Where MrsRW Has Been Hiding

Everywhere I go it's the same thing - "we're tired of your shtick, where's your wife?" It never fails. She drops out of sight for a while and I start getting the emails... "whadja do to her, you MEANIE?" I tell ya I don't get any respect.

Well the plain fact is that while I've been off dreaming away in wonderland, making goslings in the air with my cigar smoke and generally goofing off with my life for the last year or two, happily drifting without so much as a plan or a goal or... er... any use either... actually... MrsRW has been off working and networking and becoming the chief breadwinner around here. I am... as it were... being carried.

Not that I have any complaints. I am nothing if not a practical man. This honcho-macho crap about how the MAHN must be the major income and the MAHN gets the bacon and if your wife makes more than the MAHN you, as a MAHN, are of little MAHNliness is a lot of... well... crap. This is 2008 almost 9. It's a new world.

And starting in mid January it will be a new world for MrsRW as well, as she got word yesterday that a consultant's position she applied for with a national company has been offered to her, along with what would amount to something like an immediate 20-22% raise in pay. As in - for starters.

While I've been traipsing around the blogohexadehydrationsphere adding useless little comments here and there, sending off poorly conceived and even worse-executed "literature" (coughcough hack wheeze) for consideration to agents and publishers who are NOT impressed, dreaming up great big important blog posts that have little to do with anybody or anything anyone cares about, and kind of puttering around the house eating bon bons and wearing my big pink fluffy slippers - MrsRW has been taking what amounts to, basically, an associate's degree and almost twenty years of experience in her field - through various positions that give her a unique perspective in the health care field - and forging ahead with her professional career like a responsible adult human being who actually matters is supposed to be doing.

She's on the board of her professional association, has given speeches and presentations, created the system her present hospital currently employs as a major part of its income stream (which, since it is a Catholic Charities hospital turns NO ONE away and can afford now to do that better), and will now be doing major consulting work on a national scale.

It's going to mean a lot of travel for her, and that's going to be the rough part for both of us - but there's no telling where this leads to after that. Her resourceful care and talent for marshaling her time, resources and intelligence - plus the fact that she's the one usually in charge of things around here anyhow - will put her in good shape for the challenges. And her daughters and I are very proud of her, and love her very much.

When she graduated high school she was an 'A' student - in fact an "Illinois State Scholar" recognized student. Anything she wanted to do, or any school she wanted to go to, would have found an easy reason to accept her. Instead, because of her family situation, she had to not go to college and instead get a job checking people out at a local chain grocery store so she could afford to move out of that house ASAP. What a waste. Then, after we re-met and married and our daughters were born and started school, she maintained her 40-hour a week job and went to nursing school at night. She flew through that, got hired as a nurse, discovered a skill for the admin side, varied her experiences in case management and the like, and eventually became a manager in a major Chicago-area hospital. Now this. Well it's about time the world recognized her. She got - as far as I'm concerned - a bad break finishing high school. And this amounts to vindication.

Her daughters and I are exceedingly proud of her.

And I can afford an extra box of bon bons every week now!

Things you should really know about RW

Probably not too many people will see this and I know why:

  1. No one has me in their feed-reader
  2. I post so infrequently that it's more work than it's worth to check back to see if there's anything new here
  3. My life is rather uninteresting and that's why I rarely have anything to say (at least from my point of view)

But, as I listen to RW cutting the hedges it occurred to me that he probably won't "self-reveal" on his own blog because he is innately private, shy and it's hard for him to write anything that might sound self-aggrandizing.

