"We can dance"
Kay finally retired. Don’t know if you knew that. Yep, she’s now home with me, and lovin’ every minute of it.
Me? Well, I like it. It doesn’t pay much, but we can go where and when we want. Oh, and we can dance if we want to. "We can leave our friends behind, ‘cause your friends don’t dance and if they don’t dance, well…" I’m sorry. That song is now stuck in my brain. I hope you’re happy.
While I may have symptoms of retirement, I’m not. It’s just Kay. My schedule is as flexible as all get out, but I’ve got responsibilities. Don’t think I don’t.
For one thing, it’s my job to sit, drink coffee and talk to you guys once a week. I have to pick the topic and do most of the talking. It’s not easy, what I do. You don’t notice so much, but we have one or two whiners among us. Oh, yes we do. See? You’ve started already.
Then I’ve got some other writing stuff to complete. I write all the time, unless something comes up. Like maybe I notice Paladin’s picture is crooked on the wall, or some celery needs deveined, or Spider Solitaire suddenly appears on the screen. Other than stuff like that, I’m a writing fool. -- What?
Oh, and once a week I have to eat out with restaurant critic Brad Meyer, and then go to his studio to video the review. Brad is no joy, let me tell you. He called the house the other day and Kay answered. Bradford says, "Hey, is fat and ugly in?" I’ll buy ugly. In fact, ugly is paid for. But fat? Portly is so much less hurtful.
Getting past that, let me say that I do a bunch of other low paying things. A lot. So, I’m not completely retired.
And, to be honest, neither is Kay. The girl makes jewelry. Necklaces and earrings and toe studs. I made up the toe studs. Kay even has her own company name. Kay’s Creations. Isn’t that neat? It’d be hard to put the word "creation" next to my name without getting tickled. Brad would laugh his big rear off. (Hey, I give as good as I get.)
The only problem with Kay’s jewelry-making involves where she does it. She works in the study right behind me. I’m facing the window, she’s facing the back of my head. Doesn’t bither me a bot. (What movie is that from? Gig Young delivered the line.)
When you make jewelry you have to talk to yourself a lot. I had no idea. I’m sitting there trying to come up with a transition to take us from ice cream sandwiches to a noisy ceiling fan, and I hear, "Crimpers. Where are my crimpers? I’ve got to… wait a minute. I’ll just…" I defy you to keep your train of thought on track when somebody’s talking crimpers behind your back.
So now you know why I flit all over the place in my writings? -- No, that’s not right. I flitted long before Kay started making jewelry in front of my back. You knew that. Some of you mentioned it back in the Twentieth Century.
Regardless, retirement takes some adjustment. How long the adjustment period lasts is hard to figure. Some adjustments take till death. If your husband has been dead for five years, and you still get upset at him being in the kitchen with you, well, you need that "Medium" lady. Patricia Arquette? I think that’s her.
Speaking of which, the kitchen is one area that has caused tension in our household. I used to cook every meal. I got good at it, too. Now Kay’s shoving me out of the way and taking command of the kitchen. Her kitchen.
I wouldn’t mind so much, but she does so many things wrong. Doesn’t put nearly enough butter and oil into stuff. And, cheese? Don’t get me started. She gets these zero calorie cheese sticks and tries to melt ‘em into some of her dishes. What a funky taste and texture. It’s like putting a golf ball in a skillet and melting it into your noodles.
Oh, and cleaning up? I used to take care of the cleaning. I’d vacuum and mop and wash clothes. Stuff like that. Well, Kay told me that tomorrow we’re cleaning out my closet. She already cleaned hers, and figured it was my turn.
My closet is not like hers. It’s a lot smaller and has fewer shoes. But, it’s got stuff in there that hasn’t seen light in forever. Valuable stuff. Kay wants me to get rid of all my teaching materials. Boxes of notes and tests and overheads and seating charts. She says that after five years, I might as well accept the fact that I’m not going back to the classroom.
I know she’s right, but I’ve got a lot of important stuff in those boxes. Took me ages to compile it all. I thought Kay would at least wait until I died before tossing them. She’s not only NOT going to wait for me to kick the proverbial pail, but she’s going to make me do the tossing. That’s not tough love. That’s savage love, you ask me.
Before I married her, there was no sign of any of this. I had to wait 39 years to find this stuff out. She’s a tricker girl, this one. Oh, and -- forget the transition -- we’re going to start exercising. Get this, we’re going to start doing Zumba dancing. Jill told Kay how much fun it is. My own sister encouraging Savage Woman!
I hope you realize I’m exaggerating a bit about my frustration. Truth is, I’m adjusting quite well to Kay’s retirement. She got adjusted two minutes into her first day.
I’m sure this is going to be great. Did I mention that we can go where we want to? Oh, yeah. "A place where they’ll never find. And we can act like we come from out of this world, leave the real one far behind. And we can dance…" Men Without Hats. They’re killin’ me. I’ll be cleaning out my closet to that song.
To watch Brad and Mark’s recent restaurant review below.