When I was little, I used to tell my mom that someday I would get big and she would get little. I’m not sure if I thought that I would literally get bigger than my mom (I am) or if I would need to parent my mom due to her old age or dementia(no comment). Today at lunch, the manchild, who is bigger than me, had to parent me.
We were sitting in a cute New Mexican restaurant eating our burritos.
Me: Did you see that I tagged you in that Facebook post? I want to see that movie about Betty Boop.
Manchild: [swishing his ice tea around in his glass because this place is anti-straw and there was nothing to stir in the Sweet N Low] What movie?
Me: It’s based on a true story! [I LOVE true stories!] It’s about the woman who inspired the cartoonist to draw Betty Boop. Her name was Elizabeth Boop.
Manchild: [skeptical look with one raised eyebrow]
Me: I’m not making this up. I sent you the trailer. It shows her on a farm with her mom. She accidentally hits herself in the head with an ax and since it’s like 1930 they can’t drain the fluid and she ends up with a big head. [Even I am hearing myself at this point.]
Manchild: [picking up the phone to look at Facebook] Mom, did you happen to notice that Funny or Die posted this trailer? [does air quotes around trailer and speaks to me like I’m an 11-year-old who really need to understand that Santa is not real.]
Me: No. It’s real. Kelli said that she wants to see it too. [Kelli is smart. She knows it’s real, right?]
Me: IT’S REAL!! Chris said he would take me to the Marcus theater with the bar. It’s a real movie.
Manchild: Mom, it’s not real.
Me: [laughing and whining at the same time] BETTY BOOP is REAL!!
Waitress: Hi, everything OK? One check or two?
Me: One! I’m his mom. I know I look too young and all.
Waitress: [laughing and retreating]
Me: But, it has to be real. [pulling my phone out to Google Betty Boop Movie and not finding anything other than old cartoons]
Manchild: You can fixate on it all you want. It’s not real.
Me: [Pulling out my credit card] I’m going to look on the computer at home.
Manchild: And you will get the same results, Mom. Betty Boop is not real.
And sometimes, the children parent the parents. He got big and I got little. And, as an English professor, I teach students how to find good sources. I have failed.