Back when Alan and I shared a computer, I used to track his enthusiasms through our bookmarks. He researches major purchases with a thoroughness that would shame Consumer Reports, and in those pre-Safari, OS 9 days, when all bookmarks went under a single menu (“bookmarks”), I knew when they started filling up with BuildABoatInYourGarage.com, he was soon to make an announcement involving that very thing.
Multiple users and folders give us all a bit of privacy, and I’m not the prying type, anyway. I guess the joke’s on me if I open his laptop one day and find QuickieMexicanDivorce.com active on the screen, but this latest thing is being announced with books. All over the house are books on sporting clays, wing-shooting techniques and the art of shotgun engraving. This one has been building for a while, since our year in Ann Arbor when we took a trip north and our host gave us each a chance to kill a clay pigeon. Alan was the only one who drew blood:
I don’t know what it is with my husband and the gentlemanly sports. You’d never know he was brought up working-class in a northwest Ohio factory town. By rights, we should have his-and-her Barcaloungers with a freezer full of venison in the garage, and instead we own a million dollars’ worth of Hardy fishing reels, half a dozen graphite rods suitable for catching everything from bluegill to 25-pound salmon, a handmade McKenzie drift boat and an English saddle (that last one’s mine). And now, soon, a shotgun. One of our new shooting books instructs us on the etiquette of firing so as not to hit your beaters, as well as techniques for switching quickly between multiple weapons, the last predicated on the assumption you have an assistant standing next to you with a second gun.
“Who are you going shooting with?” I asked. “Prince Charles?”
Ha ha. Although really, at this rate I think we could be weekend guests of the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall and hold up our ends with only a bit of shopping beforehand. All Alan needs are some plus-fours, or maybe a kilt.
Actually, I’m looking forward to trying out our new weaponry, although with our history of marital squabbles while co-recreating — we nearly divorced on our honeymoon, after discovering our paddling styles were incompatible for a double-cockpit kayak — maybe not.
A friend of mine once had a really bad boyfriend, from whom she had an acrimonious split. Some years later, he married a woman who gave him a shotgun for a wedding present. As a journalist and veteran of many murder stories, she knew that it was only a matter of time before the new husband went back to his cheatin’ ways, and his bride would be driven to take action with both barrels. “I can see it now,” she said, fairly rubbing her hands together. “‘Police say the murder weapon was, ironically, a wedding gift from bride to groom in happier days.'” Cackle, cackle. I’m waiting for this story, too. I remember that guy, and boy did he have it coming.
OK, enough blue-steel romance. Haven’t current events been marvelous of late? “Marvelous” in the “what a great story” sense, that is. The French Poindexter who may end up bringing down a 150-year-old bank single-handedly; the destruction of the Gaza wall after months of surreptitious weakening of the structure; and, of course, yet another lesson why it’s dangerous to mix chess and alcohol.
Which should be enough bloggage to get you chatty folks started, but I do want to point you to a couple of nice considerations of Heath Ledger, starting with Glenn Kenny’s, which has its own links within to explore, and Roy’s.
Please, God, keep me away from the Daily Mail. I have a life to live! But how can one resist it, when they include photos of Sarah Jessica Parker wearing a blue doughnut?
Finally, those of you who spend all day online have probably already seen the infamous Craigslist vagina couch, but maybe you haven’t heard the ne plus ultra oh-snap from my new fave site, Datalounge, where a million queers get together to trade the snark: Once a month you have to stuff a sheep in it for five days.
You’ve been a great audience! Have a wonderful weekend!