Jamaican me crazy.

Lying Awake\ Lying about Being Awake

Kim: I’ve waited so long for you to wake up.
Me: Really? Because I was up earlier and you were asleep…

Kim sighs heavily

Kim: Why do you always lie? I don’t understand? I’m not mad that you slept in so why are you lying about it?
Me: I’m not lying.
Kim: You’re lying again.
Me: How do you know if I am up when you are asleep? Huh?
Kim: Robin, I know when you’re lying.
Me: I’m not going to argue with you on your birthday.
Kim: Were we arguing or having a conversation?
Me: C’mon. It’s your birthday. I’m going to treat you to breakfast. On me!
Kim: It’s all inclusive.
Me: Just hurry up. I’ve been up all morning waiting for ya!

Kim rolls her eyes and grabs a room key. Family vacation has begun.
Bossypants. Hint: It’s Not Tina Fey

Kim: Call down and order us some beers.
Robin: You always boss me around!

Kim’s right eyebrow shoots up. This is the nonverbal expression that means you are crazy and I’m confused as to how we got here. I have seen her do this to everyone. In fact, I imagine that her eyebrow is lifted during 75% of her day. I wonder why I wasn’t born with the ability to do a strong “You are crazy/I don’t give a damn” eyebrow raise.

Kim: Was I bossing you or merely encouraging you to call?

That’s another thing Kim does. Ask you a question with two similar words that have different degrees, prompting you to choose the softer of the two. I never fall for it.

Me: You were bossing me. “Go get us chicken. Go get us a towel. Ask her if those seats are taken.”

I’m pleased I have examples. No one ever has examples when they’re trying to prove a point. I have plenty.

Kim: I didn’t scream at you and tell you to do it.
Me: Your tone doesn’t matter. It’s still a command.
Kim: Well if I always boss you around then you always want to make a deal. You never just do something. It’s “I’ll get us breakfast while you go get the sunscreen. Or I’ll get the towels, you find a chair.
Me: That’s because I’m fair.

Kim leans back in her chair. When she’s done talking she’ll just return to what she was doing, unmoved. No grand conclusion or exit. I, for one, like to end with my best closing argument.

Me: All I’m saying is that I don’t like when people tell me what to do. I’ll do anything for anybody, but I don’t like being told. You know what I mean?


(Thirty minutes go by)
Kim: Robin, do you mind getting us some lunch please?
Me: I like the way you asked Kim so sure!
Kim: Nobody is perfect Robin, but gee golly-I sure am trying!
Me: When you exaggerate Kim it means you’re insincere and not trying to actually stop bossing me around.
Kim: Robin go get the damn lunch!

And I do. But I tell myself it’s only because it’s her birthday, and because my mom would find this all so silly and because I have a photoshop app on my phone.

Small victories.

Hughken, Cooper and Robin

He looks very serious. Like he’s not in the mood to take a picture of two girls enjoying vacation, but I ask the lifeguard anyway.

-Will you take our picture?
-Sure sure. I’ll take a few and you can choose.

I instantly love him. Kim hates when I ask for multiple pictures so I’m happy to meet someone who already knows to give me options.

-Your name?
-Robin. Yours?

I stare at his name tag as he reads my mind.

-It’s Hughken, but it’s hard to say so I just say ‘call me Cooper.’
-That’s not hard to say.
-Well, people usually say it wrong or they aren’t used to saying those two names together so I just changed it.
-Sorry to hear that.
-That you change your name to make it easier for other people.
-No problem. My dad’s name is Hughken and if I have a son I will name him Hughken too, but Cooper is fine.
-I’ve never mispronounced a name I wanted to remember.

It sounds like I’m flirting when really I just want him to go by the name on his birth certificate-the one he likes most. I change the subject.

-Do you have any New Year’s resolutions?

This is my favorite icebreaker and upon hearing it, Kim opens her book and rolls her eyes. To be exact, I don’t see her roll her eyes I just know that she does.

