Shit My Grandma Says (and Does)

Inspired by Shit My Dad Says, I am going to attempt to write down all the crazy stuff my grandma says and does nearly every time I see her. She’s 85, is 5’2″, weighs about 90 pounds soaking wet, Italian, and completely uninhibited.

Explanations and additions to this list will follow.

1. “One right after the other.”

(She says this when she gets impatient, which is most of the time. It’s a classic Grandma saying.)

2. “They should look at themselves in the mirror.”

(When she sees an overweight or morbidly obese person.)

3. “All those actors. They’re all Jewish. And that Dustin Hoffman. He’s so short.”

(My Grandma has an obsession with Jewish people. To this day, I still don’t know why. She also doesn’t like short men or actors who aren’t very good-looking. I personally think Dustin Hoffman was attractive.)

4. “She’s just a little bit simple.”

(She says this mainly about, K., the woman she lives with – mostly when K. does something my grandma disapproves of, which is most of the time.)

5. “Move out of the way, fatty!”

(I was picking her up from the Wal-Mart pharmacy and waiting for people to walk across the parking lot so I could drive off, and she noticed this overweight woman dart across the path. As usual, she was impatient to get home.)

6. “Peter, you should not have given him that sloppy joe.”

(This was a long time ago. I must have been 9 or 10, maybe even 8. My cousin Jeremy and my Uncle Pete had just arrived from the plane – I believe they had been living in Germany at the time – my uncle is in the Army – and we were going to have sloppy joes for dinner. Jeremy, who must have been 3 or 4 at the time, wanted a sloppy joe. He had been sick on the plane; he doesn’t do too well with air travel. He really wanted a sloppy joe, and Grandma was warning my uncle not to give him one. But he said, “Mom, if the kid wants a sloppy joe, I’m giving him a sloppy joe.” So Jeremy got his sloppy joe, ate two bites, and threw up at the dinner table. Grandma took him to the bathroom and said, “Peter, you should never have given him that sloppy joe.”)

7. “Look, Maggie! They’re throwing chairs at each other!”

(I think I was probably 7 or 8 at the time and Grandma was staying over for the night because it had gotten dark and she hates driving at night. So she was sitting in one of the kitchen chairs, about two feet away from the television, and was watching The Jerry Springer Show at an extremely high volume. I was sitting in the kitchen reading or something and all of a sudden I heard all this commotion on the TV. So Grandma started laughing hysterically and cackling like a witch. “Look, Maggie! They’re throwing chairs at each other!” she shrieked with laughter. So I came running in to see maddened guests heaving chairs and trying to give each other a concussion. Grandma thought it was hysterical. Societal degenerates attempting to kill each other with furniture because their husbands cheated on them.)

8. “All this driving and driving.”

(She says this every time she is in the car for over an hour. She must have said this about three times a day when we visited California – where my Uncle Pete was living – for a week.)

9. “It’s so heavy.”

(Any time a bag or item weighs more than five pounds, she will say this.)

10. “That stupid Bahama. And his stupid wife. I hate that Michelle Obama.”

(There is nobody my Grandma hates more than Barack Hussein Obama. Until he announced that he was running for vice president, Grandma was an outspoken Democrat. Ever since Obama was elected, she’s been leaning more and more toward the Republican side of politics. She’s even gone so far as to listen to Rush Limbaugh – and enjoy it.)

11. “This one and that one.”

(Similar to #1 – it’s one of Grandma’s stock phrases. She refers to people as “this one” and “that one” when she doesn’t feel like saying their names.)

12. “Where’s my tissue?”

(Grandma is extremely frugal; she grew up during the Great Depression and it had a huge impression on the way she lives. She conserves tissues until they literally fall apart. She will use the same tissue over and over again. We – Grandma, Mom, and I – were on the plane to California to visit my Uncle Pete, his second wife, and my cousins. During the flight, Grandma got the aisle seat and she was blowing her nose all the time because the air conditioning on the plane made her cold. She got out a tissue she must have had since World War II, blew her nose, then spread the tissue out on the arm of the seat – where everyone walking up and down the aisle could see it. I thought she was drying her tissue there. She thought it was economical. Everyone else thought it was disgusting. We got off the plane at the airport in California. Grandma took the tissue and put it into her blouse – to this day, I don’t know why she does this. Later on, after we had gotten settled at my uncle’s house, she was looking all over the place for her tissue. My mom had found it in the bathroom and threw it away – finally – but she did not tell Grandma, who would have had a fit. We replaced her tissue and she never knew the difference.)

13. “That’s my Imus!”

(Grandma is a huge fan of Don Imus. Whenever she can’t get him on the radio, she gets very sad. When Imus made the remark about ‘nappy-headed hos’, Grandma was extremely angry that he was taken off the air. When he finally came back on, she loudly proclaimed, “That’s my Imus!” and was happy for a long time.)

14. “It’s so cold in those supermarkets. You should always bring a sweater.”

(Every time Grandma enters a supermarket for any period of time, she always complains about how cold it is, especially in the freezer section and the produce section. Every time I walk in with her, she tells me to bring a sweater. I never do, because I don’t feel the cold. My Grandma is cold-blooded – she gets cold extremely easily.)

