15 June 2010

The Problem With Reading In Bed

A wise man once said--it might have been Spencer Pratt--"Reading in bed is one of life's supreme pleasures." Frankly, I couldn't have said it better myself. Unfortunately, reading in bed is not always what it ought to be. Sometimes...last night, for instance...it is misery.



My wife, Betsy-Ann, and I were propped up in bed, reading our respective choice of literature. For her, that meant some silly bit of fluff she found in the "chick-lit" section of the bookstore. For me, that meant the June issue of Highlights magazine. I was studying intently the Hidden Pictures game, wondering if it was a particularly difficult puzzle this month or if I was simply too tired to concentrate properly. I'd managed to find only 7 out of the 15 hidden objects, with the slice of pizza proving to be uncommonly elusive. I was busy searching through the picture when I heard the most distracting sound coming from my wife.

"Wususususususususususususususu. Wususususususususususususususususu."

I held my tongue as long as possible, but the constant low, whispering sound was preventing me from completing the puzzle.

"I'm sorry, honey," I said. "But could you please read to yourself?"

She turned her head to me, bits of Ritz cracker falling out of her beard. "I'm sorry, I didn't realize I was doing it. I'll try to stop."

"Thank you kindly."

I returned to the picture. With my hard-earned silence, I was able to quickly discover the pizza in the spokes of a bicycle. So very tricky. Still, if I'd been working with optimum focus, I should have been able to ferret it out long ago. The next missing picture was a comb, but I thought I might save the rest for the next day. I still wanted to read the letters page before turning in for the night.

"Wusususususususususu. Wususu. Wususu. Wusususususususususu."

I set the magazine aside. "For the love of all that is good and holy, will you please shut up? Will you shut up? Will you shut up? Will you? Will you shut up?"

"I didn't realize I was doing it! I'm soooo sorry I'm taking away your concentration. I know it's hard for you to follow along while reading a magazine meant for kindergarten students!"

I sat bolt upright in bed. "Have you ever read an issue of Highlights? The articles are written so they can be enjoyed by both adults and children. Adults and children alike! Why is that so hard for you to understand?"

"Don't you ever yell at me in this bed," Betsy-Ann said, tossing her book aside and turning to face me. "I can't help it that you're an emotionally stunted man-child. Don't take it out on me."

"Well," I said, fully regretting my choice of words before they had even left my mouth, "I guess this is what I get for marrying a talking goat!"

A moment of complete silence spun out as we both pondered what I had said. I wanted to take the words back, but they were out there and no apology would be good enough to make them disappear. After a moment, she pushed back the covers and leapt from the bed. Her hooves made a faint clip-clop sound on the hardwood floor as she left the bedroom. I heard her pause by the salt lick in the kitchen for a brief refreshment. Shortly after that, she was gone.

Wracked with sadness, I leaned over and buried my head into her pillow. It smelled like Tide and goat urine. It smelled like love.

9 comments:

Cassie said...

Wow. Just. Wow.

I'm sorry you're an emotionally stunted man-child. That really sucks.

Gorilla Bananas said...

Yes, you need separate bedrooms to make a marriage with a goat work. That's what this man said, anyway.

Eric said...

Wususu, wususum hsaps uhm,

*clears throat with a booming ahem, and continues reading your blog post*

wussusshu susuwsash...

Quirkyloon said...

Are you sure it smelled like goat urine? Cuz Tide has a new detergent: Tide with Ammonia.

hee hee hee

*clippity clopping away*

Candy's daily Dandy said...

I am a huge Goofus and Gallant fan myself. That Goofus is always getting into trouble.

Chris@Knucklehead! said...

Candy sort of beat me to this comment, but I'll say it anyway.

Goofus stays up until the wee hours of the morning reading, and is a total asshole the entire next day.

Gallant plans his reading time so he gets to bed at a reasonable hour and he is fresh as a daisy in the morning.

Vodka and Ground Beef said...

Wow. I don't know what to say. I think your wife needs her own blog just to get her feelings out. And I will read that blog.

I do have to say that Highlights Mag is fantastic, though, so Betsy-Ann needs to straight up chill out on her judgment of your reading selection. It's a magazine that gets people fired up and engaged in the reading process. It's a wonderful thing.

Finally, the fact that Betsy-Ann has doused her pillow with goat urine might be a sign that she doesn't want you to come closer. Perhaps if you switch up your lit just near bed time (that's all I'm saying), you might smash your head into a more sweet-smelling pillow.

Jeff said...

I come to this blog not just for the great writing, but also because I know this is the Internet's only one-stop resource for goat urine stories accompanied by a picture of what appears to be Sam Waterston reading in bed.

Insana D said...

I believe you have been married just long enough to start recognizing your partners animal match (something that gets title status in Highlights magazine several times a year). You recognize her goatiness and she recognizes your baboon childlike qualities.

There's no reason a goat and a baboon cannot coexist in peace and comfort. Yes, the offspring are a bit odd, but no more than the chinless freaks that come from British royalty.

I have an art piece that I'd like to re-dedicate to your lovely Betsy. It has the disturbing word "Utah" in it but otherwise might be a sweet tribute to her goaty happiness and love of mature literature. You may see it here:http://insanadsprojects.blogspot.com/2010/06/non-conformist.html

I shall go and read more of your blatherings and see if I can find anything worth stealing and using at the family reunion. I have been assigned to be the bartender at a koolaid and otter pop dive and was told to come up with numerous funny stories to regale my pre-pubescent audience with. I will credit you, but it won't matter because they don't know who you are. I shall be funny by proxy. If they tip, I'll send 1/2 your way. Expect upwards of a nickle in the coming weeks.