the smell of my desperation has become a stench

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Internet, I need you to be my girlfriend right now, the one who invites me over on Friday night to have a glass of wine and talk about how, sometimes… not all the time… but occasionally… and at times frequently… husbands can be complete idiots.

I really appreciate it. When I’m done I’ll let you tell me about how awkward it is when your boss tries to say certain words that get muddled by the botox that has been freshly injected into her upper lip.

Yesterday afternoon on the half-hour drive home from my mother’s house Jon and I were talking about what our dream house would look like, and luckily we’re pretty much on the same page. If we could aim for the stars it’d be a modern masterpiece with glass walls and slick lines, and we’d each have our own office so that I could play my Debbie Gibson collection and he could play jazz. Not that there’s anything wrong with listening to jazz. Other than it makes playing in heavy traffic seem like a less painful activity.

I was suggesting a certain facade that he couldn’t wrap his head around, so I grabbed a pen to draw my idea. Please pay attention to the previous sentence, because it lies at the crux of this story. That pen. The pen that I grabbed. A grievous and heinous gesture. I bet Hitler didn’t even grab pens.

That pen happened to be the one we use to keep track of our mileage, the one tucked inside the tiny notebook that lists all the business errands we run and whatnot. And after drawing a beautiful diagram of a giant wall of sliding glass doors, I lost my mind and dropped that pen into my purse. I mean, who does that? Can you believe the nerve?

Fast forward to this morning, a Monday morning, one wherein our oldest child decided it’d be a perfect time to imitate a glacier. In fact, I think she’s still down in her room right now getting ready. I should probably alert her teachers that we’ll be there in, oh, 15 million years. Less if China doesn’t cut its carbon emissions.

Wasn’t a good morning, no, and getting her out the door is something we all need to work on. All of us, we know this, but sometimes we lose our cool. And I thought neither Jon nor I had really stepped over the line until two minutes after Marlo and I kissed the both of them goodbye when it sounded like Jon had driven the car through a giant glass structure filled with scrap metal and chickens.

I quickly built a pillow fortress around Marlo on the floor, ran to the garage, and there was my husband, harried and squiggly lines shooting out from his head like lightning bolts, a giant, white seven-inch by thirty-six-inch piece of plastic pinned underneath the front wheel of the car. I couldn’t tell if he had taken out a part of the refrigerator? Part of the storage system? Was that dry wall? Except I couldn’t ask him anything because those squiggly lines had grown hands, reached across the garage and were strangling me.

So. What follows is an abbreviated version of his side of things:

Jon’s normal routine is to start the car, and while his foot is still on the brake he shifts it into reverse. Then he reaches for the pen and notebook to write down the mileage. Once that number has been recorded, he can then quickly back out of the garage and head for school.

Except, there was no pen. Remember? Someone had removed that pen from the car. And I guess this offense was so odious that HE FORGOT THE CAR WAS IN REVERSE, opened the door in an effort to go inside and get a pen, and next thing you know HALF OF THE CAR DOOR IS BEING RIPPED OFF. BY THE OTHER CAR IN THE GARAGE.

So now one car is missing part of the driver’s side door, and the other car looks like someone mistook it for a fast pitch. You want to know why? Because I grabbed that pen.

Because I grabbed that pen.

I will completely accept full blame for this accident if I can be there when he tells the guy fixing the door EXACTLY what happened.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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