15. “Why did I bring my sweater?”

(After saying #14 before we entered the supermarket, we walked in and it was unbelievably hot in there. Grandma was stunned. For once, she had no need for a sweater in the supermarket.)

16. “We would pretend we were Jewish.”

(Apparently, when Grandma was much younger and lived in New York, she and her sister would pretend they were Jewish in order to get into certain parties and dances. It’s an interesting story and she tells it often.)

17. “She’s like the Incredible Hulk.”

(This is Grandma’s common complaint about K., the woman she lives with. K. is a large woman, and she’s always moving the furniture around the house. It’s never in the same place from week to week. My grandma is amazed at how K. can move all that heavy furniture.)

18. “If he touches him, I’ll come down there with a gun and kill him.”

(This is about my grandma’s strong aversion to and hatred of her son’s – my uncle Pete – ex-wife, Karen. Karen is quite crazy and is into drugs and has been living with a man who supplies her with drugs. Grandma said the above statement when my cousin Jeremy was going to live with Karen and her boyfriend for a few days. Apparently, Grandma was under the impression that the man was going to hurt Jeremy. It was a funny mental image – my 85-year-old Grandma with a gun.)

19. “It’s so cold! Feel this vent!”

(Grandma is always complaining about how freezing cold K. keeps the house in the summer. She puts every fan on the highest speed setting there is and she has the air conditioning blasting. This makes Grandma very uncomfortable, but she’ll never confront K. about it because she fears K. will kick her out of the house.)

20. “It’s so boiling hot outside!”

(Grandma hates temperature extremes. In the summer it’s always “boiling hot and the mosquitoes won’t let you sit down and read a book outside!”)

21. “This is your father’s stomach, this is Jeremy’s, this is yours, and here’s Jordan’s!”

(This comes from one Thanksgiving when I was probably 8 or 9. My cousins Joey, Jordan, and Jeremy were over, along with Uncle Pete and Aunt Karen. My mom had set out some place mats with pumpkins on them. I was sitting beside Grandma and she was trying to entertain Jeremy, me, and my brother. She was pointing to the different sized pumpkins and saying how they were like our stomachs. Then she pointed to a particularly big one and compared it to Jordan’s – it was an insult because he was overweight at the time.)

22. “That cold air was blowing right on my neck the whole time!”

(Nearly every time Grandma goes into a place with air conditioning – most notably churches – she will always complain about how the cold air was “right on my neck!”)

23. “He just likes to hear himself talk.”

(Grandma came with my family to our church one day; we had been going to that particular church for about a year and we wanted to introduce Grandma to the priest. Our priest always likes to make very long announcements at the end of Mass, so we sat through them. Grandma was not pleased; she’s the type who would get Communion and leave right afterwards. She said the above line about our priest, who has a Belgian accent and “loves to hear himself talk.”)

24. “Sitting and waiting. All that sitting and waiting.”

(Every time Grandma has to wait for more than fifteen minutes, she gets very upset. She always arrives at doctors’ appointments early just in case “they might take me early” and when the wait is too long by five minutes, she gets up and complains to the receptionist.)

25. “You should have gotten your hair cut just a little bit shorter.”

(Grandma keeps her hair cut short in a crew cut all the time. She seems to believe this hairstyle is appropriate for everyone. Every time my brother or I get our hair cut, she always tells we should have gotten it a little bit shorter. If we were shaved bald, I’m sure she would still say it.)

26. “Cut your hair! What are you going to do in the summer with all that mop hanging in your face?”

(She says this nearly every time I see her. I just got my hair cut recently and Grandma said, “Oh, thank God you cut your hair. That long hair was so passe!”)

27. “There’s my Kangaroo!”

(The convenience store by Grandma’s house that usually has the cheapest gas prices. It’s “her” Kangaroo because she lives by it and when she drove – she stopped driving about three or four years ago – she would always get gas there or at the Murphy’s by Wal-Mart because “they give you a nice 3-cent discount!”)

28. “That Mack. He’s another one.”

(Grandma had a “boyfriend” called Mack who she met at the senior center. At first, he was her best friend and she was practically in love with him. I entertained thoughts of their marriage with much giggling, but she started to lose patience with him when he tried to buy her expensive things and took her out to eat with no coupons – there are many other reasons why Grandma “dumped” Mack, but that’s the first one I thought of.)

29. “There’s so much grease. How do they expect you to eat all that grease?”

(Whenever we get something from a fast food restaurant or order a pizza – this happens extremely rarely, unless Grandma happens to have coupons – she will always complain about the amount of grease. She’ll put a napkin on top of the pizza and press down to absorb the grease. She will also wipe french fries with a napkin before eating them.)

30. “I know. I see.”

(Grandma believes that because she watches The Jerry Springer Show and The Maury Povich Show that she is all-seeing and all-knowing, especially about the antics of white trash Americans. She also assumes that all Americans are like the people on Jerry Springer and Maury.

I’m sure I’ll be adding to this list. Let me know which quotes are your favorites!

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