Maybe he's just getting old, but whatever the reason, he and my Grandma look a lot alike. That's how she draws her eyebrows on, high and pointy. At least his aren't orange. She still has yet to learn how to match her hair and eyebrow shades. Black and Orange, maybe she just really likes Halloween.Anyway, we had to have dinner with her the other night. In Public. Husbandman had never had to meet her before. He's heard many a horror story about her but never had the honor of witnessing one firsthand. We don't see her often.
We were the first ones at the restaurant, I forgot to adjust from normal people time to family time on the clock. We were WAY early by that standard. I saw a car in the parking lot and felt a dark presence and just knew that she was here. I did not want to subject Husbandman to her alone so we ducked into a nearby store and waited for more people to show up so the weirdness could be spread around. My Uncle arrived about ten minutes later so Husbandman and I went back to the restaurant. It was just the five of us. Me, Husbandman, Uncle, Husband of Darkness (Grandma's husband), and the Bringer of Darkness (Grandma).
The first thing the Bringer of Darkness did was tell other patrons they were disgustingly obese. That was fun. There was lots of awkward throat clearing and red faces from Uncle and I. I think Husbandman was stuck in disbelief. He just kinda sat there, not moving or breathing. We were all safe as long as she was distracted by strangers. Soon other family came shuffling in, not making eye contact with the Bringer of Darkness and we were seated. The poor waitress. The Bringer of Darkness was not very kind in telling her that she didn't care if her meal came with soup or salad, she didn't want either of those. She was FINE. We were given bread, I attempted to cut off a slice but the knife was too dull to even break the crust. Family laughed and thought, "Oh that Anastasia, always clumsily doing things *knowing laughs and smiles exchanged*." So the Husband of Darkness decided to cut the bread for everyone. Lots of Bostonian mumbling ensued and the bread was smashed into a pancake and everyone had to tear their portion off. In your faces everyone, looks like it was the knife and not just clumsy me. How do you like them apples?!After the weird bread thing we got our soup or salads. Waitress got yelled at by the Bringer of Darkness again. "Where is MY salad?" Poor waitress. Stuck between a rock and an soul sucking old lady. I'm just glad it wasn't me.
It's probably a good thing I wasn't there for this next part. I have this really bad habit of uncontrollable laughter when I get uncomfortable, scared, nervous, anxious, or embarrassed. That would have just thrown fuel onto the racist fire. I was only gone a few minutes but knew something was up as I was walking back to the table. A few family members were looking at me with this expression of "We're in a special circle of Hell and I'm actually considering murdering an old woman in order to get out." As soon as I sit down Husbandman nonchalantly tells says, "You missed it. Your Grandma just asked your uncle if he remembered being called the n-word that one time. Then she laughed." Husbandman has a way of downplaying the situation, if that was how it had played out I don't think everyone would look like they were constipated. I went back to my salad when brother made Husbandman lean forward so we could whisper to each other behind his back. Not like behind his back as in talking about Husbandman, but behind his back as in actually using him as our whisper shield. Brother told me a more involved version of what had happened. Apparently the Bringer of Darkness had to repeat the question to my Uncle three times because they were seated so far apart that he couldn't hear her. And she didn't say n-word, she actually used the N word. Multiple times. And then said, "That was funny!" And started cackling. People stared. I can't help but wonder if that was the reason the manager stood by and kept watch over our table for the rest of the meal. Something like this happens every time we go out with her. I don't know why we keep going in public, it's embarrassing to have all the other tables staring at us. They always seem to seat us in the middle of restaurants, other patrons surround us. We may be banned from three or four different Olive Gardens...I bet we never have dinner with her at our homes because that's like inviting an evil spirit inside. Exorcisms are SO time consuming.
The Bringer of Darkness was the one to teach/introduce me to all the different racist terminology when I was a child. I didn't know then that she was evil and was teaching me things that should not be repeated so I would work them into every day casual conversations. It probably didn't help that I had bleach blonde hair and blue eyes as a kid. After having multiple conversations/interrogations about my language with my parents I learned to always ask them the definition of any word Grandma taught me.
Back to Dinner: After Grandma yelled the n-word a few times dinner resumed and finished with forced conversation and minimal eye contact. There was also a guy making balloon animals who seemed to be under the influence of some sort of drug but that didn't phase anyone. You can still make balloon animals when you're on a paranoid twitch trip. We left generous tips, even to the drugged out balloon guy. He probably needed to buy another hit after working our table.
I probably sound callous and rude. I know it's not "normal" to call one's grandmother the Bringer of Darkness, but that's the way life is sometimes. Sometimes old ladies are nice and give you gross hard candy or sweaty raisins they've been clutching in the palm of their hand for 3 hours (true story). But sometimes they are just racists.