So Gary from Sunday School has a bumper sticker on his truck that says, “I love my wife”. Harmless, right? I’ve seen them around. I often wonder why I need to know that other guys love their wives, but some folks find it warm and fuzzy and reassuring and desirable. Okay, women like these bumper stickers. Gary’s wife Suzanne noted that several women had pulled alongside Gary in traffic to say how much they appreciate the message on the bumper sticker. (I guess it’s a good pick up line, if you are lacking in scruples. Besides, have any of you Blogalitarians seen an “I love my hubby” sticker? For that matter have any of you had a member of the other gender say “I like your bare bumper”? No! Of course not. It’s rude.) Anyhow, the other ladies at our table oohed and awed and made a big thing about the bumper sticker and how all good married men need one. I knew where this was going…into the deep culvert of my deficiencies. The impulsive honey-marooned Erin got on Amazon Pronto.com and ordered a bumper sticker for her hubby Robert for Valentine’s Day. Right there in class!! And while shopping, got him a tee shirt and coffee mug to match, along with a subscription to the weekly magazine “What Women Want But Won’t Ever Tell You“. My wife noted that I did not sport any such messages on my tee shirts, mugs or bumpers, implying that I love her less than the other men at our table love their respective wives. I don’t like situations like this. Oxygen becomes unavailable to my nose and mouth. The room shrinks. Asphyxiation dulls my cerebral cortex and dims my eyesight. “MEDIC!” There is comparison, group think, guilt, and shopping all rolled into one volatile recipe. And trust me, these women know how to follow a recipe. Thanks, Gary.
I do love my wife, but I don’t rent billboards to advertise it. Nor do I trust folks who feel compelled to do so. However, I recognize that feeling love is not enough. It must be communicated regularly and effectively. I fail to do this. Shame on me for not celebrating my beautiful and capable wife. On the other hand, if putting on a dollar bumper sticker gets me into the Husband Hall of Fame, then I don’t want to go. ( Where is the HHF anyway? Knoxville? Spokane? Sacramento? Butte?) I actually bought my wife some flowers after church, not because of Gary but because I had meant to on the preceding Friday. However, I had a massive headache that lasted all afternoon and into the evening. Perhaps it was a guilt conversion reaction but I doubt it. I had been thinking of randomly buying her flowers for a while, as if a pollen-laden bee had been buzzing inside my old beehive brain. I couldn’t remember how long it had been since I’d brought her flowers. This is never good for a married man to be caught without a fast answer for the romance cops when they get you under the 600 watt halogen lamp…”when did you last purchase flowers for your wife?” “Uh, uh, I don’t know. I think it was last Valentine’s Day.” “We need receipts or video.” “But, but….” Sadly, some men never recover, they decompensate and wind up as grave keepers in medium to small cemeteries, condemned forever to remove dead flowers from headstones of the deceased. Hygiene wanes, dental hygiene especially, and each year a rotted tooth drops out of their hopeless mouths. It’s medieval, Blogfleas.
So men, if a tree falls in the woods and nobody hears it, not even Neil Young, did it make a sound? let me translate: if you don’t tell your wife regularly and effectively that you love her, will she know? The answer to both questions is ‘you are a dead tree’ and the world is deaf to your would’ves, should’ves, and could’ves. They are just so much sawdust. Amen! (Let’s take a collection while they are confused.)
Now on Saturday I spent hours cleaning out our nasty garage at my wife’s request. Then I washed and waxed her car as a bonus goody. Did I happen to see an “I love my hubby” sticker on her bumper? Well, you know the answer to that. I’m not running out to buy one for her either. Not sure I want guys pulling alongside her motioning for her to roll her window down…”hey, lady, nice bumper sticker. Wanna see mine?”. Come on, the sword of justice cuts both ways.
On Sunday I got online and made reservations for a “Summer of Love” concert on Valentine’s Day. I don’t expect any kudos for this because it is conditional on health and weather and calamity avoidance. Men, I don’t care if you have raised Barry White and Marvin Gaye from the grave and have them waiting in a candlelit living room covered with rose petals and champagne bubbles, just waiting to croon over your lady, what’s gonna happen holds no weight compared to what you failed to do yesterday. Step up and tell you wife, “I wanna be your bumper sticker Daddy”. No, don’t say that. Try some Barry White song titles, ” Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe”, “You’re The First, The Last, My Everything”, “You’re Gonna Miss My Lovin'”. Now if that doesn’t work, put on your Marvin Gaye collection, “Let’s Get It On”, “What’s Goin’ On?”, “Keep On Getting It On”. After that, you are on your own, men.
My dear wife of almost 35 years, I love you. Now in deep Barry White bass, “Ahhhhh Luhhhhhhve YOooooouuuuuu, Baaaaby doll.”