As the day of the big family reunion approaches you can feel a change in the atmosphere. The air grows still and thick, as if girding itself for an oncoming cataclysm.
Your mind begins to feverishly search for any strategy to avoid the event.
The problem is you can’t just make up any old story. The family has dug its meddling, controlling, abusive, tentacles so deeply into your life, that parasite that’s been burrowing its way through your brain thinks they’re intrusive.
Your family has spies everywhere–they’re like the KGB, but without the warm fuzziness of Soviet communism.
Virtually every scheme that has any hope of success involves extensive plastic surgery, funneling large sums of money to a man named Guido who is of shady repute, and learning to speak a broken form of Mandarin.
You consider changing your name, moving to Botswana, and becoming a mime. Your plan however has one fatal flaw: mimes suck.
Maybe if you’re stricken with some horrible illness such as Ebola, or the Bubonic Plague, you could justifiably avoid the festivities. But you give up on that thought–you’re just not that lucky. Besides, the family would expect you to roll up to the reunion in a quarantine bubble like some pathetic human gerbil.
And you can remember the year Cousin Ricky skipped the reunion because he selfishly had his burst appendix removed. Your aunts made his life a level of Hell that not even Dante could envision.
But most importantly, you don’t want to have to deal with “the phone call of bitter disappointment” from your grandmother. It’s been known to crack terrorists faster than waterboarding. And some of them didn’t even speak English.
So unless you unexpectedly die (fingers crossed) you’ll be going to the big family reunion.