Sunday, December 25, 2005

A Very Cupcake Christmas I

Scenes from a Cupcake Family Christmas

Last night, on Christmas Eve, we went to my cousin Mary's house. When I was a kid, we all used to celebrate a very traditional Italian Christmas Eve with the fish and midnight mass. Now that my generation has taken over hosting the holidays, we haven't stayed so traditional. My cousins' number one hobby is having babies. Last night, all the kids were there. One 5-year old, three 3-year olds, two 2.5-year olds, one 2-year old, one infant and one in utero. Do you know what eight sugar high kids running around with their cousins and waiting for Santa sounds like? Here's a hint: it sounds very very loud.

One of my cousin's wife pondered her impending breast reduction surgery and how she would explain it to her kids in a such a way that the kindergartener would not go to school and announce, "My Mom is getting smaller boobs!" The rest of my cousins remarked on things that their children have said about their boobs. One reported that every day for three years she has run naked from the bathroom to her bedroom after she gets out of the shower (??). And after three and a half years, just yesterday her son asked his father, "Hey, where's Mommy's pee-pee?" My cousin responded, "Huh. I don't know." My cousins are raising some very confused children. Also, all spend a lot of time together, which I think is really wonderful. But yesterday I witnessed the two-year old yell "Daddy!" and run and jump on his uncle's lap. Like I said, they're adorable, but they're confused. And did I mention how loud they are?

At one point, the kids started a riot asking for a present. So my cousin Christine say them all down, got them quiet with the promise of a present. And this is what she said: "The present I have for you right now is something that you can't unwrap and you can't hold it in your hand." Oh my God, I thought, they're taking all the kids to Disney World! This shows how stupid Cupcake is. Then she continued, "And that present is love!" There was 10 seconds of stunned siled from the kids before they started screaming. She said, "The present we have tonight is family!!" More screaming from the kids, then the older ones started booing. I wondered if this cousin, pregnant, had a death wish or had just lost her mind from so much morning sickness.

My cousin Anya said, "Your dad is asking for you. He wants something. I offered to get it for him, but he wants you." This is what women do in my family, wait on the men. "Pop, can I get you something?" I asked.

"Here's what I want. A roll. Three meatballs and two chicken wings. A roll, three meatballs and two chicken wings. Repeat it back to me." After I passed that test, I asked, "Would you like me to put the meatballs in the roll?"

"No, I'll do it myself."

"Okay, maybe if I get an advanced degree, then you'll trust me to actually put the meatballs in the roll."

My uncle was sitting at the table talking to Rosa. My grandpa married Rose a few years after Grandma Nancy died. My grandfather died when I was 10, but we still try to keep up with Rose. My uncle was talking about my brother, his godson, "And you should see my nephew. He has his own apartment in Connecticut. He has a paying job. And he has a girlfriend." I was sitting across the table smiling. "And my niece," continued my uncle, pointing at me, "I'm very proud of her."

"Nancy has a boyfriend??" asked Rosa, getting all excited.

"No, no not yet," said my uncle and my face fell. "Don't worry bout nothing Nancy," my uncle said to me. "Everything happens in its own time. It will happen when it happens. Don't worry." I smiled at my favorite uncle. "And if it doesn't happen, there's a reason for it. So don't worry about nothing."

"What?" I asked. "What do you mean, 'if it doesn't happen'? Why wouldn't it happen for me??"

"No no," said my uncle. "I'm just saying..."

Oh my God. My familiy is already preparing for my spinsterhood. Then Sal went on to tell Rosa, "My neice has done things, even when I was 18 and I was pretty brazen then, I could never have done. She's a very brave girl and I'm very proud of her." I had to blush. "She works for the bank now, but one day she's going to own the bank."

I love these people so much. They may not understand the decisions I make, but they respect me. "The present we have tonight is family ... that present is love."


Joshua said...

Dude, that is a great story. I can't wait until you become an industrialist and start your own bank. Bank Cupcake. It will be pink.

Cupcake said...

Yes, perhaps being a robber baron industrialist will ease the pain of being an old maid. And remember, at the Bank of Cupcake, all dividends will be paid in frosting.

rachel said...

oh, nancy, that was very sweet...

i'd say "merry christmas," but i'm afraid that people might confuse me as being conservative, so i'll just stick to my liberal we-all-hate-christmas ways and wish you a resounding happy holidays!

Josh/Muteflute said...

first of all, I'll always take frosting over money.

second of all, that is the most adorable story of all time. The present we have love. Amazing.

Happy Holidays!