I Feel My Heartbeat, When You Run Your Fingers Through My Hair, Oh Yeah, I Can Tell You, I Can Feel You Be My Side When You're Not There, Oh Yeah
Did you ever hear the lateral thinking puzzle about the man and the two barbers? Patrick is fond of telling me the latest lateral thinking puzzle he just read and usually I think they are fairly interesting, but nothing to hold onto to tell my friends and family. However, the one about the man and the two barbers I do remember if only because it is one of the only ones I have ever deciphered all on my own, with no hints, and without having to utilize an excess of time.
A man is vacationing in an unfamiliar small town and he wants to get a haircut. He asks the nearest stranger where he may go about doing so. The man tells him the town is so small that they only have two barbers, but he cannot tell the man which one gives a better haircut. That, the stranger says, the man will have to discover for himself. The man thanks the stranger and walks to the location of the nearest barber that the stranger pointed out. As soon as he walks in he is appalled. Trash is strewn about and all the mirrors are dingy. The barber himself is an unkempt example of a human being--hair strewn about, unshaven, and his clothes have witnessed the better of the part of the week the man ascertains. Suprisingly, the barber still has a sizable clientele as there seems to be two or three willing to wait in the pig sty of barber shop. Still, the man decides to take his business elsewhere.
He hurries to the second barber. Once there, he finds a spotless and pristine barber shop. The floors are nearly spotless and all the mirrors have a glean to them reminescent of a hospital room. The barber himself is remarkably polished--stark white uniform, clean shaven, and not a hair out of place. This barber doesn't seem to have the room full of waiting customers that the other barber had, the man thinks, but, then again, that could just mean this barber only cuts hair by appointment.
Yet the more he contemplates the two contrasting barbers he realizes his only choice is to visit the first dirty barber if he wishes to get the best haircut in town. He sighs and heads back to the first barber.
Question: Why in Hell's bells does he do this?
Answer: Seeing as there are only two barbers in town, obviously the first barber gave the second barber the flawless cut and shave, whereas the second barber obviously gave the first barber the atrocious spectacle of a hairstyle.
Sometimes the manner in which an individual presents himself comes second to whether or not that individual can get the job done.
"I wouldn't eat a rib even if you had one to offer, Greg. So there," I said very forcefully.
I was cranky.
I was sitting in my spa tub in my master bathroom last month, not by choice, but by circumstance. I had unfortunately locked myself in the bathroom, even though Greg had told me the lock had broken and that the locksmith was coming to take a look at it two days hence. I had been sitting in the tub for the last two hours, attempting to finagle a solution to my dilemma. It wasn't so much the idea of being locked in my bathroom for the next few hours that worried me. It also wasn't so much the idea that I hadn't eaten for the last six hours and a certain hunger had been building inside me that worried me. Lastly, it also wasn't the fact that I was supposed to have gone out with Steph that night and had predictably left my cel phone sitting on the kitchen counter that worried me either. What bothered me most was the 5'10" annoyance seated on the throne in the corner.
"I swear, Breanne, only you..." he said half-mockingly.
"Heard it. That makes, what? The eighteenth time you've said that in the last hour, honey? Here's a hint. It's getting old," I said, stomach still grumbling.
He wasn't trying to be a S.O.B.. He honestly was attempting to keep me in good spirits by displaying that, even though we were in a jam, his humor was still intact. The problem I had lost all sense of humor. I knew where the fault lay. He knew where the fault lay. If only he could just show sign of disappointment or anger I could quit worrying. I was in one of those situations where the anticipation of the reprimand was worse than the reprimand itself. Greg doesn't often display his displeasure in a furious temper or demonstrative yell. I've conditioned him well to take most setbacks in stride and to approach life's obstacles with my make-do attitude. Still, there are certain moments, like the one I found myself in, where I wish he would show some kind of outward emotion.
Him taking things in stride all the time often times worries me. I'm a very demonstrative person. Yes, I can see the brighter side of things, but I am also the first person to call a lemon of a day, a lemon. My belief is akin to the old maxim of recognizing the lemon for what it is and then turning that lemon into lemonade. Greg's belief resembles more of not acknowledging the lemon at all as if you don't acknowledge the lemon out loud it really doesn't exist. See no lemon, hear no lemon, speak no lemon, as it were. In most circumstances I would say, "whatever's clever, whatever floats your boat, whatever's your cup of tea..." like the Our Magazine secret mantra went. But sometimes I wish he could be on the same page as me.
