I realized–and this probably should’ve been obvious, and maybe it was to basically everyone but me–that I get irritable before seeing Paul’s mom, like just the knowledge that I’ll be interacting with her puts me on edge, which obviously is not good. This happened with a few people in the past and naturally–and again, obviously–some form of apprehension like that is my sign that I need to not spend time with whoever it is. It happened in high school with the class bitch, Danielle, and I switched lunch tables for my own sanity. It happened with the Craigs, and I haven’t spoken to about half of them in something like a year or two, at least not regularly. But I can’t avoid my boyfriend’s mom on that level, unfortunately. I do my best and I have it down to only once every few months, which admittedly works out great. I still think she’s an awful woman and I’m at a point where I’m almost resentful of her because it’s very obvious that Paul’s a bit fucked up because of her, but short of screaming at her, I can’t do much.

And yes, this means I dealt with her over the weekend, and again, she was pretty much fine. It was frustrating, though, because we were trekking up to the mountains for Paul’s dad’s birthday and they’re not exactly good at planning things. Paul and I were given two possible times Friday night–1o or 12–and by 9 Saturday morning, that changed to 2. This haphazard planning works fine when you’re only dealing with the family under one roof, but when Paul’s moved out and they’re inviting me along, it gets dicey. We both have to drive an hour to come in, and I can’t speak for him since it’s his family, but my life doesn’t revolve around them and I’m not thrilled abut spending a Saturday sitting around accommodating their constantly changing plans. Plus I think it’s rude and suggests that my time and plans don’t matter.

So I decided to see Gone Girl with my mom while I waited, partly since I knew it was going to be a busy weekend, we both wanted to see it, and this might be our only chance to go that weekend.

We both liked it. It was good. I feel like maybe it was overhyped, though, because I didn’t love it like I thought I would. That said, it’s a movie definitely worthy of a second viewing, and I’d love to read the book, too. It could just be that things played out so differently from what you’d expect that it was a little jarring, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Now, I’m normally very anti-cellphones in movies (and stage productions, concerts, etc…) but I just had that sense that it was getting late and the movie wasn’t quite wrapped up yet. Since there was only one other small group in the theater and they were in front of us, I did turn my phone on, and sure enough, it’s close to 1 and Paul tries to call me. I texted him instead, and naturally, that was the time they decided to go to the mountains. Granted, there was a slight miscommunication where Paul made it sound like they were leaving at 2 when they were planning to get there at 2, but even so, it doesn’t take an hour to drive up to the mountains. So after the movie I booked it to my parents’ and Paul and I took his car to meet everyone up there. We decided on taking a separate car because Paul’s family like a more casual Ohiopyle trip and Paul likes hiking as far and long as he can, and I know from experience that going up as a big group and being at the mercy of everyone else ends in a disappointed, slightly cranky Paul.

We were there for their annual buckwheat pancake festival. I don’t know why buckwheat pancakes are so good because I ate plain ones–I didn’t want to venture into weird pancake territory–and Paul, who knows my taste pretty well, was adamant that I’d hate buckwheat pancakes. They were good pancakes, but again, possibly overhyped. Not even the street vendors up there were impressive. Plus I hate going to Ohiopyle when it’s crowded because then it’s really difficult to enjoy the place. It’s hard to park, for starters, and then everything is crowded and it’s hard to go where you want and do what you want. The one advantage of fall crowds is they’re not too interested in hiking or anything, so when Paul and I did go off on our own, we were pretty much truly on our own–unlike last time, which I believe was Labor Day, when I got stuck trekking over some rocks behind a woman in flip-flops carrying a baby. Because what could be safer?

Sunday was a surprise party for Paul’s dad, which was pretty nice and fun. Julie’s boyfriend, Michael, is solidifying himself as the favorite significant other in the family, which I joked isn’t hard to do with me around, and part of that is he actually helped out. Julie might not give him much choice, I don’t know, but I do know I’d never volunteer to pitch in for something…mostly because that means spending more time around his mom–and even the siblings get to me at times, except Emily–and we’ve already established how unwise that is.

The weekend was tame, though, compared to last night. Paul and I trucked into the city after work, met up with my parents, had dinner, and then saw Fleetwood Mac (for the second time). YES. Apparently, I didn’t write about when we saw them the last time (what the hell!?), but they were fantastic then and they’re fantastic now with Christine McVie back. I plan to write a full review of it later for AXS, but basically, I’ve been hearing my mom say for years how she didn’t want to see them live without Christine because it wasn’t the same. When they were here last year, I pretty much said, “Look, Christine said she’s not coming back. She’s been gone for 15 years. Maybe it’s time to give in and see them without her.” And then what happened? She played a show with them, realized she wanted to keep playing shows with them, and rolled into Pittsburgh about a year and a half later.

As I said on Twitter: I’ve never been so happy to be so wrong.

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