If you’re the son of a Greek mother, whether that mother was born in the old country, America, Canada, Australia or anyplace else, you are…a god. It’s as simple as that. There’s no debate. And if you’re the first born male… whoah, watch out.
If you’re a daughter of a Greek mother, and you have a brother, you are simply a daughter. Don’t look shocked. You know it’s true. Greek sons rule and Greek daughters… I don’t want to sound anti-feminist, but here goes… serve. Wow, I said it. Stop the presses! The cat is out of the bag. Send all hate e-mails to Cosmos Philly please.
Let’s back up. I’ve been around for more than five decades. I’m a Greek-American male. I was alive when they shot Kennedy. I know things. I have credentials too: I’m a son of a Greek mother. I have daughters. I have relatives and friends who are sons and daughters of Greek mothers and I have relatives and friends who are Greek mothers of sons and daughters.
I offer the following scenario to back up my hypothesis about Greek sons and gods.
It’s Saturday morning, about 9:00 AM. 22 year old Yianni is sleeping in his bed, faced down, his arms spread out, and he has one leg off the bed. He’s sleeping in his clothes from the night before when he was with his friends and came home about 4:00 AM. His clothes from, over the last week, are strewn all over his room. He’s snoring louder than a tugboat fog horn. His sister, Maria, on the other hand, is 21 years old. She was out last night too, with her six girl cousins and she came home before 2:00 AM, only because she was out with her cousins. Her room is meticulous. All clothes are hung properly and her bed is made.
As Maria, washed up and ready to go, comes down into the kitchen for a cup of coffee, her mother gives her a stern look and with a wagging finger, says (it’s better if you add an accent), “ You want to stay out late? Huh? You’re lazy. We still have ‘doulies’ today. We have to vacuum, do the wash, iron your father’s shirts, wash the windows, hang the pictures I bought, sweep outside, go to the market, make the pastitsio and dolmadakia for tonight, because your aunts and uncles are coming over, water all the plants, and we need to get the good trapezomandila out. We should be done by 11:00 AM and we can then have a cup of coffee.”
Maria stares in disbelief and sarcastically says, “What about Yianni? What’s he going to do?” That’s when the Greek mother melts upon hearing her son’s name. Her shoulders relax a little and she has a slight smile on her face. She turns to Maria and answers in a sweet voice, “To xriso pedi mou. My boy. Let him sleep. He’s tired.” Maria’s stare of disbelief quickly becomes consternation. “Really, Mom? I’m not tired? I’m in college full time and working at the diner and cleaning this entire house while your “Adonis” upstairs is on the five-year, maybe six-year college plan and we’re lucky he comes to the diner more than two times a week! It’s not fair!”
Maria knows in an instant that she has gone too far. Her mother’s stare would turn Medusa into stone. Her mother slowly replies (and you have to add the accent), “Dropi sou. Krima. I didn’t raise you to be like those other kids. Who will marry you if you act like this? Now go up to Yianni’s room and get his clothes to wash and don’t wake him up.” Of course, Mom adds the Greek mother spit at the end and a few mumbled words. Maria starts cleaning and Yianni keeps snoring like a drunken sailor.
I’m sure if you are a Greek daughter you’re like Maria, and you have been in that situation and others, such as no one eats at the dinner table until Yianni comes home, and of course the Greek mom cooks a separate meal for Yianni because he doesn’t like that Greek village stuff mom cooks for dad. Maria eats it. She has no choice. Yianni comes home at all hours of the night and without even a phone call or text. Maria cannot go out two blocks passed her house without her mother calling her every five minutes.
Of course, Yianni is dating three girls simultaneously and Mom makes sure his jeans are evenly pressed when he goes out. She also gives him a few extra dollars. If Maria dates, it better be a Greek boy whose parents are known to the community, have a good reputation, and she better marry the boy. If Yianni catches a cold, immediately Mom breaks out all of the Greek home remedies to get him better and while he sleeps, she silently prays and makes the sign of the cross over his sweet, sleeping head as she kisses his forehead. Maria, she gives her a hot hamomili tea with a Tylenol and if it’s Friday night, tells her not to sleep late tomorrow morning because, “ehoume thoulies.”
Is this fair? Is this justice? No, it’s a Greek family. And what about Greek fathers and their daughters? That’s an entirely different article.
So what’s the point of this article? Absolutely nothing. I’m a son of a Greek mother. And Maria? Well, she will get married, have a son of her own, and, of course, treat him like a Greek god!
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