The workshop for humor writing, human interest writing, networking and getting published

Erma Bombeck Wrighters' Workshop Banner

Scenes from a boomer marriage,
Chapter 3

There’s an old saying that familiarity breeds contempt. I disagree. Having been married for nearly 20 years, there’s an ease to the way Hubs and I relate to each other that I think is one of the ultimate perks of a long-term relationship. It’s comfortable. It’s accepting. It’s affirming. It’s without artifice.

And it’s blog fodder.

I mean, c’mon, if we were newlyweds, I doubt I’d feel okay exposing something that happened in the bedroom to the blogosphere, or publicly calling myself (or Hubs) out for doing or saying something stupid.

But being older — and thankfully prone to laughing at and with each other — sometimes stuff happens that I just have to share (with Hubs’ blessing, of course). Some recent examples:

Scene 1:

We’re cleaning up after a dinner party, with me washing items that can’t go in the dishwasher while Hubs dries. Having consumed a healthy quantity of wine during the evening, our powers of observation aren’t at their keenest — and I don’t notice that he’s putting the clean, dry items on the kitchen island behind us. And he doesn’t notice that I’m turning around, grabbing those items and washing them — again.

Me:      Hey, wait a minute — didn’t I already wash this?

Hubs:  Where’d you get it?

Me:      Off the island.

Hubs:  Those are all clean.

Me:      Oh, for gawd’s sake. Time to call it a night.

Scene 2:

The two of us are sitting at the dining table, having a casual supper and just gabbing about whatever — as married couples are wont to do.

Hubs:  I saw a video today that showed a snake swallowing an alligator whole, and x-rays showed how the carcass dissolved inside the snake over the course of a week.

Me:      Wow, snakes must secrete some strong stomach acid.

Hubs:  It’s too bad cats couldn’t do that with hairballs instead of urping them up the way Kirby (our long-haired cat) does.

Me:      This is some appetizing dinner conversation, huh?

Scene 3:

Hubs is able to recall his dreams quite vividly, and recaps them for me most mornings — and they’re usually quite entertaining. One recent morning:

Hubs:  Last night I had a stress dream.

Me:      About what?

Hubs:  I had a bunch of cardboard boxes in the garage to cut up before the trash pickup got here, and I wasn’t sure I’d get it done in time.

Me:      If that’s what you consider stress, I think you’ve been retired too long.

Scene 4:

It’s early one morning, and Hubs and I are about to have an amorous encounter. Suddenly, however, we hear a repetitive slapping noise coming from the adjacent bathroom.

Hubs:  What the hell is that?

Me:      It’s Kirby trying to cover up a turd that must’ve landed outside the litter box.

There’s a plastic mat outside the box to catch litter and occasional other droppings, and Kirby is scratching the edge in an attempt to bury a piece of poop he’s dropped, causing the mat to lift up then flap on the floor. So I get up, retrieve the errant turd with some toilet paper, and throw it in the toilet, washing my hands before returning to bed to resume what Hubs and I had begun. En route, however, I see Kirby hunched over and dragging his butt across the bedroom rug.

Me:      Aw, crap.

Hubs:  What!?

Me:      Kirby must have more poop stuck to his butt; he’s scooching across the rug.

I grab the cat and carry him back into the bathroom for inspection. Sure enough, there’s a piece of fecal matter that didn’t completely make its exit from his poop chute.

Me:      Can you help me here?

Hubs:  What do you want me to do?

Me:      Can you hold him while I get the poop off him?

So there we are, in our birthday suits, taking care of the business end of a cat. Our mission successfully accomplished, we both wash our hands and return to bed. And with the single-minded focus that men seem particularly capable of exhibiting at times like this:

Hubs:  So, where were we?

Which inspired this haiku:

You know you’re well-loved
when even rogue cat turds don’t
derail his desire.

 Roxanne Jones

Roxanne Jones blogs at, a mostly lighthearted, often irreverent look at life as a baby boomer, 17 syllables at a time. When she’s not tapping out haikus, she’s a freelance medical copywriter, enjoys chardonnay and contemplates plastic surgery to get rid of the wattle on her neck.

Reflections of Erma