I was just taking a shower and I had a thought. Do other women have mulch in their showers? Or lawn clipping, or leaves or twigs or whatever else fell off the man when he showered? Men are a funny bunch, aren’t they? I mean both funny ha-ha and funny odd. Though probably not funny to each other…just to their women.
It used to drive me batty when I had to rake the shower, or bedspread or sofa, but at this point in the game, I’ve given up trying to teach an old dog new tricks. I consider it a WIN when the old dog can remember his OLD tricks. I’m not going to rock the boat by piling on more. Quite frankly, I’m just glad the old dog is still here! However, I have noticed that as he gets older, I have to learn new tricks.
Growing up in the seventies left the lasting scent of “Peace” and “Love” swirling in my brain. So when Steven first got on his ‘We Need a Gun’ kick, I just laughed it off. Normally, it only takes a few weeks for him to either forget a kick or just naturally move on to a new one. But the gun thing wouldn’t go away. He thinks that the cancer and chemo left him weaker and more sluggish than he was in his youth. I think it might be aging that makes him feel that way. But the cause is moot, because the feeling meant enough to him that he just wouldn’t forget the ‘We Need a Gun’ chant.
So after months of his droning, I gave in and we went to a gun show. I knew that if I cracked that door open, he’d run right through it, and he did. He even called for back-up. One of my brothers is both a hunter and a typical nudging brother, so Steven started getting reinforcement from someone who talks and texts me regularly. It was an ambush; they wore me down and overpowered me with millimeters and ought-sixes and semi-automatic babble!
Now we have a gun and the chant has become “I need more bullets.” Seriously? He hasn’t used the first box up yet..or at all. We live a small, safe beachside community where our house is 4 blocks away from the police station. I told him we’d get more bullets after he shoots someone, which made me start wondering what would happen if we really had an intruder. With all the medication Steven takes, he can sleep through a Space Shuttle take off, a major thunder storm, an accidental stomp on a dogs squeak toy in the dark and the triple crown of Whippet racing that tracks over the bed…at midnight. Remind we why we got a gun…
Then I started getting links in my e-mail inbox. All types of gun propaganda. All from my husband. The last one I opened was a You Tube home video of some Larry the Cable guy wanna-be who was hiding behind his bed with a shotgun aimed at the door (where the camera was located) and and handgun aimed at his window in a Dirty Harry scenario that just happened to include his sleeping pet beagle who wouldn’t get off the unmade bed. I couldn’t even watch the whole 9 minutes because I could feel brain cells dying as that hillbilly ranted. When I asked Steven why I had to see that nut job, he said it was all about being prepared. We needed to rehearse…just in case. We needed a plan of action!
That’s when I discovered that Steven planned to be asleep through the siege. There it is! He’s worried because he is so knocked out after the meds kick in that he’s afraid that if something does happen, he won’t be able to respond…to protect us. He’s worried about me, which is sweet. What’s not sweet is that his plan begins with me hiding behind the bed, in camo pajamas with a flash light pointed at the door and a gun in my hand rehearsing the Bin Laden raid. Seriously? I’m the ‘Peace’ ‘Love’ generation. I never planned to shoot a gun, much less to shoot a person! Do other wives have to do this? I can see other women raking their showers, but crouching next to the bed like a sniper?
I’m a patient woman. And I know my husband. I knew it wouldn’t go away until I humored him, so I sucked it up and walked through the plan with him. Rehearse…we must rehearse! Dogs in the closet so they don’t run into the line of fire. Check. Flashlight on and pointed at the door so I can see the perp. Check. Before I take my place I’m supposed to roll Steven off the bed to the floor for safety…but he wouldn’t let me rehearse that part. Hell, where is the fun in doing this if I don’t get to push him off the bed? Whatever…I rehearsed. I’m a fast study and good sport, and I knew that this would stop this craziness.
It did. Since then, we haven’t spoken of the gun…except for the ‘I Need More Bullets’ chant. Although that’s not really about the gun. That’s more about trying to get a rise out of me! However, now Steven sleeps better because he feels like he’s got protection. Unfortunately, then I couldn’t sleep because I felt so RESPONSIBLE for our safety. Recently, though, I had a moment of clarity. We had a storm and the thunder and lightning had the dogs huddled up in bed with us. Steven was snoring and I was trying to nod off. There was a knock at the door…
I got up, went to the door, and opened it, no gun in tow. Surprisingly, Steven was right behind me holding the gun. Standing there was a police officer with a flashlight. He was alerting us that the storm had knocked down a tree in our side yard and it was blocking the road. He was just giving us the heads up because that’s the kind of danger we have in our little community. Beware of trees. Standing there in my uber-sexy camo pajamas, I thanked him. He probably thought I thanked him for the heads up. I thanked him because we didn’t have to shoot anyone, but if we did, it would have been Steven doing the shooting.
My wonderful, brave and awake husband stowed the gun and walked out with the officer to survey the damage. When he came back in he climbed into bed and quickly drifted off to sleep knowing that if he had to, he could be the tough guy he used to be before cancer, before chemo, before 50. He could protect his girls.
I just raked off my side of the bed and fell asleep thinking about how funny men are.