For any of you who don’t know, my mother moved out in April 2003 after I turned 18 and has lived separately since. To put the point on the cliche, I got a dog and hi-def TV for my mother, good trade. Anyway, open dislike has given way to more subtle forms of snarkiness. This year, I want to send my mother a picture of my father, brother, brother’s girlfriend, cat, dog and various things living under the floor and entitle it “Merry Christmas, from the Robinsons”. Maybe in 2008 we’ll do it. Then we’ll have something to give to all my brother’s god-damn friends who’ve discovered that pictures of their children can be mailed. I the process I’ve learned something that Mendel taught us long ago: ugly dumb-looking people have ugly dumb-looking babies.