The bug that had at least one of us knocked out for the past three weeks appears to have left the building. Time to get back in the swing of things.
I was saving this item for a post on the best backhanded compliments I’ve received, but it’s a prerequisite for this story so…
Husband: You have Erma Bombeck Syndrome. EBS. She was hilarious in writing…
[good so far]
Husband: …but then they tried to give her a TV show and she totally tanked in person.
Me: Are you sure that’s what you meant to say?
I’m fully aware that my written blatherings have always been better than my verbal blatherings. (Apparently, Google’s spell check thinks “blathering” is not a noun. Well, Google, you’re not the boss of my blog.) So the conversation Saturday night at dinner really came as no surprise.
We were out celebrating our 13th anniversary (which is actually today).
Husband: So, since you have EBS syndrome, I expect something written for our anniversary and my 40th birthday [in a few weeks].
Me: What do you mean, like a card? A blog post? A letter?
Husband: Whatever, just something written.
Me: Um…can I just print out the thing about the homeowner’s association and give you that?
Me: I don’t know if I can just come up with something “on demand” like that.
Husband: Not my problem.
So I went looking for some inspiration. Some of my best material ends up on Skype chat, so I checked out the history of conversations between us. It goes back to January 2008. I cut and pasted it into a word document. It was 145,946 words. That seemed kind of overwhelming to wade through so, as I am wont to do, I gave up on that idea.
Instead, I wracked my “photographic” memory (or is it “racked”? The interweb is unsure…) to come up with some memories of how it all started.
Sunday, December 10, 1995
First date. We went to a Christmas Cantata at his full gospel church in downtown ghetto East Coast City. I lost some of my whiteness after that performance. When he dropped me off…
Me: Well, thanks, that was fun.
Husband-to-be: Yeah, thanks for going with me.
Me: Um, okay, bye.
Me: [Seriously? Is that it?]
Tuesday, December 12, 1995
Frantic call from Husband-to-be, who suddenly realized I was leaving Friday for 6 weeks.
Wednesday, December 13, 1995
Second date. We met downtown at 10pm after his Christmas concert rehearsal, went to a diner, and talked until 2am.
I told my boss I was nervous, and that maybe things were moving too fast. He said, “That’s not what love is about. Love survives because of compatibility between two people, because of the things you share, the fact that he loves the Lord. Those are the things that last.”
December 1995-January 1996
$300 calling card bill
[Companionship] is often called Friendship, and many people, when they speak of their “friends” mean only their companions. But it is not Friendship in the sense I give to the word…Friendship arises out of mere Companionship when two or more of the companions discover that they have in common some insight which the others do not share and which, ’til that moment, each believed to be his own unique treasure (or burden). The typical expression of opening Friendship would be something like, “What? You too? I thought I was the only one…” It is when two such persons discover one another, when, whether with immense difficulties and semi-articulate fumblings or with what would seem to us an amazing and elliptical speed, they share their vision — it is then that Friendship is born. And instantly they stand together in an immense solitude. – CS Lewis, The Joyful Christian