notquiteold

Gracefully Aging – With Resistance

Kissing Frogs

My husband is a sweet eccentric. From reading my blog, you would certainly see the eccentric side – because it’s so much fun to write about.

But he’s also quirky enough that some folks have asked me why in the world I was drawn to him in the first place. (as opposed to running for the hills.)

Because I married late in life, I suppose people might assume that I married this guy because I was desperate – and ready to ‘settle’.

SO not true!

But my ‘advanced years’ did play a part in my decision. If you have twenty-five years of dating under your belt (which is not a suggestive wisecrack, but I can see why you might think so), you’ve been exposed (not suggestive either!) to all types of men.

You can pretty much determine all the traits you DON’T want in a man.

Your list of “No Thank-Yous’ only grows.

You don’t relax your standards – you get pickier.

So here’s a short list of the frogs I have kissed while searching for my prince.

But first, a couple of disclaimers:

1.  I have changed the names. Not to protect these losers. It’s just that making them sort of fictitious is somehow less embarrassing for me.

2.  My life was not a string of horrible relationships. Not at all. It was a horrible relationship  – then a long long dry spell – then a horrible relationship – then the dry spell – then the next horrible relationship.  Not a string. More like hiccups that have to be scared out of you.

3. I did actually date some nice normal men. They kept that tiny flicker of hope alive.

Okay, let’s start the frog parade.

Larry, my first boyfriend:  He said he knew my house. The one with the broken step. I started my list: No Snobs.

Moe:   Wielding scissors, his mother chased me out of the house.    I added to the list: No Crazy Relatives.

Curly:  He wrote me the most hilarious series of letters. I was enthralled. And then in literature class the next semester, I found out that Curly didn’t exactly write those letters. He merely typed them. Kurt Vonnegut wrote them.   Added to list:  No Plagiarists.

Shemp:  Shemp told me that his mother was a twin, but he figured that twins must stop looking like each other as they age, since his mother looked nothing like her twin sister. I explained to him about fraternal versus identical twins. He said, “Wow, how do you know this?”   My list grew:  No one who slept through the entirety of high school.

Navin: The night before our big vacation he went to the dog track and lost every dollar of our vacation money. We were left with our plane tickets and my credit card.  I added:  No Gamblers.

Bluto:  How I waited for the phone to ring. And it did. Saturday evenings at six, Bluto would finally call and say, “Why don’t you come over?” And I’d get in the car and drive 27.6 miles to spend the evening with Bluto. Every time. Several months later, I finally worked up the courage (after driving 27.6 miles of course) to say, “Some time you might want to come over to my place. Aren’t you curious to see where I live?” Bluto just stared. I wrote in my list: No Self-Absorbed Bastards.

Linus: He planned a romantic evening, but forgot to open the damper when he lit the fire. The smoke detectors went nuts. So did Linus. He could have laughed it off. He took a different route. He locked himself in his bedroom and had a nice little cry.  I added:  No Humorless Wusses.

And last but not least:

Bart:  I met him at a business convention. We worked for the same corporation in different states. It was true love – for three days. I returned to my job filled with dreams of family life. I secretly began paperwork to transfer to his state. Three months later I attended another corporate function. Bart wasn’t able to attend, since he was at the hospital where his wife was giving birth to their third child.  I wrote one hundred times: NO CHEATING PRICKS.

Yes, my husband is eccentric. He likes Gene Autry better than The Beatles. He shreds the bedsheets with his toenails. And he wants to start a horseradish farm.

So what?

He meets all my other criteria.

And he leaves me extraordinary designs in the peanut butter.

43 Comments

  1. you are brave to share these hilarious stories–you are obviously a lot of fun

  2. onlinehitchhiker

    Ha! I do hope these these men don’t stumble upon your site. Though, if they do, it’s going to be pretty funny – remembering all their past antics. Haha.

    • Remember – these are idiots. They would never recognize themselves.

  3. I think I may have met some of these men in the time between my first marriage and my second. There was even a crazy moment when husband number one started to look like a pretty good catch in retrospect. (actually in all fairness we married as teens, and it was doomed from the start, but still there’s a reason we divorced) Anyway, one of the first ‘newly single again’ dates I went on was with a man who confessed to me that he had killed a man with his bare hands in a parking lot. He told me this over dinner, as the desert arrived. (desset?I can never remember which is which?and who can think straight under these circumstances?)I think he was even pointing his steak knife at me, you know, like poking it in the air between us as if this were an unconscious reflex. After dinner we stumbled out of the restuarant into the parking lot, and I really really wished I had a whistle. So, my own list included what would seem unnecessary by its obviousness, yet gravelly applicable. NO MURDERERS.

  4. Susan Ritchie

    I think we have all met some form of this guys, the longer you date. I know I did. And you are right – sometimes what some people think are “crazy traits” can be really endearing, when the person you love is the right person. Funny what you can learn to accept, from the right person.

    • Some crazy traits are endearing; some are just crazy. Love just makes you put up with both kinds.

