Here’s the deal, folks.  I’m a giver.  So in honor of the Christmas spirit, I decided to give you the best gift of all.  Information.

You were hoping for a cappuccino maker, weren’t you?  Well next year don’t be so naughty.

But, I promise, you’ll be so thankful for my information regarding the in’s and out’s of the first year of marriage.  Because obviously, I’m considered “seasoned” now, being married for a whole year and all.  Here are some things for the men out there to keep in mind:

1.) Women will tell you they love flowers.  But I’m here to let you know a secret.  No woman likes to receive flowers.  They’re expensive, they die quickly and they don’t taste like chocolate.  There is a clause to this little tidbit, however.  We DO like to receive flowers at work.  Again, not because we care about the flowers, but we do like bragging to the other office ladies about what a wonderful and thoughtful husband we have.  And we just don’t tell them how he can never remember to put the toilet seat down so your butt doesn’t fall into the bowl at 3 in the morning when you’re half asleep.  Yeah.  We pretty much leave that part out.  To keep up with appearences and all.  You understand.

2.)  I say “I’m fine,” but that is just a warning flare and should be handled with extreme caution.  If you turn back to playing video games, actually believing that I am fine, I will go into the other room and possibly break the tv remote by throwing it at the wall.  I’m no expert, but that doesn’t seem “fine.” (Crazy, yes, but I make no apologies for my crazy.  We’ve all be there, ladies.)  Here’s a good tip to heed: what women think and what we tell you can be easily simplified by pretending you’re always in the middle of playing the opposite game.  Let’s give it a try:

“I’m fine” = I am so not fine, right now.  Fix whatever you did/said/are contemplating that you will do in the present/near/far future or you will see my rendition of the Exorcist girl in real time.  Now in 3D!

“I never see you” = You don’t spend enough time sitting on the couch rubbing my feet while we talk about and analyze each other’s feelings.

“I’ve told you 1,000 times that the ketchup goes behind the mustard on the 3rd shelf.  The 3rd shelf!” = This is actually a trick freak-out, of which you will have to be a complete mind-reader to understand, because OBVIOUSLY, I’m not mad about the ketchup, but HOW CAN YOU  NOT GET that I’m actually mad that you can’t turn a freakin’ light off in this damn house?  You see the parallels between the ketchup and the lights, right?  The women reading this can.

“It’s not ok to just use all my nice kitchen towels to clean up messes when we’re out of paper towels” = This has no hidden meaning.  It’s just the truth.  Tony. 

3.) I don’t care what TV you buy.  You don’t need to explain to me the difference between LCD and LED.  Just tell me which one is better, pick the size you want and let’s get out of this stupid store already.  I believe you when you say it clearly has the best picture when side by side with the other 20 TV’s on display.  God forbid I actually tell you one might possibly have a slightly better picture, because how the heck would I know and, please lord, don’t all of a sudden doubt your first choice, causing us to spend another 45 minutes deciding. 

And because it’s not fair to only give advice to the men, I’ve covering the bases for you ladies out there as well.

1.) Once married, give up all control on trying to get him to use the laundry hamper.  You know where Tony’s dirty clothes pile is?  The pile that sits right next to the laundry basket.  Or under our kitchen brunch bar, or next to the bed, or behind the bathroom door… When I go to do laundry now, I’ve just stopped checking the hamper for his pile.  I just take a quick tour around the house and we’re all set to go.

2.) Which leads me to number two.  I think men might be colorblind to what whites and darks means when doing laundry.  I realized this when I asked Tony to get me his colors and he brought me his dark work socks along with a white polo shirt.  I held up the polo shirt and he points to the red stitched logo to explain his reasoning.

3.) He will not realize you colored your hair, but he will realize when you move a DVD out of alphabetical order.  Conan the Barbarian is terribly uncomfortable sitting amongst the letter “P” movies and it will bug him to no end until he can spend another hour rearranging it back to perfect order.  It’s like an OCD ritual that, when done, helps him to feel like everything is now right in the world.

I hope you enjoyed my lesson in marriage, aka Wives Vs. Husbands: Wives Always Win edition.  As much as I get all tongue and “cheeky” (see how I did that?!) on this blog, it’s been a great year living with the love of my life.  We have our up’s and down’s, but in the end, I wouldn’t trade his non-traditional laundry pile for the world.

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