Thursday, January 14, 2010

When opportunity knocks, ignore it

This is one from 2006. I pulled it out today because...well...does a wife really need an excuse to make fun of her husband? God bless America.

You know there’s gonna be trouble when your husband starts out the day by locking himself in the bedroom closet.

The soft rat-a-tat-tat barely registered in my sleep-fogged mind. Snuggled tightly among the down comforter and fluffy pillows, I enjoyed having the entire bed to myself.

Bam-bam-bam. My subconscious self wondered where that noise was coming from. I was soaking up rays on a sun-drenched beach while a cabana boy lotioned me up. The only pounding I should have heard was the surf.

BAM. OK, now I was officially awake.

It took only a moment to realize the pounding wasn’t our golden retriever’s long-fringed tail hitting the side of the mattress in an early morning greeting.

Nope, this was something else. Something new. Something a person shouldn’t be hearing at…I rolled over to peek at the clock by the bed…5:32 in the freakin’ morning.

I glanced at the closet door, my eyes struggling to see through the dark. The door was shut but a thin crack of light shone around its perimeter. Then I heard bam-bam-bam again.

My heart began to pound. Was it a ghost? Aliens? That weird kid from “Saved by the Bell?”

I carefully moved one foot from under the covers and placed it on the floor. I began sliding soundlessly off the mattress, pillows trailing in my wake as I prepared to drop down on all fours and reach under the bed to grab the lethal Louisville Slugger baseball bat I keep there for occasions just like this.

My right leg, tangled up in the still-warm comforter, bent at an odd angle as gravity took over and I fell the rest of the way to the floor. So much for the element of surprise.

As I lay there, struggling to retrieve the wind that had been knocked from my lungs, I deftly plotted my counter attack. I was a Ninja warrior. A highly trained U.S. Navy Seal. Or Wonder Woman. Yeah, that would be cool. I’d have an invisible jet and a magic lasso.

Oh, wait. I’d have to wear that tiny bikini. Scratch that. I’ll find a superhero who wears baggy sweatpants and an Old Navy T-shirt.

The loud banging sounded again and interrupted my thoughts. Apparently I had yet to develop my Ninja-like concentration skills.

With my eyes trained on the door, I groped under the bed, searching for the cool, wooden handle of the Louisville Slugger. A cloud of dust flew out and landed in my face. I fought the urge to sneeze, not wanting to betray my position to the enemy.

I had, however, learned some valuable military intelligence: the dust monster wasn’t the one in the closet. Clearly, he was living under the bed.

I pushed aside three tennis balls the dog had rolled under there, a pair of dirty balled up socks and a half-eaten peanut butter sandwich one can only assume Baby Baldwin had stashed there for later.

Finally I hit pay dirt and wrapped my fingers around the handle of the bat. Game on, I thought as I pulled it out. Let’s roll.

I quietly crept over to the closet. With my weapon of choice clutched securely in my left hand, I reached out with my right and grasped the door handle. Slowly, so slowly, I turned it. Cracked the door open. Peeked inside.

And was greeted with the sight of one very annoyed husband.

My shoulders slumped as I lowered the bat to my side. Guess I wasn’t gonna kick any butt today.

“What are you doing in there?” I asked him, not quite sure I wanted to know the answer.

Without saying a word, he reached down and grabbed the inside of the door handle and turned. I noticed that the door latch failed to retract. He’d gone into the walk-in closet to dress and shut the door behind him, not wanting the light to spill out into the room and wake me.

It wasn’t until he tried to open the door that he realized the knob was busted and he was stuck inside. How embarrassing. But very, very funny.

He looked at me and finally uttered his first words of the day, “I assume this will be in a future column, right?”

Gosh, I so love a smart man.

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