I’m my parent’s computer guru.
Let that sink in, y’all.
Me. I can’t even turn on my TV to watch football without help from Landon. In my defense, we have way too many damned remotes and I don’t watch TV but still.
Every summer when the kids and I go to Texas to see family, I install new virus software on both of my parent’s computers, run that shit because they won’t do it again until I’m home for Christmas, and clean up everything for them.
I’m also their personal 24/7 computer diagnostician. They call me whenever they’re having problems with anything online, which includes Ebay and PayPal accounts and all online order making. Yep. They CALL me so I can get on my computer and order something online for them.
I know a lot of you can relate to this. Technology and parents and all that stuff they seem to be so helpless about. Here’s a great Amy Schumer sketch about that very thing.
I wish I had taped the last phone conversation my Dad and I had, trying to figure out via YouTube how to fix an issue with Mom’s computer. It went something like this:
Me: Okay, Dad. Click on this video link to watch this tutorial showing you how to fix this.
One minute later.
Dad: Click on that www thing?
Me: Yes. Click on that and it will take you right to the video. The video shows your computer screen and takes you step by step through what you need to do to remove that from Mom’s computer.
One minute later.
Dad: It opened another screen.
Me: Yeah, that’s what it’s supposed to do. Take you to YouTube.
Dad: Okay. All I see are two broads yapping their gums at each other.
Me: Dad, that’s a commercial. Hold tight and it’ll get to the tutorial, showing you what to do.
Dad: Why are they making me watch two broads when I didn’t click on that?
Me: It’s advertising, Dad. It’s how they make money.
Dad: I clicked on it again to get the broads to shut up.
Me: Dad, it’ll just start all over again. They’re going to get their ad time.
Dad: I have to watch it to get to the video?
Me: Yes, Dad.
Dad (mumbling very unhappily to himself while watching it): Two old broads flapping their gums. Drink your coffee and get on with it.
Now y’all know what’s
wrong awesome about me and where I get it from.
I went along with this line of thinking, that my parents would be lost without my assistance with all things technological until sometime last week.
For the last several years, right after Thanksgiving, my Mom puts money into a PayPal account. She came up with the idea to do this. I use that money to buy presents for my kids that are from her and my Dad. The gifts get shipped straight to my parent’s house, Mom wraps them up in really beautiful paper with handmade bows and puts them around her tree. She doesn’t have to leave her house, except to pick up the packages off the porch.
It is always a sight to see when we go home for Christmas to see all the presents around her gorgeously decorated tree. It looks like she has been shopping with tender loving care and a whole shit load of time all year round. My kids love her and my Dad to death and are always absolutely floored and thankful for all the gifts, having no clue (nor should they) that I did all the legwork. Okay, finger work because it was online. Whatever.
I was getting ready for Gracie’s Birthday party at our house last week so I did not have time to online shop. Mom messaged me a couple more times, gently reminding me the money is in the account and ready to go.
I’ve also settled a recent Ebay dispute Mom had with a return. It was ugly and the seller was a real douche bag even though the screw up was their fault. It took several times of going back and forth between Ebay and PayPal, disputing and responding to the seller for a refund. I did it because she asked me to and, you know, poor helpless Mom and that big, bad, confusing computer thingamajig and mega companies.
And in between the gentle reminders from Mom about the money and the dispute rebuttals, it hit me.
I’m my Mom’s bitch.
Computer illiterate? Maybe. Fucking brilliant? YES! This is the smartest woman I know. I’m jealous. She’s been playing me like Blue Oyster Cult plays the cowbell.
She transfers money to an account, I go online and buy shit with that money, send it straight to their door in Texas, she wraps it all up, and gets all the credit. Every single damned bit.
You ever had to settle a dispute with an Ebay seller? It’s a pain in the ass, especially when the seller is a lying sack of shit who sent you the wrong item and then lied about you returning it, even with proof of return from the Post Office.
After the initial realization that my Mom is actually the smartest woman alive and the awe wore off a bit, the feisty side of me fought back. I think Mary Tyler Moore said it best:
I’d like to continue this newly found streak of parental defiance but I’d better go. My Mom’s calling and I have to give her UPS tracking numbers and a detailed spreadsheet of how I’ve spent her money. She’ll also probably need a refill on that coffee, dry cleaning pickup, and I need to get those packages off her porch.
Have a good week, y’all.