So here are a few things that I think you should know about RW:

  • he is intensely loyal to people he loves. But...he can cut you out of his life without a backward glance if he feels that you've double-crossed him.
  • he loves his daughters unconditionally but he is not blind to their faults and won't take any shit from them
  • he has a hard time showing emotions (unless it's to his granddaughter) whether it's love or hate. After 30 years he still feels weird with public displays of affection. When we were first married he would rarely kiss or hug me in front of his family (think about it: people sort of expect that kind of stuff when you're newlyweds, don't they?). He's still that way. But at times he really wants hugs and kisses. An impromptu hug and kiss from one of his daughters or the granddaughter will totally make him melt
  • He is both extremely hard-working and incredibly lazy. Like today: he's going to trim the hedges, cut grass, edge the lawn - which is growing halfway across the sidewalk - and then collapse. Spread this out over a couple days? Why do that? Ruin the WHOLE weekend? On the other hand he can spend a whole day doing nothing more than watching football (I know, it's a guy thing).
  • He HATES to spend money. Right now he's saving aluminum cans because, well, it's like 5 cents a pound or something and, gee, over a year that really adds up.
  • And yet, he is extremely generous . Our whole life, if it came to something his girls (me, too) wanted or needed he would somehow find the money. (I guess this is where the aluminum cans come in).
  • He loves his family (sister, nieces, nephews) but if he doesn't see them he doesn't really miss them
  • He can hold a grudge and has a long memory: if you hurt one of his kids (or P-G*) he will never forget. He may ACT as though nothing happened, but trust me, you are DEAD TO HIM.
  • He has the type of brain that can remember the theme song from a 1960's Chicago kids' show or an actor who had a walk-on role in a 1940's movie (do you know who that IS? He was the guy carrying Errol Flynn's sword in "Sea Hawk!") but he can't remember how to get to our daughter's house 7 miles away although we've been there how many times?
  • Breathing and writing are almost the same thing - no, scratch that; for RW it's the same thing. He can't live without either. He'd love to be widely read but he'd write even if no one read anything he wrote.
  • Although RW intensely loves his own family (the girls, P-G and me) we are not enough. He wants to leave a legacy through his writing (see above).
  • He often says he's be fine living in a cave but he also says (and knows) that he'd become a degenerate without his family.
  • He likes to think he has good taste in clothes but he really doesn't. He has to be pushed (I mean shoved) into wearing anything that could remotely be considered trendy. He can't understand that no one wears a 3-piece white linen suit anymore. I'm always saying, "but RW, yes, it's in style, bu that's Jay Gatsby in the 20's, for God's sake".
  • He feels that he's living in the wrong era (see above). He would like to be living in the era of the Spanish-American War.
  • He is NOT handy. Any plumbing or home-improvement project always costs twice the usual cost. First, the original cost of materials and second, the cost to have a professional fix the fix.
  • He can be extremely detail-oriented: he will re-write a paragraph ten times until it's "right" but will leave grass clippings all over the sidewalk and driveway or shave with a dry face and dry razor (ouch!) leaving stray whiskers here and there because he can't be bothered to have a "regimen".
  • He loves food. I can ago weeks eating cereal because I eat to live, but RW has really gotten into the planning and preparing of food. I am so NOT an appreciative audience. I mean, I LOVE that he does the cooking, but I really don't give a crap about what it actually is. As long as I don't have to cook it I will eat whatever he makes. Really.
  • He actually thinks he's going to win the lottery and is disappointed every week when he doesn't. Buying his lottery tickets (what? spend money?) every week is a ritual. And every week he dejectedly says "we didn't win" in a sad, sorry voice. It's ok; most days I like my job.
  • He likes animals as long as they don't live here. The zoo, yes. In our house, no. His motto: animals belong in the wild (or anywhere but in our house). Since we've had several pets over the years I think this is an example of the lengths he'll go to to make his family happy. Having a poop-free backyard made him a really, really happy guy.
  • For someone who doesn't show a lot of emotion (outwardly, anyway) he actually is, sort of like a toasted marshmallow.
  • He is intensely spiritual. He disdains the ritual (and singing) of mainstream religions and finds renewal and solace at his Friends Meeting.
  • He is really picky about what he will watch on TV. He will almost never watch a sitcom but is addicted to Project Runway, Top Chef and American Experience.
  • He is a self-searcher. In his mind there is always something to improve. This makes him both happy and dissatisfied at the same time.

Hmmm. ..I probably could've done this as a series. I don't think this list is anywhere near complete. But as RW likes to think of himself as a man of mystery, I should probably not reveal all.

* Princess Granddaughter