A Loco Viewpoint
Recently, Cupcake came at me with a new-looking binder clutched in her hands, since that is definitely the ideal place to clutch binders. My heart sank like a wicker canoe. The label Cupcake had carefully affixed to the front of the binder read, “Chris’ New Year’s Resolution Monitoring Log”.
“You’re kidding, right?” I snorted. “I don’t recall making any New Year’s resolutions.”
“I suspected you might want to play the faulty memory card and claim you didn’t make these self-improvement promises,” Cupcake responded breezily. “That’s why I had you sign them here, here, and initialed here, complete with time and date.”
“Let me see that!” I gulped audibly. “Well, no wonder! You had me sign it after I had been to Cam and Cec’s New Years Lobster Boil and Libation Appreciation Convention. You can’t hold me to that. I wasn’t in complete control of my faculties.”
“You don’t appear to have complete control of your faculties at the best of times,” she sniffed. “If I waited for you to have all your poop in a group, you would never have to sign it.”
“That sounds good to me!” I agreed enthusiastically.
“The fact is, you DID sign it. I have the proof right here,” she continued, waving my autograph in my face. “So, let’s go down the list, shall we?”
“Wait a minute,” I stopped her cold as a sudden thought broke through the haze of panic. “Where’s your signed and notarized list of resolutions, or did you already decide you were perfect and have no areas of improvement in your life?”
“Oh, I made some as well, but you didn’t ask me to write them down or anything. You were more interested in ending the conversation and going for a spin on the bed,” she snickered, brushing away my concern. “They were just a few practical ideas, “Be more assertive,” that sort of thing.”
“Be more assertive?” I gasped, almost swallowing my lower plate. “You couldn’t be any more assertive than if you were a Sherman tank!”
“There was also one about spending more quality time with you,” she continued assertively. “I thought you would actually like that one.”
“That depends on what you consider ‘quality time’,” I responded warily; smelling a marital land-mine up ahead. “If you mean watching more Richard Gere movies or Big Survivor Brother TV shows, I’m not really keen. Now, if you’re talking about an increase in connubial canoodling…”
“I’m not,” she interjected flatly. “Anyway, this isn’t about my self-improvement, it’s about your self-improvement. For example, Clause 12, subsection 43 states that you will do more to help around the house. When were you considering tackling that resolution?”
“I do help around the house,” I defended. “It’s just that we have different standards.”
“Please,” she smirked. “You have so much junk on your side of the bed, I suspect the dust bunnies are going to be getting their own episode of “Hoarders”. And what about Clause 17, subsection 18 through 24 concerning your bathroom habits.”
“I’ve told you a million times,” I spat back, beyond exasperation, “I do not miss the bowl. The issue is splashback from the force of the stream. I don’t sit to do it as I don’t want that splashback on my butt.“
“Oh, my and look at Clause 6, Subsection 4. This concerns not being argumentative,” she eyed me pointedly.
“I am not argu…” I bit off the rest, albeit belatedly seeing the trap she had just laid for me. “I am not arguing I could use a little refinement in some areas, but I believe I engage in frank exchanges and fair debate. I would never argue with you, my sweet. I always lose anyway.”
“Uh huh,” she responded without conviction. “To be honest with you, Hon, I don’t see one iota of change from December 31 to the present.”
“I’m wearing different underwear and socks,” I put in weakly.
“It’s a start, I guess,” agreed Cupcake, instantly telegraphing that her lofty expectations had just run into a reality check. “Seriously, though, you may want to consider some of these suggestions.”
My heart leapt skyward like Superman showing off. The resolutions had now become mere suggestions! They were not immutable laws but simply gentle guidelines!
“I am willing to admit that there are areas I can work on,” I began begrudgingly, “and I appreciate that you have given some thought to how to improve yourself, as well. I will make you a deal…”
“Go on,” Cupcake prodded, “I can’t wait to hear this.”
“I will conform to every single clause, every subsection, every bisection, intersection and Caesarian section,” I offered to her astonished face. “However, all I ask in return is to create my own binder for you where I list all your faults and you are legally, morally and ethically bound to conform to my ideal of what you should be. It will, of course, take weeks to put it all together. It looks like my binder has been a work in progress for years…”
“How fitting,” snickered Cupcake. “A work in progress, indeed.”
.”…so I think it’s fair your resolutions for me don’t kick in until my resolutions for you have been adopted.”
The silence in the room was as piercing as it was protracted. The enormity of the offer gave her much to consider and I pictured all the synapses in her brain firing simultaneously. I was surprised her head didn’t glow.
“Deal,” she said offering her hand.
Considering the first resolution in her lengthy list of misdeeds I didn’t have to deal with until I was done with hers was, “No more procrastinating!”, I was confidant we both understood we had just agreed to the status quo. Her list might take a while.
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