oxymoron67: (dino head)
[personal profile] oxymoron67
My topic is "Chillin' Like a Villain"

This is an intersection entry with [livejournal.com profile] neverletyoupart, whose entry is here.

We did variations on a theme: grandparental death.



My grandfather Joe died in 1950, leaving behind my grandmother and their two daughters, my mom and my Aunt Karen.

In the two years before my grandfather’s death, his parents had died, leaving behind an estate that included a large house. The estate hadn’t been totally sorted out by the time my grandfather died.

This caused problems. The people involved in this story are my grandmother, Bid and my grandfather’s siblings: Frank, Phil and Margaret.

Scene: Frank’s living room

Frank: Look we just sit her down and tell her.
Phil: It’s not that simple…
Margaret: Sure it is. Joe is gone. They have no claim on any of our parents’ estate.
Phil: No. Pat and Karen are his children. They are his heirs.
Frank: They aren’t directly mentioned in our parent’s wills. We don’t have to include them.
Phil: That isn’t right. These are our nieces. Bid is our sister-in-law.
Margaret: WAS our sister-in-law. Joe is gone.
Frank: Margaret’s right: Joe is gone. We owe Bid nothing.
Phil: But…
Frank: If all three of us go to talk to Bid, she’ll back down and accept what we say.
Margaret: After all, there are three of us. We’ll outnumber her.
Phil: That isn’t going to work.
Frank: Phil, you have to choose. Us or her.
Phil: … Fine. I’m in.

Scene 2: Bid’s living room
Bid: EXCUSE ME? WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU’RE TALKING TO?
Margaret: There is no need to yell. This is why I never liked you. No sense of decorum.
Bid: You are trying to cheat my kids and me. You’re lucky that ALL I’m doing is yelling.
Phil: Be reasonable, Bid…
Frank: Joe is gone. You have no claim on that house.
Bid: Really, Frank? How much is this because you live there rent-free?
Frank: HOW DARE YOU? That has nothing to do with this.
Bid: Not from where I’m sitting…
Margaret: That doesn’t matter. Joe is gone. You and your kids are not mentioned in the wills…
Phil: It’s better for everyone if you just accept this, Bid.
Bid: Well, better for you. You get the money, Frank gets to live in a house for free and my daughters and I get screwed. No. Not happening.
Frank: You have no claim on that house, Bid. Let it go.
Bid: We’ll see about that.

And with that, grandma threw them out of her house.

Grandma hired a lawyer and took my grandfather’s family to Orphan’s Court (now the Court of Common Pleas). She won the court case, so the house was sold, and the profits of that sale split up between my grandfather’s siblings and my grandmother.

That money put my mom and her sister through college.

My grandma and her family never talked to them again, which made for some odd situations, because they were all still living in my hometown when I was young. My grandma would occasionally point them or their families out; icy glares would be exchanged, but we never actually spoke.

Well, almost never. In the early 80’s, my grandma and one of her sisters were leaving her house to go to a Bridge tournament when Phil pulled up. He asked if they could talk, but grandma said no, that she had an appointment, though he could certainly come back.

He never did. Phil died a few months later. We didn’t attend the funeral.
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October 2013

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