Posts Tagged ‘humiliation’

I’m taking a break from my somber “What’s the Point of Marriage?” series to bring you a stupid and rather pointless story. It is also a scandalous story. So, siblings, parents, or other easily-scandalized friends: you may want to redirect your browsers away from this page rather than reading on at this point. If you ignore my warning and go ahead, and as a consequence get the jibblies, don’t tell me I didn’t warn you.

* * *

This Christmas both sets of parents – that is, Ben’s parents and my parents – pooled their money so that Ben and I could get ourselves a couch as a Christmas gift. We needed it. Ben and I have a long, narrow, empty room in our house on the main floor that hasn’t had any furniture in it since we moved in two years ago. We refer to this empty room as our “gallery.” It makes it seem not-so-purposeless-and-weird. The walls are bedecked with framed Pre-Raphaelite paintings (prints, of course), medieval weaponry (OK, one sword) and a few of my own medieval-inspired drawings. Ben and I went to a few furniture stores to find the right couch and, with the money from the folks, picked out a sleek, mocha-coloured leather sofa that would fit in with the décor. Me likee.

We picked up the couch from the furniture store in Ben’s truck a couple days before Christmas. We unwrapped the plastic and cardboard coverings and set it up in our gallery. We then proceeded to test it out, with him seated normally and me sprawled out across the length of the couch with my legs over his knees. It felt so nice and cozy. We were both very happy.

“It’s long enough to lie down on!” I said happily.

“You know,” he said slowly, “We could totally have sex on this couch.”

I rolled my eyes. Of course that was the first thing he thought of when we were testing out our brand new couch in the gallery. He could turn anything into a love bed if he put his mind to it.

“We could also have sex under the Christmas tree,” I pointed out, motioning to the glimmering gold wonder in the corner. It was the only other substantial thing in the room.

Inexplicably, his eyes widened as if I had just made an outrageous request – as if I was being very foxy and seductive. He liked it. He was obviously totally misunderstanding me. I protested.

“I’m just saying! We – or anyone – could technically do it anywhere! There’s nothing especially sexy about this couch!”  I wanted to be clear: I was not making a request, I was making an observation. You can do it anywhere, technically, is what I was trying to say.

But he had already decided how to interpret my words.

It didn’t come up again (I swear!) until a few days later when we were at our friends’ house with a bunch of other married couples.  Ben and I were sitting on the floor next to their Christmas tree, and a couple of guys were sitting together on the couch nearby.

“You know, the Christmas tree here and you guys on the couch over there make me think of something Kathy said to me the other day,” Ben began.

This is where I began to wish my husband had a mute button.

He retold our conversation on the couch, repeating my words in a liquidy voice, dripping with lust: “We could also have sex under the Christmas tree.”

The room filled with hoots and whistles. Above the noise I tried to holler, “I so didn’t say it like that!!”

When the room finally quieted down I was able to shout, “You are so completely twisting the way I said that! I was just making a point that all it takes is a horizontal surface.”

That was only met with multiple objections – “Not technically!” – and a few more winks and understanding nods.

“No . . . you guys . . .” was all I could muster. “I’m just sayin’!”

But it was no use. Of course. There was no changing the thoughts happening in the room. Ben and I were now the sex-crazed couple of the bunch, and I was apparently the more adventurous of the two. Not a word more could be said about couches or Christmas trees without knowing nods in my direction.

“I don’t know why you had to tell them that,” I whined to my husband in frustration after the third reference to me and Christmas trees that night.

“Hey, if Ben hadn’t told us the story, you would have eventually written about it in your blog,” one friend argued.

“Why would I ever do that?” I shot back.

* * *

I tried really hard, but I couldn’t come up with a life lesson or anything for this story. I really want to be a good blogger with lots of good life lessons but it is difficult.

The only “lesson” I learned from this very annoying episode is that no matter what I like to think, I will never have any real amount of control over my husband. He is his own person. This incident was a vivid reminder that Ben and I can be totally united in so many ways, and yet his mind and his mouth are his own. I will never possess a mute button for him or anyone else I love.

And I guess it’s a good thing. It can be irritating, realizing we can’t control our loved ones, but it is also the reason we are able to have relationships: because we are two distinct people with our own thoughts, each bringing our own unique ideas to the table. Er . . . couch. If we really could control or predict what the other was going to say all the time there would be no room for a relationship. It keeps things . . . interesting.

I guess I could also point out that married life is far from boring, and that hanging out with other married couples can be way more scandalous than you’d think.

