I was in a department store check-out line today, with the rest of New England, buying a present for Robin from my parents. There was general chit-chat about how everyone is getting through the holidays — a conversation I’d started by asking the woman behind the counter how she was holding up, and she just shaking her head.
The lady behind me got going on and on about how materialistic her daughter is. It’s all about what she’s getting, she said. She demands to know on a daily basis what items from her list have been purchased already. All she cares about is her presents. She’s addicted to shopping and all she wants in life is to buy things.
Even the young woman behind the counter was all like, “Lady, then you are not helping her by being here. You should get her NOTHING.”
And I did not ask this mother, “how have you managed to raise such a complete little shit?”
But I did say, “Wow. That seems to be a bullet we dodged, at our house.”
“Oh, then you have boys?” Nope.
“Oh, well then they’re not teenagers?” Actually yes.
“Oh. Well mine is just addicted to shopping. Wait till she finds out you have to pay rent and buy groceries too.” How old is she? “25.”
Lady, if my kid ever behaved like you’ve just admitted to a total stranger that yours does as a young adult, I would make a donation in her name to the International Rescue Committee, then write her a card expressing hope for her to become a better person and strongly suggesting that she never again give me a wish list of any kind, ever.