Getting Mugged By The Family

Ron Nagasawa
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Wednesday - July 14, 2005
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Ron Nagasawa is on vacation. This column was first published in January of 1998.

I know adults aren’t supposed to get attached to objects like kids do with baby blankets, but don’t ever let me catch someone using my coffee mug.

The other night, my inlaws joined us for dinner at our house. Coffee and dessert were being served, and since it’s local style everyone helps themselves.

I stepped out of the kitchen for a few minutes and when I returned, my father-in-law was pouring himself a cup of coffee.

Apparently, he was not aware of the coffee mug assignments that exist in our household. He was using my favorite cup of recent years, a black, “X-files — Trust No One,” coffee mug.

Of course, as my father-inlaw he holds a position of power in our family hierarchy, just one notch below the absolute rulers, my own mother and my mother-in-law.

I held my tongue as I watched my wife’s dad walk away with what I knew would be the best-tasting cup of coffee in the house. Since the harmonic chain of coffee mugdom had been broken, I decided to use my wife’s favorite “Winnie the Pooh” mug.

She in turn used my mom’s “World’s Greatest Grandma” cup which left my mother with our 8-year-old son’s “Batman and Robin” glass mug from McDonald’s.

The whole mug world was spinning out of control, but by the end of the dinner I had tamed my anxiety with the knowledge that by morning, I would once again have possession of my prized drinking vessel.

Besides, this wasn’t half as bad as the time someone actually washed out my coffee mug at work. Now that was a true crisis.


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