My Night with Eleanor
We celebrated my grandma's 86th birthday on Tuesday. My friend Elizabeth writes some really funny posts about her grandma. My grandma is also the kind of person who is hilarious without realizing she's being hilarious. I wanted to remember some of the conversations we had the other night so I thought I'd share.
It's important to know first that she's a devout Catholic, and there was big news in the Catholic world this week when the Pope resigned. Just as importantly, she loves celebrities, reads Vanity Fair, and really enjoys bargain shopping at the grocery store or Target.
When we have conversations, she has the best punchlines. Sometimes, her stories make her laugh and other times she's being dead serious, which makes what she says all the more comical because you never know what you're going to get with her.
Me: I made you Gwyneth Paltrow's chicken recipe for dinner.
Grandma: Oh yeah. What? Do you have a book of recipes by celebrities?
Me: No, she has a website and puts her recipes on the internet.
Grandma: Oh, I knew that. I knew she was in to cooking.
My mom: Did you ever think you'd live until you were 86?
Grandma: No. [Pause] But I'll be ready to go when I'm 87.
My mom: Why 87? What do you need to do in the next year before you're ready?
Grandma: There's stuff I need to read.
Me: What do you need to read about?
Grandma: The Pope. Did you know he had an artificial heart?
Opening her Presents
[Grandma opens a birthday card]
Me: That is from me and Matt.
Grandma: Oh, Kroger!
My mom: That is a gift card worth $20.
Grandma to me: Oh, twenty dollars! You must be doing very well! [Dead serious]
To finish off the evening, we watched My Week with Marilyn together. I'd been planning to watch this movie with her for over six months. I thought she'd really enjoy it since Marilyn Monroe is her favorite celebrity.
- Beginning of the movie -
Grandma: That's not Marilyn Monroe.
Me: No, it's not. It's a movie about Marilyn Monroe.
Grandma: Oh. When is Marilyn Monroe coming on?
She spent the movie telling me she already read the story in Vanity Fair.
- End of the movie -
Me: What did you think of the movie?
Grandma: Corny. I mean, she was silly like that but I liked watching her movies.
Me: How would you rate it? On a scale of one to ten?
Grandma: A one. [We all laugh. She turns to our neighbor's son and wife who are staying with my parents.] Did you ever see the one where she went skinny dippin'?
Neighbor's son and wife: [Shocked face] Uh, no. I don't think I saw that one.
So, maybe I should have just rented Some Like It Hot. She was expecting Marilyn and got Michelle Williams. Although, she did ask me if I knew about Michelle's history with Heath Ledger, of course.
I really doubt I'll be so up on current events if I make it to 86. I am grateful that the Pope resigning is giving her a reason to live through another year. And don't worry. She's been talking about not expecting to live this long for decades. It's part of her schtick.