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January 29, 2003

My mother, out of the blue it seemed, inflicted (to my thinking) a particularly arbitrary type of cruelty on her mother.

"Mama, I know you love me, but you love Barry best," she would say. She spoke the phrase often and without apparent provocation. I thought it cruel and unnecessary and untrue. Grandma loved everyone equally, dispensing candy and cookies and cakes to the deserving; mercy on the undeserving.

Sort of like God.

I've come to understand my mother's position clearly, now that she is a grandmother. I have been replaced, completely and with little ceremony.

I have embraced cruelty.