Coming home for the holidays can be a nice break from the hustle and bustle of your everyday life, but it can still be a mixed bag. Yes, you get in some quality time with grandma and the family dog, but you also have to deal with, well, family and old hometown friends you haven’t seen in 51 weeks.
Though spending time with family and friends is necessary and really comforting, it can also be an endlessly awkward guilt trip filled with the same few phrases year after year.
Yes, I do live in a major city, but no, I don’t have the money to do anything particularly exciting. Why, yes, I did see that my friend from fourth grade got engaged, but that doesn’t mean I’ll be getting hitched anytime soon.
As you board that plane, train, or bus this holiday season, get nice and familiar with these nine phrases. You’re about to hear them a lot…
“Are you seeing anybody?”
Yes. No. Sort of? It’s complicated… can’t we just move on?
“Have you been to [overpriced tourist attraction] yet?!”
While everyone in New York City hangs out at the Empire State Building, I have yet to be invited to one of those parties.
“How’s life in the big city?”
I wake up, go to work, come home, eat food, watch TV, and go to bed. So, yeah, it’s pretty thrilling.
“How is [your best friend from fifth grade]? I haven’t heard about them in ages.”
From the looks of their Facebook, it seems like they’re OK. I don’t really know. We actually stopped talking junior year.
“It looks like you’ve lost a lot of weight!”
I’ve actually gained 15 pounds from pure stress this year, but thank you for commenting on the width of my thighs.
“So, are you still working at [insert the job haven’t been at for months here]?”
Nope. I actually got laid off, but thank you for bringing up that painful memory!
“When will you be moving back home?”
A guilt trip is my favorite kind of vacation! Thanks for asking!
“Wow, we haven’t seen you ‘round here lately.”
Thank you for the passive-aggressive comment about how infrequently I come home.
“You should really come home more often.”
Ah, yes. There we go. This one is nice and direct. Feel free to pay for my flights and food, and then we’ll talk.