When I’m an Old Man

“Erin, I’m going to be a ridiculously funny old man! I’m already ridiculously funny, but when I’m old….”   This is a fairly normal type of marriage conversation for us before you get too alarmed on her behalf, she’s used to it. 
To be fair, she thought I was a whole lot cleverer before she saw my idea-material (The Simpsons) when we were dating, but I’ve tried to stay funny day by day, but this requires crossing the line from time to time to keep things fresh. 
Like the time I accused her of shoplifting in a Fields store (remember those?). 
Not my most well thought out marriage moment to be sure, but very very funny. 
I’d noticed she wasn’t laughing at my jokes a year or two into our marriage (a common thing I’m told), so in the best interests of her health and happiness I ramped up my game. 
We were shopping in a Fields clothing store and I did what I did when shopping or anything else equally boring and turned my brain off. 
Girls, when you ask us what we’re thinking and we stare back blankly for a moment before replying uncertainly “Nothing?”, we’re not kidding. We look guilty because we weren’t expecting a pop quiz surprise attack right then. 
So my brain was shut off as Erin paid for her purchase and then got the defib paddles when AFTER the till they had a sale on cheap socks! (Don’t bother telling me defib paddles are for your heart). 
“Cheap socks!!!” I exclaimed!!!
Every male is well acquainted with the Sock Demon. You buy fourteen new pairs of socks and lose half a dozen pairs after the first wash?? Where do they go? 
Sock Demon. Obviously. You physically can’t lose six pairs of socks after one wash and the only explanation must be supernatural. 
I’d recently been visited by the Sock Demon and was excited at lashing back righteously by buying a dozen new pairs, even if I’d lose most of them in a week. Cheap socks are cheap socks. 
As I walked back around to the till my wife just sauntered through ahead of me as if everyone was ok with that. 
I whispered to the overly serious cashier “You should check her pockets. She likes to steal stuff.”
Now it’s best to assume when around me that everything I say is said for shock value and to get a laugh. Apparently Cashier Lady was having a bad day (possible a bad decade as the depth of angry face wrinkles might indicate) and couldn’t quite get a read on the open laughter of my face. 
She launched into an angry tirade about how “You shouldn’t joke about that! I could call the Police and your wife could go to jail!!!”
Never EVER tell somebody like me something like that. 
I had to bend over just to breath as choking and laughing were competing in my throat. “Oh my goodness! Straight to jail Erin! Hahahahahahahaha”
I could just imagine a police person trying to keep it together in the presence of a very serious angry lady while checking my wife’s pockets for stolen stuff at the Fields store, while my wife is envisioning murder. It still makes me laugh. 
Erin responded by dropping her jaw and openly staring at me with a look that said “You’re dead when we get home!” 
Whatever. It was worth it. She still isn’t humble enough to admit it was funny, but I am. Heck, it’s still funny. 
I decided a long time ago life was going to be hard and I might as well laugh about it. Even difficult situations now know I’ll be laughing about them before the day is over. There’s always something a little funny to be found. Some people try to find things to be grumpy about but that’s doing the devil’s job for him, so to speak. 
Like the time I bought a VW Jetta from an Eastern European guy who couldn’t “Find the registration but everything is good with it”. Lost $1500 in a month fixing a car that had been written off before cutting my losses and getting on with my life. Whatever. I’m an idiot. 
Haven’t done it since though… 
I think laughing at yourself is the fastest path to not repeating silly mistakes. The more ridiculous my story is after the more I seem to learn the lesson. 
One time I had a hornet nest in my hot tub, so with no protection whatsoever and a devil may care attitude (“How hard could it be?” – famous last words), I took my IMPACT DRIVER to the forty seven screws of the cover before reaching for the hornet spray. 
If you are unfamiliar with the noise an impact driver makes, just imagine a hammer drill had a baby with an AK-47?
Apparently hornets attack whoever is holding one of those long before he can get the lid off or get to safety. 
Learned something new and now I have a good story. 
Mission accomplished. 
Will I be a funny old man? Yes I will. My kids will hate me but I’ll be the king of the world to my grandkids. I want my daughters to be flooded with stories about my antics. 
They’ll just smile and nod: “He earned his late childhood. Welcome home to the real world where we don’t eat ice cream for breakfast”. 

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