She's the closest thing I have to a grandmother within nine time zones of here. She was my nanny when I was young, and now she's adopted family. She's of a different generation, a different era. Discussing anything controversial with her is at best a waste of time - a talk radio junkie, God bless her, politically, socially and economically we are on opposite ends of the *cough* spectrum. Beats me why we argued politics for an hour last Saturday afternoon, and then religion mixed with current events for another hour.
I say, laughing, "Well, having exhausted politics and religion, let's talk about sex. Would you care to begin?"
She chuckles right back, "Okay, well, there's boys and there's girls..."
I ought not to say anything, but can't resist. "And, well, boys and boys, or girls and girls..."
And suddenly she's serious. "Speaking of girls, you know that woman Ellen Degeneres? She has that TV show?"
"Sure, what about her?"
"Well. I just can’t stand to look at her."
I should know better, but ask anyway: "Why?"
Her voice grows instantly strident, self-righteous, shrill. "I just can’t look at her mouth! Every time I see her I just have to look away!"
I understand. I sit there, in stunned silence.
But my younger brother doesn’t get it. Before I can shoot him a Let It Drop look, he innocently asks what the problem is with Ellen’s mouth.
And I watch the disgust and the hatred twist her face. She spits out, "She uses her mouth! They - Those people - they use their mouths on each other! In THAT way! Gawd, I hope she brushes her teeth afterwards. Ugh!"
Now my brother is the silent one, and I'm trembling.
Satisfied, she sits back, all steel and contempt as she says to my brother: "And now you learned something new, didn’t ya?"
I stand up, manage to keep my legs and my voice from shaking, and announce that I need to go to the bathroom. A few minutes pass. I walk out and ask cheerily, "Who wants ice cream?" Crisis averted, for the moment.
I love her, I really do. But while I may someday forgive her sneer, I will never forget it.
One of Those People.