Someone place the 911 call now.
Winter is coming, and for me and Steven, it brings our worst domestic dispute.
OK, make it 311. It won’t come to blows, and calling 911 for non-emergencies really pisses them off. I know, because I once called the fire department when I was worried about tree branches that were growing too close to our living room window.
It was right before Hurricane Irene was supposed to hit. I was just calling to ask, “what would you suggest I do” because I thought the branches could shatter our window and rain glass down on an innocent passerby (though it was more about the shatter our window part). 311, the number for municipal issues like traffic questions and pothole reports, hadn’t been helpful.
On the other extreme, 911 was too eager to spring to action. The dispatcher ignored my pleas for advice and insisted on taking down my address. Next thing you know, the whole fire department was outside our window, dressed in heavy gear and looking up at a cherry blossom branch. They didn’t crack a smile when I laughed about how silly it all was.
I was kidding, don’t call 911.
But do prepare to see me and Steven bickering on the street. This is the season where we have one particular argument over and over. Actually, though we have what I’d consider an ideal marriage, there are 5 arguments we will have till the end of time assuming all goes as planned and we both live forever. Here they are, with the winter one last. Because I hate winter.
“Why are you hungry? We just had breakfast.”
If you want to anger a woman, tell her it’s not time to be hungry. This happens most when we’re traveling, and walking around all day together. I usually feel the first pangs when we’re in a museum. I have a low-ish threshold for museums, which I’m not proud of. There’s got to be a German word for “hyper-awareness of one’s growling stomach caused by shameful sensation of not knowing diddly-squat.”
Steven doesn’t understand growling stomach, or snappy-pants low blood sugar. In fact, he has no nerve connection between his stomach and his brain, or no feeling in his stomach whatsoever. Get this: he has never felt physical hunger. He only knows it’s time to eat if he sees a cheeseburger and it looks really good.
So, that’s why he says “Why?” When I say “I need to eat.” And then, I want to hit him.
“You can’t catch up on sleep.”
If I ask Steven to let me sleep in tomorrow because I haven’t had a good sleep in 3 nights, he’ll say, “Don’t bother. You can’t catch up on sleep.” He claims it’s true because he read a study. He knows better than that. The only scientific proof you need that a person can catch up on sleep is that I CAN CATCH UP ON SLEEP.
He remains unconvinced.
“Why’d you erase my Million Dollar Listings?”
Steven says he didn’t, but then how did the three that I was saving disappear from the DVR list, replaced by 5 episodes of Antiques Roadshow, a Masterpiece Theater special, and The Devil Wears Prada — his favorite movie in which Ann Hathaway, at her most
buxom talented, has to run through the streets of New York with a tray of cappuccinos?
There’s plenty of extra memory in our DVR.
But my husband loves to throw stuff out, especially if he doesn’t like the looks of it. Old, dented plastic water bottles that I’m reusing despite cancer warnings about plastic, “girly” books he doesn’t approve of, the pickles in the fridge that I keep explaining don’t go bad because that’s the point of pickling. And, of course, Million Dollar Listing episodes.
(Aside to Bravo: Why aren’t these available On Demand? Why?)
He hasn’t had a fair trial, so I’ll say he allegedly cleared them thinking I’d watched them all. No. Just because I played it, and you sat through the whole thing, doesn’t mean I watched it. It served as background while I worked or Facebooked, and now I have to start it over and watch it for real, because I don’t want to miss a single fake negotiation over a single horribly-decorated Hollywood Hills mansion. (Good god, 1950s modernist structures done in faux-Tuscan finishes. What’s wrong with people!)
“It’s not hot.”
Steven doesn’t sweat. He glows, and even that, he does very mildly. I’ve mentioned before, after he works out, his gym shorts smell faintly of mint. It’s not like I go sniffing them, but he likes to pull them out of the clear plastic bag and smother me with them. He literally rubs it in my face how un-sweaty he is, because I am a Sweaty Betty.
When we walk to a restaurant together, I beg him to slow down. Not just because to keep up with him, I have to do a half-run, half-walk thing I call the Turkey Trot, but because if we walk above a certain pace for 10 minutes or more, even in the cold, I will sprout a glistening sweat-stache and dewy forehead as soon as we reach our destination and sit down at a table. And then, within 3 minutes or so, it’ll turn into torrents. Cascading schvitz sheets, down my face.
Steven, though we’ve been together for 13 years, will cock his head as though he’s puzzled and trying to work out how this sweat event could happen when it’s not even hot. And then, helpfully point out, “You’re glistening.”
“It’s not cold”
Have I mentioned that my husband is an evolutionarily advanced form of human? In addition to hunger, he doesn’t experience a thing called “cold.” If it’s above 4 degrees Farenheit, he walks down the street with his coat brazenly, arrogantly open. I’m Too Sexy For This Windchill.
So when I insist on zipping up before we leave the lobby, or refuse to sit by the door at a restaurant, or beg, “Please, please wait till we’re inside to text, it’s too cold to stand here,” he says, “It’s NOT cold.”
“Remember that time you called the fire department?”
He uses this when I overreact to something. It would make #6, but it isn’t really an argument. Because what can I say back?
What do you argue about over and over with your sig other, or any kind of other in your life?
Have you ever met someone who doesn’t feel hunger?
TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS.