Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Flock of Flamingoes

Ok I usually just stick to the dorky topics of life, but every now and then an experience occurs in life that just must be shared. I went through one of the most stressful nights I have ever been through. At least within the past 3 months. This story involves my family. (Don't all stressful stories involve family?)

So there are two things you need to know about my family.

1. We shudder and freak out over Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. We'll watch the movie on a loop because we love it, yet it also terrifies us. Birds in general freak us out. I'd even be willing to say that most animals fall in that category of freak out.

2. My family and I are highly dramatic. Give us the least bit of drama and we run with it. Here is an example. Back in the day when the original 90210 was on, I found myself smitten with the storyline involving Kelly Taylor and that stalker girl getting burned in a housefire. Anyone remember that? Essentially the 90210 gang was at a house party and a fire broke out. Kelly and some stalker girl were locked in a bathroom and suffered some minor disfigurement among other issues. I loved that storyline.

So one day my cousins were over, playing with my brother and me at our parent's house. My mom was in the kitchen getting some snacks together. Well she was making popcorn and the bag burned badly. Smoke was flowing from the kitchen, we were told to scramble out of the house for fresh air.

Well I took that moment to become highly dramatic. While everyone ran outside I ran into the bathroom screaming at the top of my lungs. I put towels on the floor and threw water at the door. I was doing my best to relive that 90210 episode for all it was worth. It was sad and tragic. Everyone thought I was off my rocker while I just wanted to be Kelly Taylor. Even though Brenda Walsh was always my favorite. That is just one of the examples of how dramatic things can get with my family.

Anyways, so let us look at what transpired last night-

My husband (J.) and I had my mom and aunt over for dinner. My dad was away from home so we thought it would be nice to have a fun dinner to liven up the beginning of the week. Everything was just great. Dinner was good. The conversation was full of laughs. My mom was a little nervous to go back home to an empty house, but my dad would be back the next day so everything would be alright.

Anyways the night ended, my aunt quickly left and before my mom said her goodbyes she asked, "Didn't your aunt seem funny tonight?" I had noticed nothing out of the usual, but my mom insisted that something was off. Either way she shrugged it off and headed home to a dark empty house. I wanted her to call me as soon as she got home.

So some time went by. I got out of my work clothes and into comfy stuff. (The kinda stuff I'd never be caught out in public in.) J. was watching some random car show on television. The night seemed like it was winding down nicely. Until I got a phone call from my brother.

"M, have you heard from mom?" My brother sounded worried. I started to feel a little nervous. I told him that mom had just left. Then he dropped this ditty on me, "I just got off the phone with her and she says there are hundreds of birds in her front yard." I couldn't understand what he had just said. My brother went on, starting off serious and then dissolving into laughter, "Mom is freaking out because there are hundreds of plastic pink flamingoes in her yard. How much wine did she have to drink at your house?"

I couldn't understand, it didn't make sense. "She only had water, we didn't even open a bottle of wine. Hold on, mom is calling on the other line, let me speak to her." I clicked over to talk. Before I could say a word my mom was on the verge of hysterics, "M! M! I don't know what to do! They're everywhere!"

"Mom, slow down, what is going on?" I asked, hoping she'd make some sense. Choking back fear my mom explained, "I pulled into the driveway and my headlights shined across all this pink in my front yard! There are hundreds of pink flamingoes. I am so scared. I don't know where they came from, I can't get out of my car!"

Shaking my head I calmly told her, "Call the police. Mom, listen to me, hang up the phone and call the police. I'm scared for you." I didn't know what else to tell her! All I could think was that there was some sicko out there with a ton of pink flamingoes. My mom was hearing nothing, "I can't call the police! And tell them what? I have all these damn birds in my front yard! I hate birds! This is a nightmare, I am so scared. I can't get out of the car. I have to let you go."

I clicked over to my brother and was flipping out. Dad was gone and my brother lives on the Best Coast. I had no idea what to do. So I mustered up my inner She-Ra and looked for more presentable clothes to change into.

"What are you going to do M?" My brother asked. I wasn't sure, "Well someone has to go help her! There could be some random murderer in her house!" I told my brother to hold on as my mom called again. Clicking over my mom was on the verge of tears, "They are in my courtyard! They even put these damn birds in my courtyard! They also left some sign that says 'young life.' I can't breathe. I can't move." She hung up on me and I started to scream.

By this time my husband was on the internet trying to find an answer, he said, "Look, your mom just got flocked. By a youth group."

"What the hell does that mean?" All I could think was that my mom was about to be a casualty to some weird gang initiation. I was freaking out. J went on, "Some Christain Youth Groups do this thing, they call it flocking. They put pink flamingoes in your front yard for a fundraiser."

"Preposterous! That is just the dumbest thing I have ever heard!" I relayed the message to my brother. Neither of us were buying it. Why would a Christain youth group target our mother? Nothing made sense. So we did the only thing possible, we went down the list of our mortal enemies. I've racked up a lot of broken hearts so my fear was that some Brotherhood of Evil Ex-Boyfriends had been formed to take out the people I cared most about. My brother feared that some church group was after him for his affinity for old John Waters films. We were terrified.

I had to click over again as my mom called back, "They are asking for money." I was thinking for a ransom, "What?!" She sounded different this time. I spoke some more, "Mom, J just told me it is some youth group."

"Yes I know. They flocked me. The run out and put pink flamingoes in your front yard and ask for forty five dollars. You leave the money in an envelope and they pick everything up in the morning."

I was pissed. First of all who in the hell comes up with that idea for a fundraiser? Secondly, we all just about died of stress fractures. I thought my mom was going to be the big horrific story on the evening news. I could not take it. My heart was just pounding so fast.

So we did what we do best, we laughed uncontrollably. What else could we do? I clicked back over to my brother and relayed the new turn of events. We couldn't stop laughing because we thought people were after us. Paranoid much?

Then my mom called back one last time to tell me the shocking truth, "My sister was behind this! I told you that your aunt was acting funny tonight! She got me!"

After that I spoke to my brother and we could not stop laughing even more. We just couldn't. I mean what a hot damn mess. All my husband could do was say, "What did I marry into?"

Seriously though, that is one terrifying way to raise money. Talk about striking the fear of God into someone. A damn mess. Just a mess. That is all. Now go watch Dallas tonight on TNT.

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