The Bedrock of Wedlock

The Honeymooners

Breathe through your nose.

What???

Breathe. Through. Your. Nose.

Silence.

Are you kidding me with that?

Why can’t you breathe through your nose like a normal person?

Are you fucking kidding me??

Seriously. You’re so loud! I’m trying to sleep.

Are…you…fucking…kidding…me?? Breathe through my nose?

More silence.

Who are you?? The breathing police??

Normal people breathe through their nose. Just try it. Close your mouth and try it.

Ya know, you’re such an asshole!

With that, he slams a pillow down over my head.

I’m trying to sleep and you’re breathing so loud, you mouth breather!

God damn it. It’s a good thing you’re cute. 

I turn over.

And that you have cute ass, too.

I got up early to start writing this morning. Russ had set up his coffee in the coffeemaker the night before, just like he always does. This is the other thing about Russ and me—we drink different brands of coffee.

Yes, we have his and her coffee in this house.

This situation happens a lot. I wake up before he does, remove his prepared filter from the coffemaker, replace it with my own, and set his back up to start an hour later. This is what “playing through” means in our house. You would think we would change the routine to something more efficient, but the inefficiency in itself has become part of our set routine.

Except this morning, I couldn’t find any extra filters in the kitchen. Stumped, I finally poured his grounds into a small bowl, and used his filter to make my coffee.

Later, Russ walked out of the bedroom, rubbing his eyes.

I’m sorry, but I don’t know where our coffee filters are, so I couldn’t start your coffee.

He stopped, quiet.

How long have you lived here? They’re right next to where you put the Doritos last night.

(He left out, “You dumbass,” which he does a lot. He’s nice like that.)

Now he’s starting to wake up and get cheeky.

I’m surprised you didn’t use toilet paper to make a filter.

(He knows me all too well).

I would never do that!

(This is a lie.)

I would use paper towels!

(I left out the “Duh, dumbass” part because, well, he was right. When there are no paper towels, the T.P. is batter up.)

He rolled his eyes.

Same thing.

(He has no idea how right he is, but secretly he does. This is the secret sauce of our marriage.)

It’s Only Money

They say there are three big conflicts every marriage faces: sex, money, and parenting. Russ and I agree pretty well on most things. Our values line-up about the big things, but like any marriage, there are kerfuffles over the little things.

When Russ moved in with me, all of the household bills were already in my name and we’ve left it that way.  I’ve continued to keep that role and be responsible for making sure all of our bills are paid on time. This is how we handle the logistics of our money. It happened by default, but it works.  I’m the accountant on a daily basis, and he’s the audit committee on a monthly basis.

Last weekend when I was visiting a friend, I texted Russ:

Well, she took me to this awesome, little wine store and I just spent $100 on wine.

He texted back:

What??? Did YOU buy $100 of wine or did WE??

BLAH! I spent $100 and now you’re not allowed to drink any of it, so there!!

BLAH!

When I got back home, Russ said very nonchalantly:

So I bought new sheets for the bed.

Okay, great. How much were they?

$400.

WHAT???

Are you kidding me??

A sheepish grin crossed his face.

Well, that includes a comforter, too.

(As if that explains everything).

Wait! We didn’t discuss that! … You made an unauthorized purchase! … And who spends $400 on sheets??

And a comforter! he pointed out.

That’s it! I said, incredulous. Next time I leave town, I’m taking your debit card with me! You are no longer to be trusted alone with it!

Sometimes the audit committee needs an ethics committee.

One big difference between Russ and I is he does a lot of research before making a purchase, and I don’t. His strategy might include going to a store and trying something on, and then going to another store, and trying something else on. Without a doubt, it always includes reading a lot of reviews about the merchandise. Russ also reads the instruction manual to everything, and keeps them stored in a file.

Together.

Labeled.

For me, the instruction manual is usually the first thing to hit the trash when I open the box. I’m much more of a “try it first, then fish the instructions out of the trash when you get stuck and can’t figure it out” kind of girl. I also consider reviews as completely fallible, prone to erroneous summation. I’ll take a recommendation from a friend in a heartbeat, but the rest of the world, who I don’t know personally…Forget about it. You can’t even trust the “Best of” list from a reputable, professional source.

Once Russ and I tried “The Best Restaurant for X-kind of food in DC, and it was so bad, we couldn’t believe a single person had one, positive comment to make about it. The service itself was beyond reprehensible and the food was mediocre at best. And you know what? It is always packed on the weekends. PACKED. I don’t really understand it. Who are these people who sign up to pay good money for shitty service and cheap food?

