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In-Laws And Other Monstrosities

March 2012
Written by: Dame Wotta Tripp

How To Deal With Unwelcome Guests

The terrifying words ring out on what should be a laid-back summer night after a hard day's work, a relaxed Wednesday evening looking eagerly forward to the rapidly approaching and well-deserved long week-end:

"Honey, my parents are coming to stay Friday evening!"

Spoken so casually and seemingly brightly while stepping out of the shower or unloading the dishwasher, you might almost be tempted to think that your partner didn't understand the magnitude of what they have just said!

Spoken too brightly. And you are almost tempted to respond with matched good cheer. But only almost.

Because, let's face it, nobody who isn't barking mad could actually be looking forward to such an absolutely horrible event.

This casually flung-out bit of god-awful news has ruined your plans, no, stop... it's far more serious than that.

You are devastated!

When you can finally speak again the wounded, ragged, outraged voice is hardly recognizable to you, even though it's your own. It's quavering strangely and so very highly pitched:

"You bloody what...?"

You briefly consider killing your spouse as the crazy thought that a week-end in the local police station followed by twenty years might be a more attractive option flickers through your poor warped mind like summer lightning.

Taking some deep, steadying breaths and gaining back a modicum of self-control you scrub that idea and instead pour yourself a rather stiff drink. And then another.

Seven straight doubles and a heated argument later you lie rigid in the marital bed, turned coldly away from your once affectionate partner, watching the chill fingers of gray morning light wash over the room like an evil presence searching out prey.

Your snoring spouse sleeps peacefully behind you, oblivious to and uncaring anyway of your anguish.

The alarm will be ringing to get you up for work after your sleepless night in just a few seconds less than 23 minutes, you have a massive hangover, and now there is little over 36 and a half hours left before they arrive...

If this sounds familiar, then you know you need some of Dame Wotta Tripp's sound and light advice.

There are many times when you don't seem to have any control left over your own life. You can't seem to find time for that life, maybe don't even feel as if you have one anymore.

Some people call this condition marriage.

Before we deal with the monstrous shadows that can sometimes be cast over the marital bed by the spectres of disapproving in-laws, parents, siblings and other assorted relatives, we must first realize that we all temporarily lose control over our destinies when unwelcome guests arrive.

But did the perceived control we seemed to remember having once exercised in our lives ever really exist? Was it genuine?

Perhaps. For some. And they will now be numbered among the extremely small percentage still exercising that control and calling all the shots in their own lives.

For most, it was just a sad illusion fuelled by youthful dreams and aspirations.

Combine your average parents with what passes for value systems within society and what do you get?

Such Terrible Relatives!A ghastly and sickly malfunctioning hybrid, one that is spindly, pale, evil, brainwashed, bigoted and used to functioning almost entirely on automatic, mindlessly revisiting the mistakes of a previous generation upon the next.

A morass of separate and conflicting cultural, political and religious belief systems indulged in by the insecure and misguided creates a general confusion about how we are all supposed to behave.

Many teens in the enthusiastic flush of young adulthood try desperately to evade the patterns presented for them to follow before settling down and getting on with them anyway.

It's a crushing weight. Most people cave sooner rather than later.

And how are we all supposed to behave, anyway? Well, you might read DWT's article 'Ethics Versus Morals' to find out.

Mind you, if you wish to behave impeccably you should not use the methods outlined below for shortening the length of a guests stay, or even causing them to leave.

If you're desperate then you will probably try anything at least once.

Regarding Acts of God and relatives there's often very little that can be done without crossing the line and either completely alienating your partner or committing acts of criminal proportions.

People will always own relatives, no matter how often they're advised not to do so.

Nevertheless, here are some tips to make your guest's stay more comfortable - for you!

• Stock up on your favourite soother. Put it in a safe and secret place for emergencies. The hip-flask was not invented as a joke - use it. Try and stick to filling it with alcohol though - Ayahuasca or belladonna will only make things very much worse. Nothing stronger than absinthe is recommended.
• Arrange for someone to phone you up demanding you come to help out in a dire emergency, thus excusing you from the family gathering for at least a few hours.
• Stow a thermos, sandwiches and a couple of good books in your car ahead of time. When you can bear not a second more fall to the ground writhing in agony. After a minute or two recover sufficiently to be able to move around, explain your necessity of going to the hospital emergency room with your mysterious illness and excuse yourself ruefully and with sorrow. Hideout with your picnic and books. You might even try the emergency room - anything's preferable to being at home right now.
• Have an excellent friend who owes you a favour go under cover of darkness to the home of your visiting relatives and stage a break-in. Take nothing but make sure that the break-in itself is discovered and reported. This will send your unwanted visitors scurrying back home. Give an amount to charity as penance or visit 'The Confessional'.
• Develop something akin to dysentery. If being stuck on the toilet reading is preferable to socializing you can actually take a slight overdose of laxatives for ultra-realism. You could also make some brownies or muffins with chocolate flavoured laxatives and allow everybody to 'catch' what you have. Your guests will soon rush off to recover at home.
• If your monstrously pestilential loved ones smoke or drink, ban all cigarettes and alcohol (except for your own secret stash) from the house. Explain you have developed allergies as well as an alcohol problem. This should knock a few hours off a weekend visit.
• Play annoying and childish practical jokes all weekend. Use such things as a whoopee cushion and fake plastic dog excrement.
• Play rap music very loudly or turn the television on to a program that drives everybody crazy, such as reruns of Gilligan's Island or Dallas, also loudly.
• Purchase a pet rat, snake or other such pet and release it into the guest bedroom. The selected creature is a living being and you must be prepared to look after it with respect and affection for its lifetime. But just think of the service it will give you, for you can temporarily release it again and again as needed!
• Arrange the paraphernalia of dark magical work all around the house, along with pictures and posters of a satanic-looking nature on the walls. Try using skulls, foul-smelling incenses, strange chanting and such things. Nail an inverted crucifix above the guest bed and make sure that black candles are burning around your home when your unwanted visitors arrive. Keep begging them to have a séance with you.

The detailed planning of these types of escapades you will have to think up for yourself. Be creative. It will take your mind off the count-down of the hours remaining until they are at your door, staring critically all around them with eyes that are possibly too close together.

And remember the words of comfort in the following quote, which fell straight from the ridiculously-moustachioed mouth of Friedrich Nietzsche, probably while he also was preparing to welcome unwelcome guests, 'what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!'
Go Back To Night Letters


Dame Wotta Tripp gives helpful tips for dealing with and even gettig rid of unwelcome relatives who have come to stay.

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