WHEN MOM INSISTS on helping you get revenge on that creepy, manipulative high school theater director, say NO. She will claim you can royally mess up his life by writing his name on a piece of paper and putting it in the freezer. But the price you pay for this black magic is getting laid up with terrible back pain. 

Mom will tell you of the times she has frozen names in the past (like her boss, the manager at Red Lobster, who keyed her car after an argument). She will describe in gleeful detail the ways their lives fell apart (like Red Lobster Manager, who soon lost his job, wife, and house). And she will tell you of the agonizing back injuries she suffered as a cosmic consequence for exacting vengeance over the sullied paint job of her once pristine cherry red ’88 Chevette. 

When she offers to “take the fall” and put the creepy director’s name in the freezer herself, thereby sparing you a hideous back injury, say NO. She will do it anyway, and indeed the creep’s life will be ruined (shockingly swiftly), and shortly thereafter, Mom’s back will go out, at work, as she bends down to pick up a strewn hushpuppy. It will be a back injury so severe that you will be reminded of it every time a back or an injury is mentioned, along with another reminder of how much she surely loves you if she “took the fall” in such a manner.  

In conclusion, even though she’ll do it anyway, say NO. But remember to tell her you love her when she comes home clutching her back. Because she does love you – even if she doesn’t listen when you say NO. And even if she ignores you when you say it’s a terrible idea to use red nail polish to touch-up her keyed Chevette. Also, younger self, maybe give her a call?

 

Deeki is a writer and filmmaker in Los Angeles.