I have often commented to Camera Girl that since people nowadays live enormously longer on average than people in the pre-modern era that the institution of marriage with its whole “’til death do us part” clause is behind the times and needs to be updated with more nuanced language. However, I never say this when she’s holding a sharp knife. She’s excitable.
But it’s fair to say that a fifty-year reevaluation event seems warranted. We’ve got another five years before that milestone but I felt it was a good idea to start some preliminary exercises to determine if an emergency early intervention would be needed.
Today I went on an inspection to see how she was doing. This morning when I came down for breakfast, I carefully examined the meal for signs of insufficiency or insincerity. The scrambled eggs and pumpernickel bagel seemed up to snuff. Check. The breakfast conversation was satisfactory. Check. But the after-breakfast banter seemed to die away. I was sitting in the living room working diligently on very important web site related work. But there was none of the expected wifely encouraging, congratulatory pep talk that somehow, I think should have been there. Maybe just a random “Let’s go photog!” thrown in every few minutes. That seems reasonable. Within a half hour my rage built up to the point where I actually got up and went into the kitchen to investigate this outrage.
Well, she probably heard me coming because she managed to throw up a smoke screen of cooking food. As evidence she had a red sauce with meatballs on the stove and a pan of sausages in the oven and an Italian cheese cake under construction on the counter. Well, okay. Check, check, check. She seemed to be busy. Seemed!
I went back to the living room thinking furiously on what I had seen. Well, the kids and grandkids were coming tomorrow for dinner. I guess maybe cooking was a prerequisite for the meal. Maybe it would be a little unreasonable for her to do all the cooking after I went to bed so as not to interfere with the very important wifely responsibilities of cheering on the king in his daily battles. Could it be possible she was in the right? Was it possible I was being selfish? Me? “I’m the Bad Guy? How did that happen?”
Faced with this confusing thought, I retreated to first principles. What would Ralph Kramden do? Ah, that’s better. Obviously, this pretend-hard-working act was a plot to undermine my sense of self-righteousness. As such it qualified as disloyalty, the ultimate wifely sin. Hah! I knew it. I’m the good guy. I win again!
Well, once that had been worked out to my full satisfaction, I felt better and could afford to be magnanimous. I went into the kitchen and patted her on the arm and praised her for the wonderful work she was doing. This seemed to confuse her a little but she kept working and almost seemed to ignore my presence. Well, sure. Not everyone has my ability to multi-task. I smiled tolerantly and made a silent benediction over her efforts. A wise man once wrote that, “uneasy is the head that wears a crown.” And so true it is. I’m constantly employed providing guidance and useful advice on any number of things around here. My inexhaustible supply of knowledge is always improving her efforts. Noblesse oblige as the say.
I guess the outcome is I’ll let things lay for the next five years. Sure, she tries to undermine my authority but she’s a hard-working member of the team and I like to reward effort. Plus she’s related to my children and family is family. Well done Camera Girl, well done.