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Back-Seat Mothers

| Vancouver, BC, Canada | Parents & Guardians

(My mother is an incredibly nervous backseat driver who insists on sitting in the passenger seat when somebody else is driving. My parents have asked me to drive them downtown to get on their cruise ship. It’s an incredibly busy time of day, so I’m nervous enough as it is. It’s a warm, sunny summer day and the roads are perfect.)

Mom: *gasp of horror*

Me: “What happened?” *looking around to see if I almost hit something*

Mom: “Sorry, that guy in the next lane was pulling up next to you.”

(A few minutes later:)

Mom: *gasps again, starts slamming an imaginary brake*

Me: “What is it?” *looking around again nervously*

Mom: “Sorry! I didn’t know if that car was stopping at that red light.” *she points way ahead*

Me: “Mom, please calm down. I’m nervous enough as it is.”

Mom: “Sorry, I’ll try.”

(A few minutes after that I’m cautiously driving through a major intersection. I pull into the middle of the intersection.)

Mom: *screaming frantically* “[My Name], WATCH OUT!”

(In an absolute panic, I slam on the brakes hard enough to slightly skid. My father and a friend in the backseat get coffee all over themselves, horns start blaring behind me from the abrupt stop, and we’re all thrown forward into our seatbelts.)

Dad: “Oh, my god, what happened?”

Me: *looking around frantically* “I don’t know. Mom just started screaming. Mom, what was it?”

Mom: “…”

(The car behind us honks again; the people in the next lane are passing us and staring in confusion. Luckily the light is still green.)

Me: “Mom, what?”

Mom: “…that guy up ahead turned his signal light on. I thought he was going to change lanes.”

(The embarrassment seemed to fix her though; after realizing how psychotic she was getting, she’s been much better ever since!)

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Oranges And Chickens And Ham, Oh My

| Edmonton AB, Canada | Children, Sons & Daughters

(My six-year-old son just bought a notebook which he calls his “secret diary.” The fact that it’s supposed to be a secret never stops him from leaving it wide open on the kitchen table every day since he got it. Of course, whenever he does this, I take advantage of it. Here are some things I saw in the diary.)

Monday: “Peanut butter + jam = good. Ham + cheese = good. Peanut butter + ham = not bad. Jam + cheese = gross.”

Tuesday: “I wore shoes inside and no one found out.”

Wednesday: *nothing on the page but a badly-drawn picture of a chicken*

Thursday: “I like oranges.”

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Bop-It To The Next Generation

| Louisville, KY, USA | Cousins

(My fourteen-year-old cousin is visiting for the weekend. I’m 26. This exchange takes place while we’re watching videos together.)

Cousin: “Do you know what ‘Bop-It’ is?”

Me: “I was playing ‘Bop-It’ before you were born.”

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A Mother’s Decision Carries Some Weight

| USA | Parents & Guardians

(We’re getting ready for a trip to the beach. The last trip we went on, my mom brought multiple heavy bags with her.)

Me: “Mom, I’m begging you, please travel light this time.”

(Since this is the third or fourth time I’ve asked her this, she’s getting a bit annoyed with it.)

Mom: “Look, I bring enough to be comfortable, and what are you complaining about? Who do you think has to carry all of this?”

Me: “I do, otherwise I wouldn’t be saying anything.”

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The Love Be-teen Siblings

| USA | Siblings

(It is my brother’s 20th birthday; he, my mother, and I are sitting in the living room waiting for my sister to come home so we can all go celebrate. When she walks in, she hugs him, looks him dead in the eye and says:)

Sister: “Congratulations on beating teen pregnancy, [Brother].”