An Observation On The Unintended Consequences Of The Behavior Of Elderly In-laws Who Watch The Weather Channel

Not covering any new ground here, but needs to be said.  Love is a strange thing.

Every time the Weather Channel shows bad weather where we live, my in-laws, who live hours away from here, phone us to make sure that we’re okay.

At age 80+ they do not believe in calling a cell phone number because they believe that talking on the phone while driving a car is dangerous.  And because they do not know if either one of us will be in our car when we answer our cell phones, they leave a message on our landline answering machine.

The messages are all about the same.  First, they say our names, then tell us who is calling.  Then they hang up without telling us why they called.  No good-bye, just click and the line goes dead.

It is from this pattern of behavior that we have come to know when bad weather is headed our way.  The lack of concrete message is the clue.

Because we both are too busy to spend much time in front of the TV this sort of non-message phone message has come to be our own special, personalized form of the Weather Channel.  And we love it.

And them for doing it.

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Midwestern by chance. Kindhearted most days.

14 thoughts on “An Observation On The Unintended Consequences Of The Behavior Of Elderly In-laws Who Watch The Weather Channel”

    1. evilsquirrel23, you said it! It’s rather sweet that they do this, but it’s become a bit of a laugh in our house. Move over Weather Channel.

      Like

  1. That is awesome!! My mom always calls and babbles about nothing on the answering machine, then says “Nothing important. You don’t need to call me back.” But I always do because I love to hear her voice. Who knows how much longer I’ll have that privilege?

    Like

    1. Margaret, at least you get a topic when she babbles. When Z-D’s parents call about the weather they never say what they’re calling about, but at this point we know. It’s so funny to us.

      Like

  2. Our families are the same way. The weirder the weather, the more they seem to call. And at least half of every phone conversation is spent talking about the weather. My husband’s dad is the worst– he’ll hear something on The Weather Channel and then call us up to see whether we’re getting that weather (they live about 8 hours away). And then he’ll spend at least 15 minutes telling us what he learned on TWC about the jet stream, etc. and why we are (or aren’t) getting the televised weather event!

    Like

    1. Maria, gotta laugh because it’s the same story here. Maybe when you get older you automatically develop an interest in the weather! And with the Weather Channel being available 24/7, it becomes your enabler. That’s the real story, I’m sure of it.

      Like

      1. Ha! I looked and you are in the Midwest too. I think this is a Midwestern thing– to talk about the weather ALL the time. My friend who’s originally from CA and moved to the Midwest doesn’t get it because they don’t have to talk about the weather in CA (it’s always perfect). Instead they talk about their feelings and stuff– not at all Midwestern! 🙂

        Like

        1. Maria, you might be on to something there. Never thought of the ubiquitous weather conversation as being regional, but now that you explain it, I get it. Bet that you’re right.

          Like

  3. Gotta love ’em! I always love how my mother calls and leaves a message saying, “Hello….this is your mother….”, like I wouldn’t recognize her voice. It just cracks me up every time!

    Like

  4. I absolutely love it! Mine used to call a couple days later and ask whether I was still alive. I’m not sure they ever left a message on my answering machine or voice mail. I remember them wanting to leave a message for my brother and making me call him to leave the message.

    Like

    1. Zazzy, my mother had no difficulty leaving a message, but Z-D’s parents never quite get to the message part of things. They just start, then hang up. It’s rather funny now that we know what they’re doing & that nothing awful has happened to them.

      I’ve heard other ppl say what you did about making one child call the other one to leave Mom & Dad’s message. It’s kind of goofy sweet.

      Like

  5. Both sets of parents used to call us when they heard there was a tornado anywhere near Georgia (“near” meaning “anyplace south of Tennessee and east of the Mississippi”). Sadly, they’re all gone now. I wish they were still here to call.

    Like

    1. John, I tell you these oldsters are so consistent in their weather-worrying behavior. Who knew that this topic would bring out so many similar stories? Thanks for stopping by to comment.

      Like

Comments are closed.