How wonderful to be young! Learning about life and love, with your mother there to guide and comfort. Wednesday, Beth reminded us of just how much we forget – if we’re lucky – about adolescent life at home with the parents.
The baby pics. The embarrassing photos shown to the girl or boy that we are trying to impress, and mother’s commentary on each and every one of them. Oh, that will impress all right! And you will never forget, nor be allowed to forget, the total humiliation.
It may start out innocently. Mom shows a photo of you last summer, one you look really good in. But then it’s “Oh, look at this one, I just love it,” and next thing you know she’s telling the story of giving birth. “Like passing a ten pound bowling ball.” Please Lord, just take me now.
Here’s some hints, kids, for when you start seeing someone. Go out the door to meet him or her, yell ‘won’t be late’ back to your parents and keep on going. If your girl- or boyfriend has a car, tell him or her to stay in it and honk for you to come out. Your parents won’t like either of these, but dealing with their annoyance is preferable to dealing with the photo show.
You’ll probably never avoid the show and tell, but you can try to postpone it until you know the person you’re going out with a bit better. With luck, you’ll get to see his or her baby pics before having to go through it with your own.
I would love to know how many takes were needed to get the scene of Beth showing Craig’s baby photos to Caitlin. The expressions on each actor’s face was perfect. I don’t know how they could do it without breaking up laughing.
The entire sequence of dinner-with-the-family was brilliant. From Craig’s cooking preparation, with Beth looking at him and the kitchen as if he were performing an exotic ritual that she had never before witnessed. To her satisfied “that went well” to Kirk after Craig walked out, looking daggers at her, to walk Caitlin to the bus stop.
And Kirk’s final bemused look at Beth. He knew full well that this had not gone well but did not know how to explain the wrongness of it to her. It’s as well you didn’t try, Kirky, she would never understand or accept your critique. This is something you just do when you’re a mother.