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Sunday, 4 November 2012

How do you solve a problem like madness?

Uncomfortable situation at hand: uncle A is away on a business trip, but his plane took forever to leave the country because airlines are not what they used to be. Not much of a problem on its own, but he called a few times to let aunt A know how it was going and how he was not going just yet. And then he didn't call again until it was late at night (I can't remember exactly but we can go with 9:30pm and it won't make too much of a difference). Aunt A was out at a friend's house. He called here and I told him aunt A was away, so he called her mobile. When aunt A got here she told me how uncle A was upset with her for having left him a voicemail message asking for his whereabouts and threatening him if he didn't call to fill her in. All that went through my head was Oh. Shit.

And here's why: walls are quite literally paper thin around here. Though I don't always pay attention and it's more often than not good to get the heads up on a conversation I wasn't a part of, I get a good idea of what goes on calls-wise. This is especially true of aunt A's calls because she's quite loud when she's on the phone. So, back to the voicemail message. Aunt A started by saying she didn't even know how to send a voicemail message. She argued she'd never do anything of the sort and that if uncle A is in another country then it must most certainly be impossible and then some other woman (with her voice, mind you, I think uncle A can be trusted not to mistake her voice) must have left that message. Well, after aunt A asked me this afternoon if I thought uncle A had arrived, and I suggested we look up the flight online and she said no, I know she made a call and left him a message. As I remember it, she didn't threaten (which is surely an exaggeration on one or both parts) him with anything should he go without calling, but she did ask him to let her know how it had all went. While a part of me knew uncle A doesn't take well to such phone calls another part of me figured it should have been quite all right because aunt A was reasonably worried about uncle A and not unreasonably worried-sounding in her message. 

It's really on both of them and I was stuck not knowing what to do or say. If I tell her she obviously knows how to leave voicemail messages because she's left BCM and plenty of other people messages before she'll think I'm calling her stupid. She said she couldn't have possibly left a message because she heard no cue and when uncle A is out of the country his phone automatically zones out all calls and I argued the call must have gone through anyway (most likely because of whatever he's paying for his mobile service includes it). She insisted on the impossibility of it. I didn't push my point further. To aunt A, it's no longer reasonable to assume she must have called and left a message and forgotten, and it's much more likely that some other woman left uncle A a message and he was foolish enough to confuse the two of them. To an extent, I think she's lying about not knowing she left him a message. It's the story she initially gave him to defend herself from his backlash and she stuck to it. The silliness comes when she tries to defend herself to me, with the lies she told him and tries to believe herself.

It's not so unlike today's lunch, where I noticed aunt A's icecream had caramel syrup in it, hidden underneath the granola and peanuts. Who does she think she's fooling? More so when she's so worried about her weight? I said nothing and did my best to look away.

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