posted by susan-oh-susan / march 13 at 7:20 am / uncategorized / 26 comments
To finish yesterday’s story…
John stayed for about forty-five minutes.
Nika and I kept watch from the master bedroom window. So we saw him arrive—we had our freak-out about his orange hair—and then we realized that he was a passenger in the car that dropped him off.
And the car wasn’t leaving.
It stayed parked at the curb in front of the house… and the driver was still sitting in the driver’s seat.
Adjusting her make up.
Flossing her teeth.
And before you say, we couldn’t see that… we got binoculars.
Because, you know, it was probably… well, you know. Her.
And I, yeah, I wanted to see her.
I have a pair of binoculars in the bedroom not because I’m a peeping Tom, but because when the kids were little, I got into birdwatching for a while.
“Well, we’re sort of birdwatching,” Nika said when I admitted yes, I had binoculars, but it would be wrong to use them to spy on the driver who was probably my husband’s lover… even though I really wanted to. “Also, it’s spring, and I’m sure the winged rats are migrating in droves, and we can always claim that that’s what we’re really doing. And if the binoculars accidentally point at the car… Come on, Susan. You know you want to.”
And that’s about all it took to convince me.
Flossing. She was actually flossing.
“Susan, this isn’t just because I love you, but you’re way prettier. Like, in every way,” Nika said.
And you know what? She was totally right.
I am not actress or supermodel beautiful.
But on a good day…
Ok, so if she’s not prettier… or younger… then… what about her is better?
I already told you, her breasts—not that great. I told Nika about that and she almost peed herself laughing.
“Jewel of the Not-So-Spectacular Boobs,” she said. And we laughed.
But then, later, I started thinking…
Is she more exciting?
Marcella is going to kill me—just don’t, ok, be kind—but I’m not that smart. I mean, I’m not stupid. I know I keep on saying I’m stupid, but you know what I mean. I feel stupid—I’ve felt stupid, often—over this whole… affair. Situation. Day-to-day, I’m not stupid. But I’m not… an intellectual. You know?
And my life… my life has been very small.
Children. House. Baking. Cooking. Cleaning. School field trips.
My hobbies are small. Even the birdwatching—I did that because John thought I should get a hobby. A “more interesting” hobby than baking. Or scrapbooking, which I was getting really interested in. Or gardening, which I loved.
A more…educational hobby.
I didn’t really care that much about birds, ever.
I didn’t really care about working either. Isn’t that a terrible thing to admit now? When I got pregnant as I was finishing college, I never thought, “Oh, no, there’s the end of my career!” Or—“Oh, no, there’s a slow down in my career!” I was like, “Woo-hoo, I’m going to be a mom!”
And the degree I took in college? Small. Small, irrelevant. A useless—well, I won’t say. I don’t want to offend anyone who took this degree and built an amazing life on it.
Not worth regretting, not worth fighting for.
He’d never dye his hair orange for me.
OMG. Why did I write that? I didn’t mean that. For the record—I would never want him to—he started going grey pretty early, John. In his early thirties, a few greys here. Full salt and pepper before he was forty. And I loved it. It made him look distinguished, I thought. I said.
He didn’t seem to mind, either. He didn’t mind getting older. The grey hair, the crow’s feet, the slight paunch in his belly.
We were getting old together, and it was good.
Until it wasn’t. When did it stop being good?
When did he start… feeling restless?
He was never… I wish I could explain to you. I don’t want to make him seem boring or dull.
But—I remember, we were talking once about a colleague from work who just got laid off, and who took his entire severance and put into… oh, I can’t remember. A food truck? A café? Anyway, some kind of business venture. Quite risky. In partnership with some thirty-year-old hippy girl with purple hair. For whom he had left his wife.
John was so… critical. Contemptuous.
“Not for me,” he said. “I will happily settle for my safe, boring job and my safe, boring wife.”
He did, he actually called me that. His safe, boring wife.
How did I not notice or get upset when he said that?
I think when he said that… I laughed. And I kissed him.
And I felt safe.
“He’s leaving,” Nika finally announced. She had the binoculars. “Let’s go downstairs.”
I let her go ahead. Watched John get into the car—through the binoculars. Watched him kiss… my replacement.
My not-that-spectacular-why-is-she-better-than-me-how-is-this-fair replacement.
