Other couples bicker about dirty socks

By Mir
September 5, 2006

It’s time to reveal all about the weekend wrap-up, but first I simply must share that the high and low points of my day came in rapid succession this evening. I swung through a complete spectrum of emotion, and am still feeling a bit off-balance.

First: I have a toothearache. Either I have an earache that is also affecting my jaw, or I have a toothache which is referring pain to my ear. I cannot tell which. But it is making me fairly miserable. Bah.

Second: It arrived last week, and I finally tested out my replacement robot. In spite of my throbbing ear/jaw, watching this thing zip around my family room and then emptying all sorts of unspeakable grime from its innards was immensely gratifying. I totally would’ve licked it if I hadn’t seen what it had been touching.

So that was my day. Rather, my evening. Please try to contain your excitement. (Though I am open to any home remedies for a sore ear, provided they don’t involve anything gross. We like to leave matters that link “bodily orifice” and “disgusting” to Monkey, thankyouverymuch.)

Onward, to reveal the truths from yesterday!

1) Deflowered. I went to Sonic for the first time ever and got a cherry limeade that simultaneously made my tastebuds sing and sent my brain into overdrive with the gazillion calories of pure sugar. It was the most wondrous beverage I’ve ever had. I think it’s a very good thing that there aren’t any Sonics up here.

This is TRUE. I had never been to a Sonic before. I have had cherry limeade, but NOTHING like what I was given at Sonic. That was cherry lime heroinade, I’m pretty sure. (And when you look at it THAT way, the price certainly is a bargain.)

2) Bad boys bad boys, whatcha gonna do? While eating lunch on the UGA campus on Saturday, Otto and I enjoyed the varied and interesting sights of a college town on game day: People from all walks of life clad in red and black, latecomers to the game desperately seeking parking, girls with pompoms… and a couple being busted for indecent exposure.

This was a trick item, as it is technically FALSE. It’s entirely true except for the last two words—the couple was ticketed for open containers (public drinking), not indecent exposure. Although I must say that I was astounded at the number of scantily-clad young women we saw strolling around. I guess I’ve forgotten what college towns are like. And I am old and curmudgeonly for feeling that shirts ought to consist of more than a largish rubberband strung across the nipples.

3) Triple dog dare. On Friday night, Otto dared me to marry him. Right then. Like, “I’ll look up a justice of the peace in the phone book RIGHT NOW.” (So. Romantic.) I declined.

I hate to break it to everyone who was so sure this was ridiculous, but this item is 100% TRUE. And my darling Otto is currently digging himself a very DEEP and DARK hole by insisting that REALLY, he was saying he couldn’t live another day without me, and the romance was IMPLIED, and I am now on record as having TURNED HIM DOWN. I hold that “I am not going to marry you ON A DARE” is also pretty clear on the IMPLIED “but if you ask me nicely I might stop kicking you and consider it,” but there you go. Hey, some women dream their entire lives about meeting that one special man who can argue semantics endlessly. Look at me so lucky to have met him early and to now have him doing all of those special things like offering to fetch the yellow pages so that we can elope.

4) Dude, what did that chicken ever do to YOU? Sunday was spent preparing for, throwing, and cleaning up after a big barbecue (which was a blast). One of Otto’s friends came over early to set up his grill and cook a couple of chickens… which he did by shoving beer cans up their nether regions, placing them on rack stands, and finally stuffing onions into their neck cavities before placing them on the grill. Where they stared at me, a desperate plea for help readily apparent on their onions (which was where their heads should’ve been).

Yes, it is TRUE that I have now witnessed beer can chicken being prepared, and I ate it anyway. It was delicious. But watching the prep was disturbing in a way I hadn’t imagined possible. I wanted to apologize to the chickens. Instead I kept telling them to stop staring at me.

5) It doesn’t mean the president isn’t a warmongering ass, though. Twice while in the atrium of the Atlanta airport today, a group of servicemen (being shipped out, by all appearances) came through and received STANDING OVATIONS from the other passengers. Which actually made me teary. And I have a small, shrivelled stone of a heart.

