Wednesday, March 18, 2009

He's Moving on Up

It only took five years, 4 months and 37 days. But that's only from when I started counting. I probably had visions of this happening long before that, but that's when I really started paying attention to how long I've been whining about it.

My husband got a cell phone yesterday! Big deal, you say. Oh, what a big deal it is.

He has been hiding behind the excuse of "I don't want anyone to find me" for years now. Translation: he doesn't want me to find him. He cares less if people from work find him. But I think he's been hiding from me. I don't blame him. I can be a huge pain, high-maintenance, annoying, time-sucking and a general nag when provoked. I fully admit to these character flaws, and there are times when even I would love to hide from me.

It would be OK not to have a cell phone if he weren't a person of importance at his job. I imagine his secretary is giving a prayer of thanksgiving at this very moment, so grateful is she that she can now locate the chair of the department with all the major concerns of the department in a timely fashion. So grateful is she that when the dean calls to talk to Darren, she now has a number to give him. Lizzy, you deserve a raise. Maybe I'll talk to Darren about it tonight!

"He doesn't have a cell phone?" people would ask me over the years, aghast. "You've got to be kidding me!"

I kid you not.

Finally a couple weeks ago after a series of communication mishaps, I had lost it. I was trying to organize something with the family and had a last minute change of plans. Could I call him and tell him what was going on? No! So I went to find him. He was sitting at the physical therapists, getting his knees worked on.

I walked up to the table and told him in a not-so-very-nice voice that unless he got a cell phone within the next week, that there would be some serious consequences. And then I whispered a few in his ears. I do have some decorum.

The therapist working on him said, "Woa!" and tried to hide behind his little laser wand thingy, as to not get involved in a marital dispute.

"Uh," Darren said. "Could we discuss this later?" His face was turning red. But I had just got going. I was on a roll. I had reached my limit. Thoughts of every time I hadn't been able to find him over the years surged through my brain. There would be no mercy.

"No, we cannot. If you had a cell phone I wouldn't have to make a special trip down here, and embarrass you, to tell you our change of plans," I said.

"Well, maybe if you would stop changing plans, then there wouldn't be a problem." he retorted. But he sort of looked as though he shouldn't have said that.

I was speechless. I was dumbfounded. I was trying to save him time by coming to the physical therapists to tell him that things had changed, to please not go pick up our child. How dare he accuse me of changing plans. My blood was boiling over, despite my medication.

I decided not to make more of a scene, although I'm sure that therapist went home to tell his wife how grateful he was that she wasn't such a ___________. Fill in any word you want.

I just said, "You have about a week to get a cell phone, and I'm serious," and fumed on out of there.

It has taken about two weeks, and he has spent a lot of time down at the Sprint store talking to Russ about his options. Each time he has come hope empty handed, where upon I have had to whisper my threats into his deaf ears.

And then last night the phone rang. "Hi! I'm on my new cell phone! See you in a few minutes!"

"I'll believe it when I see it," I said, feeling hopeless.

And then he walked through the door with a little black device and when we said the prayer on the food for dinner we included thanks that our dear old Dad and husband had finally entered the 21st century.

Now he's got to figure out how to use it. He's going to pay his teenage daughters to enter in all his contacts and get him up to speed on technology.

I guess he can still not answer when I call, but I can still whisper consequences til the cows come home.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Nervous Sun

Here I am, it's been a month.

Here's what's going on in my neck of Utah, the "I'm just not going to let spring ever come" state. I love how John Updike talks about March in his children's book "A Child's Calendar." He says,

"The sun is nervous
As a kite
That can't quite keep
It's own string tight.

Some days are fair,
And some are raw.
The timid earth
Decides to thaw.

Shy budlets peep
From twigs on trees,
And robins join
The chickadees.

Pale crocuses
Poke through the ground
Like noses come
To sniff around.

The mud smells happy
On our shoes,
We will wear mittens,
Which we lose."

This is March. The sun peaks out and hides, then starts the whole thing over again. When the sun's out it's tolerable and even exciting, but when it's not, it's not worth staying outside. My son thinks it's definitely spring, and likes to wear shorts and t-shirts to school when it's 30 degrees outside. Can I just say that I am sick to death of fighting with him about clothes. When I ask him to take a jacket to school, you'd think I'd asked him to hike through the Kalahara without water. Good grief.

Yesterday at school was the 5th grade maturation program for boys and girls. "But we were separated," Nathan told me. I couldn't believe when he got in the car after school and "shared" this information with me. I was stunned when he brought it up at dinner in front of his teenage sisters. "What did they tell you?" they giggled. Their laughing didn't deter him at all.

"About how we're supposed to wear deoderant and take a shower every day. Giggle giggle, blush blush from the sister section. "And how pretty soon we're going to start liking girls." Giggle, giggle.

"We all gagged and pretended to throw up when he said that," he added. Peals of laughter from all of us.

"Next year you'll learn more stuff," I said.

"Great," he said, and rolled his eyes.

My crocuses are poking through. Updike's crocuses are pale but mine are bright yellow and purple. I'm glad we made the effort to plant them last fall. Thankfully they can't go back into the ground after they've sprung, like the sun going behind the clouds. They are the bravest flower of all, to stand up to the fickle days of March.

Hope there's some sun wherever you are today!