The Old Man and I

I live with my grandfather.
I have made a few posts recently that have shown a little bit what our lives together is like. A lot of them show us being generally snarky to each other, which is pretty much the basis of all of our conversations.
My grandfather is very sarcastic and has a very dry sense of humor. He also likes to tease a lot, to the point that most of what comes out of his mouth is him teasing me.
Luckily I worked in automotive for the past year and if you are going to work in that industry, you have to roll with the punches. My old boss would introduce me at parties/meetings as the “Corporate Pain in the Ass”. He also told me once that I would probably never find love because of my personality.
And how did I respond to those comments?
You throw it back. Top it if you can.
And none of us ever got offended, because we knew that it was said in affection and jest. It wasn’t really meant to hurt the other person.
We also were in positions where we would have to do deal with people saying really mean things to us and so in a way it prepared us for the real deal.

Fast forward to living with my grandfather, who I didn’t really know very well when I was younger.
He was around a lot of the time, but he didn’t really get on well with kids so it was hard to talk to him.
Today he tells me that he gets along better with “kids” in their twenties. I would agree (except about the kids part) since now he is a very easy person to talk to and he is very fun to banter with.
Well, here is an example of some of that banter that I posted on Instagram from last night:

rutext

So, he is in a wheelchair.
Not paralyzed, but just can’t use the right side of his body and I feel a lot of people look at that and immediately feel sorry for him.
They see him in his wheelchair, that he is 85 and immediately start to judge these sorts of interactions.
This post I made on Instagram got a response from my cousin commenting

#PoorGuy

I just rolled my eyes.
He is not a poor guy. When I got there to pick him up he said “About time you showed up”.
He was obviously super upset about the text.

But people don’t understand that sort of relationship I have found.
They will look at us shocked or even say something to me about it and he eats it up. A lot of times he will be smiling at me when they are saying something.

(Seen Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vj_tlHqnWj0)

The “something nice” he said in that video was “Good For You” when I told him that I had gotten him a Pepsi from the store.
….Yeah, homeboy gives as good as he gets.
My aunt actually apologized to me that he is so “mean to me” a couple of weeks ago.
And yet, we are both fine.

Last night we went to Cafe Rio together and as we were leaving he told me to take our leftovers out to the car and he would roll himself out to the side-walk while I did it.
So, I was holding the door open for him and he was having trouble getting through the doorway.
This lady came running up to him asking him if he needed any help and he just kept trying to get through the doorway on his own without answering her.
She then looked at me as if I was going to answer for him.
I just said:

“He needs to learn to do it on his own.”

She gave me the most horrified look ever and then looked at me like I was the worst person in the world.
She missed him just rolling his eyes at me and then said “Well, I think you’re doing a great job.” to him.

I don’t expect everyone to understand the relationship that my grandfather and I have.
They see the snarky comments and the back and forth, but they don’t see the affection that happens between us, because it’s mostly through acts that happen when no one is around.
Like the other night he had an accident in his chair and I ended up cleaning it up and I couldn’t help but think that there was no way I didn’t love him when I was doing it.
Or the other night when I wasn’t feeling good and fell asleep on the couch, I woke up at 2 am to find him fixing the blanket on me.
He got embarrassed when he saw me awake and quickly said:

“It wasn’t fully covering your feet!”

And rolled away.
The same man who 5 hours earlier when I told him I still wasn’t feeling good told me:

“You know, we shoot sick horses.”

Just the kind of comment we both expected.

the old and I

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One thought on “The Old Man and I

  1. Great perspective. I will reconsider the joking in my relationships. I was taught every joke had an element of truth….which was usually hurtful. I can see the endearment here…with some people.

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