  5. Funny blog. I ALMOST spit out my Starbucks mocha latte! My current husband (also full of idiosyncrasies) is nothing like the other loves. This one really loves me back!

    • Ahh, loving you back. It’s amazing.

  6. I’m sure many who read this are convinced we dated the same people, before finding the ‘right’ idiosyncratic guy! But a guy who makes designs in your peanut butter – he’s a keeper! You can always buy more linen, and as for Gene Autry? That’s what headphones are for…what a great post! :-)

  7. Kissing frogs is the best way of finding your prince. Unexpected suprises come in differently wrapped packages. You are a lucky woman, Nancy!

  8. Your naming convention leaves nothing to be desired. Did you leave them thank you notes as you ran for the hills?

    • Mostly I left a river of tears. Now I can’t for the life of me understand how these frogs could break my heart.

  9. Hee! I did an experiment where I said “Yes” to everyone who asked me out on the date for one year. From that experience, I got a LOT of hilarious first (and last!) date stories and one sweet, charming husband who I met in November, just before I was about to lose all hope :D I love bad date stories only slightly less than I love how-we-met stories.

    • I always said yes to everyone. Because you never can tell…

  10. Congrats… obviously you stood your ground until the Prince showed up and never lowered your standards!

  11. midlifemeg

    I’m following in your footsteps! The point of dating is to rule out the bad ones, right? So glad you found your peanut-butter-embellishing prince.

  12. you had me at “kissing frogs.”

  13. Suzanne Tate

    Just sent this on to both my granddaughters (20 and 17). It’s about the right time for them to start their own lists. Wish I’d had this around when I was kissing frogs (although in my case, it was more like the wretched Komodo Dragons).

    • Don’t scare them too much. It worked out for me. (Of course, I was forty, but you don’t have to tell them that.)

  14. Great stories …. funny to think those guys are most probably married now, apart from the one whose wife was having a baby – he’s most probably not! Sounds like you were extremely patient and held out for a great husband … the happy ending! :)

  15. Great job — and so relatable! My favorite line: “More like hiccups that have to be scared out of you.” Glad you found your prince, though!

  16. Kiss ‘em? It sounds like most of those guys deserved to be on the menu – frog legs!

  17. I love your hub’s eccentricities! Especially the p.b. designs. This line was so great – “…like hiccups that have to be scared out of you.” I’m still trying to get over Linus and Bart!

  18. Great post…are Blutto and Rocky the same guy…or did you have two on the go at the same time? LOL

  19. Ahhh…I see that you caught that and changed the name…that’s what I do, too!

    • That’s what I get for changing the name. I forgot what I had changed it to.

  20. Love this post! SO fun.

  21. Wow! You certainly earned your Prince!

  22. Dor

    Shredded sheets and designs in the peanut butter are small prices to pay for Prince Charming in your life. What a lucky lady you are – and as you know, I absolutely love your blog. This post is no exception.

  23. Great, funny post that I can totally relate to. I just read a quote, I believe attributed to Anna Quindlan’s sister: “It will take a hell of a man to beat out No Man.” Sounds like you’ve got a hell of a man!

    • I had never heard that saying, but I totally love it. My father used to say, “If you wait long enough for Mr. Right, you’ll have to settle for whoever’s Left. I did not agree.

  24. Daughter #1 could fill a whole notebook of criteria she is looking for in finding her Mr. Right. I think “peanut butter swirls” fits perfectly on just a post-it note taking in “loving care, artistic and creative flair, neat and tidy, knowing what a real pantry staple is.” Yes, I like how you keep it simple.

  25. I really like your illustration with this one.

    The eccentric ones are the best, though. They keep life interesting.

    • Life’s not boring when your spouse is a little nuts.

  26. This post is priceless! I’m sure some folks look at my husband and I and wonder what on earth we’re doing together. But we are crazy in love after 16 years of marriage. Your “toad” stories are spot on!

  27. Ugh – correction – make that “frog” stories – sorry! I guess I was thinking of the toads I dated!

    • There certainly are some frogs, toads, and lizards out there.

  28. I love so many things about this post. I dated Linus and Bart, too. I wrote a post a couple months ago about why I hope my daughter kisses a lot of frogs. I firmly believe it makes you better at identifying the prince when he comes along: http://definingmotherhood.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/date/

  29. bahahaha….I love this post. Makes me want to make my own list of losers before Prince Charming….It all began with Junior Prom when my boyfriend danced the night away with a :”friend” who had borrowed MY jewelery for the the night. GRRRRR. (I ran into her years later and she was so washed up at a very early age. I smiled at this.) Oh, and this boyfriend came out of the closet later on. That explained a lot…maybe he was attracted to the necklace and earrings? Oh, and I dated a cheating prick, also. BAD news. So glad I found the right one. Glad you did too…even with Gene Autry taste, he sounds like a keeper. (if you get some nail clippers to him.)

  30. What a fabulous line: “Not a string. More like hiccups that have to be scared out of you.” I’m still laughing!

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