Tag Archives: marital comedy

History lessons with my wife

So, I was mostly minding my business tonight while Deb watched Grey’s Anatomy. During a commercial, I looked up from my read of a book on the decline of the Ottoman Empire to read her a passage which I thought said a lot about Napoleon’s ability to influence peoples (though I was in fact a bit wrong about that). She said, in her outside voice as is traditional, “You don’t know history at all!”

“I don’t?”

“No. If you did, you would know that his last name was not really Bonaparte…”–I grew kind of excited–“…but Bone Together. ‘Bonaparte’ was an attempt by him to draw people away from him so he could have sex with the enemy’s women. That’s why he won the war!”


“Come at me, big daddy. Ask me anything. Bring it.”

“Okay, very well. What is the significance of Çatalhöyük?”

She fixed me with a gaze of shock and dismay. “You don’t know what Saddle Who You was? Listen and learn. When they wanted to build the Trojan Horse, they needed a saddle that could hold a lot of people. So they made one, and named it Saddle Who You, which is derived from Saddle Hookah. This enabled them to deliver rubbers.”

I looked at her and just laughed. “Rubbers?”

“Duh. Why do you think it was called the Trojan Horse?” I sat silent, like any good husband slow in the uptake. “See? You don’t know your history. Ask me anything else.”

“Fine. Who did Charles “The Hammer” Martel defeat at Poitiers?”

She looked aghast that I could be so clueless. “Charles Martel defeated Le Peu Nailé, which of course means ‘the nail.'” I cracked up again, couldn’t help it. “Keep it coming. Ask me anything.”

“Okay, dear. What was the significance of Charlotte Corday?”

A sigh. “Charlotte Corduroy, you mean. She invented pants, but they were corduroy pants. They were also called ‘whisper pants,’ and the idea was to give them to the enemy so they would whisper when they walked.”


“Absolutely. I’m really sad for anyone like you, with a degree in history, to be so un-knowledgeable.”

“I think you meant ‘ignorant,’ dear.”

“NO! I said ‘un-knowledgeable’ and I meant ‘un-knowledgeable!’ Now come on. Ask me another. I can see I have a lot to teach you.”

“Fine. Please name one of the Spanish explorers of North America.”

She thought for a minute, consulting her stores of learning. “Well, his name was Julio El De Massmainebostainia. There are some states named after him. He came with his wife Maria, their daughter Nina, and some pinto beans.”

At that point, there was nothing for it but to come put it on the blog.


“I’m the Have-Nots for the week.”

This morning I was brushing my teeth while Deb attempted to blow-dry all that hair. I brush my teeth reliably, but I dislike it. The mess, the taste, the gagging that will happen when I do it for the proper length of time. Deb is going camping with friends, and I’m going to go hang out with friends, staying with the delightfully hospitable McCall clan. (And no, I have not opened a can of dumbass posting on the blog that we are out of town. There’s still a family of five living here in our absence.)

When I’m trying to brush my teeth with Deb around, she takes advantage of the fact that I can’t talk by heckling me. When she found out I was going to Steve and Melissa’s, she had visions of culinary delights, so the Heckling-of-the-Day concerned the fact that I was varying unflattering epithets for going without her. I should also mention that we sometimes watch a trashy reality show called Big Brother, in which people live in a sound stage that the show calls a ‘house,’ compete for food and powers, and try not to get evicted. If they are Have-Nots, they have to eat ‘Big Brother Slop,’ a nutritious but unappetizing wallpaper paste.

So I’m brushing my teeth. “You are such a faecolith for this,” she groused. “I’m on slop. I am the Have-Nots for the week.”

As hastily and poorly as I set that line up before leaving, it probably won’t do to you as it did to me. I was overcome. Ever try laughing with a mouth full of toothpaste while brushing? I was doubling over, causing toothpaste foam to come dripping down my beard (which I hate), pouring out down the toothbrush onto my hand (which I abhor), messing up my orderly brushing routine (which annoys me). The whole mess made it funnier, my fastidious brushing turned into a hydrophobic-looking FAIL.

Have a good weekend.

It looks like Shrek puked in our blender

Deb and I are fond of the HBO fang series True Blood. While the plotline sometimes goes to dippy places, for the most part it’s quite entertaining. The dry comedy never fails to crack us up, and the characters grow in complexity over time. I’ve got no use for this whole zombie fad, which I think, hope and trust will fade away like a crappy dream, but some of the vampire stuff is pretty good.

One of our TB traditions, as I’ve mentioned in the past, is strawberry milkshakes with a ton of red food coloring in them. She makes them with Splenda and low sugar ice cream, and they are surprisingly good. The strawberries? Dumped frozen straight into the blender. That thing can’t last much longer.

Last night I came upstairs just before the show, having heard the construction work noises of the blender going to work on the fruit. Before I got around the corner, Deb lamented in her traditional way (at the volume you’d use to address a gathering of deaf elderly people):  “Jonathan! I screwed up really bad!”

“What happened, dear?”

“LOOK!”  I did.  The blender was full of green slurry. “I was trying to mix colors and I forgot that blue and yellow don’t make red! I’m so sorry!”

I started laughing so hard I doubled over. My wife is a brilliant woman in the many areas where she is brilliant, but when it comes to chemistry, physics or biology, they barely register. She was and is entirely capable of forgetting color mixing while cooking, though she would never forget it while painting (at which she is quite capable). Between gales, I reassured her: “It won’t taste any different, dear, it’s fine.”

“Noooo! I can’t believe I did this! It looks like Shrek puked in our blender!”

“It really is fine, dear.” And it was, if you didn’t mind imagining strawberry flavor colored emerald green. We watch the show with the lights off, which made that a little easier. As I believe wise old colonial horndog Ben Franklin once said, ‘in the dark all cats are grey.’ We started to watch the show, with all its nudity, violence and adult themes (everything you want!). Except that every so often, I’d turn and laugh at her.

After a while, I said, “Dear, I just figured out what would be perfect for this.”

A sidelong look of foreboding.  In resignation:  “What?”

“There needs to be a Vulcan vampire show. Can you imagine Spock as a vampire? We could drink this every time!”

“You’re weird.”

Many of our conversations conclude with those words from her.

“There are some popsicles out on the grill.”

Yet another on the List Of Statements Made Mainly In Alaska.  I just made it, and I was not wisecracking.  I brought my wife home the fruit popsicles she enjoys, but there was no room in our hosts’ freezer, so I stuck both boxes in the snow piled atop the grill on the back porch.  They’re still out there.

In a normal place, the response might have been:  “Honey, have you been drinking?”

In Alaska:  “Great, dear, will you please bring me one?”