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House Arrest Is Best

by Ann Brown February 19, 2014

February_2013_Portland_Maine_DSC2111 By Corey Templeton Congress Street Arts District Snow Storm 2 Sidewalk


From what I’ve gleaned off of Facebook, people are ignoring the alerts to stay indoors and they are leaving their houses. In the snow and ice. To go places.

I really don’t get it.

I must have been born without the cabin fever gene because I am starting to panic that in the next few days, we are going to be able to venture out of our houses. And all the reasonable excuses to stay at home will disappear.

Here is what I have at my house: EVERYTHING I need.

Here is what the outside world offers me: Hmmm….still thinking.

The other day, my mom told me that she wants to give my sister money so Karen and Craig can go to France. She asked me if that would be weird for me if she did that.

And then we both laughed merrily. Because I would give Karen a couple of thousands of dollars just so I don’t have to go to France. My feeling about Karen traveling is that every time she goes somewhere, the pressure is off of me to go somewhere. It’s a win/win. Well, except for Robin, who probably didn’t bank on marrying someone who travels only to Clusterfuckistan, which is in my own head.

Poor Robin. When Robin and I met, I was a kickass traveler. I had lived in Israel, I had been to Europe, I had been to Mexico; I cut a rather swashbuckling figure to him, I imagine ( I just called downstairs to ask him if when we met I cut a swashbuckling figure to him. He started laughing so hard, he is now choking on a mucous wad and sounds like he might barf). I will take that as a “yes”.

I used to get excited when I made plane reservations. Now I keep making them and re-making them until the confirmation code letters spell out something that I can make into a good harbinger. If the confirmation code has an “X” in it, well, forget it. That means I will die because it stands for the “ex” Me.

It is not easy being me. The ex Me or the current Me.

My uncle Harvey, who is a non-stop world traveler, taught me a trick. Well, not so much a trick as a window into the genetic neuroses of our family. Whenever he is flying, he says to his friend Arnie (who often travels with him), “Happy landings on a chocolate bar.” And they fly, travel and return safely.

Please don’t try that for yourself, however, because then you all will use up its magic powers. And my uncle Harvey will…well, you get the picture. And you don’t want that on your head.

Harvey’s son, Adam, is the reason airline companies exist. Adam is an insatiable traveler. I really cannot believe we came from the same DNA. His blood must have come from the part of the family who rose from their hovel in the Ukraine to fight the Cossacks with their last breath. And then booked a flight to LA.

My blood came from the same hovel, but clearly through the family chihuahua who piddled on the down blankets while hidden under a floorbood in the kitchen and prepared for certain death by the Czar.

Adam said to me, “You know how you panic when you have to fly somewhere and be somewhere new? That’s how I feel when I don’t have somewhere to go.”

I don’t even think he’s actually Jewish.

Although without the Uncle Harveys and Cousin Adams and the Sylvia Browns in our bloodline, we would never have made it to America. If the family’s future had rested in me, we’d still be in the shtetl, stretching out that last crumb of black bread. On the upside, however, we could have probably walked over to Sochi this week. Something Adam and Harvey and Sylvia cannot do from America. Just saying.

I like to be home. And nap. And eat. And be grumpy. I am probably about 90% ursine and 10% human. Especially when I haven’t waxed in a while.

So, I will squeeze the final perfect hours of this ice storm exactly where I want to be. Home. I’m off to the kitchen now to get some–

Wait. Fuck. We’re out of wine. FUCK. Fuck.

Help. I’m stuck in my house in an ice storm. Get me out of here!

The post House Arrest Is Best appeared first on The Next Family.

Ann Brown
Ann Brown


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