Friday, May 15, 2009

Layin' Low

My family is in hiding this week. We all have to lay low. You see, my free loading cousin Boaz came back to town and we're all trying to avoid him.

Boaz is my now 25 year old, second (I think?) cousin from Israel. He's my grandfather's younger brother's grandson and he is a pain in the ass, first class mooch. The last time we saw him was at Thanksgiving and I wrote about his background then. Please go here and refamiliarize yourself with Boaz and then come back so that I can explain the most recent developments.

Ok, so you got all that?

Boaz left on Thanksgiving night with our closeted gay friend who took him to the airport where he mysteriously flew off to South America. This was very suspect as Boaz had this whole sob story for my parents about how he didn't have any money and how he just needed his job at the Dead Sea Salt mall kiosk and how he needed to use my parents' car to get to his job. It was pathetic. My dad even felt badly enough for him to give him an iPod. But Boaz was pissed that my parents weren't letting him move in with them (because who wouldn't let a distant relative move into their gorgeous waterfront home in Florida and let them drive their SUV?) and that my dad said he had to find his own transportation. He was indignant about it too, so Boaz, who was supposed to be flat broke, somehow managed to get himself a plane ticket to South America.

Two days after arriving in South America - I think Peru - he added me as a friend on Facebook, but not my husband, because he was mad at Husband for cutting off his Internet access and deleting all of the files he downloaded onto my parents' computer, which nearly destroyed it. All of a sudden, I'm getting notes and posts and updates on Boaz's South American tour. I barely know the kid and he's writing me notes like "Hey Beautiful Cousin, having a great time, miss you!" Every couple days he would post pictures from his trip. I was about to start calling him Che. It was like the frickin Motorcycle Diaries. He went to almost every country in South America and it appeared that he met up with a group of his friends from Israel who were backpacking, doing the whole Lonely Planet thing. They certainly appeared to be backpacking in grand style though and this went on for several months. I saw pictures of Boaz at Carnevale. Boaz with llamas. Boaz chewing coca leaves. Boaz and friends in small Chilean fishing villages. Boaz in Buenos Aires and even Boaz and friends climbing all over the mysterious statues on Easter Island. How was Boaz funding this trip, I wondered, if when he was here all he did was complain about how broke he was? Obviously, it was a lie and he had plenty of money. He was just trying to scam some more out of my parents, which didn't work.

Two interesting things happened in March. First Uncle Ben Yusef joined Facebook. Why, I have no idea. The man is in his 70s. Uncle Ben Yusef added me as a friend, which then allowed me to see all of his comments back and forth with Boaz. I discovered that the two of them were planning to meet up in Florida and stay in my parents' house for a month. I called my parents and asked if they were aware of this and they were not and they weren't very happy about it either. My dad called my grandfather and told him about it. My grandfather was equally unhappy because it turned out that just that very week Boaz had shipped most of his luggage from South America to my grandparents' house without telling them! That's interesting thing number two.

Boaz actually had the nerve to ship his luggage to my grandparents' house without telling them. I think he did this because he obviously wanted to lighten his load, but because he didn't want my parents to know he was coming back. Otherwise he would have told someone he was shipping all this stuff. I think he underestimated my grandfather and thought he would just hold the stuff and not tell my dad he had it there and then Boaz could just show up on my parents' doorstep. Obviously this is a stupid plan that makes little sense.

In any event, a ton of suitcases arrived unexpectedly on my grandparents' doorstep. Boaz and Uncle Ben Yusef were planning a sneak attack on my parents. We had to do something.

I thought that I should write a letter to Boaz and thank him for his donation to my grandparents' Temple. How thoughtful of him to send all those clothes, shoes and toiletry items to needy families in the community who could really use them. His trip to South America really changed him as a person, didn't it? I almost got my grandparents to go along with it too. It would have been perfect. Boaz would have crapped his pants thinking we gave all his stuff to charity.

My parents told my grandparents to tell Uncle Ben Yusef that they were going out of town for several months and that they were closing up their house and that no one would have access to it, so he couldn't stay there. Uncle Ben Yusef was mad and canceled his trip, but he informed them that Boaz was still coming.

We decided that if Boaz had to stay at my grandparents' house that he would have a bad time and quickly leave. At my parents' house he has it too good. There's a pool, the beach and my parents live in a fun part of town where there's lots of things to do. He has it made there and has no incentive to leave. My grandparents' house is the complete opposite. They live in a small duplex in an elderly community for aged Orthodox. Everything revolves around the Temple. They are far from the beach and miles and miles from any entertainment that would appeal to someone in his mid-20s. It would be perfect. He wouldn't last two days.

Boaz has been there for three weeks. He refuses to leave.

Apparently he doesn't care where he is and has no desire to be anywhere other than somewhere where he can get free food and a computer. He sleeps all day, gets up at five and hogs the computer where he downloads a bunch of crap and Skypes with his friends all over the world until the sun rises and he goes to bed. He has eaten my grandparents out of house and home and had a fight with my grandfather over the computer the other night when Saba asked Boaz if he could please get on to check his work email for a moment.

"Can't you see I'm doing something?? This is very important!!" Boaz yelled.

My grandfather wants to kill him. He calls every day and describes to us all in detail exactly how he would like to murder his mooching nephew. My grandmother is at her wits end.

Finally my grandparents devised a plan.

"We're going on a cruise," they told Boaz, "We're leaving and we have to have the house tented and fumigated for roaches while we're away, so the place has to be vacant. You can't stay here."

