On the way up to her brotherâ€™s wedding in upstate Michigan, Kathy snapped this picture, and showed it to me. Apparently it was designed to attract drive-by customers to an enterprising junk yard on some rural highway. For some reason I thought it was very funny â€¦ I imagined a drive-thru window with a gum-chewing attendant:
â€œWelcome-to-Hubcaps-to-Go-how-may-I-help-you?â€ asks the attendant in a bored monotone.
â€œYeah, Iâ€™d like â€¦ three hubcaps for a 2003 Subaru Outback and a side order of hubcap protectors, please.â€
â€œDo you want chrome with that? Super Size?â€
â€œNo, thank you.â€
â€œThatâ€™ll be $79.84, including tax. Please drive forward to the second window.â€
What other kind of hubcaps are there? Are there a kind that you can consume on the premises? Or perhaps there is a program where people can sponsor hubcaps for needy children overseas? Burning questions, all.
Switching subjects, now. There is something very fun about other peopleâ€™s weddings â€“ or at least there is if you enjoy being married yourself. Kathy and I were talking about our own wedding some 15 years ago, and she mentioned how glad she was that we didnâ€™t have to start over (and â€˜all thatâ€™ to deal with again.) â€œFifteen years of fighting,â€ she mused.
â€œFifteen years of fighting?â€ I wondered to whom she had been married, all those years, and why he was such a jerk? I donâ€™t remember more than two or three fights a year, which hardly translates to fifteen years of fighting. Mostly we have disagreed about four things: finances, parenting, why Tim doesn’t clean the garage on Saturdays, and whose turn it is to get up and change that late-night diaper. Figure an average of about six hours per argument, conservatively figuring four fights a year, that only adds up to a little over two weeks of conflict over fifteen years. Mind you, thatâ€™s a lot by some standards, but â€¦ I guess we see things a little differently. I asked her about it, and she wailed, mockingly: â€œThatâ€™s because you werenâ€™t THERE all those years!â€ Sheâ€™s a hoot, really.
Kathy read this draft (one of the nice things about WordPress is that she can see what I’m writing, even when we are separated by thousands of miles) and insisted I clarify, so I will. What she probably meant is that she was glad we didn’t have to start all over again, going through some of those difficult issues and learning some of those lessons we all have to learn. But I think my take on it is more amusing.
In all seriousness, one of the delights of our marriage is that we don’t fight much at all, and when we do, we fight fairly. We avoid the use of words like ‘always’ and ‘never’ and we don’t raise our voices or throw things or stomp out, slamming doors. Kathy’s Nana and the scripture agree: “Don’t let the sun go down on your wrath.” Many times we have wrangled late into the night following that principle — it is interesting to see how unimportant some conflicts become when your night’s sleep is at stake and you have to get up for work in a few hours.
We recently had occasion to think about how much we had been apart over the years â€“ Iâ€™ve been blessed with a job that doesnâ€™t require me to travel much at all. We figure weâ€™ve not been apart for more than two weeks, and only once or twice at that, when Kathy has gone to visit one or the other of our parents and I didnâ€™t have enough vacation time to go with her. We just plain like to be together â€“ we didnâ€™t get married so that we could lead separate lives, after all. Of course, Kathy would probably say that we just like being together to fight, all those fifteen years. But Iâ€™m not bitter. Really.
Oh, since this was a picture taken on Thursday, it counts for Project 365.
Project 365, Day 172