Land(line) Ho!

August 27, 2019

As all couples do, Steve and I have our occasional differences of opinion. Over predictable things, like the correct household temperature. 76 degrees for sleeping in the winter! Toasty, I say! Might as well just set fire to $100 bills, Mr. Frugal says. 68 degrees for A/C in the summer? Refreshing, I say! But we don’t need it on at all, he says, sweat dripping from every pore (going into Steve’s office on a sweltering day is like entering a Finnish sauna, which bothers him not a bit). We also have differing ideas about the urgency of this or that home repair or yard maintenance project. I have been asking him to do something about the dingy family room walls for eons (what, were you going to suggest that I paint them? That’s hilarious!); hubby prefers to spend his precious non-working hours trimming the hedges, over and over and over again.

Lately, we’ve been going round and round about our telephone landline. Yup, we still have one. Nope, we never use it and rarely check our messages. Steve has explained to me why he wants to keep it going several times, but I haven’t been listening, so as far as I am concerned it’s a total waste. The robocalls now come in on our iPhones too, so we’re not escaping those in any event. And every now and again when we DO check voicemail, we hear an invite to some long-past soiree, or birthday greetings for the one who celebrated that milestone six months ago. If anyone is reading this and knows our landline number: don’t use it if you intend to actually communicate with us. I mean it.

We also—get this—still have an AOL account. I think they are finally free now, but for the longest time we paid. This I understood (sorta) because it ( was the business email address, and Steve thought it’d take forever to make sure our contacts were updated. We are finally up and running (, by the way, if you are interested in a terrific children’s theatre production. You aren’t? Carry on, then). This afternoon I was looking through my old emails to find a certain message when it struck me: it might be in my AOL mailbox instead! So in I signed. I currently have 75,000 unread messages, 99% junk I’m sure. After a desultory search, I decided I didn’t really need the message that much after all. But I digress.

42 years into this Voyage of Discovery called Marriage, we take these minor disputes in stride, and marvel at how little we actually fight. Our quirks seem to balance out (remember Rocky’s romantic assessment of his relationship with Adrian? “She got gaps. I got gaps. Together, we fill gaps.”) So on we sail, Steve and I, adjusting our thermostats up and down, making our peace with a few different priorities. Agreeing on the most important things, especially our love.

But I swear. Next Saturday, I’m hiding the hedge clippers.











































































    I am an author (of four books, numerous plays, poetry and freelance articles,) a director (of Spiritual Formation at a Lutheran church,) and a producer (of five kids).

    I write about my hectic, funny, perfectly imperfect life.

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