We’ve all met that person who has a full cannon of personal anecdotes with stories so crazy, so outlandish that you end up wiping tears from your cheeks while you wonder to yourself, “This can’t be true, right?” Well, I’m here to tell you these stories are true. (Unless the storyteller is in a bar, then these might be big ol’ booze lies.)
I’ve recently come to the conclusion that there are people, like myself, whose lives are so ridiculous that our life’s purpose is to provide entertainment to the masses by sharing our tales. I’m also certain the universe crossed the paths of the Turk and I all those years ago for no other reason than to make us the life of every party we attend by recounting our daily foibles and if last week is any indicator, there is no hope of things changing.
It began on Sunday. I was working in the yard when I heard the vacuum. Since I’d vacuumed an hour earlier, this Nancy Drew needed to investigate. As I called to him from the garage, he began to stammer his now frequent catch phrase. “Don’t worry, I fix it.”
No woman, anywhere, ever wants to hear the phrase “Don’t worry, I fix it.” Ever.
Inside the house, I found a dusting of drywall with bits of plaster coating half of the living room and interspersed within the furniture were huge chunks of insulation. Reflexively I looked up to the vaulted ceiling and released a large, involuntary, “Ohhhhhh nooooo.”
The Turk stood at the top of the stairs, right below the giant hole in my living room ceiling. Sheepishly he added, “I fix it. Don’t worry. Next week I take vacation and I do it then. Don’t worry.”
He’d gone into the attic to check on a leak and prepare to install a ceiling fan (Another project he felt capable of executing after watching a couple YouTube videos. God help us.)
“You stepped off the beams didn’t you?” I asked.
“How you know?”
“Because in American houses there is nothing between the beams.”
He looked down at me with utter confusion. “How I know that? In Turkey houses are concrete.”
“At least I didn’t fall through there,” he added pointing to a full set of six other dent/not quite holes, going across the ceiling.
That was Sunday. Monday was uneventful followed by a Tuesday that started the same but escalated quickly to hot mess status.
Thanks to summer storms, we dealt with a long day of power outages so though I’m usually a frugal gal, (cheap ass and tight wad have also been used to describe me but I prefer frugal.) I declared, “We’re going out for dinner!”
As we enjoyed a dinner prepared by someone other than myself and served in an air conditioned establishment, I cut a deal with the Turk – “Help Number 1 get ready for football tryouts with a little catch or fold the 3 loads of laundry I busted out between power outages.” The choice might seem obvious but in our house, football is my jam so it could go either way. (For a recap of our football journey, check out this previous entry.)
“I take football.” And those were his famous last words.
Minutes later a small voice outside yelled, “Um, Mom…Mom…Mom!!!!” immediately followed by a loud Nugget voice yelling, “Mom! Baba is boken.”
From the upstairs window I could see the Turk writhing on the ground and spewing Turkish profanity. His thrashing body was mere inches from a hole I’d asked him to fill for the past two years (Isn’t it always?) so I bit my tongue and yelled from the window, “Are you broken?”
“Evet.” (‘Yes’ in Turkish. We go bilingual for clarity in states of emergency.)
“Do you need help?” I called; wanting to make sure it was real and not soccer field drama being employed to get out of playing catch, before I abandoned my laundry pile.
He switched back to English, “I think I need go hospital.”
After some Turkish profanity on my part, and an epic level of tongue-biting around the whole hole situation, I loaded up one broken Turk and two half-breed Turks and headed to the ER where I nervously filled the silence with statements like, “You’ve only been an American for 4 years, you’re not American enough for football yet.” And “Next time I bet you choose laundry.” (FYI – Unless you’re open to sarcasm, nervous joking and huge bouts of impatience, I’m the last person you want by your side in an Emergency Room.)
…3 hours later we had a diagnosis of a fractured ankle along with a pair of crutches, orders to put no weight on it until he went to the orthopedist and a prescription for pills that made him so goofy I thought he might have to sleep it off in the car.
Thankfully, by the end of the week the orthopedist put him on one crutch and a walking boot. It was a damn good thing too because when it comes to caregiving I am nothing short of Nurse Ratchett and between one immobile Turk and two incredibly needy ½ Turks, a few more days might have given me a ticket to a vacation at Betty Ford Rehab.
So that was last week, and while most of our weeks don’t usually result in a maiming, the level of drama is constant and this summer has been no different.
The other day Number 1 Son said, “Mom, why do you always laugh when bad things happen? It’s a little psycho.”
I replied, “Well son, yes I am a little psycho, but years ago I learned that with this ridiculous life, if I didn’t laugh and entertain people with my crazy tales, I’d be dead.”
He nodded in understanding but I think that was just for the part where I admitted to being a little psycho.
There are 2 weeks left before school starts and 4 more weeks before the Turk is out of his cast. That’s a lot of room for more ridiculousness. But fret not, I’ll keep sharing my stories because clearly it’s my station in life. I’m preparing for my canonization somewhere in my 60s..St. Margaret of the Turks…what do you think?