Thursday, September 3, 2009

I Must Set the Record Straight

For the record: My wife gets to watch much more TV than I do. And I’m fine with that because there’s not much on TV I really need to see. I like to go to the movies. I’m a movie-going kind of guy.

I saw three movies in the theater last year. I guess I’m too busy giving my wife and 5-year-old son the care they deserve.

My family subscribes to Netflix, where you can rent DVDs online and have them mailed to your house the next day. We rent two DVDs at a time -- one for me/my son, and one for my wife.

For the record: When I receive a movie in the mail, I watch it that night when everyone in the house is asleep, or, if it’s a movie for my son, I watch it with him when Mommy is out with friends. I mail the disk back the next day.

My wife’s DVDs sit on top of our TV for months at a time before she watches them. I just can’t see the harm in renting two movies for myself when I have the chance. My wife thinks I’m unfair.

She, unlike me, watches her shows during the prime times of the day. And what does she watch? Oprah. Reality TV. Entertainment news. I’m sorry, but I’d rather take a fastball to the groin. And I think my son feels the same way.

Thursday night, I asked my wife to get off the phone with her best friend so she and I could finish the conversation we’d started several hours previous. We couldn’t agree on which TV programs to delete off our DVR so we could have the space to record a cartoon our boy really wanted to see. We had six hours before dawn, when his program was to begin, so we needed to make a decision before going to bed.

I suggested my wife watch a few of her shows that night -- like I unselfishly do -- so she could then delete them and have space for our kid’s program.

“I don’t think so,” she said without any thought. “Let’s just delete your movies and be done with it.”

“But I’d really like to keep my movies because, unfortunately, I can’t tape them -- our VCR doesn’t record anymore. Not only that, but none of the movies I have on the DVR are available for purchase on video, nor will they ever be on TV again.”

For the record: My wife leads me 10 to 1 in magazine subscriptions. I think it’s clear who makes the compromises in the family.

“Sweetie,” I asked my wife lovingly when she abandoned the conversation to phone a friend, “can you please come back and finish arguing with me?”

She ignored me.

“He doesn’t even let me watch my shows when I’m watching them,” she said as if I weren’t there. “He talks the entire time.”

“I’m usually trying to quiet down our son so he doesn’t disturb you,” I said. “I apologize.”

“He’s just a TV snob,” she said to her friend. “He just wants to watch his stupid film noir.”

For the record: The quotes above were taken directly from Thursday night’s transcripts of our debate. Notice the name-calling on my wife’s part and her hostility toward the terrific, ground-moving film noir movies I like to watch? I, on the other hand, would never give my wife an unfavorable name. And, before this article, I never once criticized the shows she watches.

My wife eventually went to bed that Thursday night. And my son eventually woke up the next morning to watch the cartoon that had aired earlier. I’d recorded it on the DVR.

For the record: I had nothing to do with the mysterious loss of shows my wife had previously saved, allowing space to record our son’s cartoon.

Even if I was responsible, I wouldn’t feel at all guilty because of all the unfairness I’m usually dealt -- as described in detail above.

Note to reader: Please disregard any retractions from my wife. She’ll likely say my facts in this story are incorrect. And that’s a lie.

-July 2009

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