Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My mom is really into sex trafficking

Question:  My mom/dad/family member/crazy co-worker is addicted to the news/reality tv/the tlc network on loop/dateline and brings up the weirdest topics, sometimes at inappropriate moments. How do I handle this?

Answer (s):

Everyone is embarrassing at some point. Go big or go home, bring it back ten fold.

Therapy, but stay in network. That way you don't come after me because you're spending money on therapy and not on vacation. If you're a therapist, definitely don't find me, I'm close to having an entire wing somewhere in a fancy NYC building named after me for all my sessions.

What's your favorite drink? Mine is a martini, get to know yours much more intimately.

OK, maybe I got your attention with the title.

But I'm not lying. My mother has become addicted to sex trafficking

Of course, the idea of sex trafficking is absolutely horrible. So I shouldn't turn it into a laughing matter, but here we are with this embarrassing scenario. And my above is my legal sign-off that I do not endorse it. (Dear Lawyer Extralongname, Is the above enough to get me out of a potential lawsuit? I'll bake you a zucchini, blueberry loaf. Love, (not literally, ok, depending on how much of a mess you get me out of) Amy.

My lawyer barely winning his last case. Take it easy on him, he's lactose intolerant. I'm not, just in case you were curious. And I really love hazelnut gelato if you ever want to send me some.

I am 33 years old, slightly athletic with sarcasm that has muscles the size of Arnold Schwarzenegger. My sister is 29, a tough soccer player (legs of steel), with a mouth that would scare inmates in federal prison. Her husband is a wonderful, burly (and by burly I mean he has shoulders that look like 2X4s), and a football coach who is 6'4" tall. They are backed up by 2 tiny, terrifying, slightly mental pugs.

My lovely mother has not only seen the movie,'Taken' (which is about Liam Neeson rescuing his daughter from the horrific world of sex trafficking/selling) but has watched one too many Barbara Walters specials/Dateline & 20/20 episodes on exactly the same topic.

I couldn't really find individual photos of my sister and I being tough guys.  But if my sister and I morphed into one person it would turn out to be this Arnold head. His hair would obviously be long and super cute.

This concerns me. For the very reason that not only is she convinced anyone will be kidnapped for sex trafficking, but that it can happen in Metuchen, NJ or anywhere else in the Tri-State area- whenever my sister and I are on our own. I'm pretty sure if you talked to her over her favorite brand of scotch (with a lemon twist) she might convince you that my dad could be kidnapped for sex trafficking.

I did originally add a picture of my dad, but I'm treading on thin ice already and I pretty much know ahead of time when I'm in trouble. I'm sparing myself now and trying to get brownie points with Andy Garcia.

So here's how I can explain how neurotic my mom is and what better way than to put it in play format. Grab your co-workers, it's a good procrastination tool instead of doing important things like revenue, excel spreadsheets, and powerpoint presentations.

The Neurotic Mom Play by: Amy Porpora

Setting: Suburban home in New Jersey. It's 9:30PM on a Friday night and the street is well lit, the lawns are perfectly manicured, the house lights are on. You hear some barking in the distance.

Amy: She pulls into the driveway of her parents house. Gets out of her car and goes to open the back door. (pulling at door, looking confused since the lights are on) She looks at the mat below her feet just to see if there's a bulge, hiding a set of spare keys. Nothing. She runs to the front of the house, and sees that the front lights are also ON. She pushes on the door. Nothing. It's locked. She looks up and sees her parent's lights are on upstairs. She rings the doorbell. Nothing. "Are you kidding me? Now you two can't hear the doorbell?" She ventures to the deck on the other side of the house, that is NOT LIT and starts fumbling through cobwebs trying to find a fake rock with a bunny on it that sometimes holds another spare key. NOTHING. Amy now goes back to the back door, rings the doorbell and starts knocking at the door. "HELLLLLOooooo. What happened to, 'Amy don't worry we left the door open for you?' Frustrated she calls from her cellphone.

Dad: Hello?

Amy: DAD! I've been downstairs for almost 10 minutes. Both doors are locked, I almost fell looking for a hidden key in the fake rock with the bunny etched on it. WHY IS A DOOR NOT OPEN?

Dad: Ok, hold on. Dad comes down and opens the door. Oh your mother was supposed to leave the door unlocked. Why don't you go upstairs and ask her why it's locked?

Amy/Dad: Both walk upstairs, Amy has more sarcasm in her step.

Amy: Amy enters bedroom with her Dad behind her.  MOM, it's not even 10PM, all the lights are on but the doors are locked? And I rang both doorbells.

Mom: Oh, oops we dozed off watching the news. I didn't hear the doorbell.

Dad: MILLIE. Looking at Amy and walking to his side of the bed. Your mother, rolling his eyes, watched some news program and got scared.

Mom: Well it was scary and I had to run down and lock the door.

Amy: Really? In OUR town? You NEED to stop watching these shows!


*Disclaimer:  Everyone in our family rolls their eyes. It's hereditary, but it doesn't stop you from getting in trouble, grounded, or yelled at (no matter how old you are).

Yep, this is my mom looking scared, pretty much 24/7.  Don't tell her you went to the mall, and walked from your car to the door. She'll send you 12 emails how you'll be sent to a private island and wake up in an ice bath sans kidneys.

This story isn't uncommon. When I mentioned to my mother that my friends and I walked less than a mile to a sports bar, I wasn't lectured on how I should wear sneakers instead of heels. I was told that myself and my friends (all of us in our 30s) could have been  KIDNAPPED FOR SEX TRAFFICKING. I can't quote Diane Sawyer, Barbara Walters on anyone on The View panel, but I'm pretty sure none of us fit the profile, and no, neither does my dad.

I love my mom. I love how she sends me 15 coupons for toothpaste and pasta. I love how she prints out emails and sends them to me ("Well you would've deleted this one, so I SENT it."). I love how she gets excited when we go shopping ("Really? You think these shoes are nice? I mean, they are only $20. Don't tell your father!"). So I guess if I have to get lectured about walking through life pretending I'm on a breeding sex trafficking playground, then I'm pretty lucky to have a neurotic mother who cares. And she's neurotic; guess how many other stories you'll hear?