Harlequins, Country Music, and Marriage
This week was our anniversary.
Those who have read my blog know my husband as an Elvis-loving reluctant cat father who appears in a supportive role whenever I seem to be in the midst of a crisis. That’s pretty much him, though I have left out that he is a Japanese music expert, a great cook, and a dedicated bike rider (sometimes missing only 2 days a year because of snow), among other things. I like him because our first date was a George Jones concert, our second a Jim White concert, our third a Yoshida Brothers concert, and our fourth, a marathon of Flight of The Conchords.
The first three dates were his ideas; the fourth mine. In other words, he is far cooler than me:
I wanted to sing this for him at our wedding, but a drunk rehearsal at my brother’s place at Christmas, stage fright, the hassle of transporting a guitar and a really white dress, and general laziness kept me from properly preparing it. Oh well.
Would have liked to do this one too:
What I like about this song is its acknowledgement of the special within the mundane. Get picked up from work and find out you’re having a baby. Knock over your partner’s water glass in a drunken stupor and they don’t even notice because they love you so much. Cough all over their breakfast and all they can see are your beautiful eyes shining through the hangover glaze. Aw, ain’t love special?
I was reorganizing my stack of Harlequins on the bedside table the other night – all of which, by the way, are variations on A Cowboy for Christmas (guess I’m predictable) – and my husband was asking me about them. I was telling him how the book just ends with the kiss, or the promise to get married, and that such a promise usually comes after much strife and only one kiss throughout. In fact, the ones with the most sex are the ones most likely to end in just a kiss, one full of romantic promise and eternal dedication, whereas the ones that have no physical contact between the couple throughout (just yearning looks and burning loins and such) tend to end with one proposal and one kiss, in that order. In other words, the story is done when people decide to get married.
Turns out this is NOT the case! I was entirely shocked to find out I still had a life after my wedding. And that that life is not a stream of roses, whispers of sweet nothings, and giggling, healthy, bouncy children. Just a rather itchy cat and a lot of sweatpants. Huh.
Not that it is this either (I hope):
So here’s what I’ve learned in one year of marriage:
Just kidding. Well, not entirely. Turns out life keeps going, but you still don’t acquire a whole lot of knowledge in just a year. Anyway, marriage is: going out onto the porch and throwing empty beer cans around, or hurling stacks of unmarked essays (sorry kids) across the room in frustration, then helping each other clean them up before the in-laws arrive; it’s worrying that they’ve been in a bike accident when they get home 20 minutes after you; it’s kicking someone to stop snoring, then waking up to their cute face sound asleep next to you in the morning; it’s wondering what the hell you’re going to do if you don’t get some alone time soon, then when you finally do, feeling kinda lonely and bored; it’s devising the best way to do your taxes and pay off your student loans, then putting that off longer than you should in favour of watching an episode of Mad Men or The Venture Brothers; it’s realizing you’ve still got your same stupid problems and hang-ups and worries and that you’re still totally selfish, but a small part of you is worried that they have a stomachache or that you’ll wake them up when you set off the fire alarm (I call it the toast alarm) at 6 am.
All I’ve learned is that alone time, listening to my recent most favourite album, is great, but then talking to someone about it later is greater. Also, that I’m apparently a poet.
We still don’t know if we will have kids or be this nice to each other in a year or live in the same place or ever get real adult jobs, but we do know that so far, our marker of happiness is that we both still sing in the house. Mostly to the cat, but I occasionally toss out a “There’s horses here for everyone/saddle up kids let’s get’er done” as I walk by his office to let him know I still love him enough to let him hear me sing.