Monday, October 13, 2008

A Desperate Phone Call

I mentioned before that my mom has been sending me all of these scary emails that I KNOW are coming from my Aunt Mary & her stepfather. They are chock full of lies about how Obama is a Muslim & how the handbasket is nigh. They take me all of about 3 minutes to disprove via the WSJ, snopes, factchecker.com, but I lost it on Friday. I sent her an email, that while restrained, was still pretty full o' the all caps. It's not that I don't believe that people have the right to vote for McCain, I just can't get any of the ones that are close to me to give me a reason. This makes me think that a) it's because they know their reason is illogical (i.e. he's a Muslim), not based on the issues &/or b) they are looking out for their self-interests, which just happen to be completely contrary to mine (i.e. they make more than $250k). I thought about sending an email to all of these people & letting them know that if McCain were to win, I have to move to Canada because under his plan I would have no insurance. I have TWO previously diagnosed conditions. I decided I don't need to worry about it because I KNOW Obama is going to win, but I needed to feel better. I did a crazy thing. I called my grandmother.

My Grandma Ike is 83, a widow, that lives in Saginaw, MI. Her real name is Eileen, but she & her 3 sisters all have these silly nicknames (Maryann is "Neem"?). I've never asked. Both of her parents were from Finland & she grew up in a town in the Upper Peninsula of MI so small (Kenton) that she just tells people that she's from another, slightly larger town, Bruce's Crossing. Her mother went blind at age 18 from a cavity that travelled up to her optical nerve. She still raised 4 girls in the Copper Country, largely alone. My great-grandfather was a lumberjack & built trusses in the mines. When he wasn't felling trees or in the mines, he was hunting deer. She is tough lady, but still a lady. An example? See photo below. She is holding a state record setting walleye. (record has since been broken) Notice how even in the gloves, she's holding the fish away from her body? See the sneaky smile?


The reason it's a bit dicey for me to call Gram is because we have talked all of 3 times since my Dad died over a year ago. She has been carrying on ridiculous tantrums about certain things, namely guns, that my grandpa left to my dad, that she thinks should go to her cousin. Ridiculous things. Before you get all shocky, yes, my family has guns. We are from the north. I was fed solely fish & venison for most of my early childhood that was caught or killed by my family. I ain't Sarah Palin. Don't panic.

I was my Grandpa's favorite. I would leave the kitchen full of women to go to the barn with Grandpa & Dad. Gram thought I should stay & help with the dishes. I went fishing with them while she stayed home. We have issues.


Gram is, however, a through & through Democrat. That walleye earned her this plaque, signed by the governor at the time, Engler, a republican. Gram threw it away because he signed it. She left the Upper Peninsula to go to California during WWII to volunteer for the USO, Lutheran Church, & help a very pregnant cousin whose husband was believed to be a POW. She met Grandpa in Los Angeles the day he got back to the states through a roommate. She moved to MA & married him after only knowing him for 2 weeks. She's not a wallflower, but she also can be pretty racist. I was nervous.

Gram didn't let me down. She had already voted, & voted for Obama. She is excited for him, for us. She is worried about what "these zealots" are going to do to his family. "Poor, sweet-faced girls of his," she said.

Phew.

She was glad I called. I think she feels a little better about me, now. I feel a little better about myself because at least someone in my family is fighting for me.

"Honey, Canada's not so bad, ya know," she said.

1 comment:

tiggy said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog. I wasn't your Australian reader but I am now! Just about to blogroll you!
Will come back and have a long look tonight.
Tiff (three ring circus)