As I was typing away in my home office, I received a frantic call from my wife.
“Help, come quick.”
This was serious. I raced upstairs without checking my email for jokes or last night’s sports scores on ESPN.com.
When I reached the dining room, my wife said with fear in her voice, “We’re in the bedroom.”
I hurdled the toys strewn across the dining room floor. I hurt my knee but hobbled to the bedroom. There was no time for pain.
“What is it, honey? Are the kids all right?”
“It’s, it’s a thousand legger.”
My wife pointed down to the disgustingly large, but ultimately harmless, water bug.
“That’s it. I hurt my knee for a bug.”
“Just kill it!”
Both she and my daughter had looks on their faces that said, if you don’t kill the bug, we’ll kill you.
I could do this. I grabbed her shoe.
“Not my shoe!”
I grabbed my shoe and swung at the bug. I missed.
“You’ve got to be kidding me. Do I have to call my mother?”
Now she had done it. She questioned my manhood. I swung again and missed. The bug started to crawl away. However, before my wife could taunt me with “My 96-year-old Grandmother has better aim than you,” I swung with all my might and splattered the bug before it could escape.
“Thank you, thank you so much.” My wife hugged and kissed me as if it were our wedding night all over again. If my daughter wasn’t there, who knows what would have happened?
It then dawned on me that I had just discovered something fantastic, a true aphrodisiac…the Holy Grail for all men. I had to seize this glorious moment. With a newfound confidence, I scoured the rest of the upstairs for more bugs. Unfortunately, the rest of the house was bug-free.
My wife rolled her eyes.
“If you want to do something constructive, why don’t you fix that window I asked you to fix two months ago?” My status as conqueror and hero had vanished.
“I think I hear my cell phone ringing.” I bolted to the sanctity of my basement office.
A couple of days later, I told my friend John what happened.
“My wife tells everyone that’s the reason she stays married to me—I ‘m willing to kill bugs,” John replied.
It wasn’t the sexiest reason in the world to stay married, but it made perfect sense. Early on in relationships, we often view our spouses as perfect and overlook our mate’s faults. After a few years and may be a couple of kids, the honeymoon is over. You begin to see your mate’s faults, wrinkles, receding hairline, strange hair patches, half-dollar size bunions, etc. You then have to bring something practical to the equation, such as bug or rodent killing or the willingness to clean the toilet.
My marriage is secure as I’m willing to do both. Additionally, whenever our relationship seems to be in a rut, I don’t have to run out to the store for flowers or candy—I just kill a bug and the romance is rekindled. For those extra special occasions, i.e., when I really mess up, I have a stash of dead bugs I can drop on the floor at a moment’s notice.
Knowing my luck, though, one of my kids will probably find my stash and hide it on me. Then I’ll be in serious trouble. Until then, however, I’ve got Love Potion No. 9.
Copyright © 2009, Brad Manzo