…costs $1 around here. It all started when I was late to work. No, to be honest, it probably started 37 years ago when Lois became Laura’s Big Sister. Anyway, things came to a head when I was late. Every. Day. I kept telling my sister I was sorry.
She finally snapped, “That’s a lie! If you were really sorry, you would stop doing it. From now on I decree that every time you say you’re sorry, I will charge you $1.”
Do you know how many dollars that is in a day??
I didn’t, until I thought I would actually have to fork out for it. And I hate to say it, but she was right. This little game continues to haunt me.
“I’m sorry I lied to the credit union ladies about you not wearing underwear.”
“That’s a dollar!”
I said, “I’m sorry I said I wrote your number on the mens room wall. I didn’t really write it there– I just told a customer I did. They knew I was kidding!”
I tried again. “Shit. I’m sorry I told your husband that I would ‘have my sister sleep with’ him when he fixed my brakes and again when he plowed my driveway? ”
“Nuh uh!! Lies!! Gimme a dollar!” she’d say. (She doesn’t think it’s funny when I ask to borrow a dollar, either.)
For awhile, I got quite good at not apologizing, even when I was truly sorry. Or using a mental Thesaurus to say I was recalcitrant, apologetic, and woeful. But that felt like a loophole.
I used to hack* her Facebook all the time. I would think to myself, what would Lois say? Probably something like,
“I declare Laura the Employee of the Month! Take my credit card and get yourself a hammock and a slushy machine. And call the contractors to build you your own office!!”
“LAURA!!!” , she would type once she noticed she was still logged in and I gave myself a promotion. (When she uses ALL CAPS IT MEANS SHE’S YELLING. Not a good sign.)
“sorry, sissy. i love you.” (All lower-case means I am contrite. Sorta.)
“BULL!! DOLLAR!!” (Do you know what apoplectic means? According to Wikipedia, “Colloquially, particularly in the adjective form apoplectic, apoplexy means furious, enraged, or upset to the point of being unable to deal with a situation rationally or diplomatically.” I usually try to stop myself before she becomes apoplectic. With mixed results.)
Anyway, the game hasn’t been a total waste. I have dramatically cut down on saying things I don’t mean. Ok– marginally cut down. And I like to think it’s good mix of self-help and parenting, too–we all catch ourselves doing it. I hope it’s teaching The Boy to consider whether or not he truly wants to change his behavior, or just duck the consequences. It makes me more accountable, too. I am not always late. I am even early occasionally. Why? Because that’s one thing I AM sorry for.
However, I cleaned my room today, and found 4 dusty quarters. Tomorrow I will present them to my womb-mate just in case she doesn’t think I am sincere when I say, “I’m sorry that Amy P. tagged you in a picture on Facebook, and I told 700 of my closest FB friends that you gave her crabs. (Not to mention all 12 people that subscribe to the blog).”
And hope she doesn’t hit me. 😀 Seriously, how could I have let an opportunity like this pass by?? That is worth a dollar. Hello, it’s priceless!! It’s right up there with the time someone Googled “Queen of Poo” and were led to the post about my sister and fertilizer.
*It’s not really hacking if your loved one forgets they are logged in and walks away.
PS: Only a few days left in the year, and my bid for Employee of the Year is in serious jeopardy. Please vote for me here?? And as usual, if you found this post the slightest bit helpful, “like”, share or comment. Thanks! Loveyabye! 🙂