As a friend wrote on Facebook recently, You don’t kiss and tell, and you don’t fight and tell.
Except, of course, when you write a blog.
“When are you going to write about how you two argue?” asked a young woman who is involved with an older man. She wondered whether an age gap could contribute/influence/lead to a verbal wrasslin’ match. So I said to Sheri, “I think I’ll blog about how we argue.” And I mentioned something about authority, etc., etc.
What happens? She steals my blog idea, and now the world thinks I don’t know how to cut a tomato.
|YOU WILL RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!|
I KNOW HOW TO CUT A TOMATO, SHERI!
You use a knife. Not a fork.
But it is true, I have more than once given way in arguments out of a sense that Sheri is more experienced, with a better vantage from which to see the world, and thus, bears a greater authority. From a young age I’ve respected authortiy, wanting to believe whatever God, the Declaration of Independence, and Captain Kangaroo had to tell me. Becoming a newspaper reporter, I think, gave me a structure in which to learn to question authority.
Then came Sheri. And I had no newsroom to back up my challenges.
Hot water in the ice cube trays makes the ice better? Cold water in the coffee pot makes better coffee? Okey-dokey. We’ll do it your way.
And when I insisted my way was the right way, we got into some of our most helacious cold-shouldered knockdown arguments. One was over chocolate chip cookies. I’ve never since tried to bake chocolate chip cookies. The marriage means that much to me.
But here’s something else that has happened over the years. Sheri has agreed that there are subjects in which I’m the champ. Where to get the car fixed? Me. Installing light fixtures? Me. Picking a dog from a litter and training it? Me. Sense of direction and where we need to turn? Me.
And because she’s ceded authority to me in those spheres, I’ve found it easier and easier to speak up in other spheres when I question a point-of-view she takes, or a method of doing things. After all, she didn’t marry me because she wanted an employee. She wanted a husband. So now, twenty years deep, my reactions aren’t based on a vassal-serf dynamic, nor are hers. Now, we’re better at listening to each other rather than playing semi-conscious roles.
So I get to cut the frikkin’ tomato any danged way I want.