Thomas: No stealth mode when it comes to moms

The other day my sister an I were arguing. That comes as no surprise to myself and others, considering my argumentative nature and tendency to want to be right.

I’ve always been a talker; in fact, on many occasions I’ve proudly claimed to have the “gift of gab.” My family and most friends would say I got my first booster shots with a phonograph needle.

However, it’s in my nature to argue, and my sister and I have been known to fight like cats and dogs, but rest assured I love my sister and am proud of what she has accomplished. In fact I often say “she’s the child who got it right.”

Well, in the course of this little argument our mom got involved and of course she told me to stop picking on my sister. She said it in a joking manner knowing I was just teasing her.

In fact the argument was more of a good-natured ribbing between brother and sister. I’m sure those with siblings know what I’m talking about. When you were younger you’d have those senseless arguments, “I’m not touching you, “I know you are but what am I,” “stop looking at me,” and a personal favorite, “stop copying me.”

With these little spats we would annoy our siblings just to get a rise out of them, to see that flush of red overcome their face and veins start popping out in their foreheads. We would delight in their squirming and pacing in an effort to get away from us, only to have most of the little spats end with that dreaded “Mom, tell him/her to stop bothering me!”

It was at this point Mom would say, “Be nice to your sister,” or “young man, don’t make me get after you again.” Which would have been enough to make anyone stop, that is until you see your sister standing behind mom sticking her tongue out at you mouthing the words “You got in trouble, you got in trouble.”

This of course is where my devious nature would kick in as I tried to find a way to bug my sister and leave little to no evidence of my activities and learn the secret of operating under mom’s radar.

This as many of you know is not easy; mom’s radar can pick up the slightest disturbance and is keen to any overactivity or the absence of activity.

You have to maintain a level of devious behavior while operating near mom’s radar that I am certain extends into the neighboring county.

If you suddenly drop off mom’s radar, she begins to panic and back tracks your last known location, eventually finding out where you are and catching you in the act of doing something you are not supposed to do.

I think my cousins Nathan and Blondie will back me up on this one: We had stolen one of their mom’s cigarettes and then went behind the barn to smoke it, thinking we were so darn clever and had avoided detection. We were wrong, because of our absence my aunt came out of the house and began to scream, “Boys?! Boys where are you! Come on out! You better not be smoking! Thomas I’m going to tell your mom!”

Drat! We were busted, but how? We took such care to leave the cigarette holder the same way and even made sure the lighter was the right side up.

Mom’s radar is the only way I could figure that she knew we were up to no good, that and we three boys had gone quiet and were not playing video games or swimming in the pool.

For years I tried to figure out a way to operate in stealth mode to avoid detection, but came to realize there is no stealth mode when it comes to moms. You might manage to hide it from them for the time being, but it is guaranteed they will find out and, believe me, they will either give you that scolding look that could melt steel or play that ever-famous guilt card.

You know about the guilt card, right?

It’s that sigh and sad look usually played right after she tells you about her plans to go visit some relative in the middle of nowhere for several hours where there is no TV reception, and so no chance of watching the game or going out with your friends. Of course her laying out of plans was always accompanied by the ever-famous “but if you don’t want to go with me, I’ll understand.”

So if you haven’t guessed it by now the lesson to be learned here is always be truthful to your mother, unless you are prepared to accept the consequences. If you think you have pulled the wool over your sweet dear mom’s eyes, beware she can see through walls and around corners otherwise she wouldn’t have the name “Mom.”

Thomas Garcia is a senior writer at the Quay County Sun. He can be reached at

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