Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Post Which Starts Out With Me Trying To Be Funny But Ends Up With Me Just Being P*****

At some point during my first year of marriage, I originated a exciting coping technique, which I call “conversation retire.” (I know: it needs tuning. Let me know if you can think of something better). "Conversation retire" works pretty much like it sounds. Once a certain conversation topic has come up a certain number of times (43), without in any way drawing close to a resolution, either one of us is allowed to declare that that topic is, from that day forward, banned from public consumption. It has been “retired.” We could think about it; we just couldn’t talk about it.

Almost immediately, it proved a hit. Gone for good were the most emotionally agitating (and dialectically unsatisfying) of our conversations. For example: Angelina Jolie. My wife, as it turns out, has a LOT of anger towards Angelina Jolie. Probably, she should. I don’t know. But I have now heard about the many faces of Angelina Jolie’s evil enough times to be able to recite them all by heart. Even worse, despite how frequently it comes up, the subject STILL sends my wife into something approaching a frenzy. So, in the interest of the common good, I’ve had to have it banned.

Other topics that we’ve decided to ban include: Oprah Winfrey (Who, Even Though She May Not Be As Evil As A********* J****, Is, in Reality, MUCH Worse than Certain Naïve Unknowing Husbands Might Suspect); Felipe, Our Ex-Housepainter, And How Stupid We Were Not To Have Done A Last Inspection Of Our In-Fact-Badly-Painted House Before We Paid Him; The Unbelievable Gall of Certain Friends of My Wife Who Never Bought Us A Wedding Present (Despite The Fact That Some Were Actually Members of The BRIDAL PARTY); Jon and Kate Gosselin, Relationship and Parenting Skills Thereof; Hugh Hefner, Relationship and Business Acumen Thereof; and, finally, above all else, THE TOPIC—the one for which the whole idea of ‘retiring’ conversations was originated…Michael Vick. More specifically: How Michael Vick, As Punishment For His Crimes, Deserves the Death Penalty.

Ok, now understand. I don’t like Michael Vick. I didn’t like him before the dogfighting stuff came out. I like him less now. He’s a terrible person, and deserves to be permanently banned from public life. But I don’t think he should be put to death. And my wife, hyperbole aside, actually did. And does.

This ended up becoming a long-running debate. Her side of the argument was that after he got out of jail, he would re-sign with another team, make a lot of money playing football and eventually be totally rehabilitated. In a few years, it would all be forgotten; therefore to make sure that didn't happen, he should be executed. Really.

My argument was that it wasn't necessary. Even before the dogfighting stuff, Vick was on the way down. He was never better than a second-tier quarterback. He couldn’t pass; he wasn’t a great leader; he wasn’t well-liked. Add to that the massive public outcry that would greet any team crazy enough to sign him, and there was no way—NO WAY, I explained (in the Knowledgeable, Man-Who-Understands Sports voice I trot out from time to time)—that he would ever play again in the NFL.

You all know what happened. Somehow—stunningly—my vast insight into the mechanisms of pro football has proven insufficient. Vick’s been given one more chance. My wife, it saddens me to say, was totally 100% right. (Which suggests, by the way, that Angelina Jolie lives entirely on the blood of slaughtered kittens). It makes me sad. It makes me angry. It makes me want to root against the Eagles.

I started this thinking I’d write a funny post about the travails of marriage. Now, though, I’ve become upset. I was grouchy (well, grouchier) all last week because the Bink was going through some sort of unhappy emotional phase (it manifested itself in a lot of mean-spirited growling and excess barking). Literally 1/3 of my waking involves me worrying in some way about his happiness. And I don’t even like animals! Meanwhile, Michael Vick is charging money so people can come watch dogs fight to the death!? I mean…what the bleep is that?

I guess no one deserves to be punished forever, but somehow this seems to have all gone away so fast. I just feel like somehow there is something deeply wrong with Vick. Anyone who would willingly inflict pain upon something innocent and helpless is profoundly broken. And two years in jail is not enough. The death penalty may be too much. But this.... This is not enough. It can't be. It just can't.

What a great guy!


Katherine said...

1. I am sort of in love with your wife.
2. I also think Michael Vick should be put to death. I might be willing to help.
3. But wait - what's so bad about Oprah? Didn't she save reading? And open a school for girls in Africa? That's not so bad, is it? I kind of love Oprah. I can't help it.
4. The fact that you care so much about Bink is merely a reflection of your beauty as a person
5. Forget Felipe. At least you bought a functional toilet. Don't even get me started about toilets.

Jordan said...

1. Retirement status aside, I have anger management issues that prevent me from commenting further on Oprah (I am sickened even to have written her name).

2. I love you too, Kate.

3. We do have pretty good toilets.

Barbara Carlson said...

More Bink!!
Hell with people. Certain people.
My persona non grata is S.P.
Like a sore tooth I can't stop testing with my tongue,
I read stuff about her...or her ilk... "Meanwhile," said one source, " a solid 63% of Palin supporters think that Barck Obama was not born in this country." WTF
AND I met an old acquaintance this week who had met S.P. last July in Alaska -- said she liked her!!!
We agreed to disagree...

ANCIANT said...

I wish my soul was beautiful. In fact, it is moldy and weathered and mottled. Like old leather. In poor condition. And even I, Steve Dallas-like as I am, could not bear to inflict even mild discomfort on an animal. So what does that say about Vick? Nothing good.

Almost every time I sit down to write, I resist the temptation to toss out 1000 words about what's going with my dog. Believe me. This blog is already hanging on the precpice. Within six months it's going to dedicate itself entirely to my dog. It's frightening. I've become a dog person. Or at least a Bink person.

Like today, we had to take him to the vet, and they made us hold him while they gave him a shot. Now doesn't that seem odd? Unusual? We had to watch him being afraid. It was pretty traumatic.

Of course, 30 minutes later he was asleep, so I guess he shook it off ok.

RE: SP. I was 90% going to vote McCain until he nominated her. And then, I was -25% going to vote McCain.