I’m not going to write about the state of the world and the mean people who are doing mean terrible things and the others that are saying mean and terrible things and the darkness, the horrible darkness in people. It’s too much. And I have no answers. So I’m going to do what I do best and babble, telling you a story about nothing important with no real ending, in the most manic zig-zaggy way. Because that’s what I do.
A few weeks ago, we went to a football party at a new friend’s house. Which is laughable because Husband “doesn’t do sport.” And I also don’t do sport unless it’s live where I embarrass myself and my friends by always rooting for the wrong team and getting way too involved while yelling myself hoarse at the very wrong moment. It’s a wonder I’m not on YouTube. Heck, it’s a wonder I don’t have my own channel.
So we’re standing in this kitchen at this football party not watching football and I spot a few love letters my friend’s husband has written her and she’s tacked up on the wall. Simple love notes on post-its that let her know she’s loved and appreciated and that he really liked his lunch. And I, not so subtlety, pointed out to husband that he used to do that and hint/guilt/hint and he responded like he always does when I hint/guilt/hint to him “What? You know I love you.”
Fast forward to this past Friday. I was going on my first girl trip since the disastrous one I took ten years ago to the Ritz Carton Half Moon Bay. The trip with four very new friends I’d agreed to as a “Sure that sounds great.” But never thought would happen. The trip where one of the four was in a unhappy marriage and spent the entire time trying to out gloom Eeyore and the second kept ordering the best most expensive wine and top shelf vodka and fancy desserts that cost more than my pitiful dinner salad and then informed us we were splitting the bill and held her hand out for my $750 check for the weekend. Thank goodness the third girl is now one of my best friends because I could not have made it through that weekend without someone to interpret and reciprocate my eyeball rolling and my “What the f?” face.
Unlike that horror, this girl trip was just going to be the two of us on an overnight trip to Memphis. And this was a friend I know and like and isn’t the type to present me with a bill for my half of whatever debauchery we get into. I’ve learned to better choose my friends, as I’ve grown older.
Anyway, when I got up at 5am to set off on my grand adventure, I found a love note from Husband, written on a napkin propped up on the vitamins. So dang cute, even at 5am. No, especially at 5am! So I wrote him one.
But marriage – no matter what your friends say - is about one up-man ship. He wrote ‘I love you’ on a napkin, so I grabbed a card and wrote a novel. I praised his patience with me. I thanked him for his love. I commended his smarts and follow through on the studio. And I let him know that life without him would be not worth living. It was epic. If he was one to cry, a tear might have slipped down his face while reading it. I am good at the sappy stuff.
But, where to leave this heart wrenching missive? The kitchen counter - well, that had been done. Next to his bed - if it weren’t attached to his phone, he’d never see it. Taped on the bathroom mirror – who can find tape at 5am? “I know,” I thought, “his studio!” I snuck down to the basement, unlocked the studio door and looked about each room for the perfect spot. Settling on his mixing desk, I propped the card in its envelope against the screen.
Where it promptly fell over.
Now I hadn’t turned the lights on when I entered the studio. There was enough ambient light from all the bells and whistles he has all over the stupid thing. And the sun was coming up so I was confident in my abilities to place a card on a desk.
I was wrong to be so cocky.
After the card flopped over, I picked it up and brilliantly placed it against the keyboard. Where it stood for half a second – before it slowly slid down, bumping its top off the bottom of the keyboard and slipping right down the big hole right below the keyboard and into the abyss that is a large mixing desk with stupidly placed cutouts for air circulation.
I turned the light on then. And with the light, I could clearly see the hole that had blended in with the dark coco brown of the desk in the dawn light. I could also clearly see that I would not be able to do a thing about getting that damn card.
Thwarted by a damn desk, I did the next best thing; I got post-it notes and wrote him a series of small notes, directing him to my love novel, tasking him with retrieving it, an impromptu scavenger hunt. “This is even better than just a note on the counter,” I thought. Post-it notes stuck on various walls and couches, I got myself together and left the house, off for 36 hours of bad decisions and over analyzing everything, leaving dog with Husband and an epic love letter for him to find.
Then I got a text from Husband asking me if my note to him was the post-it, the one on his mixing desk that said ‘way down’ with an arrow pointing under his desk. Um, no! Major love note fail.
Funny thing about mixing desks – they do not come apart unless you’re moving. And no amount of wiggling arms down deep awkward holes in said desk has resulted in the missing love letter. In fact, he can’t even see it to know it’s there. The good thing about all of this, I can tell him all sorts of things I wrote in that letter that may or may not be true. The bad thing, I have no actual love note proof so Husband wins this round.
If you want me, I’ll be in my workshop constructing some sort of letter retrieval contraption. Losing a round of sentiment to Husband… well, I just can’t let that happen!
Every time I walk into Target these days, I think of my poor friend, Tori, and her incredibly embarrassing story involving hair gel and Target and I laugh and laugh and laugh. Because things like that happen to me all too often.
In fact, I was just telling a new friend about this lovely event that happened to me in Sept. 2013. The shame hasn't faded!
WALK OF SHAME 9-18-13
If this were a movie, it would open with me doing a walk of shame through the dog park, Tigger the Dog tightly held by the collar. Both of us trying not to make eye contact with the judgmental dog owners watching and pulling their dogs away from us like we were a bad smell.
But it’s not a movie. It’s my freaking life. And in my freaking life, this totally happened:
Yesterday, Tigger the Dog (TTD) and I went to the dog park. When we first moved to Nashville, we went to this park twice a day but since our move, it’s been ages. It’s a pretty cool dog park; lots of trees, freshly mulched levels, a zig zag path running to the bottom of the park and lots of benches and tables throughout for dog folks to sit on and watch their babies play. Unfortunately, most folks just hang out in the center, on the path near the water fountain, near the site of the incident.
