"If I gave you a million dollars would you slap Granny across the face??" My uncle Bobby cracks open a Coors Light and we play the "What would you do for a million?" game.
"Um, I'd do it for ten grand." No hesitation there.
"AND, I would be mad at you if you didn't!!" My grandma responds without haste over a glass of red wine.
This is precisely why I love my family. We have Sunday dinner, every Sunday...since as long as I can remember. Usually it's Italian food, since- we're Italian. But we mix it up with taco/margarita nights, and often pizza. Since, pizza fucking rocks, and everyone likes a good excuse to quench their thirst with a frosty glass of beer.
And honestly, it's the thing I miss the ABSOLUTE MOST when I'm away, not the beer, the family. I don't miss the full pantry of food, I don't miss the security so much, I don't miss my bed, I miss my family. I miss Sundays. My favorite day.
I miss "Family Olympics" let's just say we're a competitive bunch, so we like to challenge each other to games like pole-vaulting with tree branches, and trivia. My mother is convinced she is the smartest person alive, so things often get loud. We debate, we talk over each other, we disagree, we cook together, we're uncensored, we kiss each other's foreheads and gush over how we happen to be the GREATEST FAMILY EVER, who totally deserve a reality show. (MTV, Get in contact with my people.)
And every time I decide to flee, they get me a farewell cake and wrap me in hugs of encouragement, strength and send me with a shot for road.
The red wine flows like water. Purple teeth and lips grin widely and laugh loudly. We get entirely inappropriate, and they still manage to accept me when I have a glass too many and confess my trashy lapses in judgement, and for good measure they offer me their stories too:
Granny, when my mom found her bong as a teenager,"OOOOHHHHH...I was just keeping it for my friend!!!" Though, she's also the one who had a pet raccoon named, Cocaine Sadie. A fucking RACCOON. I couldn't make that up, I'm not that good.
I always want them to know how much I love and adore them. We express it openly, but I want to tattoo my face with their names to show my gratitude.
I would clean their toilets for the rest of eternity, I would pay their taxes and take them to trips in Tuscany, if I could. I would take on a wild pack of hyena's with my bare hands if it would make them more content.
Anything I could do to make their lives better, I would do- they're the most important thing to me in the world, and for all of the dysfunction families can have, all of the differences and "faults", I am proud to put a stamp on them all and call them mine.
So, when my uncle asked if I'd punch my Granny in the face for a million dollars, when she was sitting across the table....Of course I said yes, cause I'd give the entire million back to her after the hit.
Ok, maybe not THE WHOLE million.
Would you punch your Granny??