Wanted to cry.
But I didn’t.
Do you know what I did?
I took out that scary ugly Rabbit, and I rode it to an explosive, angry orgasm.
Then I went downstairs to see the boys.
We didn’t talk about John at all; we just had tea and ate macarons.
“Your father didn’t eat anything?” I said when I reached for my first macaron.
Tyler let out a weird sound, half-laugh, half-groan.
“Cody wouldn’t let me bring out any food,” he said.
I need to confess… that made me feel good.
“More for us,” Nika said, reaching for her second. “By the way, Mama Susan, why on earth did you vacuum your bedroom before coming downstairs?”
I told you, it sounds like a Turbo jet.
Or, apparently, through a closed door, a vacuum cleaner.
26 comments on Birdwatching and Jewel of the Not-So-Spectacular-Boobs:
FemmeFataleFun: Babe, send me your address too, and I will send you some quieter sex toys. Better yet, Marcella—take the woman to a sex store and let her pick out something that doesn’t terrify her.
ilikeherbooty-full: You go, Susan. Fucking ride that Rabbit. Also, anyone who bakes like you doesn’t need any stupid birdwatching hobbies. You are an artist. I still dream about that cherry pie. If I die tomorrow, I will die happy because I have tasted it, and my only regret will be that I will not taste it again. You are… fuck, I’m no good at this. You bitches do this. Tell her she’s not small. And send me John’s address. I’m going to start sending him roadkill in the mail.
BeautifulThingsEveryday: Suddenly, I almost like you.
BeautifulThingsEveryday: Susan. You are NOT small. Also, you used the Rabbit! Yes! And what she has that you don’t have… don’t ask that. Don’t ask that. It’s not about you.
sugar&spice76: Exactly, honey, exactly, honey. She’s new. She’s different. She’s not you. How old is your man? Forty, mid-forties? It’s the age—the restlessness. His small life… His dissatisfaction. It’s all him. Not you. What’s he do for work, anyway?
susan-oh-susan: I wish I could believe that, Sugar. He’s… it’s kind of hard to explain. He’s in procurement.
ilikeherbooty-full: What the hell is procurement?
susan-oh-susan: It’s… he works for one of the big oil and gas companies downtown. And he procures—buys—things for them.
ilikeherbooty-full: Like, paper clips?
susan-oh-susan: No, like… I don’t know. Bigger things. Equipment and things.
ilikeherbooty-full: Sounds boring as hell, Susan. He be the boring one. Not you. “He’s in procurement.” He buys paper clips. Sweet Jesus. How’s that even a job?
sugar&spice76: See, honey? It’s him. Not you. His crisis, his breakdown. About him. Not about you.
mommyshidinginthebathroom3: Hugs. Susan? This is going to sound stupid and trite from a—what did Sugar call us? Strange Internet friend. But I love you. And you’re amazing.
FemmeFataleFun: Me too. And I’m serious—let me hook you up with some sex toys. Actually, do you gals want to have that online Passion Through Play and Toys Party I was talking about before? I’ve never done an online one, but I’m totally up for it. Susan can host.
Caspian00XO: Can I come?
BeautifulThingsEveryday: What the fuck are all these men doing here?
ilikeherbooty-full: You are such a sexist bitch, Cougar. It’s a free country.
BeautifulThingsEveryday: I almost liked you for an entire fifteen minutes. Well done, boy.
ilikeherbooty-full: Woof woof.
FemmeFataleFun: Do the two of you need to get a room?
ilikeherbooty-full: But seriously, Caz, fucking scram. I’m the only rooster at this hen party.
Caspian00XO: I don’t think that’s fair. Susan?
susan-oh-susan: Jerome, this is not a harem, it’s a blog. And it’s my blog. And if it was a harem, it would be my harem, and you can’t kick people out of it.
ilikeherbooty-full: Did you just call us your harem? Ha ha ha.
susan-oh-susan: I just meant… you know what I meant! Be nice to your friend! And, to my friends.
ilikeherbooty-full: Yes, ma’am.
Find out more: Cherry Pie Cure: Cast of Characters and More
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PS A Table of Contents of the Cherry Pie Cure/Susan’s Writing Cure Blog posts can be found at the Cherry Pie Cure landing page.
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