My sister’s husband just called. I don’t even have his number saved in my phone, but I recognized the area code, so I answered. My heart started to beat really fast because I assumed someone had died, otherwise I wouldn’t be getting a phone call from a random Seattle number on a Friday night. [I have anxiety. And a history of sudden family deaths.]
But when I heard Pablo’s voice, he sounded totally casual, so I relaxed. But I was kind of confused why he was calling me. The last (and ONLY PREVIOUS) time we had a phone call was when I drunk dialed him on the last day of my first year of law school,1 to win a bet with my friend Matt2 over the proper way to shoot La Bandera.3 So… almost exactly two years ago.
“Hey, Pablo… what’s up?” That was the politest way I could come up with to say, “why are you calling me?”
“How are you doing?”
“Good, I guess. Finals are going on.”
“Great. It’s Friday.”
“So you have plans?”
“Um, staying in and studying.” At this point I hear my sister shouting something, but he shushes her.
“Shh! So… Robin. Your exams are this week?”
“Pablo, this is weird. Why are you calling me?”
“What! You are my family. It is normal to call your family to see how things are going.” At this point I hear my sister saying, “SEE!?!!”
“Put Becky on the phone.”
“She doesn’t need to be on the phone. I am calling you.”
“Yeah and that is WEIRD.”
Becky wrestled the phone away at that point and explained to me that Pablo was complaining she never calls his family. She countered that he never calls her family. So he called me, immediately, to win the argument, but my reaction meant that Becky really won. Neener neener, Pablo!
But yeah. I’ve got a family that rarely uses the phone, even blood relations. I call my sister about once a week to gossip, and my little brother twice a month or so to make sure he is still eating vegetables and getting hair cuts and hasn’t dropped out of school or gotten arrested. They call me in three circumstances: 1) Returning a missed call from me 2) I haven’t called in a month and they need to make sure I am still alive 3) Someone has died.
Compare: Collin’s parents call me to say hi all the time. It’s great! I like it! We’ll talk about the weather and what’s happening at the dog park and business and school and all that good stuff.
I have had two phone conversations ever with my sister’s husband. I think I had two phone conversations with Collin’s mom last week.
Blending families! It’s wacky.
1Which happened to be May 5, so tequila was more or less mandatory.
2Who happened to be the then-future brother-in-law of my future fiancé, but we didn’t know that yet.
3The answer is a shot of tequila, a shot of sangrita (which is not the same as Bloody Mary mix, as Matt suggested), and a shot of lime juice (the second way Matt was wrong, he stopped after shot 2, which is ridiculous, because it is called La Bandera because white, red, and green are the colors of the Mexican flag, but I should probably stop making fun of Matt because he has much more embarrassing stories to tell about me when I’ve been drinking, including the night a few months later when I met Collin. Matt, if you are reading this, I left out the part about Sarah’s dress, so have mercy).