I am preparing to leave for my family reunion in Murfreesboro, Arkansas. Here's what you need to know about Murfreesboro: nothing.
But, for the sake of painting the pain I will be in I will share this: it's hot, really hot; it involves some level of camping; there is an insect infestation; there is dirt; I will be sunburned despite the volumes of sunscreen I slather on myself; the bathroom situation is semi-dire; I will have thigh chafe due to gallons of sweat over-lubricating that area; by nightfall my four year old will lose her shit from over-tiredness and my mother will increase my anxiety by fretting over what everyone thinks about my four year old losing her shit; most of the family I never see will not bother to show, but all the folks that live in Dallas (and that I see all the time) will be there; someone will be injured; someone will have a fight with their mother (no, not me); there will be some sort of boat accident; there will be a whole lot of sitting around in the heat; lawn chairs will be at a premium and coveted jealously; I will be cajoled into squeezing my fat ass into a bathing suit; while swimming in the lake my mother will worry about all of us swallowing flesh-eating bacteria; I will almost pass out from the exertion of pulling off my wet swimsuit; some former cousin-in-law will show up out of the blue, missing some teeth, and drunk; I will wonder how much inbreeding occurred in my family once upon a time; my aunt and uncle will bicker to the point we're all uncomfortable; I won't get any sleep because my cousin snores like a buzz saw; I will eat too much; I will not be able to poop due to the aforementioned semi-dire bathroom situation; my mother will be checking everyone for tics every half hour; I will want to kill someone; I will want to kill myself; and, finally, I will swear to never do this again.
But, I will. Why? Why endure this hillbilly misery every year? Because my mother makes me. And even though I'm 36 years old, she can nag me into doing almost anything. You don't know guilt until you know my mother. You don't know unrelenting harassment until you know my mother. You don't know emotional manipulation until you know my mother.
I always think she would have been the greatest lawyer to ever practice because the other side would cave instantly just to get rid of her. Yet, she's never unkind, never rude or hurtful. With unfailing politeness she will carve out your will to exist. Resistance is futile. Give into the momma. I always do.
Murfreesboro boasts the only continental diamond mine in the U.S. Digging in it for diamonds is like digging in the asshole of the earth.