So I’m back in my loser hicksville hometown in upstate New York, where I’ll be spending the next five weeks suffering at the hands of my insane, radical Christian parents. Think extreme praying, book burnings, and the complete lack of anything to do with sex, drugs or fun. Hurray! Still, no matter how terrifying or embarrassing or Jesus-loving my parents can be at times, it’s still nice to take a little vacation from my otherwise ultra-deprived and inherently hellish London squat life. Gross.
Now don’t get me wrong—squatting is great. Not paying rent is amazing and the whole subversive lifestyle thing is vaguely fun or edgy or whatever. But there’s only so long I can take living with a bunch of junkie prostitute filth wizards, taking baths out of buckets and passing around head lice, before it all gets too much and I just want to spend some time in a real house, full of real-people things. You know, things like a shower, coffee, vessels in which to drink the coffee out of (commonly referred to as “cups”), a television, etc. This is why every year for the holiday season, I travel across the Atlantic to spend some quality time in the suburban wasteland that I like to call Hell. Woops, I mean “home.” Freudian slip…
I haven’t even been here for twenty-four hours, but it’s already totally apparent that my parents are completely batshit. Like even worse than I remember. My mother has started doing this thing where she talks to Jesus out loud, as if he’s just a normal guy hanging out around the house. For example, last night she was making dinner, when out of the blue she goes, “So Jesus, should I make macaroni or hot dogs tonight?” She said it all calm and casual-like, as if it was no big deal she was having a one-way conversation with a ghost. Then this morning, while in the car on the way to the grocery store, she looked over at me and asked, “So, do you still want Donny Osmond to win Dancing With The Stars?” I got two words into my response before she cut me off, saying, “Oh sorry Honey, I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to Jesus.” The woman is out of her fucking mind.
Another thing my mother hasn’t stopped talking about since my arrival, is how my brother and I are both destined for a future of eternal hellfire at the hands of Satan. Or something. “It’s so sad that the Devil has taken hold of your heart,” she said to me as she tucked me into bed last night. So apparently her and my father have decided that it’s Satan’s fault that I am this way, rather than their own. Seriously, it seems impossible to me that two people could give birth to offspring so intrinsically different than themselves—me: a squatty atheist with a healthy appetite for casual sex and ketamine, and my brother: a vegan, guitar-playing pothead whose only bed is a friend’s couch or the back seat of his band’s van. Classy. Still, I like to think of my brother and I as just temporary rejects, headed for greatness despite the disbelief of our faith-wasted parents.
Sadly, it looks like this trip is taking a turn for the worst. Tomorrow it will be Thanksgiving—a day in which my entire God-fearing family will gather under one roof. I can picture it now—my mother asking Jesus whether the potatoes should be baked or mashed, my hunting-obsessed grandfather asking why the fuck my brother is eating tofurky, my asshole Republican cousin doing some casual gay-bashing. Sigh. At least I know I can expect $20 from my grandma. She gives me this cash allowance every year, telling me to “put it toward my wedding fund,” completely unaware that it goes straight up my nose. Hmm… I wonder when I should break the news to her that I’m gay???
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