today my aunt mimi died, she was 96

20131031-231935.jpg my moms mom only had one sister, juanita. aka mimi. that was probably all she needed.

my grandma was a smart tough woman, and my aunt was maybe a little tougher. its not surprising that she spent her life in the steel city.

she had little tolerance for bs – and less so as she got older.

when the clock turned 90 on her she started doing interesting things like sending me back letters i wrote her when i was a kid.

at first i was all, what the heck? but when id talk to her on the phone id understand: she knew this day would come. and she knew id probably get more out of it than the garbage man.

aunt mimi and uncle bill were huge steeler and pirate fans. they were right there during the we are family world serieses and the steel curtain super bowls.

somehow they got the autographs from lots of the players and sent them to me.

she smoked, she drank, she never lived in a nursing home or an old folks home

and she hung in there kicking till 96.

20 years ago, after uncle bill died, she got a portrait taken of herself.

then sent it to my mom.

it was very large.

my mom was all, ooooooo kaaaaaaay.

but my mom put it in the guest room, where i sleep when i visit there, and this summer when i was there i thought to myself

oh my god, Aunt Mimi totally took a selfie 20 years before it was cool.

glad youre reunited with uncle bill! hope he’s still eating raw hot dogs!

<3 Aunt Mimi <3