Monday, July 14, 2008

Pranks are fun (and fun is violent)

My wife, Amy, and I have a very playful relationship. We've always placed great value on smiles and laughter, and we want to create for our children an environment which encourages such. Marital roles are a complicated-yet-structured thing, and the overarching goals of the design involve mutual love, respect, co-edification, and a joint effort towards holiness. But when pressed for a quick explanation, we'll skip the philosophy of it all, and tell you that marriage ought to be full of good clean fun!

One way in which we have fun is by playing mild pranks on each other. For example, a few nights ago we were playing Monopoly in our living room. Now, our living room has through the North Carolina summers a tendency to attract such unsavory and unwelcome guests as house centipedes (which we lovingly refer to as "thirty-leggers") and American cockroaches. From June to August, we very rarely enter that room without a cursory scan of the ceiling and fireplace area for "critters". Lately, we haven't seen as many of them, but this didn't stop Amy from — in the middle of our Monopoly game, with my back to the fireplace, and with her giggling about something else — pointing behind me and gasping as if she'd seen the largest dual-headed, ten-legged, armor-plated mutant cockroach in the world about to dig into my skull for some cranial pudding. To say that I "was startled" and "jumped" would be an understatement. Truth be told, I was lucky to survive the ordeal with wearable underpants!

My opportunity for revenge came today. I was working downstairs, and Amy went upstairs to shower before lunch. I gave her some time before heading up after her, then — figuring she was already in the shower — burst into our bathroom feigning a child's voice and saying, "Mommy! Mommy!" Well, she wasn't in the shower. She was almost in the shower, standing on the bathroom scales. At my outburst (or is that, "inburst"?), she grabbed for a towel to cover herself so quickly that she broke the towel rod off the wall. Once she realized it was only me (and the towel rack finished bouncing off the walls and floor), we had a great laugh about it. Oh, sure, I still got the requisite and well-deserved smack, but it was all so worth it.

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