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The Great Debate, Part 2

January 30, 2010

    Snow arrived silently during the night, surrounding the house in millions of white garbed battalions. When I awakened the next morning, it was still coming, a hushed ambush that delighted even as it assaulted the senses.

    I knew this warrior to sting with ice and numbing cold, and yet I welcomed its presence. It was Beauty. Peace. Tranquility covering a multitude of winter blandnesses (is that a word? Ech. Who cares.). I was looking forward to being housebound, the Siege of the Snow forcing me to keep to the comfort and security of home.

    I sat down to try to write, try to get some work done. After all, I was a day or two late on the “Don’t Need a Man” blog that I had promised—it had been interrupted by the pressing matter of the Apple IPad, and then by snow preparations on Friday. You see, we prepare for snow here in the south, because life pretty much comes to a screeching halt. We go to the grocery store and buy the very last loaf of bread and gallon of milk; we go shopping because it will likely be five days before we can leave our homes and get to the mall; we buy whatever we require to complete some big in-house project that we’ve needed to complete for a while, so we can feel productive instead of trapped. We check out the pay-per-view and tivo situation, and rent movies if necessary. We prepare.

    My husband sat down around the same time.

    And he started to talk. About nothing. And he talked, and he talked, and he talked. At one point, he very astutely observed, “You’re typing.”

    “I’m trying.”

    “Oh, am I bothering you?”

    “Not at all. Keep talking, and I’ll keep trying to multi-task.” My hands hovered over the keyboard, expectant. Waiting. What had I been about to type? Dang it.

    “Oh. Did I break your train of thought?”

    I gritted my teeth. “Yep.”

    A smile broke out across Duane’s face. “Hate to break the news to you, baby, but it looks like we’re going to be stuck together for the next forty-eight hours.”

    And a flood of joy overwhelmed me. This is why women need men. I just needed reminding.

The Chinese Lunch, Part Two

    “So, what you think about ole Tiger Woods?” Duane asked the old lady, thinking the whole hunting topic was about exhausted after a slight inconsistency with Sarah Palin. She leapt into this topic eagerly.

    “Oh, I don’t know what in the world he was thinking about, sleeping with all them women.”

    “Are you by any chance one of them old women who’ve outlived their husband and put him in the grave?” (I guess you’ve figured out by now that with Duane, precisely nothing is off limits.)

    “Naw. I divorced his a**.” Isn’t it great that after reaching a certain age, you can say just about anything and get away with it?

    “You did?” (Snorting with laughter, naturally.)

    “Yeah. He nearly killed me twice. He was a paranoid schizophrenic. He nearly killed me—he was crazy.”

    “I guarandangtee it. If you thought he was crazy, I bet he was.” (Just a tiny emphasis on the you. She’s a sharp old bird—don’t want her to catch on to the fact that he’s messing with her…)

    “He WAS crazy!”

    “I guarantee it! Ain’t you found you another man by now?”

    “I don’t need no man. I don’t know what no woman needs no man for. All I need is RCA.”

    “What’s that?”

   “My t.v.”

    “I hear ya. You mean to tell me that you don’t want a man in your life?”

    “I just…cringe…at the thought. I’ve had movie stars, rich men, poor men…I’ve done had ‘em all down on their knees…begging me to marry ‘em.”

Here Duane interrupted his own tale to interject—“now you haven’t seen this woman. She hadn’t exactly won any beauty pageants, if you take my meaning.”

    “I hear ya!” he encouraged her. “And you didn’t take any of ‘em up on their offer?”

    “Naw, I didn’t want any of ‘em.”

    “Yeah. Well, I just can’t believe that.” Duane shook his head.

    “I just can’t stand the thought…to have to wake up every morning, and look at some man’s face every day…for the rest of my life…I just couldn’t bear it. Ain’t no man in the world that good-looking.”

    Duane leaned over…”You mean to tell me that I’m not good-looking enough? That if you could wake up every day and see my pretty face, you wouldn’t want to do it?” Now, there is some precedent for this query. There is an older lady at the company–Granny, we call her–who adores Duane. She tells him (and me) how handsome he is, and how if he wasn’t married she’d snap him up in a heartbeat. It’s pretty funny.

    The old woman studied his face closely, tilting her own head back and forth in contemplation. Then, as if a definitive conclusion had been reached: “No.”

    “Hmph. You hurt my feelings.”

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. January 30, 2010 2:50 pm

    Oh Lori this is just de-lic-ious! I am laughing so hard.

    “I just can’t stand the thought to have to wake up every morning and look at some man’s face every day.”

    I can just picture some wrinkled wrankled old woman saying that. Pppfffft! Men! Grunt………

  2. January 30, 2010 2:51 pm

    Sorry…….had to read it again it is just so funny! RCA……..oh my gosh what a crack up!

  3. January 31, 2010 11:26 am

    I want that lady to move to my neighborhood. What a crack-up!

  4. Lori permalink*
    February 1, 2010 1:51 pm

    Rachel–she’s a loon, but a funny one! I know I’d have been in the floor, for sure.

  5. Lori permalink*
    February 1, 2010 1:52 pm

    Gerb–she kind of reminds me of that old woman on Wisteria Lane in Desperate Housewives…the one who has an opinion on everything, and it’s not usually a great one? I wish I’d been there.

  6. February 1, 2010 4:03 pm

    well, i am loving your husbands way of getting the most out of the conversation….wahooo duane!

  7. Lori permalink*
    February 1, 2010 5:37 pm

    Misty–for the strong silent anti-social type, he has a way with words 😉

  8. Anaise permalink
    February 2, 2010 9:43 am

    That was delicious to read.

    I’m glad you shared it.

  9. Lori permalink*
    February 2, 2010 9:52 am

    Anaise–yum. 😉

  10. February 3, 2010 12:01 pm

    LOL – I LOVE THIS! Lori, thanks for coming to my site: I just HAD to visit yours, after you came to mine, AND I’M GLAD I DID! 😀 Stepping into that restaurant was a delightful journey! Your writing is fabulous! – I’ll be seeing you again!

    PS. Your husband talked to that old lady like they were great friends… reminded me of someone I know increibly well. 😉 lol

  11. Lori permalink*
    February 3, 2010 1:12 pm

    Awww, thanks, Corine! You are so sweet. My Duane is a trip and a half–he keeps me laughing even after almost 15 years. When he started telling me that story, I had to stop him, pull out the tape recorder (I normally use it for business articles that I write) and record away…I just knew I would never get it straight if I didn’t.

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