In response to Jason Brooks’ The Parent Trap, which was in response to my post , which was a response to mine, which was a response to his, which was a response to mine, I offer the answer to the question which all of these postings pose: if men are so frustrating, why do we marry them?
I stand by every word of what I said earlier. In fact, my own husband read my last post about men acting like children and when he was done I said, “Well?” And he said, “Well what?” (Naturally, he could not figure out what I was talking about without my using all the words.) I said, “Are you going to argue with me?” He said, “I can’t argue with any of that.” This means one of two things: 1) that he can’t argue with any of that, or 2) that he is a smart man and has been married to me long enough to know that was the correct answer. I don’t know which it is, and, frankly, I don’t care.
A little background here: I have been with my husband for 17 years, and married to him for 13. He is my BFF. When things are at their worst, he is right there. I trust him with my life AND my money. He is loyal and I have never once in all these years caught him in a lie. (About 87,459,302 lapses in memory, but never a deliberate lie.) He never fails to make me laugh, and, if I do say so myself, we make some pretty fabulous babies.
As I said, Mike has no idea what to buy me (or anyone else) for any gift giving occasion. When our son was small Mike bought him all manner of remote control cars and model rockets that our son couldn’t do anything with but drool upon. When I turned 40, he bought ‘me’ a new TiVo. (I rarely watch TV.) After the raised eyebrow, he made up for it by buying me an 18 volt Margaritaville™ cordless blender which I love lovelove because it shaves the ice prior to blending, can pulverize a pineapple in about 10 seconds, and has a carrying case so I can take it out on the floating living room known as our pontoon boat (which is named the Mother Ship for reasons to be described in another blog post.)
But I digress. I am married to a 6 foot tall manchild with grey hair who is old enough to be retired with a decent pension. Most men, as Jason pointed out, are semi-aware of the situation, and Mike is no exception. Mike even ran up to me once at the grocery store with a box of Cheez-Its in a flavor he’d never had before saying, “Mom! Mom! Mom! Can we get this?” because he knew exactly how he was behaving and he can laugh at himself.
Despite all the frustrations my sister-friends feel, it isn’t like we married you just for goofers. We really did love you when we said we did in front of the world on our wedding days. And, if we are still with you, we still do. There is no one on Earth whose head I want to throw a rock at more than my husband’s, but there is no one else I’d choose to spend the rest of my life with. I know without a doubt that he would die protecting me and our children. In fact, half the time I want to throw a rock at his head is when he is trying to protect one of us and I think he’s gone overboard. But you’ve got to appreciate where that comes from.
He’s not very good at cleaning. He honestly thinks he has cleaned the kitchen when there are still crumbs on the counter and day old coffee in the coffee pot. He thinks if he has cleaned out the inside of the toilet then he has cleaned the bathroom. And yes, he wants a pat on the head, an ‘atta boy’, and a cookie (and perhaps some grown up time) each time he does it. (Picture me hurling more rocks.)
But the truth is I would never ever in a thousand years be able to hear those weird little noises the car makes, much less fix them. I have no idea how much oil to mix in with the gas for the Mother Ship, and the only reason why I know you even have to mix oil with the gas is because he told me. He keeps track of the oil in my car and changes it, he mows the lawn, and he rakes the leaves. He can get my children to laugh harder than anyone else. He can fix the dryer so we don’t have to buy another one. He kills large insects. All that stereotypical manly stuff. Plus, he is six inches taller than me, and can get stuff off of high shelves. And, he tries. More often than not he fails, but he tries, and like I tell my children – you don’t have to be perfect. You just have to be the best you that you can be.
So remember this, guys: as much as we hammer on you, it is because we know you are tough and you can take it (and partially because we know that drops of water carved the Grand Canyon, after all.) And we love you. This is the 21st century. We don’t have to marry you unless we want to. And, as I said 13 years ago, “I do.”