Phone Fumble

Erin often leaves her phone ringer on which drives me crazy because her ring tones aren’t great and go on forever and I have to hear them. 
I tried to help her by clean-editing a version of Without Me by Eminem to notify her when I called as a romantic surprise years ago, which was especially hilarious when she was at the Telus Spark during orientation with a bunch of elementary children on my daughter’s field trip and a phone NOT on vibrate. 
One would think that thirty seconds of slow-mo fumbling her phone in a vain attempt to turn the ringer off to “This looks like a job for me so everybody just follow me cuz we need a little controversy but it feels so empty without me” would put her in the mood for love when she answered? 
Wrong. 
Girls are so hard to figure out. 
Guys are not too difficult. If we look like something is wrong it is likely one of the top three things: We’re hungry. We want to make out. Nothing. 
Most of the time it’s nothing. We haven’t studied the art of “looking ok”, particularly when you think we shouldn’t be ok about something. 
I walked in the other night from church and Erin takes one look at me and says “What’s wrong”. 
I said “?”. 
“Honey, what are you thinking about right now??”
“Um. Nothing?”
Then we get accused of lying? We’re not kidding. Maybe you should be mad because we ought to be thinking about things that matter? Probably a better argument. 
I often find it amusing to write about guy/girl things in our home mostly because it can annoy people who take themselves and what they think they know a little too seriously, which we used to do, but I think our daughters haven’t exactly suffered from a bit of candour and humour from their dad. 
Sadly they dish it now maybe better than I do, so I have to invent new ways to keep things fresh around the house. 
Each of my four girls thinks they’re my favourite and it’s probably because I whisper it to them very confidentially and wink after. 
One day Ailish offered me candy in a moment of weakness to say it into Voice Record on her phone. Now she has a record of it which she plays for the others because candy is delicious but I still wouldn’t change it because the outrage her sisters show is just for show. I just find them later and whisper “I don’t like Ailish, I REALLY like you most” as they nod knowingly. 
Life can be surprising. I once described parenting as “one horrible adventure after another”. Marriage is hard. Work is hard. Years ago I had a revelation that if I continued complaining and getting stressed out about everything it would soon reach a point where I’d feel like I couldn’t do it anymore. 
In my twenties I decided things were only going to get harder so I might as well relax and decide to enjoy the surprises because it beats the cowardice of a life built to keep that bad things out. 
A wall is a wall. It keeps out everything, including joy. You can’t “selectively numb” (thank you Brene Brown). 
Now I try to find humour in everyday moments, good ones and bad. If you look for it you’ll find it. 
So recently Erin’s phone kept ringing with a daily reminder on it that I finally shut off because she was someplace her phone wasn’t (???). Her reminder was super nice which is the reason people like her more than me. It said “Encourage someone today”. 
“Awwww”, I thought before changing it to 
“MAKE OUT WITH COREY RIGHT NOW”
Why? Because I can’t help myself. 
My rationalization is that she started dating me because she thought I was funny and I need to keep the spark alive! 
I know what you’re thinking right now. “Corey, you are amazingly romantic. Did she throw herself into your arms?”
Surprisingly no, but in my defence this time around I could hear her laughing the next morning at the same o’clock and telling the staff about it later. She said I should write about it this week just in case you’re angry on her behalf (ladies ya’ll hunt in packs:). 
Sure sometimes it blows up in my face, but if it didn’t I’d have no stories to tell at dinner parties, 
and no sermon illustrations…

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