It's not about the house.

Friday, July 11, 2008

May You Never

Johnny – and I swear that it was Johnny – spilled beer on my keyboard. Here’s what happened:

There’s this song he used to love but forgot about and only recently remembered (I’ll tell you what it is later, don’t you concern yourself with it for now). He doesn’t own it on CD or tape or vinyl, so lately – especially when he’s in his cups – he's been asking me to call it up for him on YouTube.

It’s a nice song. If you’d asked me month ago I would have said that it was beautiful. But 1200 hearings of the same song over and over again does something to a girl, something a little twitchy. And we do know that Johnny gets into his cups regularly, right?

So tonight, when he asked me to call it up, I may have been a little short with him. I may have, in fact, at first refused. And I may have, in fact, raised my voice. We may have gotten in a little outside-voicy tiff, that may have ended in me calling the song up and then walking away. Okay, I may have stormed away. And then I may have crawled in bed to sulk.

What I failed to notice was that he had a beer in his hand when I left. And not just any beer, but a long-necked bottle, when he’s used to drinking from a can (I do not defend my husband’s choices; I merely present them here as fact).

Time went by. I could hear that he’d gotten in the shower. More time passed. I couldn’t hear what he was doing. More time, and then he came into the bedroom being all cute and lovey in a very non-Johnny-after-a-fight sort of way. He started combing the cat and everything. I should have known something was very wrong.

I crawled out from the covers and let my defenses down. I pulled the hair out of the cat-comb so Johnny could continue playing Dad. I even told him I was sorry that I yelled. After a few minutes we both got up and left the bedroom, forgetting that we’d either of us ever been upset. We wandered through the house, heading who-knows-where, telling each other about the dentist-appointments that we’d both had this morning (which may explain why we were both a little raw). And then, for some reason that I don’t remember, I went in the office.

If I were an obsessive, insane blogger, I’d’ve grabbed the camera; but I’m not, and I didn’t, so I’ll trust you to imagine what I saw. There were several puddles on the floor in a distinctly drippy pattern: one big splash with lots of little satellites around. Like a -- oh, like a murder scene, only not (yet) blood. And then, before I could get the words “what the” out of my mouth, I saw the desk.

My keyboard was overturned on it. And under the keyboard, a mother-puddle that was the source for all the rest.

Well, I won’t detail the banshee-screaming that came next. Suffice to say that I am heartily ashamed. After all, for a year and a half I typed on a laptop that had no letter ‘a’ because of my own beverage-related carelessness. But somewhere in all the screaming, I did say something along the lines of “I’m not as mad that you did it as I am that you just walked away! Why did you not tell me?”

And that banshee-bit, I’m willing to stand by.

So anyway, he left. Up to the pub. I spent a half an hour taking the thing apart trying to clean it, before I remembered that I also said “Why can’t you act like an adult!?” At which point I called his cell phone and apologized, giving him ample opportunity to do the same – for the, you know, ruining-my-keyboard thing? – but he didn’t cotton.

Ah, well. Johnny’s 48. His mother didn’t die till she was 83 years old. There’s loads of time.

So I went to Staples and I bought me a new keyboard (oh, yeah, for future reference: taking keyboards apart and wiping the innards with a sponge is, as it happens, not the best idea). I’m typing on the new one now. At first I thought I hated it, but after 712 words I’ve realized new things just take some getting used to.

Like, for example, marriage.

Like, for example, men.

I’ll still get that apology out of him one way or another, though – and not the Lysistrata way you may be thinking. No. It will take subtlety. It will maybe take some tears, and much conniving. But I will make him understand why it wasn’t just about the fact that he broke something that belonged to me---


As it happens, I, Destructo, have broken loads of things that used to belong to him.

He always does get angry when I do it, but he always does forgive.

And the song that started this whole thing...?

Well, now that he’s not here and I’m feeling all remorseful, it does still bring a tear to my supercilious eye...

So never mind.


jen said...

cuz, I thought you were gonna say it was Fairytale in New York by the Pogues. In my mind, that fits better for Johhny!! And, Im listening to it right now...effing hilarious.

su said...

Hmm perhaps it is a genetic trait. One can actually buy flexible covers for the keyboard. When I had to replace mine I swore I was going to get one before anything spilled...... TOO late!

soup said...

anyone got any idea how to get reams of cat hair out of my laptop keyboard? i attack it with fine-point tweezers every-so-often. you can get under the keys with those, but it ain't perfect. the obvious would be to keep the cats away from it, but they won't let me. (sitting + stationary for more than five minutes = kitty love-fest opportunity) you see? there's feline math involved!

EGE said...

I feel your pain. Personally, I've never bothered to try to get the hair out -- a sisyphean job, at best -- but I imagine one of those air-blower thingies would probably work. Or a vaccuum?

Anybody out there who actually cleans their house have any actual knowledge?

su said...

Guess that lets me out!

Charlie said...


Chris said...

Just buy a new keyboard, it apparently only takes 712 words to get used to a new keyboard, much lower number then I would have expected.