None of this is true, just like it isn't true that my parents are on a trip now too. My grandparents have even fake packed for their fake cruise so he really believes it!! We have even gone so far as to not have Sunday dinners with my grandparents, like we do every single week, just so Boaz will really think we're out of town. My grandparents made Boaz book a ticket back to Israel the day before their fake cruise and they already called the Super Shuttle to make sure he gets to the airport in time.

We'll see if any of this works to get rid of him. Until then, we're still laying low.


ty-ping said...

While that is all really really funny, in a way it's almost terrible. I mean, what if he really is just that dense and self centered. Wouldn't it be easier to just tell him to take a hike and be honest. I mean the worst thing that could happen is that he dosen't like you and doesn't come back to visit you. But if that's what you'd want anyway is that so bad?
(Well I guess the WORST thing that could happen is he gets uber pissy and makes it a life long vendetta against you and all that you know.)
You never know, a good kick in the ass may be just what he needs to get a life.

Then again he sounds a lot like my sister except she at least does have jobs at times and works pretty hard at them... at times.

I've yet to tell her I think she's a useless twit so I guess I can't say anything.

Wide Lawns said...

You're very right. The problem is that he IS that dense. He doesn't care when you tell him. None of us care about making him mad. The thing is HE WON'T LEAVE. We'd honestly have to get the police or something and that would upset my uncle who has heart problems and we don't want to do that. The kid just doesn't care when people say no. It's like he doesn't take it seriously or believe it. Trust me, we and other family members have tried it and it just doesn't even register.

Connie Allegood said...

Not to be a know it all, but I believe that Boaz is your father's second cousin or cousin twice removed (for all of the old school southerners like yourself) and that he is your third cousin or your cousin thrice removed....Love the blog. :) My very southern grandmother once corrected me on this point with one of my third cousins. If you would like a full explanation message me. I'm on your facebook page. :)

Albany Jane said...

oh my gosh, this is too good!

I really wish my family were capable of such planning. As it is, we can barely manage to get together within a few days. I love the long and planned out stories.

Modern Philodoxos said...

this is going to sound really bad, but i went to peru and it's full of israelis. i guess south america is the most exotic place for israeli kids who just got out of the military to go. and it's cheap. but they are everywhere and everyone pretty much hates them because they're all self-entitled brats and are very rude. that was definitely my experience, anyway.

i'm glad your parents didnt let him scam any money out of them!

MtnMama said...

Good luck! I can imagine exactly how awful this is; we have several of them in our family. I wish we were as clever and/or organized with the plan to evade being made into a "host" for the parasites.

the Bag Lady said...

I can relate to this! Hubby's uncle is staying with us. Granted, he is ill, and is here to have treatments (eventually), but that doesn't make him any less annoying than he was before he got sick. Sigh.
I have to wait on him hand and foot because he is totally inept (the man can't even pour himself a cup of coffee without accidentally turning off the coffee maker). He never stops talking, even when there is food in his mouth, and I've heard all his stories so many times that I can recite them right along with him. I accidentally corrected him the other day when he got mixed up....
What's the Jewish term for doing a good deed?
I feel for your grandfather - perhaps we could get adjoining cells and commiserate. I keep telling hubby that Uncle won't have to worry about the cancer killing him.....

Anonymous said...

Somehow this still strikes me as an issue of boundaries and not being firm enough. I think if my parents or grandparents had a relative like that, they would simply kick him out.

As in have a talk first, then take his things downstairs, and refuse to feed him or talk to him. He is by the computer? You unplug the computer. And then you keep unplugging the computer if he tries to get back to it. Or - more effective way - you change the password so he won't get in.

You don't sit him with you on meals. If he comes to the kitchen to get something, you go to the fridge, lean against the door, look him in the eyes and tell him that you told him to get out of the house and that you were serious about it.

I know my mother could do it. She dealt with Russian mafia after all, one ignorant brat would be no challenge.


Wide Lawns said...

I don't think my grandparents could do that. They're too old, frail and nice and they're the types who don't want to start family drama and I think my grandfather doesn't want to make his brother mad.

Anonymous said...

Connie - it actually doesn't work that way with lineage. Your father's second cousin isn't your third cousin, and "twice removed" is not the same as second cousin. "Remove" refers to the number of generations separating the two people. Let's say your father has a first cousin, Ernie (they share a grandparent). You and Ernie would be first cousins once removed. If Ernie has a child, Hector, you and Hector would be second cousins (because you both share a great-grandparent). If Hector has a child, Winston, Winston would be your second cousin once removed. Winston would be your father's first cousin twice removed. I only know this because I have a billion distant cousins with whom I am weirdly close and I wanted to figure out just how we're related to each other.

Sorry for the hijack, WL!

Anonymous said...

I feel for your family. We were the constant victims of moochers from husband's side being as we live in a lovely old house with lots of gardens and a million dollar view.

After Long Lost Cousin Dave visited with his unmedicated psycho girlfriend I had a volcanic melt-down, tossed them out on their asses, locked the door and giggled as they pounded on it for an hour. I had morphed into Peter Seller's boss in the Pink Panther movies (can't recall the name, can't be bothered googling it). You know the guy.

I think the girlfriend asking to trade men for the night threw me over the edge. That or the fact that she ate with her hands. Yes, that includes mashed potatoes and cole slaw.

I did have a moment of hilarity when she informed my fundamentalist Pentacostal mother-in-law that her c*nt was itchy, mind you.

Husband is soft. At the time I preferred to call it "being a ball-less asshole that can't say 'no'".

I have grown a set of titanium, glow-in-the-dark balls and have refused visits from relatives already standing at my door with their suitcases.


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