This one is TRUE. On all counts. He’s an ass, people stood and clapped, and I was moved. But mostly it just breaks my heart to see all of those young people looking so alive when they might not be for much longer.

6) I think she’s just avoiding me. I was supposed to see Joshilyn on this trip, but she is working too hard and was sick and stressed and miserable, so we did not manage to coordinate it. But! She assures me that if I still like her and she’s still alive when she’s done killing herself with this new book, I may get to see her then.

I was surprised at how many people doubted that this one was TRUE. Although I arrived after Joss’ appearance in Athens, we had planned to meet for lunch before I left on Monday. But she came back from the Decatur Book Festival sick and tired and stressed so we agreed to postpone. Also, we were chatting on the phone while I sat at the gate waiting for my plane, and she gasped and announced she needed to hang up immediately. Something about having deleted an entire chapter of her WIP by accident. At that moment I forgave her for not meeting me for lunch. (Hope you got it back, darling.)

7) A taste of the country life. I took a ride in an old rusty pick-up truck that took three tries to get started, periodically squealed, and had a bed full of rain water. We filled it with pine straw and prayed the truck would start again for the return trip.

Well, Otto doubts my veracity because, in his words, “it’s not that rusty,” but this one is TRUE. He keeps a truck around for errands just such as this, and I got to hear all about how you can’t use bark mulch in the south. I wisely remained silent on how I’ve often thought that the landscaping with pine straw looks as though people just went insane and sprinkled old spaghetti everywhere. Also, PAYING for pine straw? You want pine straw, come to my yard. I’ll give you all the freaking pine straw you want.

8) I would, but I just peed myself. Someone I met at the barbecue and with whom I had exchanged about a dozen words offered to let me drive his car. This car. I really, really, REALLY wanted to. But I declined.

*siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh* I’m still regretting my decision, but this is TRUE. I was afraid to drive it. All I could think was that I’d end up clipping something and then not only would I have damaged the most beautiful car I’d ever seen, but Otto would be mortified. I’d just spent the afternoon trying not to make a complete jackass out of myself in front of a few dozen of his friends and colleagues. Mission more or less accomplished, I just figured my luck had run out. I opted, instead, to mostly stand there and murmur “pretty!” a few hundred times, which I’m sure was impressive.

9) Deep breaths. So, you might recall that on my last trip to Georgia, I met my first palmetto bug in the bathroom early one morning. I’m pleased to report that the bathrooms were all clear, this time. But one dive-bombed me in the kitchen while I was washing dishes one night. (In the case of the palmetto bug, absence definitely DOES make the heart grow fonder. When they are absent, my heart is a lot happier.)

Praise the Lord, this one is FALSE. I had no encounters of the insect kind on this trip. Well, other than the butterflies at the Botanical Gardens.

10) He knows me well. Otto was kind enough to grab my purse and suitcase as we were getting ready to head to the airport today. I discovered that he’d filled a ziploc bag with assorted M&Ms and Hershey’s miniatures and stuffed it in my purse. Now THAT is romantic.

Yes, Otto loaded me up with chocolate before I came home; that’s TRUE. And I had thought he was just being adorable and sweet, giving me a bunch of the goodies leftover from the party. It wasn’t until we spoke on the phone that night that we had the following exchange:

Him: … but it’s a good thing I gave you all the leftover chocolate.
Me: Huh? No you didn’t.
Him: Yes I did.
Me: No you didn’t. There’s still a bowl of chocolates on the counter.
Him: No there’s… oh, for crying out loud.

I thought he was giving me the chocolate because he knows I love chocolate. He just wanted it out of the house. But what can you expect from a man who tries to GOAD you into matrimony? Some conveniently revisionist history with a side of teasing, plus miniature candy bars, that’s what.

And now I must put my sore ear down on the pillow for a while, so that tomorrow I can get up and send my Roomba off into another room of my house. I think it’s important to have goals.


