Mimi was my mom’s feisty, skinny, patriotic, and eccentric step-mother. As a child, I would often spend Friday nights with Mimi, and each time was exactly the same. The first time I had dinner at Mimi’s she opened the cabinets and told me to pick out 3 different colors. So, I picked green, white, and purple-otherwise known as peas, potatoes, and beets. Then she told me that we must also have “a meat” so she grabbed some hot dogs from the fridge. And with that, the traditional dinner at Mimi’s was created: Hot dogs, peas, beets, and potatoes.
She sat me down at the table (after clearing a space for me amid the newspapers and Lillian Vernon catalogs) and then poured me a glass of chocolate milk. She would say the blessing then tell me about whatever issue she was riled up about that week (the woman had been a WAC in WWII and loved a good political rant) and say I had to “hurry up and finish so we can watch TV.” For some children, Friday evening with grandma meant home cooking, baking cookies, and then watching a nice Disney movie. Not so with Mimi. TV time after our fine dining meant watching Dallas. Mimi LOVED Dallas and at every commercial break she’d say, “Now, remember, don’t tell your mother anything about Texas.” (Which, honestly, in the right context, isn’t horrible advice…)
Mimi, I hope where you are they allow you to have all the political rants your heart can take while earmarking your Lillian Vernon catalogs. I also hope they’ve got your TV all ready for the new Dallas remix premier tonight, because that would most certainly be your idea of Heaven. I plan to watch the premiere tonight with fond and funny memories of you. But don’t worry, I still won’t tell my mother anything about Texas.