I was going to take this weekend off from blogging. I have two courses going on, final grades to turn in for a third, and three more starting up on Monday. (Yes, on the 4th of July. It’s one of the drawbacks of working for a for-profit online institution. There are no scheduled holidays.) So I’ll have five classes by the time all is said and done. I’ve taught one of the three startups recently, I last taught another six months ago, and the third I’ve never taught at all. So I’ve got tons of prepping and grading to do this weekend. You won’t be hearing much from me until Tuesday or so. But. Today something happened that I’ve got to share.
Scott and I sat down to dinner after the kids tonight. We’ve kind of given up on that whole family meal thing, since whether we eat with them or not, the two of us wind up popping up and down like jacks running for the kids’ requests. Eating after them means we can at least sometimes exchange an adult word without juvenile intervention. We ate the meal, agreed it was pretty awful (if you ever get the chance to try Sam’s Club’s chicken fried rice, just skip it), and I started clearing the table.
Scott said, “Oh, hey! I think I found something for us to do.” We’ve been working on a list of indoor summer things we can do with our kids, because it’s always too hot down here.
“Remember the Hanson Brothers?” he asked.
“The stupid teeny-boppy pre-Jonas brothers?” Later, when I related this conversation to Linda, she reminded me of the song “Mmm-bop”. At the time, I took the butter to the fridge with what I hoped was sufficient hauteur to end the conversation.
“It looks like one of them made a puppet.”
“Oh-kay.” As usual, he had not picked up on my tone of voice. Or word choice. I was thinking, He doesn’t seriously think I liked Hanson, does he? Surely I’ve given him a better sense of my taste in music than that.
“Well, not just one,” he continued. “But like, a lot of them, all kind of based around the first one.”
Does he want me to go see this? Because I do not want my children to ever know about Hanson. “Um. What are they like? Is there something really cool about them?” Is there anything redeeming at all about anything made by a Hanson brother?
“The first one is something … Miss Moo-ie, maybe?”
I said, “That sounds pretty stupid.”
“And she has this green friend. His name starts with a K…”
“Christ,” I told him. “That sounds like a rip off of Kermit and Miss Piggy.”
“Yeah! That’s it. Kermit. Kermit and Miss Piggy!”
“That sounds like a total Muppet rip …. Wait a minute. HENSON. Not HANSON. HENSON.”
And it wasn’t until I was shrieking Jim Henson’s name at him that I stopped ferrying dishes long enough to look at his face. It was total deadpan. The only thing that gave it away was the open mouth that he was using to keep himself from smiling. So then, I shouted, “You did that on PURPOSE.” And we just looked at each other for a few more seconds before I dissolved into laughter. It turns out 800 of the original Muppets have been donated to this puppet museum in Atlanta, and we’re going to go see them tomorrow. I’m so psyched I’m going to have to drug myself to sleep tonight. And I can’t even imagine how long Scott spent thinking up that presentation.
He does that to me from time to time, comes at me out of nowhere with something spontaneous and hilarious. He once literally scared the hiccups out of me by sneaking up behind me and jabbing me in the ribs. I was so shocked that, after I screamed, I whipped around to order him never to do that again. Only while I was in the middle of telling him off, I realized it had worked, and I burst out laughing. Now, if I had a power like that, the ability to nettle somebody completely and then make them laugh about it, you know I would abuse it. But because this is Scott, it only happens once in a blue moon, and I never know when it’s coming.
When Scott and I first started dating, I remember asking my friend Tina, who had been married for several years, what she did when her husband, Jason, stopped surprising her. She looked at me, sort of perplexed, and said, “He really hasn’t ever stopped. It’s just not as often.”
At the time, her answer made no sense to me. I could not imagine a time when romance wasn’t just something new and wonderful every day, but I knew that kind of thing didn’t keep up forever. I was trying to understand how couples stayed in love once the initial sparks cooled off, and I couldn’t figure out her response.
Scott and I celebrate our tenth anniversary this October, and it does finally make sense. I’ve realized that with him, there’s always going to be something marvelous and unexpected around the corner, and that it’s useless to anticipate or wonder about it. And one of my favorite things about being married to him is that I’ll get to find out what it is when it happens.
I love you, honey.