  1. Patricia

    Would you PLEASE marry that boy. He seems to give you a run for your “money” in the smartass department. I’m liking Otto more and more — plus he SHARES chocolate….HELLO!!!
    Otto — from the bottom of my heart, darling, come one ASK NICELY. (If I make my 3 year old say please you can say PLEASE too — with JEWELRY!!).
    But in Otto’s defense, I actually agreed to marry my husband after his romantic proposal of “So, do you want to make this permenant?” Yup, there’s a keeper, I’m telling you!
    So, I am going with that number three is true and false — since you will marry him if he asks nicely and THEN when you tell the story, this is the one you will repeat, not the one with him on one knee.

  2. Nadine - Healthifica.com

    Toothearache…such a combination. Have you taken pain killer? It might heal at least for a while.

  3. zobabe

    **weak, fainting** You…said NO? Even on a dare…criminy. I would have dared him to get the car keys and drive to the courthouse. CRIME. IN. E. I will remember this moment when I am throwing mice out windows and rescuing baby kingsnakes from my living room because I do not have a man around to keep an eye out for such things. Beautiful women have no SENSE.

    Yeah, yeah, you’re still cool and all that, since you had the beer can chicken. Almost redemption, that. Almost.

  4. InterstellarLass

    I said yes to a proposal over breakfast. We were reading the paper. He took my hand, asked me, and I said yes. We WERE in front of a fireplace though. TOTALLY romantic.

    But I’m with you…a dare is not a proposal. He has to say “Pretty Mir, Pretty, Pretty Mir. You are so Pretty. Will you be the Prettiest Mrs. Otto?” And then you can say yes.

  5. Marvo

    I’m not a beer guy (more of a vodka kind of guy), but everything that I’ve eaten that has been cooked using beer was delicious. Yum-O! Yes, I just did quote Rachael Ray on your blog. :-)

  6. carrien

    MY first proposal, there was another with a ring but I don’t remember him ever getting down on any knees, was phrased thus.
    “I don’t want you to be my girlfriend anymore.” I waited for the punchline, thinking he was making another joke. I choked on a giggle as I realized that he was suddenly asking THE QUESTION instead. I said yes.

    I think you should wait for a real proposal too though. I at least had a full moon.

  7. Heather

    I like “I don’t want you to be my girlfriend anymore.” I mean, I’d likely start crying before I figured out what he was up to, but I like it.

  8. Kendra

    um…holy crap. That’s all I can say. sweet holy crap!

  9. Amy-Go

    Um, am I the only one that thinks “let’s get married RIGHT NOW” really is romantic? REALLY romantic. You go, Otto – I would’ve said yes! ;)

  10. Lesley

    Congratulations on the proposal. And my beer can chicken cooker is called the Chick-can. Heh.

  11. Otto

    Regarding the “Triple Dog Dare” … The Pretty One left out a few details. And while neither of us can remember the exact details, she had (obviously) made some comment that I was never going to ask her because I was a wimp, that I would have some sudden realization that this was all going to become a big mess and run away, whimpering loudly, in one of my old cars. (Which would probably break down somewhere and I’d get stuck and then have to call her for a ride home … but that’s all irrelevant.)

    The Pretty One has said, repeatedly, she does NOT want a big sparkly ring. That she does NOT need a big fancy wedding. That she does NOT need a rollicking reception. And – And – AND!! – that she’d be perfectly happy to elope.

    So I said, Okay, let’s find a Justice of the Peace right now. She laughed at me and I said I’ll get the phone book … and she turned me down.

    Hrmpf. Fickle.

    There was also a spirited debate about whether I’d be able to propose without asking her dad, which she thought implied ownership in some way, shape or form. And when that time comes along, I will make that phone call, and it’s because I know he cares for her very deeply and that, regardless of time and circumstance, she will always be his little girl. It just seems to be the polite thing to do.

    On the other things … the chicken was good, but creepy … the old truck is nearly a classic, and it’s pine straw over mulch because I’d like my house to NOT be perforated by termites any time soon … she SO should have driven the car … and while I do regret not giving her all the chocolate, it’s only because I know she would have enjoyed it far more than I ever would.

    Otto is just like that.

  12. Ben

    Ha! I proposed to my wife just after having sex on the bottom bunk in a stinky dorm room I shared with three other guys (they weren\’t there, obviously, we scared them away) and seventeen years later we still can\’t get any privacy.

