Hoop and my second date was spent on a porch carving pumpkins. We drank beer and discussed scars. I told him about the one over my eyebrow, where I dove off a couch at age two and collided with the corner of a brass table. He showed me where his gallbladder had been removed. We talked for hours that night, proving our mortality and giving lobotomies to pumpkins. By the second pumpkin we had moved on to first loves and life stories, but only the funny parts. The parts we weren't so proud of could wait until later on.
Eventually, many many dates later, we started sharing stories about last lovers instead of first. I can't remember how many nights were spent on the beach confessing past transgressions, knee deep in salty water. I remember being worried that I might say something that would cause him not to love me. He worried too. Funny, even in love we're self absorbed. The first six months of our relationship were exhausting. So there was a comfort in realizing after a year that there was nothing left to tell. The stories about the past had bled into the stories of here and now.
I stashed away my naked soul and happily moved on to the next phase of our life. You know, actually living. I gained five pounds and stopped wearing make-up on the weekends. Once we weren't worried about sounding like perverts, sex got kinkier. "You want me to do what? Ok!" Hoop stopped worrying about morning breath and I stopped pretending to like breakfast. My grocery list started including things only Hoop would eat. Stories would routinely begin, "Did I ever tell you about-?" and end with the other person saying, "-Only about a dozen times."
You get to the point where you believe you know everything you can about the other person. You know all the stories worth knowing, all the lovely quirks and habits, every fault line and fracture. Until one day the other person says, "That reminds me of the time I tried to walk to school and I got lost." "What?" "You know, I was in Pre-K." "No." "Then some guy picked me up because I was wandering all by myself in the country." "What?!" "I never told you this story?" "I think I would have remembered it." "Huh. That's weird. I thought I'd told you all my stories." "Me too."
Apparently, Hoop's Mom had gotten him out the door late that morning and he'd missed the car pool. Not wanting to get in trouble, Hoop decided to walk to school. Only, he had no idea where it was. So he set out in a direction and hoped it was the correct one. About ten miles later, in the middle of the country on a dirt road, a man in a truck stopped him. "What's your name?" "Hoop." "What school do you go to, Hoop?" Hoop shrugged. Not many four year olds can name their school. So the man picked him up and deposited him at the nearest elementary.
Unfortunately, it wasn't the right school. "What's your name?" The lady at the front desk asked. "Hoop." "What school do you go to, Hoop?" Hoop shrugged. So the woman called around to all the elementary schools in the area until she found the correct one. "I bet your Mom was worried." "She was when I finally told her about it." "That reminds me of the time I was almost run over." "What?" "I never told you that story?" "NO." "Yeah, I tried to cross the street to school without looking both ways. I didn't see the car on the right. It literally brushed the bottom of my shoe as I jumped on the pavement."
"No way." "Then the car turned around and the driver screamed at me for a few minutes. I was so scared that I ignored him and pretended to be picking flowers." "Flowers." "Uh huh. Then the crossing guard, who had seen the whole thing, started yelling at me and asking my name. So I lied and said I didn't know." "You said you didn't know your own name?" "Yeah. They tried to take me to the front desk but I ran away and hid in the bathroom. I think a teacher eventually found me." "That's crazy! How didn't I know this story?" "I don't know."
Apparently, it would take a lifetime to hear them all.
Good thing I have plenty of time.
Daily Hoop Conversation:
Hoop: I wish there were little people.
Tink: There ARE little people.
Hoop: No, I mean like two inches tall.
Hoop: Because then we could keep a whole colony in our closet and they could work on our house while we were at work.
Tink: I guess they wouldn't be very expensive to feed.
Hoop: We could just hook them up to IVs like in the Matrix-
Tink: -and have them supply our house with electricity!
Hoop: See, don't you wish there were little people too?
Around The Water Cooler:
Coworker: You're a natural red head, aren't you.
Tink: You mean blond?
Daily Hoop Conversation 2:
Hoop: Quit tickling me!
Tink: Or what?
Hoop: Or um... I'll kill you.
Tink: Kill me and you get NOTHING.
Hoop: That's what you think. I took a life insurance policy out on you.
Tink: You can't do that! We're not even married.
Hoop: Yes I can. There's this thing called "insurable interest." If your death is going to effect the way I live, I can take a policy out on you.
Tink: So you're saying I could take a policy out on anyone?
Hoop: If you can prove insurable interest.
Tink: So I could take a policy out on our waitress?
Hoop: I don't think her death would effect your quality of life.
Tink: What if she dies before she can bring us our food?
Hoop: You're going to insure her for the cost of a hamburger?
Tink: Maybe I'm really really hungry.
Tomorrow: Weekend Recap and an announcement about the WWC.