I slid my body further into the tub. Being upset with my husband had done nothing to calm the cacophony of noises emanating from my tummy. By that time I should have been out with Steph already. I should have been fed already. I should have been knocking back a few before I would have had to head back home to a warm bed and a playful husband. I should not have been sulking in an empty tub.
I heard Greg laugh as he spied me attempting to hide myself behind the lacquered wood confines of the tub.
"That's great," I said, right on cue. "This isn't funny, Greg. I have no idea how we're going to get ourselves out of here. Steph's going to be pissed."
"Don't worry, Breasy. We'll figure something out."
"Call me when you have any bright ideas. You know where to find me."
For the longest time a lot of my friends inquired as to what exactly I saw in Greg. What was the one quality, the one quirk that made me madly fall in love with him? He wasn't my usual brand of steak. He isn't very artistic, nor very creative. For him the closest he came to birthing something original into the world was inventing a new pizza replete with unique (and sometime unsavory) toppings. He isn't very read. The last book he has purchased of his own volition is the latest volume of the Uncle John's Bathroom Reader. He's a great lover, an awesome lover, in fact, but that's not exactly the sort of thing you list on your wedding video about what pushed you over the edge into marrying your intended, now is it? And, lastly, as aforementioned he borders on stoic and unfeeling at times and it is this quality that perturbs me the most.
On the outside he doesn't appear to be anything resembling to what I wanted. Sometimes I play that game with myself--he loves me, he loves me not--because sometimes when the kit has hit the can, as it were, he seems to resign from all contact with me. He puts on the goofy smile and tries to crack jokes. He leaves it up to me to do the sleeve-rolling and figure out the best way to extricate our arses from the skillet. For once, I just want him to say that I've made a mistake and this is how I'm going to fix it for you. I want to be taken care of on occasion instead of doing the taking care of. Yes, I am most often am the one who flubs out in the first place, but, hell's bells, I'm the girl here. Sometimes I want the guy who's going to solve all my problems, address all my concerns, and console me when I'm inconsolable.
Not give me, "Only you, Breanne..." and a hearty giggle.
I heard the familiar sound of a plastic container popping. It is enough for me to take a look-see at my worse half. In his hands he has fished out a box of tic-tacs. Unfortunately, there appeared to be only the one. Still, it was something related to food. It wasn't lobster thermidor, but at that point in the evening it might as well as been. I must have been visibly drooling. I was so, so hungry. I batted my eyes in Greg's direction.
He laughed. Again.
How. Much. Do. I. Hate. That. Laugh. Now.
"I thought you said you wouldn't take any food I could give you. Not for a million years, I believe you said."
"Kidding, honey," I grinned like cheshire cat.
"Nope, you're always the one who's saying that once you've made up your mind you never go back. You have too much to pride to do that, remember?"
No, I had no fathomable idea why I would ever consent to being this beast's wife. What had I been thinking? I thought, just look at him. The bespectacled know-it-all smugly jiggling the box of tic-tacs around like it was some trophy trout he had just caught. He didn't need to parade his superiority over me, but he did it anyway. That's why for all accounts and purposes he is a heartless S.O.B. sometimes. This wasn't just a matter of providing for his wife in the most dire of circumstances (because being imprisoned in one's commode is that deathly serious). Hell's bells, this was a matter of life or death.
Nope, I thought, he loves me not.
I had just grown accustomed to sulking and the solace that sulking provides you when I felt the gentle caress of his hands on my hair. It made my heart skip a beat--more from the subtle surprise of the situation than the fact it was his hand on me. No, the acknowledgement that this man was the man I married came slower, eventually. I moved my head up to take his touch in more in depth. I don't know what it is about those moments when he doesn't say much, but where his actions speak encyclopedia's worth of emotions. They honestly tug at my heartstrings like a bulldog at his master's leash. He may not say it all that much and appear to mean it all that much, but it is moments like that I remember why I, in fact, did end up falling for the big galut. When it comes to showing me he loves me he gets the job done.
With his other hand he offered me the tic-tac. It was broken perfectly in half. If that was to be our last meal, it was a good sign he deigned me important enough to go halvesies.
"My hero," I said simply, with small smirk of glee. Then we wrapped our arms around each other, newlywed-style, before placing the extent of dinner in each other's mouths.
He loves me!