    No, wait, that\’s not it. Um. Hey, look, chocolate!

  13. Mir

    Otto needs to stop referring to himself in the third person (speaking of creepy)….

    And as has already been established: I do not have the funds necessary to keep the kids in therapy for the REST OF THEIR LIVES as would be necessary if I got married WITHOUT THEM. Hmph.

  14. chris

    see i read replacement robot and thought you were taling about otto.

  15. Heather

    SO ya’ll should just take off to Vegas one weekend!

  16. Aimee

    Um…wow! I don’t have any problem with the spontaneous wedding (my husband and I eloped and it was great) but I think just possibly that if he had DARED me to marry him I might have required a do-over on the proposal. Still, I think Otto’s a keeper.

  17. Sophie

    That was a really fun way to present your weekend, Mir! Bravo! It also is extra fun for me since I live between Athens and Decatur; I’m enjoying the Georgia references. Pine straw like dry spaghetti noodles – funny! I love my pine straw as mulch, but I never thought of it that way before. And, I agree – the prez is an ass, or worse.

    So, where ya gonna have a gift register for your wedding?

  18. Ani

    To Otto, Re:

    “The Pretty One has said, repeatedly, she does NOT want a big sparkly ring. That she does NOT need a big fancy wedding. That she does NOT need a rollicking reception. And – And – AND!! – that she’d be perfectly happy to elope.”

    Allow me to translate:

    “I would love to have a romantic sweet proposal with a tasteful smallish yet still engaged-looking ring, preferably after you ask the KIDS if it’s ok with them (and get them to help pick out the ring?). Then we can get married on the beach (woods? Vegas?) with our families and a few of our closest friends.”

    Ya know, like grownups in fantasy-land.

    Just sayin’

  19. Ani

    To Otto, again:

    Yes, women are weird obscure creatures. You love us that way.

    To Mir:

    Thanks for bringing the cold front down South. Those of us in the vicinity appreciated it. :-)

  20. Karen Rani

    Mir – reel that boy in, I got something to say to him:

    I’ve warned you, Mister. (See weekend wrap-up comments).

    You’re walkin’ a fine line with my girl…don’t MAKE me rip out my weave and get the wooden spoon to beat yo’ chunky ass.

    Carry on, Mir.


  21. Karen Rani

    On another note: does Ani work for Clarica? Because Ani knows stuff.

  22. shannon

    I’m with Amy-go! I think the dare was quite romantic. Although I understand the need you feel to have the kids with you during the swaping of vows.

    However it happens, just enjoy the ride!!!

    My story: my husband and i had already bought the ring. i told him it was his deal, when he felt the time was right. one night he caught me looking at the ring and said, “why don’t you wear that?” i reminded him of the deal and he then said, “you wanna be my girl?” and even though i’d known it was going to happen all along, i still cried!

  23. Ben

    Now hang on a second –



  24. Susan

    Mmmmmm, Sonic Cherry Limeade. We call it CRACKade here, though.

  25. Janice

    I too said No to my husband the first time he proposed. What can I say he didn’t have a ring.

    About your nose/ear problem – I had that once and it turned out to be a sinus infection, you’ll need antibotics.

  26. Christina

    Otto, you are the sweetest man I’ve never met, and Mir you are definately the prettiest woman I’ve never met :) Thanks for all of the fun details, I’m still laughing about the beer can chicken (having never seen that done either) but now strangely curious!

  27. Jenn2

    I just called my husband and read him the bits about the proposal on a dare. He’s offered to give Otto tips on dating a single mother, though he says he’s SURE Otto can propose in an appropriate and romantic fashion and to leave that poor dude alone.

  28. tori

    About the ear/jaw pain…I have problems with my salivary glands and it feels how you are describing it. If you massage it and use heat it might feel better (of course it also might not…because I am helpful that way.) If you want specifics on the right way to massage it, send me an email.

    About Otto, I think that is sweet that he is so sure of everything that he would have felt ok doing it right then. It is sort of how I feel about the whole Tom Cruise couch thing. I would love to have a guy feel that way about me, but don’t think I would actually want the guy to do that. Also? Regardless of the reasons he gave you the chocolate, he still gave it to you in a sweet sneaky surprise kind of way. I say he still gets points for that!

