My sister-in-law, or SIL, came up here from Arkansas to go to the wedding of a family friend. Herself didn’t go, in protest of this friend’s reprehensible and awful choice of groom, a sexist authoritarian among other things. My SIL’s youngest children came along with her, likely due to my SIL’s own choice of reprehensible partner.
I remember meeting him, on an adjunct trip tacked on to a family visit to my mother’s, a “condition” of Herself going. Not directly stated, but the implication was clear. I am a short and relatively silent man, but this guy spent an inordinate amount of time trying to impress me and cater to me. I eventually realized that he was intimidated. (Well, THAT was an unfamiliar experience for me. It’s more familiar now, happening more often, but still surprising and puzzling every time.) He seemed to be relatively polite, and proud of what he had accomplished, but it was a lost cause. I kept the peace, and held my tongue, but somehow the image of him shoving my SIL through a plate glass window was tenaciously difficult to hand wave off. Having said that, the experience reminded me of a child bringing me something they had made, written or drawn, except with zero chance of being displayed on the Refrigerator of Modern Art.
They went to the wedding, my SIL and her kids, and it went exactly as expected. No one spoke up during the “if anyone has any reason why these two should not be joined” section. Perhaps a better hype man would have elicited a greater crowd response. A lost opportunity.
My SIL has a vocal tic that makes it hard to follow her, for me, anyway. She says “you know” at virtually every pause. I find myself counting them rather than paying attention. I have tried very hard to rid myself of such things, tics, crutches, and especially accents. I probably sound a bit Midwestern, but not much. I’m aware when I sound that way. I assume that when I have tics, people get annoyed. If I want them to listen, I must speak clearly.
I made pancakes this morning. Peach pancakes with strawberry and maple syrup, and whipped cream on top. Powdered sugar, too. They looked and tasted good. I made them from scratch, meaning I scratched my finger while I was opening the box of pancake mix. I made them all perfectly. Same size, no burns. The trick to cooking is not to get distracted.
Just like the trick to interpersonal relationships. Take care and watch carefully.
So what of the WWIII in the title? That’s a battle I havent started yet.