Monday, November 27, 2006

Lucky 13

Roger and I just celebrated our “Lucky 13” wedding anniversary. Given the current rate of divorce in our country, it seems that we have a better chance of winning at roulette by placing it all on red, than we do keeping our marriage in the pink. Yet, for over a decade Rog and I have played to win, putting all our chips together hoping to beat the odds. I do like to keep the game interesting, however, by introducing him as my “first husband.”

To avoid cashing in early, marriage requires a great deal of give and take, work, and patience. Although I think at this point, Roger has given in to the fact that rushing me to be more patient is taking more work than he thought.

But even after all these years together, we've both continued to “grow”—at least in the lateral direction. He used to be my “stud muffin”; now he's more like my “dough boy.” To be fair, “hot buns” have long been crossed off my own list of tempting assets; they've been repackaged as large rolls.

One thing that has kept our marriage marching forward is that my husband is a real trooper. As I'm sure you can imagine, it can't be easy being married to a sassy gal like me. Lately though, I've been struggling to force out a more submissive side of myself. Just the other day I told Roger, “For now on, I want you to tell me when I should tell you what to do and how to do it.” His response: “This is why I'm not a polygamist.”

Sometimes I think that we can out-bicker the Bickersons. At our house, we'll play pass-the-buck like it's a heated game of “Hot Potato.” The first one to get the other to storm out of the room mumbling to themselves while pulling the hair from their head is the winner! “So;What's the score?” you may be wondering. I've never been prouder to say that my husband is almost completely bald.

I do feel bad for Roger when it comes time for me to write these columns. No, not because I reveal the dark and seedy underbelly of our crazy family life, but rather because I constantly call him at work to listen to my every rewrite. “Did you notice how I changed that comma to a colon?” I'll ask as I read my copy for the trillionth time over the telephone. It's gotten to the point where he can tell just by the sound of the ring if what I wrote is funny or not. Oddly, when I called him about this column—he wouldn't even answer the phone.

When I first met my mother-in-law, she offered me some marital advice. She said that she'd heard it from her dear friend Rose, (who was twice divorced, the last one was very messy), who'd heard it from her Aunt Eve's husband Charlie, (the shady accountant), who'd heard it from his cousin Myrna, (a real Miss Know-It-All), who'd heard it from her neighbor Betty, (the one with three sons who are doctors, you know—all three!). Anyway, Betty's sister was married for over 75 years to the same man, (and boy oh boy, could they dance—though no one ever thought it would last!). “What's the secret?” I begged her to tell me. “How should I know?” she answered, “I never listen to anybody else's business.”

I'm sure somewhere in there is some good advice. That, and always make sure you pay the life insurance premiums on time. (Roger: You took out the mail this morning … right?)

Well, Happy Anniversary Rog! I truly have been a lucky lady to share these past thirteen years with you. Odds are great that we'll be dazzling everyone on the dance floor at our 75th!

See what happens when you don't take my calls?