I'm the Kind of Girl Who Leaves a Trail

“You’re the type of person who could never have a secret double life somewhere,” My husband was telling me one day.

“Yes, because I am a good person who loves my husband.”

“No, I mean you couldn’t pull it off…because you always leave a trail. I would totally know.”

I sighed.  Sadly, he was right.  I mean, not sadly because that’s the only thing keeping me from a whole other family, but it means I just can’t pull off secrets in my house…good ones or bad ones...not happening (to quote "you Germans") :)

It’s because of things like this.

Minutes earlier, we had been sitting in the driveway watching our son play.  I was texting my mom a Christmas gift idea for Andy and I was being really obnoxious about it being a secret and that it was about him and he’d have to ‘wait and find out’.  As usual, I went back to read the message after it had been sent (I’m not sure why I do this…but I do it…and so do you).  It was then that I noticed that I had sent the message, not to my mother, but to Andy

I panicked but tried to be nonchalant…he can’t know I’m alarmed, “Hey honey,” I said breezily, “where is your phone?”

He looked at me suspiciously. 

Darn it, he knew

We bolted up out of our seats at the same time and raced into the house, leaving our 3 year-old in the yard to fend for himself.  Whatever, don’t judge, it will make him tougher.  

I had no idea where I was going…I didn’t know where his phone was, but I was hoping he didn’t know either.  That would, by the way, be the only reasonable explanation as to why he never answers it.  He doesn’t know where it is…ever. 

After a lot of racing around the house and yelling at him, I was finally allowed to delete the incriminating message. 

I wish I could tell you that this was the only time I’ve ever done this.  I wish.  But I’m not going to get into Textgate 2010 because we’ve just now started speaking again.    

But, he’s right…I am the sort of girl who leaves a trail.

In one instance, I “secretly” had my sister’s two dogs over at the house while Andy was at work one day.  I was SURE I’d get away with it.  I carefully collected their leashes and dog toys.  I meticulously combed the floor for chew treats and left the house exactly the way it was found so certain that he would never know.  And I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for the dog dish of water and the baby gate blocking the stairs that I left on my way out.    

Yes, I’m like the Jason Bourne of wife sneakiness. 

Last night I told Sam we would play some music through the surround sound in the den that was somehow hooked up through the DVD player and looped into the speakers with the help of the 1.21 Jiggawatts of electrical power…I don’t know what I’m saying. All I know is that Andy had turned it on the other night and played his iPod through it…so I was sure that I could ‘figure it out’. 

Sam waited patiently while I confidently hit buttons, turned things on and off, switched red and green wires behind the tv, turned light switches on and off, spun the batteries in the back of all 6 remotes and blew imaginary dust out of crevices in the hopes of playing one Foster the People song. 

All of it was to no avail. The stereo kept looping back to the Finding Nemo DVD that was in the player and all I was doing was losing my patience and punching the buttons even harder. 

Because, despite what they tell you, punching buttons harder totally helps. 

Then I made the problem worse when I decided it was not a button-pushing problem (because I was pushing all of them) it was a sequence-of-hitting-those-buttons problem. 

Fast forward fifteen more minutes, the remote I was holding was hot from overuse and at this point I had hit so many buttons in the process that the display started questioning my abilities.  I hit input four times only to see the words, “you done yet?” flash up on the display.  “GAHHHH…” I yelled at the tv and tore up the paper I was using to track the button pushing sequences. 

Finally, Sam brought me a pumpkin spice latte that he had run down to Starbucks to get (I guess...I don't know, I was screaming at the t.v.) and suggested we take a breather. It was only then that I gave up.  I couldn’t even get the t.v. to turn back on correctly.

I was, as we say in America, screwed.

I had NO idea how to fix what I had just done. 

So I did what every honest, loving wife does.

I waited until my husband got home and said breezily, “Hey, can you teach me how to play the iPod through the stereo system?  Sam wanted to hear some music tonight but I told him that I wasn’t sure how to do that and I obviously didn’t want to mess with the t.v. and just hit buttons randomly.” I laughed at such a preposterous idea.

In addition to the nervous/guilty laughter, I was also holding my breath and crossing my fingers that whatever realm I had sent our electronics into could be easily undone with a few buttons being pushed and no knowledge that I had ever been involved.

But that was not to be.

Andy grabbed one of the remotes, hit three buttons, frowned, looked at me and said, “What the hell did you do?”

My eyes narrowed. How does he always know?


Laughing. Thank you for the laughs, Rachel. Thank you.

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