Be it known to all interested parties or those ever so disinterested but on the contrary somewhat bored enough to muddle through this rambling declaration I am no longer a single man.
Well at least in the sense that if I went on a date with a female other than the one whose bags I loaded in her vehicle yesterday and said goodbye to this morning before she took off for a week in Houston and Austin she would likely exact severe retribution. So in that regard I am no longer in charge of some things in my life.
Like dressing myself. Those worn out old blue jeans? Probably makings for a purse or some sort of other craft project. Broke down old boots? Replaced. New cologne that I have previously never seen or heard of? Check. Shaving even though it is just an ordinary old Friday and the fanciest place we have to go is dinner? Done. I accept these things because I am generally incapable of dressing myself in a manner that is fit for public viewing. I am very likely to keep wearing jeans that have seen their better days five years ago. Shirts with one or two burn holes in them? Still good. It is a good thing women find something tolerable about men because otherwise we would still be living in a cave and eating meat on a stick, perhaps quivering from the kill and while that is fine for oysters and perhaps some other meat, it is generally a good idea to scorch the hell out of the bacteria that is likely to be lingering on my preferred protein sources. So, all in all I accept the fact that I do need a handler. Probably 2 or 3. No, make that four, I have a sister too. Between my mother, daughter, sister and now girlfriend it is less likely that I will turn up to some event wearing clothing that should have been donated, no sorry, burned or otherwise disposed of.
That said, this is going to take some adjustment. I am not used to finding tools in a state of complete disarray. Neither am I accustomed to finding .22 long rifle shells rolling around in the bottom of the tool box. That was cause for a discussion of the concept of rimfire ignition and the relative ease with which they would penetrate said toolbox and the ensuing trip to the hospital if it found meat on its wayward path. Since she has recently moved into new digs I found myself helping out with the unpacking. This continues to be a work in progress. I have managed to thin out the stack of boxes that were sitting on the porch and store them properly in the shed/barn. Hung one shelf, a couple dozen decorative doohickeys and one rod for hanging clothes in the laundry room. I was somewhat dismayed that the sockets had been summarily dumped into a vase, but they do in fact exist and I will give her credit for that. Considering that she was making a hasty departure from a particularly bad relationship I count it in her favor that she had the presence of mind to load them at all. I can overlook the pink hammer that would fold under impact with anything more resistant than a tack. I can disregard the seemingly endless supply of wind chimes which I affectionately call clang-bangers. The 682 items in the bathroom, the closet full of nothing but coats (on the back porch to boot) and the shoes....I swear I might have an even ten pair of shoes, which is not enough for this week in Houston if you were to ask her...all these things are par for the course. I expected it and would have been nothing less than shocked if it were any different. It is however going to be an adjustment. In my wildest imagination I could not have foreseen the need for 14 t-shirts for a one week trip. Oh right, morning and evening. The idea that one might wear the same t-shirt in the evening for more than one day? Unthinkable. Yep, some adjustments are in order.
When I afford myself a moment of introspection of finding or rather being found by someone I wonder at what sort of meandering path it was. I do not know the odds of meeting someone from 20+ years ago on that wild assed world wide web. Facebook has indeed made it simpler to do so, but that is by no means a guarantee. Further, even upon finding one another, the timing for a relationship has to be right. It does not do for one or both to already be in a relationship. I am not the sort of man who goes after someone when they are in a relationship; good, bad or meh. I didn't before and I am not starting now. When she first found me a couple of years ago we were both involved. I kept my distance and said hi and howdy when it was called for but I made no attempt at reconnection, in any capacity. Then one day I received a picture of myself in the inbox. After a bout of raucous laughter I immediately posted it as a profile picture. Sweet memories of ill-spent years in college. Not so sweet for my mother though and she began to inquire of its origins I had to throw up the Heisman and say," not so fast woman, you really really do not want to know." Little did I know that my response to the maternal figure was going to be somewhat misread. The next day after some rounds of liquid bravery were consumed at a girlfriend's place she sent me another note asking if I was mad or somehow offended. Typical of me, I was scratching my head and trying to figure out what the hell I did wrong this time. At least I knew enough to say, "Mad? Why would I be mad at you? That was great! If you are talking about my comment to my mom, that was me throwing up a road block before she ventured off into dark woods she did not want to enter."
"Oh. Ok! How have you been?" and so the interrogation period began.
As I said this was a request to say something, a few syllables at least, about where I stand and what I think about it at the moment. She particularly wanted me to mention the wretched pink hammer and the shocking fact of bullets in the toolbox. I included the part of my inability to dress myself properly of my own volition. It is undeniable and symptomatic of my existence as male human being.
That'll do for a start.