. I’m just going to continue wiping up from when my soda flew out of my nose. “Even my mom won’t sleep with me. That came out wrong.” I’m dying….

  23. November 16, 2010 3:22 AM

    Hilarious post. I love that you sleep in the same bed as your mom. I’d do the same, but my mom prefers to sleep in my little sister’s bed. How’s that for self-esteem crusher?

    Love this line: “Because yes, I’m a 30-year-old single woman who lives alone with cats and vacations semi-annually with her mother.”

  24. November 16, 2010 11:11 PM

    So I met this awesome lesbian and told her she HAD to come over here to check out your blog because you have so much in common (namely heartache, lesbian tendencies and international boundary issues.) and then I realized that you’d probably fall in love with her and then I’d be to blame for you hating several insignificant but previously important European countries. So just ignore anyone fitting that description.
    PS Want to come to the beach? It’s more your season.

  25. Anonymous permalink
    November 17, 2010 2:01 AM

    I scrolled down and saw the photo before I even read the post and I immediately thought ANAL BEADS!

    Storytime! I went to Mardi Gras in college with my then boyfriend, and late that night, drunk, we decided to use one of our bead necklaces for “orgasm enhancement.” Since I’m the boss and nothing goes into my butt ever, it was gonna be him, but I’d never done that before, or even seen it done, and to tell you the truth I was just pretending to know what anal beads even were that night after he brought it up. I thought anal beads were jewelry. So I pop them in, one by one, and I think I maybe fit like 50 of them up there because the necklace had hung down to my tummy before, and now there were only like 3 beads hanging out of his butt. We start doing stuff, and finally it’s showtime, so right at that moment, I RIPPED THE WHOLE FUCKING THING OUT AS FAST AS I COULD LIKE I WAS STARTING A MOTORBOAT!!! and he screamed and curled up like a baby and cried.

    You know what? This is so shameful and off topic that I’m going to post this anonymously. I’ll be back to say something nice about your mom.

  26. November 17, 2010 4:56 PM

    Yay for Clevelanders! 🙂

    I always forget to take pictures when I’m out actually having fun (as rare as that is) too. I guess I just lack that “Must Take Pictures!” gene that seems to be quite prevalent in the Japanese. I’ll live.

    Also, I give you credit for having dinner with your ex and her new partner. That sounds like something I’d be terrified to do….kudos to you for staying on good terms with an ex (it’s just not my style haha)! 🙂

  27. November 17, 2010 9:02 PM

    My mom used to want us to sleep in the same bed with her [since growing up on a farm, she slept in the same bed with her umpty-jillion siblings] but she is a VERY LIGHT sleeper and at the first movement or exhale, she would boot us out of the bed with a shrieky “GET OUT, PIGS” [hmm . . . that sounds less awful in Albanian]. Anyway, long story short, she would let my daughter, her only grandchild basically kick her in the kidneys all night long and NOT say a word. Jerks.

    PS Those do look like dildos. From what I’ve heard.

  28. November 18, 2010 11:23 AM

    Um… I fear for your private items, as no, to me that does not resemble any such thing.

    And I adored the woodland creature shout-out.

    They are watching.

    And they care.

    Enough to call and imitate your father’s bleeting to let you know of your mom’s tragic passing.

    Not any group of animals would do that.

    I mean, I’m assuming.

  29. November 19, 2010 4:18 PM

    I was going to write that I hope my son and I are like you guys when he gets older but then I realized that’s just one number away from a call to child services or Jerry Spring or both. Mainly because it just reminds me of that mother/son murdering duo (Sante and Kenny Kimes).
    It’s nice that you guys are so close even if you don’t call to make sure she’s not dead.

  30. November 19, 2010 4:20 PM

    I have candle sticks like those… I will never be able to look at them the same again.

  31. November 21, 2010 6:14 PM

    I only just started reading your blog, but I have read many posts about your lump. My friend once had a lump on her neck, and it ended up being a “Bronchial cyst”. Because when you’re a fetus you have gills, and sometimes they don’t close up when you’re born, then they get swollen. Thus, a neck-lump is formed.

  32. November 21, 2010 6:38 PM

    my god, i’ve missed so much in my absence. maybe i should weep about it. ADDED TO THE LIST!

  33. November 23, 2010 3:39 PM

    I read this but somehow failed to comment. I really just want to warn people of the danger of using a glass dildo. (And why is dildo flagged as incorrectly spelled?)

    Moms. I believe that once you had that child passing through your vagina, you immediately gained this uncanny power of guilt tripping and passive aggression.

  34. December 2, 2010 9:11 AM

    “Because yes, I’m a 30-year-old single woman who lives alone with cats and vacations semi-annually with her mother.” Just replace the 30 with 34 and you’re blogging inside my head. And no, she will NEVER grow out of sharing a bed with you.

  35. December 13, 2010 10:31 AM

    Ummm, I guess you could say those candlesticks looked like dildoes. I’m not sure about the foots and heads, though; and the glass things sort of puts me off. I’m not that excited by emergency room visits involving broken glass in my vagina.

  36. Lori permalink
    February 24, 2011 9:16 PM

    I’m a 33 year old single lady who vacations semi-annually with my mother. She also insists on sleeping in my bed with me. Actually, it is assumed, so no insistance is necessary.

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