Tuesday, July 7, 2009

What time is it?

Call me a little old fashioned, but if my phone rings later than 10:00 PM, it better be an emergency. Someone better be broken and or bleeding and requiring my specific brand of assistance (I have no idea what that may be) if they have the nerve to dial my number after 10 o'clock.

I will admit that on rare occasions I will take a call from a friend in a different time zone. I'm guilty of picking up the receiver if a man is calling. Not for a booty call, but to talk without concern for the time. Stupid and desperate? Yes. Asshat Running Man pulled that stunt one too many times and I set him straight about proper calling times when attempting to pursue a relationship. I get ballsy from time to time.

To be honest, my phone doesn't ring often and if it does it's a bill collector calling for the slime ball, asshat family who gives out my number to avoid paying their debts -- I presume they had this number over 4 years ago. Ironically, T-Mobile calls here to alert them of their lapse in mobile service payments and to inform them that their service has been interrupted. I tell these collectors that I am not the person they are trying to contact. They tell me the number will be removed from the call list, but in a couple months it all starts again.

Sidebar rant over.

So, since the phone doesn't often ring, it's enormously disruptive when the bird like chirping erupts and jolts me from my slip into pleasant slumber. This occurred last night.

I had decided to turn in early. Mancub had already awakened me once when he saw that I was sleeping on my stomach. This apparently made him curious enough to ask me why I was in that position to sleep and without a pillow under my head. He kindly offered to get me more pillows. I guess he thought it wasn't intentional that my bed pillows were setting on the floor next to the bed. For whatever reason (aging) my hip was irritated and I found that sleeping pose most comfortable ... for awhile. I thanked him for his concern and he departed.

Around 10:40 PM, the bleating of my bedroom phone jerks me awake just as I was drifting into dreamland. In what seemed one motion, I hopped from the bed to the phone on the dresser to look at the caller ID. It was my son's friend. His grandmother's phone number. The very number we were told he was grounded from using. Two rings and it ceased. I assumed Mancub picked it up. I debated whether or not to pick it up myself and inform the party on the other line that they woke me and it is not acceptable to dial our home after 10 PM. Rather than embarrass myself or Mancub, I waited a few minutes.

I called down to the boy. Questioning the call and it's poor timing, he said his friend was just calling to see if he could come by and hang out the following day. Mancub apologized and said he told his friend it was too late to be calling and that he should call during the day.

Hooray! Our discussions over proper phone use have stuck with him. He's fully aware that I don't appreciate late night calls.

Mancub isn't interested nor does he have use for social media like Facebook or instant messenger. He thinks texting is tedious and calling is far easier. This is a time where I'm grateful that he is slightly behind on socializing. I know that sounds dreadful, but in today's teen interaction, I think real communication is being pushed to the wayside. They speak in the same manner they text. It's annoying.

So, while I applaud the boys' choice to communicate it's necessary to set ground rules with Mancub's friend. My best guess is that he's allowed to run amuck and doesn't get a lot of positive attention. Mancub likes having a friend to hang out with and I'm truly happy the friendship exists. I've had to enforce and reinforce the rules of our house to Mancub's friend. I'll call him 'K'. It's a new experience for both of us; having someone else in our domicile ... eating the Fritos Scoops and drinking my Diet Coke and using several glasses when switching beverages. The boy drinks a lot! I reminded him that while I don't mind that he drinks all the water he can consume, I would prefer he not drink my DC nor use numerous drinking vessels in the course of his visit. I reminded him that he's a guest in our house and must abide by the rules and behave as a guest. More over, he was advised that it's mannerly to ask to have a snack or drink rather than rummage through the cupboards or refrigerator for something to eat. Other people's food seems to take on a greater allure, for some reason.

Seriously, oof!

Because it became apparent that K and Mancub would be spending time together this summer, I inquired about the boy to one of the teacher's at Mancub's school prior to the end fo the school year. She couldn't divulge a lot, but nodded positively when I asked if he and Mancub have a similar diagnosis only K's was more severe. K isn't a bad kid. He just lacks basic social graces. His home life has been tumultuous for his young age.

While I find this addition to our daily routine sometimes irritating, I am wholeheartedly grateful that my son has a friend with whom he can play video games, watch television and, as my mom would say, "get the stink blown off..." That means go outside and play.

They seem to be kindred spirits. Neither boy is up to speed on socialization; yet, they get along splendidly. They are direct and candid without appearing to insult the other. Mancub is fully aware of the habits that get under my skin, but has learned to just look at me and smile rather than fight a losing battle. I mainly refer to the improper use of my name. K calls me various 'M' names, but never gets to Marissa. Mancub has even tried to get him to call me "Mancub's Mom" but to no avail, I am destined to be Melinda, Melissa, Marcie .... My son and I just smile, shake our heads and I reply to K as if he got my name correct. If that's the only price we pay for Mancub having a buddy then I'll pay it.

Now, all will be aces as long as my phone doesn't ring again after 10:00 PM.


  1. I hate the telephone. Period. And late night calls really suck.

    And, I'm so glad you're nice to K. Mancub and you give K so much that he will be able to use in his life. It's nice of you.

  2. I don't blame you for not wanting phone calls after ten. That would drive me insane.

    I think it's great that Mancub has a friend. Sounds like K may need YOU as much as he does a friend. I had a friend like that growing up. I think she came over to be around a real parent more than she did to see me.

  3. Awww ... I envision a similar playmate/friend for my Bullhead (nephew with Asperger's). And, my sister, as would I, would definitely lose her religion at a late night call.

    Kudos to you and Mancub for having such a great relationship. You are obviously doing sometime right, Marissa.

  4. I feel like a real meanie when I assert myself with K, but it hasn't deterred him from coming over. Mancub has been to his house, but he says it's a pig-sty. While I am no June Cleaver, I do like a tidy home. Plus, I suspect the adults in K's house do a lot of yelling. I do not like yelling.
    Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement.

  5. I understand your position completely. Now what is your phone number again? :)

  6. I agree with TinyShrimp; it sounds like K needs you. Impose the house rules and make him accountable, and teach him how you like the dishes washed!

  7. This is a great post. So cool that he has this friend. Mancub is awesome :)

  8. You're so wonderful to Mancub, and by proxy, to his friend. K's probably grateful to have a place to go where he can find some peace. As long as you are consistent, I would bet that eventually he'll quit testing your rules and start following them properly.


    I have a 10 o'clock rule for phone calls too. Only, now that insomnia has kicked in, the 10 p.m. rule went away. Only the 10 a.m. rule stays enforced. :)


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