My mother and step-father decided to visit me over the long holiday weekend as a last ditch effort to get up here before the city turns into an arctic wasteland. I can’t say that this came as a surprise; my mother had fired several warning shots at me over the course of the previous three months. Typically warning shots don’t kill the intended target. Typically.
They decided to stay the entire three day weekend, opting out of getting a hotel and, in lieu, building a couch cushion fort in my living room floor. It might have been impressive if I had eight or nine more couches.
-side note: I need to open a store only selling couch cushions for forts…cut out the middle man-
At this point I should probably go on record and state that I love my parents and that I like seeing/visiting them but everyone has their limits. I feel like ground rules are in order; not just to keep the weekend enjoyable, but to also preserve my sanity. Fortunately for me I have like minded friends that were having a similar experience in parallel this weekend. We got the list down to a very manageable five items:
1) Fun sized weekends only, no three day weekends.
Trying to decompress from the weekend, the only analogy I could come up with was that of the fun size candy bars they sell for Halloween in comparison to the typical 2 day weekend. I think the comparison is apt.
2) No more than 4 hours at the house at a time.
This one might not seem like a big deal, but you can’t get bogged down at the house. Once you stick for more than a couple of hours, it’s hard to get that train moving again.
3) Staying at my place is not an option.
I have a roomy 145 square foot apartment. Sleeping at a 45 degree angle in my living room is not going to happen. I don’t care how many sleeping pills you downed with your manhattan.
Speaking of booze.
4) No booze.
This one didn’t affect me, but I can understand how it could be an issue. This rule goes for both parties. I don’t need any awkward conversations in either direction. It’s bad enough that I have to talk to you, don’t make me resent it even more.
5) An itinerary is necessary.
Must. Have. Activities. You are asking for it if you have nothing planned.
This list is by no means exhaustive; I probably could have found about thirty more to add, but these get the basics out of the way. It should also be said that the execution of all five of these items is not necessary. On the best weekend you might get four of the five. Consider yourself lucky.
I personally have a sixth and what could be the most important addition:
6) Don’t be an only child.
Guilt trip your parents until you have a Guatemalan brother.