  29. Bob

    HA! I KNEW that you wouldn’t elope ’cause of the kids. I just knew it. (picture here Jim Carrey as Ace Ventura doing his victory dance!!!).

    Now that I’m back home too I can maybe do my victory dances a little closer to the victorious event.

    I second the comment above about your ear/tooth-ache. Sounds like sinus infection to me too. (fluid back-up into ear causing achiness) My better half has way too much experience with this phenomena.

  30. She-Ra

    I say get that ear/tooth thing checked out. I’ve had my ear drum rupture twice in the last 3 years and that is NOT fun! If there seems to be pressure in the ear, try smoking it out. Yes, that means lighted cigarette sticking out your ear. Supposed to equalize the pressure so you don’t rupture. Obviously it didn’t work for me but it has worked for a friend. You can also do it the right way and get an ear candle from the natural foods store.

    And about the sonic cherry limes… Yum. Yum. Yum. If you read my blog from August, during my family’s road trip there are daily mentions of my trips to Sonic to get another cherry lime. Love those things but there are no Sonics where I live. Probably a good thing though or I’d be there every day!

  31. Shiz

    Wait a minute. Couples bicker about dirty socks?

  32. Janis

    Everyone knows you can’t elope until you have your highlights properly touched up. (What was he thinking?) Hope he pops the question again and you say yes. I’m going to go shop for a salad shooter (or something else just as nice) so I’ll be all set when you announce the big date!

  33. Fold My Laundry Please

    For me, Sonic Cherry Limeade = MAJOR HEARTBURN!! Now their Oceanwater drink….mmmmmmmmmmm!

  34. Krisco

    I agree with Ani.

    Otto, if you are going to go down the marital aisle, there are a few things you need to know.

    The first is, some women will SAY they don’t want a ring, but what that really means is that they don’t want to have to say that they want a ring. They want you to go out and buy it because out of the humongous love in your heart for this amazing woman, you couldn’t imagine asking without it.

    But she’s not going to say that.

    So go buy a freaking ring already.

    (I am not one of these women, although I respect them. I came right out and said, Yes I want a ring, and one big enough I can go to Texas (his home state) and not be embarrassed. I mean, come on. I DID want a ring. And we do go to Texas.)

  35. Mir

    Okay, I tried to ignore this all day. Ani, Krisco (and anyone else): I really don’t want an engagement ring. Please don’t put words in my mouth. When I said “I don’t want a ring,” I actually meant it.

  36. Ani

    But, but, but…how does one make it official then?!?!

    Just kidding. I take it back about the ring. No ring, Mr. Otto.

    How about an engraved watch then? That’s what I gave my now-husband. Since I proposed, and he didn’t want a ring.

  37. Wendy

    I guess I’m not enough of a romantic…

    But I have always thought anniversary bands mean more than engagement rings. Getting married is easy; staying happily married is the fun work.

    OK, that’s *really* jumping the gun, isn’t it?

  38. Mary Tsao

    I would have married that man in a heartbeat. Or at least pretended we were married. ;)

  39. Elana

    Hey Mir…you’re gonna kill me:

    Sonic Cherry Lime^H^H^H^HCrackade

    1 12 oz. can of Slice Lemon Lime or Sprite 
    2 Tbsp. Cherry Syrup 
    1/3 of a lime

  40. lizneust

    Poor pretty Mir with the achey head. Delurking to offer my two cents: I am a huge fan of the hot water bottle in these circumstances. If you don’t have one, you can fake it with a damp kitchen towel microwaved for a few minutes and then popped in a ziploc bag. It’s also good for back aches, but the warm doesn’t last as long. Wrap up the hot water bottle in a towel and stick it just inside your pillowcase. That way, you don’t burn your ear/cheek and the sucker doesn’t get away from you in the middle of the night. Hope it helps.

    As for Otto’s dare, I think it was lovely of him to be so spur of the moment (if not necessairly romantically correct) and I hope you felt warm and fuzzy about the emotion behind the impulse. We’re rooting for you guys!

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