Now TTD is a ball dog. She will chase a ball down, bring it back to you and - the one trick she knows - put the ball in your hand for another throw. When we first entered, I’d picked up a new bright yellow slime free ball but TTD was all over the place, sniffing here, checking out everyone's rear ends and all the strange smells on the ground. She was too hyper to play ball with me so, I bounced it a few times while wandering the path from one end to the other. Finally she calmed down, all the immediate butts had been sniffed, and over she came, ready to play ball with me. I took the tennis ball, made eye contact with her, to make sure she was paying attention and then I threw the ball down the hill. Hard.
RIGHT INTO THE FACE OF THIS GUY STANDING FIVE FEET FROM ME!!!
I don’t know his name. I didn’t get it before and I sure didn’t get it after so I’m going to call him Bob. I took the ball and threw the ball right down the hill RIGHT INTO BOB’S FACE! I hit poor Bob in the face, right between the eyes. HA-RRRD!
Mortified I start apologizing. And apologizing, over and over again. I can’t say I’m sorry enough times. The old guy on the bench right behind us yells out, “I got that on tape.” Not helping, old guy! Don’t know his name either. I’m calling him Ass.
I’m waiting for the ground to open up but nope, I’m still standing there while the fifteen or so folks, including Ass, are watching me and poor, battered Bob. Bob, is doing his best to look manly, not cry and not to rub the large lump on his head where I NAILED HIM RIGHT BETWEEN THE EYES WITH A BALL!
TTT, oblivious to the drama and feeling none of my embarrassment, is waiting with the offending ball in her mouth. She drops it in my hand and, not knowing what else to do to make this situation better, I throw it down the hill. Not hitting anyone this time. TTD brings it back. I’m still mortified and make lame small talk with Bob. “My husband always makes fun of my aim.” I say, throwing the ball again and again. “I’ve actually hit a post and had the ball hit me in the face.” I awkwardly laugh, hoping that might make him feel better about me. There is no response from him. This can’t get worse, I think. Just throw the ball a few times and then we’ll leave.
And then it does.
It gets worse.
TTD brings me the ball but misses my hand. The ball falls on the ground and is quickly snatched up by Bob’s dog - I’ll call him Fido. I nervously giggle. “TTD, you dropped the ball. Now, I’ll have to play with Fido.” Bob tells me Fido doesn’t play ball. He just likes to keep the ball from other dogs. I awkwardly laugh again. Bob doesn't. Bob tries to get Fido to drop the ball. Fido won’t drop it. Bob tries again. Fido keeps chewing. Bob reaches down and grabs it out of Fido’s mouth.
And all hell breaks loose.
Fido turns and attacks TTD. They both start growling and snarling and then it’s teeth shiny and snapping, and it goes from fun and games in the dog park to a full on dogfight in seconds. Bob reaches down and tries to separate the dogs that are a mess of fur and teeth at his feet. I manage to grab TTD’s color and pull her off and away. The other dogs that came over to check out the action and bark, “Fight. Fight. Fight.” calm down and wander away. Bob says, “I hope your dog has all her shots.” I turn to look Bob.
Who is BLEEDING!!! From a dog bite! From MY DOG!
I am now flaming red and just a babbling mess of apologies and utter disbelief. I assure him she’s had her all her shots. That this has never happened before. That I’m going to die of shame. My hand actually goes over my heart as I’m prattling on. Bob takes full responsibility. He did grab the ball from his dog Fido and Fido did start the fight but I am horrified by whole situation. I try to give him my contact information but he doesn’t want it. I can’t stop staring at the large drop of blood the size of a red pinky nail on his arm thanks to my dog. And the large bump between his eyes thanks to me. I apologize one more time and, tightly holding TTD’s collar, I walk the walk of shame to the gate. The other owners call their dogs away from us as we pass. I hook up TTD to her leash and leave, walking as quickly as I can to the car.
And then, because this is who I am, as I'm quickly walking to my car, I trip and half fall, half slide down the hill stopping myself mere millimeters away from denting the flashy car at the curb. With my head. Folks from the park are still watching. Awesome end to the visit, I think, as I pick myself up, load TTD and myself into our car and drive away. And I have no doubt in my mind, had I made contact with my head on the panel of that shiny, very expensive looking car, it would have been Bob and Fido’s car.
I am still blushing from the humiliation and TTD and I are both currently on time-out and on a self-ban from the dog park. Until everyone has forgotten what happened. Or moved away. Or died. And, most definitely, until Bob and Fido’s restraining order against us has been lifted.
Last night, Husband compared me to a Chinese finger puzzle.
“Whenever someone tells you what you should do, which direction you should go in, you just tighten up and pull in the opposite direction." He said. "Even if you know it’s the worst choice to make. In fact, even though you know I’m right, you’re going to deny it. See, Chinese finger puzzle.”
So, there’s that.
And earlier this year, when I asked him what animal I resembled, he said, “Wildebeest.” Without any hesitation, just blurted out, “Wildebeest.”
Like that was a normal animal that folks would think of when asked this abstract question. Like he’s actually considered the question before, scrolled through his animal knowledge and picked out a Wildebeest from the many, many animals that exist on this earth as the perfect animal to compare my resemblance to. Then, seeing my confusion, he clarified it as a, “Disney Wildebeest.”
Like that was better.
My friends were insulted for me but here’s my thinking; he picked me so he obviously thinks Wildebeests with a life philosophy that mirrors a Chinese finger puzzle, are attractive.
Non-linear thinking is not boring. Neither is Husband. Ever.
My name is ej. I'm a girl. I say that because with the short hair and the short initials, folks aren't always sure. More brilliant insights to who I am in About me