OK, you guys. We are going to declare a day off from the depressing Vietnam stuff for the whole day. Got it? Wednesday is a depression-free day. Go to the gym, or get your tub of Ben and Jerry's out, go shopping- whatever lifts your spirits. I'll even kick it off right now.
In an effort to stop dwelling on my own misfortune, to have a more selfless outlook, and to do my part for my fellow man (and fellow moms), I will attempt to momentarily distract us from our collective sadness by enlightening you on the secrets to a long and happy marriage. This is all absolutely free, mind you- no books to buy or Paypal donations to be made. No weekend seminars at Comfort Inn to coerce your spouse into attending. This treasure trove of sound marital insight costs you nothing. How awesome is that? What can I say? I'm a giver. I keep trying to tell you that, guys.
Darrell and I will be married 19 years, this August. Nineteen years is a very, very, long, flippin' time to do anything, especially to be married. After 19 yrs., you have to find new ways to keep the sizzle in the relationship; heart-pumping, exciting things you can enjoy doing together (or alone, when necessary) that will keep the spice and mystery alive in your marriage. It's all about trying something new each night, pushing yourself a little bit beyond what you did the night before. Oh, yeah. I think you all know what I'm referring to...
I'm speaking, of course, about computer games.
I'm sorry. Did you think I meant something else? This is not that kind of blog, honey.
Lately, Darrell and I have this one game in particular that we like to play. Luxor. We. Are. Hooked. It's loaded onto both of our computers. If you don't know the game, it's basically about slinging little colored balls at long, moving strings of other colored balls, shooting them all before they disappear into this little house thingy. If they go into the house thingy, you're done. Each level moves faster, with more strings, and gets more difficult to keep up. Fascinating, isn't it? Aren't you glad you asked? OK, so you didn't ask, and you really don't care. Anyway, it's very addictive. And frustrating. The whole thing gets me very stressed, and it's probably the last thing I need to be doing at night before I try to go to sleep.
After we get the kids to bed, and finally have a few precious moments to spend together indulging our passions, we pull out our laptops and sit down in separate rooms to play the game. That's right, I said separate rooms. The key to togetherness is (are you taking notes?)... Separate rooms. Darrell often sits at his desk in his office, which is right off our bedroom where I usually sit, so we holler commentary back and forth. Romantic, huh?
I thought I'd share one of our typical Luxor conversations with you, so that you can get a sense of the burning passion between us, and possibly even pick up a few valuable insights to help your own relationships...
Me: What level are you on?
Him: Still on 8-4. You?
Me: 8-4. Can't beat it. It's driving me crazy.
Him: Hey, does your computer ever stop for a second to make you take a break?
Me: Take a break? You mean it turns off? I don't think that's called a break. That's called crashing.
Him: No. If I've been playing for awhile, my computer will stop and make me take a break.
Me: That's weird. How does it make you take a break? Does your computer tell you it's making you take a break? Does it say, "You're doing a terrible job. Just give up, you loser"??? That would be funny.
Him: No, I'm pretty sure it's so you don't have one of those fits.
Me: (laughing) Whaaaat?
Him: You know. Sometimes this kind of stuff can make you have some kind of fit.
Me: (laughing harder) You mean, like, yanking your own hair out while shrieking profanities at the screen when you lose... again? Because I think I've had one of those... Are you talking about that kind of fit?
Him: No. It's from the flashing lights and stuff. You know? You know. Don't you?
Me: (laughing and peeing, just a little bit) No, I don't know. Tell me more about these fits you speak of. I need to know what to look for in case you have one.
This would probably not be funny to anyone else but me, but it was just something about his use of the word "fit" and the seriousness in his tone when he said it that really got me. Hilarious.
By the end of the "fit" conversation, I was laughing so hard, Darrell thought I was having some kind of fit. Good times. So... There you have it. That's how we roll. That's how to keep the fires burning after all these years. Hot, I know.
Darrell does know what he's talking about, he was just having trouble explaining himself. I knew what he meant, but I sometimes amuse myself by pretending not to understand him when I can see he's having trouble finding the right words. It's fun. It's another one of the secrets to a happy marriage. At least it sure makes me happy.
Anyway, this is what he meant. This is attached to one of our other games. "Warning: A very small percentage of individuals may experience seizures when exposed to certain light patterns or flashing lights..."
Hey, speaking of Darrell having trouble finding the right words, I dragged him along to go dress shopping with me earlier today and while driving to the store he asked me, "Do you have your flak jacket on?"
?????? I usually have a pretty good idea of what he means no matter how badly he mangles it, but this time I was totally clueless.
I said, "Flak jacket? Are you saying F*L*A*C*K? I don't even know what that is."
Then he goes, "Yes you do. You know. Your spats. Do you have those on?"
...Oh, OK. Now I got it. He means "Spanx."
Yes, I know. The differences are almost too subtle to see. Look again, carefully. It's quite easy to understand how someone could get these confused.
By the way... No luck with the dress shopping. That is now 2 wasted, worthless trips to Springfield, over an hour away. We searched the whole town. Even went back to a few stores twice, just hoping out of desperation that I'd missed something the first time. Found a few pretty ones that were either the wrong size or the wrong price. Most of the others were ugly. Too matronly. Wrong color. Too... BEDAZZLED. What's the deal with all the *&$# sparkles and doo-dads? Who decided that moms want to be covered in sparkles and doo-dads? Hideous. It's like Cher in Vegas, or something. I'm not a sparkly doo-dad kind of girl. Meanwhile, I have a GORGEOUS dress hanging in my closet that has to be RETURNED. So... The Great Dress Disaster of 08 continues. Stay tuned for our next installment, which will probably include a trip up to Kansas City. I don't suppose anyone else has noticed how FLIPPIN' EXPENSIVE GAS IS??? Just wondering.