There is a degree of entitlement embraced by the elderly that is dumped upon those around them. By elderly, I don’t necessarily mean old; I just mean older than you. It appears to be the plight of the baby of the family to be dismissed entirely by the older members of the family.

I was recently complaining about this to a friend as we swam around the lake with her 90 year old mother. By swim, I really mean walk around IN the water and complain. For a change of pace, we float and complain.

“It’s infuriating,” I said. “I’m fifty years old and I offer to make salmon for dinner. My mom chimes in, ‘Frank always cooks the fish!’ Well, if Frank always cooks the fish, far be it from me to offer to cook some damn fish. Jesus!”

“It’s the same over here,” my best friend Amy said nodding her head toward her cottage. “I don’t even bother to cook anymore. If I do, someone is always there telling me how they would do it. I don’t care how they would do it! It’s fucking chicken!”

I laughed and started to recall the seemingly endless string of times that I had been somehow dismissed by either my older sisters or my parents. Just this week alone, it occurred to me that they must not have bothered to learn my name as a child, because I was called Kathy, I was called Carrie, and for God’s sake, I was even called Frank!

I can’t remember the last time that I was able to sit on our lake house porch in the seat facing straight out onto the lake. Most meals I spend with my back to the lake, looking at it through the reflection in the porch windows. Granted, if none of the older siblings or parents are around, I can sit wherever I damn well please, but… with age appears to come entitlement and off I am sent to eat with the servants, all with their backs to the lake. Obviously these are first world problems, but it doesn’t make them any less annoying.

I spent three days working with a contractor to put together a series of bids for work to be done t the cottage. I met with the guy daily and asked him to put together quotes for three different projects. Meanwhile, my older sister was sailing, or boating, or drinking on the dock. When it was time to explain the quotes to my mother, Big Sis jumped right in and Mom shushed ME when I tried to correct something that BS was explaining incorrectly.

“It’s always like that,” Amy agreed. “Got a serious question? Better ask Big Sis.”

“You girls are silly,” Amy’s mom piped in. “Don’t you know that’s just the way it goes? Nobody listened to me in my family, either. I’m the baby too!” And there you have it.

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