Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Dear Mrs. P.,

You used to scare me a little. You told it like it was and were such a force in the family, I feared that perhaps you felt I wasn’t good enough for your son. I remember the first time I was invited to a family event. It was a BBQ/pool party at Alderwood. I walked out to the back yard, a little teary eyed because my cat, Coco, had died that morning. You said to me, “Oh good, you’re finally here.” And then you turned to Mara and said, “See, I told you she had big boobs!” I was so taken aback that I couldn’t help but laugh. It was the first time I met the entire clan and I was so nervous. And strangely, your comment (and my big chest, too I suppose) put me completely at ease.

Dear Nickie,

As time went on, I realized that you did like me. You were simply trying to train me to be a good future wife. You were teaching me about all of Renzo’s bad habits, but in your own way. You would never say, “He hates to wear pants.” “Renzo, put your damn pants on!” was more your style. You were trying to make sure I knew what I was getting myself into. Making sure I had my eyes wide open, before Renzo and I moved in together. I knew you felt I was ready for the challenge one day when we were cleaning the kitchen. You were sweeping, I was washing the dishes and Renzo was drying. Out of the blue you said to him, “You better hurry up and buy her a house and marry her. She isn’t going to wait around for you forever you know!” By that time, it had been 6 years and little did you know, you were wrong. I would have waited forever and a day. I’m pretty patient when it’s important.

Dear Mom,

You thought you were being so clever when Renzo and I were married. You were shocked that I wasn’t planning on taking his name so you and he devised this plan to get me to change it. Oh yes, I knew you probably had something to do with me suddenly receiving letters and e-mails from people calling me Mrs. P when they knew full well I was still using my maiden name. We both know that Renzo isn’t devious enough to come up with that plan on his own. And it did work. But the best was the way you signed cards and letters to me. A normal person, after 8 years, would have settled on something to call her in-laws. But not me. Everything I tried sounded weird. But you wouldn’t give up. Nickie and Dave; Mom and Dad; Mamma and Papa; Shirley and George. Sadly, I was never able to settle on something. Now it’s too late.

Dear Mamma,

It’s been a month since you left us. And there isn’t an hour that goes by that I don’t think of you. Your laugh, your voice, even the funny face you would make at me behind someone’s back. You were there for me so many times when others weren’t. You were always ready to give advice if I needed it or to just listen if I needed an ear. You made such an impact on my life and I am so sad that I never really told you how much. Having a mother-in-law, a mom, like you was a dream. You still had so much to teach me. But I can’t be selfish. I had 13 wonderful years. And now it’s someone else’s turn. I just hope He appreciates you as much as we do. Arrivederci Mamma. Ci rivedremo.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Renzo's friend Chris is a graphic designer and does a lot of work for Microsoft. For one if his latest projects, he used Bazil as his inspiration for an online ad: