I have been woefully neglectful of this blog, which was my favorite project for several weeks earlier in the year. I was struggling to decide on source material for the longest time in recent weeks, but finally I decided, hey, calm yourself down already. When there’s something worth writing about, you’ll write about it. Oh, and plus I have been busy secretly growing a human baby for months now. I mean, that is if you consider constant nausea, exhaustion, and crying jags “busy,” and I do. More about the human baby in a later post. Tonight, I need to address something far more pressing. I need to talk about marriage equality.
My husband Matt is rarely annoyed with or upset at me. I know. It’s really astounding that I can hardly annoy him at all. He takes great joy in finding ways to annoy and upset me, though, because it is really easy to do. I’m a naturally high-strung and emotional person, and, despite years of trying to project a demeanor of general calm and hoping that one day my friends will start to consistently say, “Courtney? Oh man, that girl is so laid back. I have never met anyone who goes with the flow as well as she does,” it’s who I am. I’m just what they call easily rattled. Matt takes great joy in seeking out the things that I’m sensitive about and exploiting them for his own amusement, but I don’t get to return the favor very often. Ruffling his feathers is my Mount Everest. I am determined to succeed. But I’m not very athletic.
So when I find things that get under Matt’s skin, I like to really latch on and make the most of them. Inevitably, being a more emotionally stable and less reactive person, he figures out ways to avoid being irritated by whatever The Thing is. Therefore, when I strike gold, I try to enjoy it while it lasts. For example, for a while The Thing was that I thought Bruno Mars was overrated. I hated that stupid grenade song, and the one about how he should have brought her flowers and held her hand and all those other dumb things he says. I just didn’t like the music, and Matt refused to allow this opinion. Bruno Mars was a fantastic pop singer and I was wrong and he couldn’t bear to hear me talk about this, and so I talked about it a lot.*
Then, more recently, it was that I thought one of his current favorite bands, Big Wreck, sounded like Christian rock music.** As a former devout Baptist growing up in the 90’s and early 2000’s, I felt qualified to make this declaration. As a guitarist and student of music for his entire life, Matt thought I was way off-base and lost his mind anytime I mentioned Big Wreck praising their lord and savior. Now, I’m sad to say, making up fake Jesus lyrics to Big Wreck’s songs no longer has the same effect. Just this very minute, I asked him which of Big Wreck’s songs he thinks is the most “Jesusy” so I could link to it in my blog, to see if he would get upset, and he gritted his teeth and then he gave me suggestions. It’s like he just stopped caring what I think, like some kind of emotionally intelligent wizard.**
Luckily, I have found something new.
I have always known who Keanu Reeves is, in general. That guy from The Matrix and some other stuff. In my late teens, I went to the movies to see the rom-com Something’s Gotta Give, with Jack Nicholson, Diane Keaton, and that guy from The Matrix. And even in my youthful state, lacking in critical thinking abilities and general life skills, I could see that the guy’s acting sucked. He was stiff, overly articulate, and generally unpleasant to watch. To be fair, I never really had a strong opinion about him either way, or at least not until I learned how much Matt likes him.
The other night we were trying to decide what to watch and we stumbled upon The Lake House with Keanu and Sandra Bullock. Matt loves a rom-com, and I was game since I immediately sniffed out his vulnerability to Keanu-related remarks. All it took was one comment about how that guy sucks, and I knew I was on to something. So I worked hard to comment on poor Keanu’s sub-par acting chops as often as possible, throughout the movie. Matt was enraged! Success. He tried to counteract my attack with his own comments, but he was no match for me because I think he also secretly knows Keanu sucks. We had several exchanges like this:
Me: Oh here we go. That guy from The Matrix is trying to muster up emotion again. I wish Sandy would show up and put me out of my misery.
Matt: What?! Look at that guy. What an actor. Look at those quality tears.
Me: They had to hire a guy to stand right nearby with eye drops. Or there’s some person hiding under that table plucking his leg hairs.
At a certain point in the movie, Matt announced that we would watch Speed next, so I could see Keanu at “his finest.” When The Lake House finally ended an eternity later, and Speed started, I pretended not to see Keanu in the first few scenes he was in, which had the desired effect:
Matt: Look at that guy! He’s ready to fight! How can you not like Keanu?! Seriously!
Me: Who? Oh, he’s there? Which one is he again?
Friends, it was a glorious night. The moral of this story is not how much Keanu Reeves blows. It is to encourage you all to seek out that which makes your marriage irritation equitable, and hold on to your power for as long as is humanly possible, until its last dying breath. Stay the course. Don’t get discouraged if you try several different ways to irritate and you fail. You will find The Thing. And don’t forget to resurrect the most successful irritations weeks, months, and even years later when your partner least expects to have to deal with your annoying ass.
*I’ll admit that since Uptown Funk and 24k Magic I can no longer say “Bruno Mars is overrated” and sleep at night. That guy is amazing.
**I still don’t like Big Wreck. And I sleep really well feeling this way.