Friday, May 06, 2011

The gas man cometh

Phone call number one - in morning break between classes.

Me: How's it going?
Mother: It's a CALAMITY!
Me: Oh dear. What's happened? Is the gas man there?
Mother: Yes, and both of my gas fires are leaking. They're both condemned!
Me: Oh well, don't worry. We can take you to get new ones.
Mother: But the disruption! I can't cope.
Me: I know, but we'll help you to cope.
Mother: And the expense!
Me: Well, yes, but it's not as if you're hard up. It's only money.
Mother: It's a disaster. This flat is doomed.
Me: It'll be all right ... [etc]

Phone call number two - in afternoon break between classes.

Me: How's it going?
Mother: Oh, it's fine. The gas man's slaved away all day and he's fixed both of the fires. I feel much better.


  1. If this was on FB I'd click 'like'.

  2. And do you feel much better? No, of course not. You're completely worn out from having spent the day with this fretting away at the back of your mind. Why do they do it to us! Do have a good weekend.

  3. rock ... you ... hard place

  4. You could recommend the gas man to the pope for canonization.....

  5. It is amazing how little time it takes for misery to swing to relief and calm, in almost the twinkling of an eye.
    You are keeping all your balls in the air.

  6. I understand where your mother is coming from! I hate it when anything breaks down, even if it is ancient. It's not the cost. It's more of a personal insult.
    EXAMPLE: last summer I thought the little bearings on my salad spinner were failing, as it was very stiff. I was deeply upset. I'd only had it for 29 years! Luckily a week of winding it the other way each time I used it seemed to do the trick. It's fine this year. I'm hoping it will see me out!
    By the way - I'm still in my mid-fifties!!

  7. I think the tendency to catastrophise overcomes the old sometimes (oh and the not-so-old too of course...)

  8. Perhaps our mothers knew each other... everything was a catastrophe to my mother, requiring everyone to jump to attention/action at once. She never sank into hopelessness, though; she just cracked the whip more vigorously!