Nine: A Letter from Mom!
My dear wuzzy fuzzy kitten Coda-Bear,
Hi! It's MOM!!!! How are you, sweetie? You never call, is it too expensive? I told and told and told your father to buy you a cell phone for college, but you know how he resents you for being born a girl.
Oh, I can't believe you're a great big grown-up COLLEGE GIRL now!!! It only seemed like yesterday I was watering down your formula and pawning Daddy's Stratocaster for diaper money. Remember how he mad he used to get? I bet you do. Oh, those memories! The doctors always swore you wouldn't remember a thing, but me? I believe in miracles!!!
A lot has happened since my little Coda-Bear spread her wings and left the nest. You have a baby brother!!! His name is Ballad. Isn't that amazing? Your father is just thrilled! You should see him, pampering and cuddling and cooing at the baby. It's a shame he ignored you and your sisters with such cold and complete disinterest, or he might be better at that sort of thing by now. He would have had lots of practice. But I guess I just got to save all your oodles and kaboodles of love for myself, huh?
By the way, Daddy is VERY curious as to how you're getting on. I mentioned your name yesterday, and he grunted twice! Do you have any gentlemen callers? I only ask, because you should probably marry one. He insists you won't be coming back here after school. I think he gave your bed to the hippie commune down the street.
I know you probably think about the sort of things Daddy said sometimes when I didn't hide the bourbon well, but I'll have you know that I'll bet LOTS of boys would think you're just the bee's knees, "vulture-face" or no! Remember how well your big sister got on with the boys? And she looks like the wrath of almighty God, she does!
And I've been meaning to mention, dear... she may be a bit of a pistol, but I think your father and I are both pleased you're spending so much time with Lilith. Such a popular girl. I wish I'd had a buddy to go to college with! Sounds fun! But I suppose you know how much of my college fund Grandpa sunk into emu burger futures.
Oh, dear. That sounded so dour. I'll bet you think I'm not happy. Well, I am. I'm very lucky. Grandpa was really serious about that organ farming business, your father was my knight in shining armor! And hey, not many women can fix the dishwasher AND scrub the tub in the third trimester of their fifth pregnancy! Your father really enjoys challenging me. I gave birth to Ballad right after the trash compactor electrocuted me! Your mom's a tough ol' lady! I have no time to feel sorry for myself, and boy howdy, don't I know it!
Anyway, though... I just re-read your last letter. It was a gas!!! I'm glad to hear Lilith is finding herself. I'm also glad to hear she is letting her hair grow out! I'll bet she looks much more professional, now. I'd say her parents were asking about her, but... well, I don't think they are.
I do have a complaint, hun... Isn't sophomore year a bit young to be moving into your own place? I understand that it comes under the umbrella of some sort of confederacy of Mediterranean cultural societies, and that's all well and good, but I'm not sure I approve of their morals. You know what the Greeks DID, don't you??
Uhm, because I don't. I just know my mother, your Granny, she said she always charged extra for being Greek, although I don't really understand how that worked.
Anyway, I suppose you're an adult, and your poor old mother doesn't get much say anymore, does she? I read those promotional brochures you mailed, I suppose it'll be all right. The costume parties seem fun, anyway. Very foreign! Did those people really wear bedsheets? I recall Granny saying something about having to change them every time she did anything Greek, so I guess that makes sense.
Well, I have to go, now. Call me collect, okay? And if the line's busy, keep trying. Your father keeps skipping work to look after Ballad these days, and he's always leaving the phone off the hook because the sound of your voice makes him itch. I've told him you're calling for ME, but he says the time he'd spend saying "hold on" and passing the phone off would be better spent powdering Ballad's little scrotum. You know how he is, all about preserving the Experiment family bloodline. Even from diaper rash.
Love you, Coda-Bear! Don't come back for Christmas, Ballad has your old room. XOXOXO!!