Tuesday, January 16, 2007

it's been ten years

Tomorrow marks the 10th anniversary of the day on which the better half and I formed that social bond known as being a couple. It was the day I had to do that horrible ritual, the Dividing Up Of The Stuff, with Husband 1.0 (I had filed for divorce already, but it took him some time to find a new apartment, during which point we lived together more peacefully than pre-filing for the most part). Stressed from squabbling over the CD's and liquor, I called a cab at nearly midnight and took off alone for a party I'd heard about (a friend I'd intended to go with was sick). There, with no intention of finding a new husband, but only shallow hopes of cheap sex and liquor, I ended up with the man who has become known as Husband 2.0, and the next thing you knew, I had two children, a giant mortgage, and no career.

We rarely get out without the children. We used to have a delightfully responsible and personable transsexual babysitter once a week for date nights, but our babysitter got out of the babysitting business, and economic realities caused us not to get a replacement. We formed the resolve to live within our means, which meant, amongst other things, not paying babysitters the going San Francisco rate of (brace yourself for it) $15 per hour. Last year we did find a pair of fabulous and glamorous teenaged twins whom the children worship and who come for a combined rate of $10 per hour, but they are extremely busy with their sports teams, academic work, and social lives, so they are available to babysit about three or four times a year, it seems. (It's not that they hate our children. They play a LOT of sports).

I am aware of the fact that I could trade babysitting with other parents. I used to do that on a regular basis back when I had just the one child. The problem is that then I have to reciprocate and babysit someone else's child, and invariably Iris and Lola are total pills and do nothing but complain about the Alien Invading Child Who Steals Mommy's Attention And Touches Our Toys. Plus, I can't handle a ratio of too many children to one aging housewife that often. I do regular shifts at a co-op preschool, and that's enough for my fraying nerves.

Anyhow, so my dating instincts are completely atrophied. Anton has arranged for a friend to watch our hellions for four hours, and there appears to be nothing for us to do. The man is completely clueless and without ideas. I did think of attending the Crucible's fire ballet, but it's completely sold out. Sometime ago we were planning to go to Barcelona for this anniversarsary, but that fell through when the husband's second start-up failed (before paying us $25k in back wages, aaarggh).

It has been suggested to me that we go rent a hotel room or a hot tub somewhere, but eh, we have already had plenty of sex this week. (Sex and drinking: these things occur regularly, albeit with small children on the premises, usually lightly dozing in the next room). Not to mention that we have a four hour window for this potential date and we're not going to have four hour sex. It has been TEN YEARS. It's not the same exciting voyage of discovery and learning each other's bodies it was back in the last millennium. Plus, since I've gained weight and had two children over that decade, there are whole sections of my body I don't want explored. If it has a stretchmark on it, it wants its privacy).

I guess seeing "The Good German" is going to be it, but then we'll both go home wanting to have sex with Angelina Jolie instead of each other. Oh, well. (Incidentally, if anyone has any ideas for interesting presents suitable for an overeducated geeky guy, please drop me a line in the comments. I'm usually the queen of gifts, but I just got him the books & ipod he wanted for Christmas, and he hasn't had time to work up any new cravings since then).


Anonymous said...

oh doll. if only i lived in SF, i would watch yr children all the time for free. (or at least food). if you ever want to pay for me and polly to come there for an extended vacate, let me know. children and dogs adore me. it's my one superpower.

suggested gifts :

iTunes gift certificate
an excessive highly priced dinner somewhere (geeks are usually foodies too)
the new iphone (due in june but you could gift it)
a flat screen TV
a Wiki
cool new shoes

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Carole -- Have a wonderful time. We're in the same boat, so I don't know how much help I am! We have talked lately about double dating with friends -- It seems when we do go out it involves authentic Mexican food and margaritas...nuthin' wrong with that!

I saw "Notes on a Scandal" this weekend and that was great.

Anonymous said...

First of all...

Congratulations on having made it to milepost 10 on the marital route.

Have you checked out Think Geek for any toys that his Noble Soberness might crave?

I'm not sure what your two's tastes in entertainment are, so I won't even try to make any recommendations.

Anonymous said...

$15 an hour! The going rate here is 6 or 7.

Congratulations. If it were me, hotel sex would be a perfect present. But then I'm not real sophisticated.

Anonymous said...


And as a small gift, there is a little handheld game called 20Q

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! Ten years is an impressive milestone. :D

the Drunken Housewife said...

Hughman, I live in dog central (I live on the block next to an off-leash dog roaming area, so all the guys in this corner of the Castro have dogs). You'd love it here!

I think I'm going to get him a new cordless drill. He let Lola play with his old one (I know, idiotic, huh? Sometimes I wonder what the regents of the University of California were thinking the day they gave him his Ph.D), and she broke it. Thanks, Silliyak, I wasn't think tools, but that actually is something he wants and needs.

Anonymous said...

Six years and one kid in, we saw the new James Bond. What?! Were we going to TALK to each other or something?! Then we had a fight and went to bed angry. It was awesome.

So I'll be trolling your comments for ideas, I think; I'm about half an hour south of you, so I can poach on anything good your commenters come up with.

The double date is always nice, just hard to arrange. It's too bad museums aren't open in the eves, because I could kill for a nice quiet museum date, you know? Quiiiiiet. It's dark and it's chilly, so outdoors stuff is out...at least your partner drinks. Mine's a teetotaler, so drinks in tall buildings with big windows and suchlike are out, too.

The cordless drill is a great gift.

Anonymous said...

If may interject, don't cheap out on the drill,buy a name brand (I like Makita) and the highest voltage (power) rating you can afford. If you want to go ALL out, they have combo sets with a cordless skill saw, reciprocating saw, drill and handlight and they all use the same battery. (excuse my drooling) Dremel tools and accessories are nice also.

Anonymous said...

It seems that I am a day late in responding to this post. Lets hope you came up with something to do other than 4-hour sex.

And around here (Iowa) we only have to pay $5.00 per hour and that is on the high side. Yeeee Haaaaw!