My mom, Barb, is from the South and had one dream: grandkids. I was in ministry as a single woman for many years. I called it, “Bitter Party of 1!” My mother was so obsessed with me getting married that they would have prayer circles at her church to cast out the demons that were keeping me single! I told her those demons were named, “Good Taste” and “Standards.”
She was very proactive when it came to finding me a man, especially as the years went on and I reached the ripe old age of 26. I was living out in California, and one morning I woke up in terrible pain. I thought for sure I had food poisoning from the sushi I had bought on sale at the grocery store. I ended up in the ER and had an emergency appendectomy. I was on pain meds and really dazed and confused. I remember in the darkness while I was lying on the hospital gurney hearing a voice of comfort. It was my mother. She was leaning over the IV in my arm saying, “Kerri, sweetie, here put on some lipstick. I think the doctor is single! I’ll be right back. I noticed he did not have on a ring! I’m gonna go get him!”
Here I was, lying there in my Precious Moments nightgown my grandmother had given me for my birthday, unwashed and looking mildly like a homeless person. She was trying to apply Maybelline’s Cotton Candy #4 lipstick on my face and freshen me up to meet my future doctor husband. This woman had no boundaries. I could barely understand her, but I pretended to still be sleeping. About 40 seconds later my mom runs back in the room and she has this male nurse with her. He looked like he’d been taken captive by a pirate (my mother). She was holding him by the arm and brought him right over to me. “Kerri, honey this is LJ. We just met in the hallway. He works here and he’s very nice.” He looked to be in pain. More pain than me because I was on drugs.
She looked at him and his name tag and said plainly, “So what does LJ stand for? Could it be LORD JESUS?”
“This is my daughter Kerri. She’s a comedian. She’s been on The Tonight Show. Do you like Comedy, LJ? Well, say something Kerri!”
Yes, ladies and gentlemen. That actually happened. No, LJ never called me, and the single doctor somehow disappeared also. Why did I become a professional comedian? It’s for moments like these! With a mother like mine, comedy is cheaper than therapy!
Mom finally got her grandkids, after I told her I was getting married to a Korean-Irish comedian with no health insurance. We certainly enjoyed her calls to us on our honeymoon saying to my husband, “so when am I gonna get some grandkids?”
Ron replied, “Well Barbara — as soon as you stop calling!”