"Well I think I could make millions on this idea," I say, "Perfect for the mom-on-the-go who needs a gift for everyone in the family. Two Fleshlights in one package? What a bargain, am I right?"
"You are more wrong than I ever thought was possible."
I should point out that this conversation is taking place on the phone, and the "Father-and-Son Fleshlight" business endeavor came from a conversation I had earlier in the day. I'm at my parents' house and have decided to call my friend Chris to wish him a merry Christmas (Eve). The conversation immediately turns to inappropriate humor, because that's how our conversations tend to work.
"Aren't you at your parents' right now?" Chris asks, "Can't they hear you and your disgusting business ideas?"
"No, I'm downstairs in the kitchen," I say.
"But can't they hear you from there?"
"No, they're upstairs, I'm in the basement."
"Your kitchen is in the basement?"
"No, this is the basement kitchen, the other one's upstairs."
"Two kitchens? You never told me you were a millionaire. I want a car."
"I'm not, we just have... two kitchens."
"Uhh..." I stutter, "I don't know."
"Like, why are two kitchens necessary?" he asks.
"In case the other one breaks I guess."
I have not been able to stop thinking about this. It's ruining the holidays.
Extra bathrooms make sense, because two people can poop at the same time without having to touch butts. Extra living space? Also reasonable, everyone needs their space, it keeps people from killing each other. Extra bedrooms make sense because condoms break, and you have to have a place for the screaming, money-hemorrhaging results to sleep. Hell, I can even understand having a table for dining in your kitchen and an additional table in a dining room. One is casual and the other is formal, and it's nice to have extra seating when you have guests.
But an extra kitchen? This makes no sense.
And I've never questioned it. I've always accepted it as the other kitchen. I spent my childhood questioning the motives of religion and government and authority (a great way for an eight year old to make his parents uncomfortable), but never once did I say, "Mom, why the fuck do we have an extra kitchen? Who built this fucked-up freakshow of a house?"
The realization that my childhood home is some hideous monstrosity with unnecessary appendages is a little unnerving.
And the fact that it was like this the entire time and I didn't even think about it is slightly traumatizing for me. This building deceived me, tricked me into thinking it was a loving home when in reality it's a disfigured monster.
"Hey Mama, why is our house a disgusting freak with extra limbs?"
I can't believe she still loves me.
It turns out that the woman that used to live in this place used to do a lot of canning and baking, so a second kitchen makes sense. I'm a little suspicious that she was a serial killer and used the second kitchen as her personal torture chamber and mortuarium, but I keep quiet about my suspicions (but seriously we live in the middle-of-nowhere. Nobody could hear the screaming. It would be the best serial killer hideout ever).
I guess that's what family is all about, looking past the unnecessary appendages and hideous disfigurements and accepting them for the fucked-up mess that they are.
I'd prefer it if my parents' house had a hot tub, billiards, and mini-bar room instead of a second kitchen.
But it's still home.