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Having New Old Problems

| IA, USA | Parents & Guardians

(We’re driving and there’s a crowded crosswalk. Note: my mom is sixty-one years old.)

Mom: “OH, my god! What is with all these old people!?”

(Mom pauses, her eyes going wide.)

Mom: “I can’t say that any more…”

Me: “…”

Mom: “I AM an old people!”

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Making Middle Earth Great Again

| OH, USA | Grandchildren

(Strung between two roadside poles was a reddish-orange banner for a racist, misogynist candidate I despise. Just as I notice it, my grandson says:)

Grandson: “Is that the Eye of Sauron?”

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Oddly Accurate

| Devon, England, UK | Cousins, Sons & Daughters

(My son is seven.)

Son: “Our car puts up with a lot!”

Me: “Even your toots.”

Son: “Hey! Yours, too!”

Me: “I don’t toot.”

Husband: “Really?”

Me: “…as much as you two.”

Son: “You burp, Mummy. A lot more than me or daddy.”

Me: “Because I’m indecent and common.”

Son: “HEY! We’re ALL indecent and common. You’re ODD.”

Me & Husband: “Sounds about right…”

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GPS = Grandma Printing System

| Boone, NC, USA | Grandparents

(I’ve driven up to the mountains with my cousin, to meet up with our grandma and go on a day trip. We’ve planned where to go, and meet up for lunch, then get in Grandma’s car to drive out to Linville Cavern.)

Grandma: *to me* “Here, I printed out the directions. You can be my navigator.”

Me: *after looking at the papers* “Grandma, this doesn’t have instructions. It’s just the page where you click on which route you want to take.”

(Thankfully, the papers had the address and my grandma had a GPS!)

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Dad Always Goes In The Same Direction

| Amsterdam, The Netherlands | Parents & Guardians

(I was born and raised in Belgium, but moved to The Netherlands four years ago to go live with my partner. My parents are visiting for a weekend and they want to go to Amsterdam since it is only a 30 minute drive. My father is pretty stubborn and he thinks he knows better all the time. He even believes he knows the roads better than the navigation.)

Me: “Dad, the roundabout there is a little tricky; I made the same mistake the first time. It is a roundabout with two lanes, but the inner lane takes you back on the road we’re driving on now, so make sure to take the outer circle; otherwise you won’t get on the interstate to Amsterdam.”

Dad: “Yeah, yeah. I know what I’m doing.”

(We proceed to the roundabout and I mention again that he has to take the outer circle, just to be sure that he doesn’t take the inner circle.)

Dad: “[My Name], you don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m taking the inner circle. I know better!”

Brother: “What the h*** are you doing? [My Name] takes this road every week. Why didn’t you listen to him? Just accept his advice for a minute instead of thinking you know everything better.”

(My dad then saw that the inner circle indeed didn’t lead to the interstate and the inner and outer circle are separated with a small, round, but still high concrete line.)

Dad: “Quit your yapping. I know what I’m doing!”

(He proceeds to drive over the concrete line to get to the outer ring.)

Dad: “See, I’m going the right way!”

(All four of us were sighing, because that is how it usually went.)

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