Thursday, May 24, 2012
There is a way to look at the past. Don't hide from it. It will not catch you if you don't repeat it. – Pearl Bailey
It was on June 12th, in the year 1982, that Canada witnessed the two biggest gambling institutions our nation had ever seen. The first was the creation of our national greed-fest; Lotto 6/49. The second was my marriage to Cupcake. Whereas one created hopes, dreams and aspirations in my soul, the other was just a stupid lottery.
With our thirtieth anniversary coming at us like a festive freight train, Cupcake and I sat down to discuss how we should commemorate the significant milestone. What should have been a wonderful sharing of our individual preferences, however, instead brought into focus the sharp differences we see in “having fun” not to mention a realistic grasp of our finances.
“I think we should go to Europe for a couple weeks,” Cupcake murmured, her eyes glazed over like a Calmar bakery donut only not quite as enticing. I winced. Her fantasies inevitably involve spending our retirement savings to whisk me away to some exotic place so I can watch her nap in interesting locations. I expressed those concerns.
“Oh, it’s not that bad,” snorted Cupcake, suddenly free of her reverie. “I’ve told you a million times not to exaggerate.”
“Oh? Remember when we went for a ‘naughty weekend’ at the budget motel in Leduc?” I reminded her. “You said hot tubs made you itch, the fireplace made the room too hot and you refused the champagne I bought us, claiming it might give you gas. You decided you wanted a diet Pepsi instead and I had to pay motel vending machine prices for it. Then you proceeded to watch your slate of “Dancing With the Criminal Minds” programming on the TV. Having the same experience, only in a foreign country, doesn’t make it any more appealing.”
“Sorry, but I didn’t want to be itchy all night. I would have tossed and turned and that would have kept you awake, my darling,” she responded magnanimously. “And you know I don’t drink alcohol. Who wants a three day hangover?”
“Surely there are other points on the inebriation continuum between total abstinence and being so gooned it takes you a week to recover,” I broke down her specious argument logically; a strategy proven incredibly ineffective in past discussions.
“I just don’t think you need to drink liquor to have fun,” Cupcake put in primly.
“True, but it’s more fun than watching you sleep, bathed in the flickering glow of Hawaii Five-O.” I continued more bravely than wisely.
“Fine,” she said indicating the conversation was not going well for me. “So forget travelling, what else do you want to do to honour the occasion? What is thirty years, anyway?”
“The symbolic substance associated with a thirtieth wedding anniversary is pearl.” I informed her. “Before you get any wise ideas, a pearl necklace is out of the question. Not only are they pricey, where would you wear them? To the restaurant uptown when you go for coffee? You may look a bit overdressed.”
“You could always get me a pearl handled revolver…” Cupcake suggested menacingly, followed immediately by a rather convincing ‘evil super-villain ‘ laugh.
“Yes, nothing could go wrong with that idea,” I grunted snidely. “Instead we could get pearl barley and make soup.”
“You’re making soup out of Pearl Bailey?” Cupcake looked at me quizzically. “You know she died in 1990. I prefer my soup stock a little fresher.”
“Okay, forget the soup,” I said agreeably. “We’ll get some regular barley and make a big batch of thirtieth anniversary celebratory beer!”
“Is beer all you think of?” Cupcake shook her head.
“Of course not,” I responded cheerily. “But other things I think about involve you not having a headache or being asleep. My chance of beer is infinitely better.”
“We could always have an open house with a fire-pit in the back yard,” ventured Cupcake.
“You mean like we do every nice weekend anyway?” I smirked.
“Well, that’s because it’s something we really love,” she pointed out astutely. “This way, you can have your rotten old beer and won’t feel trapped in a strange room with nothing but an unconscious woman and a TV for entertainment. Meanwhile, I get my own bathroom and can go to sleep in my own bed the second I get tired.”
“You know,” I rubbed my whiskers thoughtfully. “The idea does have merit. I could put a shout out on Facebook…”
“No way!” Cupcake responded vehemently. “I’ve heard what happens when parties get advertised on Facebook. Strangers show up. Crowd control becomes a problem. Police get involved. People will want to use our bathroom…”
“So…. Our open house will be a secret?” I frowned, trying to understand her thought processes; a thirty year exercise in frustration.
“Well, I just don’t want strangers or weirdos at our party,” Cupcake sniffed.
“What strangers are going to come to a thirtieth anniversary party?” I asked, genuinely confused. “And if you cut out the weirdos, none of our friends can come.”
“Look,” my life-mate stated categorically. “I don’t care how you get the word out, just don’t use Facebook. I don’t trust it.”
“Do you mind if I mention it in my column?” I asked jokingly; contemplating the Pipestone Flyers’ 20,000+ readers and wondering how many of them were weirdos and/or strangers dying to crash our open house.
“That would be okay,” allowed Cupcake. ”I’m sure more weirdoes read your Facebook than your column.”
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