-No, I don’t do that or make plans. Plans never work out.

I agree not because I actually agree, but because it feels impolite not to.

-Yea, they never work out!

I hear my mouth lie.

-I’m not doing a lot. Just trying to drink more water.

I say this while holding a beer in my hand.

-I am also going to stop partying so much and I want to write more and workout occasionally. Actually I don’t want to stop partying. One time this guy I liked said he would only drink on special occasions and I agreed, but isn’t life just one big special occasion?
-Sure sure.
-So really just water and writing and running, but my friend has my tennis shoes. Anyway…do you like being a lifeguard?
-Sure sure. I’ve been swimming since I was six.
-So have I, but I couldn’t save someone from drowning!

I can’t tell if my jokes aren’t funny or if he can’t tell I’m making a joke which is ultimately the same thing. Or maybe any joke where the punch line is death is off limits. I recline my chair giving him an easy out. His only obligation was to take a picture, not to talk to someone who is now being ignored by her sister. He turns toward the direction he came from and walks away.

-Bye Hughken!

I shout this as he gets further from the beach chairs. I’m waving my hands wildly like someone who is on her cellphone telling her friend she is in section C30 not C40. Y’all know the “Do you see me now?!” wave.

He turns around and laughs. Not looking so serious after all.

Kim and Robin Beck: Stars at Looking Foolish

Me: Dammit Kim, We could’ve been Mary Kate and Ashley, but mom wouldn’t let us be great!
Kim: Mom said we can’t blame her for anything that happened in childhood.
Me: If I hear that speech one more time…
Kim: “Shit you’re old enough now. Go back and act! I did the best I could.”
Me: No, no. Here it is! “Kids always want to grow up, get some money, and write a tell-all book. If y’all write one about me then I’m going to write one about y’all too!”

We both laugh. If Kim and I can’t do nothin else, we can mock our mother.

Kim: Who is buying their clothes anyway? Teens?
Me: They have an alligator bag that costs $38,000. So no. They look like lizards to me.

I hold the magazine up to get a better look.

Kim: Yea they do. Rich lizards.
Me: Let’s try to do what they’re doing.
Kim: No thank you.
Me: Come on!
Kim: No.

By a stroke of luck that I can only attribute to heat and too many beers, Kim agrees.

We start imitating the twins on the magazine. We’re cracking up and so caught up in looking like rich lizards that we hardly notice when an attractive man walks over.

Attractive Man: I see that you all have been struggling to take a picture. Let me help you.
Me: Oh no! We were just trying to–
Kim: Yes thanks we’d love you to!
Me: No really we have plenty. We were just trying to copy this picture. Wait, let me show you..
Kim: Smile! Ready Robin. Smile!

We take a few pictures and the man walks away.

Kim: Robin! Why did you keep trying to tell him what we were doing?!
Me: I didn’t want him to think we were taking selfies with my chin resting on your knee. That’s so weird!
Kim: Not as weird as telling him our grown asses were trying to impersonate Mary Kate and Ashley. I purposely closed the magazine and you kept trying to find the page. What is the matter with you?
Me: Yea that is embarrassing. But damn. Just think if we really had been child stars.

Small Victories

Kim: There is a mosquito in here and I’m going to get it.
Me: Wait, I see it. Don’t move. Staaaay Stillll.

I roll up my magazine and whop Kim four times on the head. We both know there is no mosquito on her head, but I take this missing mosquito as a unique opportunity.

Kim: (balls up her hand)

Me: For the love of God no! Please! It was a joke! A joke! And I didn’t punch you. It’s not fair! Nooooo! For the love of God! Use the magazine please. Please!

I know I won’t walk away unscathed, but she does use the magazine instead of her fist and eventually we kill the mosquito. Again, small victories.
The End

Kim: Let’s go get breakfast.
Me: Hold on. Let me just finish blogging about the trip.
Kim: Let me see what you wrote!


**I should be home by 5:00. Please contact Shyril Beck if you don’t hear from me.


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