So Easter dinner was weird and awesome, because I got my stepmother drunk at around 1600h, so it (dinner) didn’t even kind of start until I think around 2100h, so some of the younger ones were yawning, and it wasn’t like religious in any way, or ceremonial — yes, dining room, but yes also, paper plates — but mostly it was because there are ten thousand of us: five boys, three girls, one girl’s daughter, three (and a half at least, but that’s a topic for another time) boyfriends, and my Daddy and Shirley.
So, at any given time:
One boy and up to two girls are: sulking in the kitchen. Throughout the entire meal; they just keep switching (I myself got this position for two hours at my winter visit).
Between one and three of us are playing the timbales Shirley unwisely bought Daddy last winter.
Between one and six of us (including parents) are aiming a spoonful of food at someone else at the table. Right now for example, I’ve got boeuf stew on my left lower abdomen shirt-portion and what I believe is the juice squeezed from an entire half-tangerine on my right shoulder.
Between one and two parents, and possibly Lyle (he’s particular) are jumping up to change the song that’s playing. (I.E., when the banana pudding that sister Lindsay has requested specifically for her pregnant self is served, in which she is no longer interested, Daddy jumps up to play “Day-Old Banana Pudding” by this guy whose name sounds like Townes Van Zandt but is nothing like TVZ.)
One to four of the five more people-pleasing (read codependant) members of the family (me, sister Jenny, brothers John-John & George William, or stepmother Shirley) are running into the kitchen to A) console the child and/or children sulking in the kitchen, B) grab some food for someone else at the table because we’re bored or C) laugh hysterically for five minutes before returning to the table, sobered and acting like everyone’s not a total freak.
Three or more of the family members above 18 years old are making some really, really inappropriate and not very subtle sexual innuendoes. And then laughing until milk* comes out of their nose.
(*or what New Mom calls “Mono Juice,” a frozen-style fruit punch that was the only thing John-John would allow down his throat during his bout with mononucleosis.)
All any single person in the entire fucking house really wants to do is get back in the Purple Room (our den — where the TV lives? — was painted by the previous owners a deep and livid eggplant hue, and Dead Mom and I were both so attached to it that it’s always remained that color. Whatever our wars and fights and bruises and schisms, we agreed on paint colors and Eames and Heywood-Wakefield furniture. And now she’s dead, tra-la-la, I win.) and play some more god damned Dance Dance Revolution.
Which we do, after the Banana Pudding and associated fanfare have died down.
I have had at this point over a bottle of wine, I think, by myself and I am still kicking all four hundred and thirteen of my siblings’ uncoordinated asses. And now, I fear, I must get back to it.