We have ordered the fugly Dutalier rocker-glider. There is no turning back.

Meanwhile, over on Joe Weiner's website, Joe writes that my Mom, who gives interviews to anyone who asks, is refusing to talk to him. "She won't answer my questions," he complained when I called for clarification.

"Why not?"

"I don't know."

"Well, what are you trying to ask her?"

Joe cleared his throat. "Okay, question one: If you were in a room with me and Jake and one of us broke wind, would you know which one it was?"

I cracked up. Then I called my Mom. "Why won't you answer Joe's questions?"

She got extremely huffy. "Do you know what he's trying to ask me?!? I don't want to talk about that! And I am a woman of a certain age. Who cares what I think?"

"Mom," I said. "You're a figure of international curiosity. ANSWERTHEQUESTION!"

"MAKEMESOMEEGGS!" Joe yelled in the background.

I don't know if she's going to do the interview. I'm toying with the idea of instituting FranWatch: A Nation Waits and Wonders -- and counting the number of days that the truth is held hostage.

For now, I'll regale you with the first in a series of tidbits from previous Mom interviews. Like when the reporter from the Philadelphia Inquirer called her and asked whether she always knew I'd be a writer, and she said, "I had absolutely no idea." (To which I said, "Ma, you could have lied!")

Jen