Watching television turns me into a bit of a crybaby. It was the worst after the tall kid was born. I remember vaguely a commercial that featured a baby crying over a monitor. I don’t even remember what they were advertising, but I remember sobbing and pleading with the TV for somebody to “for god’s sake, pick up the baby!” Yes, I am the Hallmark card demographic.
The show that has me crying in my cornflakes this season? (You’re expecting me to say Extreme Makeover: Home Edition aren’t you?)
American Idol. I even shed a few tears for the fifty-year-old woman in the…umm…Big Bird-ish costume. My husband—a cold, cruel man who probably laughed when Old Yeller died—reacts to my sniffles with everything from male contempt to laughing his ass off at me. (Okay, he’s not really cold and cruel, but I bet he didn’t cry when Bambi’s mother died, either.)
Husband: What the :censor: are you crying about?
Shan: This was his dream and they just smashed it and now it’s dead.
Husband: He sucked.
Well, yeah, I get that he sucked. I get that his voice resembled a junk fan belt going on a 1979 Oldsmobile POS. Sure, I laughed during the actual so-called performance. That doesn’t change the fact they have this dream and it’s just been shattered, and the look on their faces when Simon stomps on them gets me every time.
Husband: Can I unpause this now?
Me: No. This would be like…if I went into a room and read my first chapter to Carrie Feron, Meg Ruley, and Nora Roberts—
Husband: I’m going to pretend I know who you’re talking about.
Me: Carrie Feron is SEP’s editor, Meg Ruley is Jennifer Crusie’s agent, and Nora—
Husband: I know who Nora is. The others…again, I’m just going to pretend I know who you’re talking about.
Me: Whatever, the point is—
Husband: Nice to know you have one.
Me: (*wifely look of death*) If I went in there and read my first chapter and they said “You suck, you’re horrific, you write like a monkey on crack and it’s without a doubt the worst writing we’ve ever heard,” imagine how devastating that would be.
At this point I’ve pushed him beyond the male capability for sympathy regarding a subject he neither knows nor cares anything about.
Husband: If you suck, you suck. Did these people ever record themselves and listen to it? Videotape themselves doing that karaoke crap?
Me: You don’t get it because you’re mean. You’re a Simon.
Husband: You’re such a girl.
Me: Well, next time you get married, you can move to Vermont and marry some big macho guy. You can title your wedding video Brokeback Electricians.
Viewing resumes. Five minutes later…
Husband: Oh, come on. Are you crying again?