Who Needs Wikipedia When I Have Grandmapedia?
Posted on March 5, 2015
There’s a stereotype about grandmothers we’re fed from a very early age. You know the one I mean, right? Older women with tightly-bunned hair, granny glasses, likes to bake a lot and coo over the grandchildren while spoiling them, yet also doling out wisdom that’ll mean something significant later on in life? Yeah, that one. And I have to admit it makes for a pretty picture. It just isn’t realistic. My own grandmother surprises me not just because she can bake like nobody’s business, but because she’s a walking social knowledge base and I would LOVE to create an app based on her. I’d call it Grandmapedia.
My grandmother…how can I put this…has thoughts. I’m sure she always did, only she used to keep the majority of them to herself. Not so much anymore. The process now is that a thought is born in her mind and almost instantaneously escapes through her vocal cords. This surprises her from time to time, as if she’s just eaten something spicy and had a little ladyburp. It surprises us, too. Other times? One gets the idea she’s showing off a little. Now, she fell down in a parking lot two weeks ago and did a real number on her right hand and face where they impacted with the ground. I’ve assisted in taking her to follow-up appointments at the doctor and re-bandaging her hand. We walked into the office for one such appointment, signed her in, sat down, and then it was as if I switched the app on.
“This doctor has been in business for fifteen years. That’s where the bathroom is in case you need to use it, but the bottom of the door doesn’t go all the way down to the floor, so you can see when someone is moving around in there. Now, he has seven waiting rooms in back, plus one for x-rays, but because he had to start putting everything into a computer, he only uses two of the rooms for waiting and a third where he stays with the computer, and you go to him once the nurses are done with you.”
Umm… I stare at her and wonder if there’s a polite way to ask why she’s telling me this. They call her in a moment later and we’re greeted by a woman at the door.
“This is Linda. She’s older than she looks, which is nice. She has three children, the youngest approaching sixteen and getting ready to drive, which makes her nervous, and she recently moved in with her second oldest daughter.” The woman behind the desk waves. “That’s Peggy. She’s happy because today’s Friday and she doesn’t work weekends, but if you catch her at the end of the day on Monday, she’s usually crabby and waiting for five o’clock.”
Then grandma introduces me and I cringe wondering what she’ll say.
“This is my grandson. He’s my oldest grandson, the first one. He currently helps his mother out by taking his dad, who has Alzheimer’s, back over to his house so she can have some time to herself or to get things done she needs to.”
Whew! Dodged a couple of bullets with that one. If she was an app, then I must have added a security setting that doesn’t allow it to dish out too much information about me. Apparently not everybody knows about this feature, though. We’re escorted over to the doctor’s room a short time later and then a whole new kind of information exchange happens.
I’ll save you the rundown and just tell you that she went over her entire medical history with him…in detail, which I’m confident he knew by heart anyway since I’m guessing she recites it each time she comes in. He left for a moment to arrange a B-12 shot she requested, which is when she looked over at me and said “He’s such a good conversationalist!” To which I replied “How can you tell? You didn’t let him get a word in edgewise.” She considers what I’ve said for a moment, then dismisses it. I see a family trait here.
We leave and as we’re heading out to the car, she tells me about her pain doctor. “He had a business close to here, but then instead of pairing up with a hospital, he decided to go into business for himself because he can make more money. Now he’s on Hall Road, has fifteen waiting rooms and one operating room. He wanted a second operating room, but he couldn’t find an anesthesiologist who’d work with his wife. She’s kind of a bitch, but not to me. I always poke my head in her door when I’m there and say ‘hello’. She knows better than to get an attitude with me.”
Grandmapedia: The App. Coming Soon!
Kristoffer Gair (who formerly wrote under the pseudonym Kage Alan) is the Detroit-based author of Honor Unbound, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Sexual Orientation, Andy Stevenson Vs. The Lord Of The Loins, Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell, several short stories featured in anthologies (to be combined in a forthcoming book), the recently re-published novella Falling Awake, its sequel, Falling Awake II: Revenant and Falling Awake III: Requiem.
4 Responses to “Who Needs Wikipedia When I Have Grandmapedia?”
Patricia Logan says:
March 5, 2015 at 1:21 pm
Okay, that seriously made me LOL. Have you ever heard of lightening in a bottle? You could possibly run a city if you could find a way to channel that much energy into a power plant.
These are the things she does best. She feels relevant when she is passing on the wisdom she’s gathered over the years and I love that. I’m sure her doctors and nurses love her too. They obviously share some personal information with her which is very sweet.
Oh, to be a fly on the wall when you’re not around and she’s in a coffee clutch with her girlfriends. I’m sure your ears would be burning and I’ll let you know when I’ve graduated to this level. 🙂
March 5, 2015 at 3:22 pm
I wish I was exaggerating in this post, but I really wasn’t. lol Mom tells me she’s like that everywhere.
March 5, 2015 at 5:37 pm
I LOVE your grandmother. When will you have the app ready?
Dorien Grey says:
March 5, 2015 at 5:49 pm
And just think of what you’d have missed had you not reconnected with her after such a long time! (This IS the same grandmother, right?)