Here’s Lookin’ At You, Kid

by MW Cook

I forgot it was Valentine’s Day. Did you? Did you get in trouble for it?

I didn’t.

I forget about a lot of special days. I didn’t always. But now I do. And I think I’m starting to understand why.

There are three main days that will earn a man a harsh reproof if he forgets them. Birthdays, Anniversaries and Valentine’s Day. Most men will start nodding now and remember the chastisement they received last time they forgot one of these days. But, when it comes down to it, most men forget these days far less often than I do.

These days serve as pegs on the calendar. Reminders of our duty to affection and mutual comfort. And, without these days, I guess a lot of couples would go through the year living more as roommates than lovers. So it makes sense that men are punished for forgetting these days.

But I can’t remember them. And I’ll tell you why.

My wife bursts with affection. Not sometimes. Not occasionally. All the time. She oozes with it. She couldn’t hide it if she tried. And her wild affection and love and empathy with me expresses itself in ways that boggle the mind. So, instead of making some ham-handed list of what I love about Ruth (as if my love for her was conditional on anything) I’m going to share a wild list of the ways that Ruth displays her love. And that may be what I love the most.

  • She hugs every chance she gets. When I leave. When I get home. When we sleep. When we’re walking. When we’re sitting. She’s gotta touch.
  • She tries to like everything I like. And she tries hard. She tries so hard that she’s the only girl I know who likes anime, video games, paper-and-dice RPGs, and action/sci-fi/horror films. She can’t like everything I like, but she’ll try her best because everything she takes on is one more thing we have in common.
  • Her affection does not change. When we disagree on politics and religion, her affection stays the same. When we are ill or tired, her affection is the same. When the kids are going crazy and the house feels like an asylum, she will still take a moment to sit on the couch and get/receive affection.
  • She says nice things about me. An ego-boost to be sure. And proof that I am on her mind. Sometimes I feel like I’m her favorite movie – she just can’t stop talking about me!
  • She takes offenses against me as worth approximately 3.67x greater than offenses against herself. It’s easy, you see, for her to forgive when people wrong her. But should someone dare to wrong me, be warned!
  • She refuses to let me go to work without food. This is interesting, because there is usually food at work that I’m free to eat. Decent food, too. But that’s not good enough for Ruth! If her husband is going to eat, he’s going to eat well!
  • She empathizes.
  • She dances with me, whether people are watching or not.
  • She lets me be a silly, unconventional, bombastic, slightly-more-than-slighty-unstable person.
  • She laughs at me when I want her to laugh at me. She comforts me when I want to be comforted. She holds me when I want to be held.

So, on this popular day of affection and hand-holding, I am happy. Not because I have a chance to get some special affection. But because I get Valentine’s Day-worth affection every day. So it’s no wonder I forget this day every year.

See ya soon, Ruth.