Anyway, unlike Russ, I don’t read directions or read reviews. I like to try it all myself first before forming an opinion (or fishing the directions out of the trash).

 That, and we now have new sheets and they’re really nice.

It’s All Cake

I took Jimmy Carter Cake to work this week. This dessert is a family tradition in Russ’ family. I love it and I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t. (But don’t take my word, or my review as gospel, obviously. You’ll have to try it for yourself.).

I’m not really sure why it’s called a cake as it’s more of a pudding-type of dessert with the added bonus of whipped cream. It needs to be made in a pan with sides as it is soft when it’s put together, and firms up in the fridge overnight. Sometimes I call it ‘Charlie Brown Pie’ just to fuck with Russ.

Whatever you want to call it, it’s just plain delicious.

Russ had a potluck lunch at work this week, and he decided to take Jimmy Carter Cake. He doubled the recipe (unnecessarily, as it turns out) and came home with one pan of cake intact. I promptly took it to work the next day and left it on the counter in the break room. Almost all of it was gone by 10 a.m.

One of my coworkers, with his plate in hand, asked me if I made it.

Sheepishly, I said, Ummm, no, my husband made it.

Adding truthfully, He’s the real cook in the family.

He tried to throw me a bone.

He asked, Well, did you help him make it?

Nice of him, but….awkward.

Chuckling I said, Oh no! Absolutely not!

He looked at me cockeyed wondering why it was a ridiculous question to ask.

Umm, you don’t understand. When Russ cooks, it’s like he’s a surgeon. He pulls everything out of the drawers and cupboards, and lines it all up perfectly. There’s an order to everything he does.

Crickets.

As he was mulling this over, I broke the uncomfortable silence with: So, no, I don’t help him in the kitchen.

Scooping another mouthful in with his fork, he shrugged and said, Ok, and walked off.

First Frost

I culminated my first week of yoga cross-training with two yoga classes yesterday—one before work and one after.

(Amazing how quickly a person can trade one addiction for another, right?)

On Wednesday, my third day on my yoga mat, I got down in child’s pose and immediately had a charley horse in the bottoms of both of my feet, and another one bubbling under my right groin muscle. So much for a resting pose. I had to warm-up for my warm-up!

Facing the mutiny on my mat, I felt like I had successfully flushed out what I had been running from (pun intended) all fall. I had felt those knots brewing, but they thankfully never surfaced. This week was confirmation that being on my mat is exactly where I need to be right now and hopefully, I’ve dodged a bullet in the process.

Now the confession:

I went running this morning for the first time in a week. I know, I know, what happened to “No Run November?” Well, by no running, I meant only once a week.

 It’s almost the same thing.

It was the first frost of the season this morning, too. I loved it! There is nothing better than bundling up, and heading out to warm-up—from the inside out. It was a great morning for a run and to stretch my legs, even I felt like I hadn’t run in every bit of a week.

A friend asked me recently what I thought about when I run. (She’s never been a runner, and though she’s obsessed with yoga, I don’t think she quite understands how anyone could possibly be obsessed by running). I was caught off guard and couldn’t quite put it into words. In the past, I have said that running is the only time when I feel like my brain is in synch with the rest of my body.

Everything is going to same speed like a well-oiled machine.

Answering her question, I said, Well. I think about a lot of things. I think about my day or what I have going on. I think about how my body feels and how it’s going in the moment. Sometimes I wonder about the people I run past. In the two seconds of coming across them and passing them, I might conjecture what their life might be like, who they are. Sometimes I just think how beautiful it is around me.

Continuing I said, And sometimes I think about nothing.

Running is my idea of meditation. A moving meditation. Good or bad, it’s the closest I’ve come to “traditional” meditation.

(So yes, I have a long way to go).

P.S.

I forgot to mention…

No Run November also signals ‘No Shave ‘til the Stanley Cup’ playoffs.

And so it begins….

Let’s go, Bruins!

The Need for Read

In case anyone is looking for recommendations:

Man at the Helm, by Nina Stibbe

Dark Horse, by Todd Rose

And just started:

A Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson

Lucky Per, by Henrik Pontoppidan

2 thoughts on “The Bedrock of Wedlock

  1. Love this! So exactly like Jack and I (he also has manuals for everything saved which I have secretly needed to look at now and then but would never admit since I would have tossed them immediately). Also agree with pretty much all of your thoughts on the joy of running! Thanks for writing/sharing!

    Like

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