Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hanging On The Telephone

When I moved in two summers go, my grandmother proudly told me "My doctor says I don't need a hearing aid yet!". At the time she was 89, so I wondered exactly when this "yet" was supposed to come. Her old doctor retired and her new doctor says nothing is wrong with her ears. I don't know where either of these chuckleheads go their medical degrees, because she's deaf as a stone and everyone can see it but them.
Granny spends a lot of time on the phone, although I'm not quite sure how much she hears. Sometimes I sit at the top of the stairs and listen. She agrees, then giggles, agrees some other words, she can't hear a word the person on the other end is saying.
I once left the house on a Sunday afternoon to go to a baby shower. I said, "Granny, I'm going to a baby shower". After I left she jumped on the phone to my Mom to say I told her that there was something wrong with the shower upstairs.
My Mom can go for days without speaking to her because she does not hear the phone ring, especially in the summer when she spends all her time on the sun porch. Her deafness, combined with the dulcet tones of the New York State Thruway just over the fence, leads her to think my Mom never calls her. Oh, Mom leaves messages, but Granny thinks the red blinking light on the phone is for decoration. "I get everyone's phone calls but yours!" she says to my Mom.
She calls my Mom, but let me tell you about my Mom. She cares for two of the most insane animals in the history of petdom. She has two very dear Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. There's Chance, the canine equivalent of Don Knotts, and Tess, rescued from a puppy mill, where she was forced to breed litter after litter of puppies. This has destroyed her bladder. She is not incontinent, but when she's gotta go, she's gotta go NOW. It's like living with infant twins, on a schedule - breakfast at this time, lunch at this time, dinner...etc. When one is asleep the other one is up. When one wants to go out, the other doesn't...but wants to go out fifteen minutes later.
These are the exact moments when Granny decides to call her, and it goes something like this-
"Yeah, hi ma, yeah...what? The dogs are barking I can't hear you, it's snack time...wait hang on Tess has to go...nevermind she just peed on the floor".
"Your mother and those dogs", Granny will say, out of the blue. "I haven't talked to her in days!"
I'm unemployed. I'm usually home.

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