An odd phone call was received at Casa Midnite today. The caller was my Grandmother. This usually entails minor dramas all about her, but not today. Today she was actually concerned about her daughter and grandson. Immediately I knew something was up.
Every year I am dragged to the wrinklies place for Christmas, and every year I wonder if cutting off my own arm with a rusty spoon will get me out of it. Now my Gran is a pain, but she is generally a pretty good gran. The old fella however is an arsehole. With a temper verging on psychopathic, delusional paranoia and a very outdated view of the world (he still thinks the Queen rules America).
Getting back to the phone call, it went something like this.
How are you? Feeling any better? They say this flu is a bad one. Your grandfather had a stroke. Are you drinking plenty? Remember to keep warm.
It was dropped into the conversation like a casual "it's raining here" piece of information, but the story unfolds. You see my lovely grandfather has verbally, mentally and physically abused my rather tiny gran for just about 60 years. So you would expect her to be happy about this, but she couldn't give a crap either way as far as I could tell.
Naturally I enquired as to the Doctors' prognosis. He hasn't seen one. Three days and no Doc. Why I hear you ask? Because he thought all the doctors were off for Christmas and she didn't correct him. Now to an outsider this might sound cold and heartless, but you have to understand that he is always right. If you correct him on anything, from the meaning of life to how many toes a koala bear has, he goes into a blind rage...which incidentally is what cause the stroke. So bad is his temper that he has been warned and cautioned by the police after he forced his way into another old couples' flat, to scream and shout at them about something he was completely wrong about, and has put himself in danger of eviction.
So my grandfather had a stroke for Christmas, a great present for the whole family.
A while ago, after the old tosser had pissed me off, I started thinking about family. They say you can't choose yours. I say that's bullshit. Just because he's my grandfather doesn't make him family. Almighty D is not biologically related to me, but he is my brother from another mother and I love him. I have collected a few people like Almighty D into my new model family over the years, and I am honoured to know them all. I don't always get on with them, that's what being a family is about, but they all make me happy and a better person.
So why not think of your own family, your new model family. Your true family. It's good to love your brothers and sisters, even if the law and biology says they're not.