Today's Lesson: How To Incur Your Beloved's Wrath* With No Effort On Your Part

I freely admit that my wife and I do not have perfectly meshing personalities. I might (or she might) think/say/do things which vex, exasperate, annoy, perplex or otherwise upset her (or she, me) on a somewhat steady basis.

These occasions are mitigated when one of us is working our "heavy" season, i.e. we're not around to witness the incident that'd otherwise plunge us into the depths of botherness, and if we are, it's only after arriving so late we'd rather more lured by the prospect of slumber than argument.

So it bears noting when howls and imprecations and glares come at you from out of what appears to be a clear blue sky. Assiduous readers will recall TFBIM is currently working her heavy season, which on top of the ridiculous hours, is spent trying to disentangle gummint paperwork and bureaucracies expressly created to disquiet and trouble the citizenry as it undergoes its annual wallet raid, courtesy of the police power of the state. So, mark that, as it has great bearing upon the case, Watson.

Now, it turned out that yesterday she had to drop off a multi-ton ream of gummint forms (doubtless the E-Z tax form) to a client. Said client was running late and, since said client lived not far from The School, and would be returning shortly before School Pickup, TFBIM called me and volunteered for Pickup Duty.

"Uh, sure. Fine."

So off TFBIM goes, breezes by the homestead to decant offspring and then exits without much in the way of verbal interplay. "Hmm. Odd." It is at this point when the more astute reader, freed from the constraints and encumbrances that accompany the Y chromosome, will be shouting at the screen something like "Run, Joke! RUN!" But I, being burdened and encumbered as stated, do not smell the danger and stay put, tending to household duties.

Dinner is prepared, consumed and its detritus disposed. Leftovers are left for TFBIM in the "ready position" awaiting her dainty digits treading upon the microwave keypad. She comes in. Not banging doors, or slamming items down. She desires, and receives, speech.

"Went to do the pickup at school today."
"Met that new mom."
"Which one?"
"The skinny one with the ring on her navel but not her left ring finger."
["Flee! RUN! Head for the tall grass!" I hear you shout. Too late now.]
"That's...uh...Adrian's mom."
"Adrian. Yes."
"She was telling me how funny you are."
"You know the new...?" I start, innocently believing TFBIM wanted me to repeat the very funny thing I said.
"She asked if you were working out again."
"I missed today, I had to go get the..." I mention, believing it relevant to share my errands du jour.
"[Pixie-looking Mom] asked me 'Are you Joke's wife? He's so funny. He's adorable.' "
"Well, I am a beautiful man." I interject, hoping to bring some of my trademark levity into play.
"She asked me what you were making for dinner.[Talbot's wearing mom] jumped in and said 'I think it's saltimbocca.'"
"Yeah! This time I sliced..." I offered, believing the subj. of dinner was now arising on the agenda.
"[Navel-ring mom] said 'Oooh. That I wish my ex was like that.' [Talbot's wearing mom] said to [Navel-ring mom] and [Pixie-looking Mom] 'You should hear him, he loves shopping. He told me about the clearance at Nordstrom. I practically have to dress my husband as well as the kids.'"
"Remember those navy blazers they had...?" offered Mr. Clueless.
"What do you tell these women?"
"Oh, I was..."
"[Deity's name]! You're impossible!"


* It was not so much wrath qua wrath, as it was vexation at the fact I am set loose, for +/- 4 months at a stretch, among cute -- and some, it must be said, are definitely Not Cute At All -- mothers and she must hear from them, whom I have clearly fooled, what a wonderful specimen I am when she clearly knows better.


BabelBabe said…
THEY know better too, they are just screwing with her. bitches. not that you're not wonderful and all...
Badger said…
Dude. I don't know how to tell you this, but I think you might have the Aspergers.
Poppy Buxom said…
If it would make TFBYM feel any better, tell her that I--who have spent hours and hours in your company IRL--know better too.

For example:

Ladies of the jury, I offer two scenarios. In the first, there is a a husband who is deeply interested in cooking, very opinonated about interior decoration, and wants to be involved in pretty much every aspect of your house, including the clothes the children wear.

In the second, there is a husband who trusts his wife to make things nice, offers no opinions, and gives her carte blanche to do and or buy anything she'd like.

Joke is the former. My husband is the latter. Which would you prefer?
Frogdancer said…
Joke, much as I adore you.. (quick! Tell your wife I'm in Australia and have never clapped eyes on you, much less anything else!!!)...
Poppy does have a point.....
Joke said…
If I spent a day expressing no opinions, I'd probably rupture something.

Kim said…

You actually talk to other parents?
At school?

What Kim said!
You must learn not to talk to these wenches!
Stomper Girl said…
Quick! Tell her about the time some of your co-workers were struck dumb by TFBYM's legs/quick wit/ figure in the red dress/etc. And then tell her how lucky you are to have found each other and mixed your fabulous gene pools.

I always chat in the school yard, my own bad self.
shula said…
A difficult row to hoe, I admit, but one that brings with it a certaina....erm....Kudos (raises eyebrows meaningfully).

And let's not even mention the conversations you have on the internet.

Please, remind me, what TFBYM stand for?

I like her more everytime I hear about her. Exactly which deity was she referring to?
MsCellania said…
OF COURSE you talk about food and shopping at pickup! We all talk like magpies at drop off and pick up - and 3 of the dads offer alot to the mix - one of the dads brought a sample of some Indian dipping sauce he had just whipped up today (recipe from Cooking Light - and it was fabulous) and we all tried it. IT WAS STILL WARM!
We share coupons for nearby stores and on-line shopping tips as well as recipes. I would say 1/4 of the parents doing the pick up are men, and alot of them are as, or more, opinionated than most of the women.
If a different parent shows up and is kind of new to the group, he or she is mercilessly sucked into the vortex, questioned and prodded for all kinds of opinions. My husband actually breaks out in a cold sweat when he has to go to pick up the boys instead of me.
I thought this frenzy of visiting at pick up was normal. People hang around forever afterwards, too, visiting.
PS. Your terra cotta tile is nice. I thought it was saltillo tile, which I HATE as it is so fragile.
I think you should do this slab granite called Blue Eyes - it has chunks of lapis in it. Or a manufactured product. Oh, my appliance guy won't ship - he only does local delivery. Sorry.
Joke said…
Will he deliver it to UPS?

h&b said…
I'm the jealous type.

Nobody disses my husband, nor overly praises him but me.

Otherwise there's fisticuffs.
Imagine how fit you would appear to the school gate mums if you did all the running you should be doing when you know (or even sense) you are in deep deep trouble.

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