Wednesday, August 21, 2013

things i get wrong sometimes and how i learned i married a Brit


math. even though i like to think i'm better than some people (after all i never calculate tip on my fingers;), the embarrassing truth which i've recently realized (all on my own. is that better or worse?) is that sometimes, i'm wrong.

the week after W was born, i spent two fretful evenings fervently trying to convince loverboy that wilder turned one week old on monday evening (he was born tuesday evening). i drew pictures, i gesticulated wildly with my hands, i spoke emphatically...and was frustratingly incapable of enlightening loverboy as to the exact date of this important milestone. i even shed a tear or two. because, well, really! how can one not know when they're own child is turning a week old?? i asked crankily. how can you even call yourself a parent if you can't even do simple math? i wailed.

loverboy stared at me, blank eyed, shrugging his shoulders, clearly missing that late-night-baby-date-counting anxiety characteristic of all those upon whom parenthood has been conferred. how could we celebrate his one week birthday if we didn't know the exact day, i worried. look, i'll show you again, i said and began desperately counting the little bridges between the days on my hand-drawn one-week calendar. six! i declared triumphantly, my finger hovering over the monday dot. six days make a whole week, because the seventh is the start of a new week. obviously. after this careful, detailed brow beating, "i guess you're right," he said carelessly, with another shrug of his mystified shoulders.

ha! i said. (quite a catch am i, i know.) it wasn't a very triumphant ha, however, because i was still nagged by the suspicion — mostly precipitated by the words "i guess" — that he didn't really agree with me and was simply appearing to agree for the sake of keeping the peace, of all things. and also, maybe he was a little afraid of extra hormonal, new mama B. well, let's just hope our baby gets his math skills from me, i thought secretly.

and then i read this post the other day and as i was laughing to myself, it hit me: my loverboy is british in his soul. it also hit me that i can't even count on my fingers. but let's focus on what really matters here — all this time, i've been married to a brit. this really bears thinking about.

i have always thought that my dear loverboy hates so much to disagree with people that he just tells them what they want to hear. and ok, it's sort of true (can you blame him?). but it turns out there is a whole country of people who are just the same way!

so, when loverboy says, "you're right, but...," he really means he hasn't heard a word you've said as it's clearly nonsense. he's just too polite to say so.

that right there is a literal translation. i have successfully transdecoded the loverboy. so now you all can go back and reassess the convos you've had with him and realize how very wrong you were in your takeaway. you were very wrong. trust me.

for example, i am now quite sure that six days are not enough to make a week. it actually takes seven days to make a week.

and i'd like to take a moment to thank my many years of college and higher education for this blindingly astute discovery. and also, postpartum hormones, for apparently robbing me of my right to be right all the time. the sad proof.

for the record, baby, i hope you do not get your math skills from me. and, your papa is one good-looking brit;). (but i am usually, mostly, almost always right;).


1 comment:

  1. sounds about right... I worked for the British Consulate, and one thing the British never do is say what they think!!!!