I’m not sure if that counts as a life lesson but that’s all I’m giving you. It’s the weekend and my brain is tired from all the “What’s the Point of Marriage?” stuff.

Just to inform you, though, we have not AND WILL NOT ever use either of the aforementioned pieces of furniture (if you can call a Christmas tree a piece of furniture) for the aforementioned purposes. Although my friends would love to convince you otherwise, you have no reason to ever feel weird or ickified if you find yourself seated in our brown leather couch in the Quiring gallery.


Stay tuned next week for the final installment of “What is the Point of Marriage? To Fulfill Basic Human Needs.”

For a comment, feel free to tell me story about your spouse saying something completely embarrassing in front of your friends. It will make me feel better.

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This post has nothing to do with marriage. But lots of other themed blogs that I read often include stuff that has nothing to do with their themes so I’m following suit. Plus, The Internet seems to prefer lists over stories, so for once I’m doing that here too.

After reading my friend Susie’s recent blog post on confessions, and after I commented up a storm saying that “confession” is one of the primary functions of a writer, I became inspired to write out a list of my own confessions.  I figured I ought to practice what I preach. (You can see the whole interchange here). My argument basically centers upon Anne Lamott’s claim that writers have a “moral obligation” to tell the truth, so that readers can be set free from the “terrible sense of isolation we all have.”

The items I’ve listed below are the things I am embarrassed of. They are some of the things that make me silly, or an idiot, or worse – evil.  Some things I’m less embarrassed of than others. The list could go on and on but I am told people don’t like to read long posts on the internet. *grimace*

Please don’t hate me for them. Maybe you’ll even see yourself in some of them a little bit and feel a little less weird or sinful yourself? Here’s hoping I don’t just humiliate myself by sharing them.

I’m also having a contest where you can win a $5 Tim card if you post a comment. See details below.

Here’s my confession list:

  • I’ve tried to read a book while driving a car before.
  • If I’m honest, the three things I want most in life are (a) clear skin (b) to be recognized as a writer (c) for people to think that I’m interesting. I would probably sacrifice my health, and, in my worst moments, several aspects of my character and some of my most valuable relationships for the sake of these things.
  • I routinely have witty, imaginary conversations with people when I’m sitting on the john. I’ve done this my whole life. And I almost always have a British accent.   My most frequent interlocutors are men on whom I have crushes, and without exception I demonstrate why I am too good for them.
  • My biggest fear in life is that I’ve never had an original thought or impulse in my life. In my most private moments, I have to face the reality that I am profoundly unremarkable.
  • The low traffic stats for this blog have brought me to tears.
  • Overall, I’m embarrassed of the person I am. But I don’t like to let on that I am embarrassed, so I hide it by using impressive Latinate language and by making fun of my friends – whom I love and cherish and couldn’t live without – behind their backs. It makes me feel better about myself.  It makes me feel cool. The fact that I had to use the word “Latinate” here bespeaks the depth of my arrogance.
  • I’ve had a crush on Matt Tiessen since 2001. The same year I met and fell in love with Ben. When we watch Relient K music videos together it takes all my willpower to keep from sighing wistfully breathing out “. . . I love you, Matt.”
  • I’ve been trying to have a baby for seven months. I’ve been so upset about my inability to get pregnant that I once spent a whole morning curled up on the stairs, crying. I then went on Facebook and hid every one of my “friends” who is either pregnant or a new mother so I couldn’t see their status updates any more. And now I don’t know how to un-hide them.
  • I sometimes think that if I just have autistic kids – which is quite possible considering Ben’s gene pool – maybe I would rather not have any kids at all.
  • I take immense pride in being the only person in my church to have an MA and to have been the first one to get a BA (outside of Bible college). I feel threatened by the fact that a number of very smart young people are now attending university, and I secretly hope they don’t surpass me in education. If they do, it better be in the sciences.
  • I have considered doing my PhD exclusively for the status.
  • I composed this entire list while driving a car.

Here’s the contest: post one of your own confessions in a comment. I’ll give you until the end of the week (that is, until Fri, Nov 27). You can leave it anonymously, so that the only person who will know your identity will be me (And how can you be embarrassed to let me see them after the mortifying confessions I’ve offered above?). At the end of the week I will pick my favourite, and since my readers seem to be almost exclusively Canadian, I will personally mail the winner a $5 gift card from Tim Horton’s. (If you are American? I’ll work something out. Starbucks?).

One last confession: this contest is primarily an attempt to get more comments out of you. I want to know who my readers are.

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