Posted in Family

Two Peas in a Very Small Pod

Peas in pods.
Peas in pods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s been almost two years since Bubba moved in.  Or is it three?  There was some adjustment at first, but then we seemed to fit in like two peas in a pod.  A very small pod.


We moved Bubba in slowly.  First it was blankets and seasonal boxes.  You know, the things no one really notices showing up at your house.  Later, we would move in a knick-knack or two, maybe some boots or coats.  I emptied out half of my dresser space and one of the bedroom closets.  As those filled up, I hardly noticed he was starting to occupy what used to be my space.


SVG version of the screenshot found at Image:E...
Image:Emacs Tetris  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Then one weekend, we piled the rest of his apartment into the back of a rental truck like it was a championship game of Tetris.  *All at once I understood George Carlin when he said, “Have you ever noticed that their stuff is shit and your shit is stuff?”  


By American standards we live in a small house.  In fact, according to **Apartment Therapy, we live in a house much closer in size to the average French.  For this reason, I prefer the minimalist look — you know, tuck all the clutter out of sight, so it looks like I don’t own any.  Bubba likes the honest approach.  His things are all out where he can access them.  No matter what devices I employ to keep his useful shit hidden, he always finds a way to keep it out next to my pretty stuff.


My grandparents, who lived in an even smaller home than we, demonstrated compromise in the most basic way.  Grampa would turn up the heat and Gramma would open a window.  If they were displeased with the other, they never showed it.  This was possibly my first and best lesson in cooperation.


Someone once said it’s never to late to teach an old pea new tricks . . . or something like that.  Bubba and I are still finding new ways to live together in this wee pod.


When we make our grocery run, we share a cart; my food on one side, Bubba’s on the other.  The fact that we disagree about whether to place the soda in the cart or underneath it, or how to park the cart in the bagging area fade in comparison to the system for which we have devised for loading it into the car.  We are a well-oiled machine.  If grocery-loading were an Olympic sport, we’d take gold.


Provided we take my car out on errands, I drive.   When I’m backing out, Bubba yells out “Clear!” as if I’m paying him for it.  If we take his car, he drives.  When Bubba backs out, I just close my eyes.  Keeping my eyes closed keeps me from gasping, which in turn keeps peace in the car.


I like listening to my audiobook during my morning routine.  Bubba says absolutely nothing in the morning, preferring to grunt unintelligibly akin to a Neanderthal.  This is how our mornings pass; him not interesting in speaking, me not interesting in listening.  The perfect non-communication.


These are a just a few of the ways that couples such as us become a partnership through tolerance, teamwork, and cooperation.  What works for one pair may not necessarily work for another, which makes it all the more fascinating.  I would bet that some of the most retold stories in your family are those of couples coming to terms with their relationship.  They are the  lessons of life, fables for the future.


Bubba loves his treats, and once they’re in the house, I can’t resist.  The thing is, Bubba likes his cookies and bars soft and chewy.  I like them crisp and crunchy.  One day he was breaking off the outside edge of the cookie.


Me:  What are you DOING?
Bubba:  Ish aw hard (with a mouthful of soft middle-cookie).
Me:  That’s the best PART!
Bubba:  Mmm . . . nooo . . Dish ish d goob part.
Me:  Are you THROWING these OUT?
Bubba:  Mmm-hmm (with a look of serious disgust).

Since then, Bubba and I buy one cookie between us.  He eats the middle.  I eat the outside.  If I make a pan of brownies, I get the edges, he eats the gooey middle, and as it turns out we are quite happy.  As happy, in fact . . .


. . . as two peas in a very small pod.


Peace . . .


George Carlin
Cover of George Carlin

*George Carlin was one of Bubba’s favorite people.  He can quote several of George’s bits, and he hung a large poster of “An Incomplete List of Impolite Words: 2,443 Filthy Words and Phrases Compiled by George Carlin” in our bathroom.  Just one more way we live together in this little pod fit for two.


**Thank you to Lois of Living Simply Free for leading me to this site.




Posted in Family

Living in Sin


Love (Photo credits: PB Teen)

Shacking up.  Cohabitation.  Domestic Partnership.  Living over the brush.  It doesn’t matter what you call it.  Bubba and I live under the same roof outside of matrimony.

We enjoy much of the same music, films, and even have the same sick sense of humor.  We share everything from living space to groceries.  Bubba and I have every intention of doing this till-death-do-us-part thing.  Sounds like marriage.  So why not just get married?

  • Children need safe, peaceful, loving homes.  Bubba and I aren’t raising any children.  There is the dog, of course, and separation could make that very messy indeed.  However, no children will be harmed in the making, or unmaking, of this relationship.  I am glad my family was born into a home with a mother and father, but I’m not sure that marriage is what made that happen.  Children are born into all kinds of good and bad homes.  Marriage does not guarantee that.
  • I don’t believe in sin.  I know there is good in the world, and unfortunately, bad too.  The bad stuff hurts children, kills people, and makes the world a scary place.  The home in which we live is a good place.  We believe in love and peace, and all that hippie stuff.  No, we aren’t smokin’ anything.
  • I don’t need a license to tell me I’m committed.  Signing that contract is easy and cheap.  Getting out of it can be difficult and expensive.  That’s the point, isn’t it?  We want someone to think twice before they walk out that door — and make ’em pay when they do.  As if breaking a relationship and dividing up your stuff isn’t painful enough.  Yeah . . . no one thinks twice about that sort of thing.

I want to wake up every morning knowing we made the choice — today — to be together.  I have made no vow before anyone but him that I will be here tomorrow.  There is no paper saying that I must share everything with him and he with me.  We choose to do that daily.

Will a license or marriage ceremony ensure that my partner will always love me?  That he will remain faithful?  That he will allow me space to grow and change?  Of course not.  It all comes down to trust.  Do we trust each other enough to marry?  Indeed . . . do we trust each other enough not to?

If, for some reason, we fall out of love — and that can happen — I don’t want to keep him here by a signature on paper.  I want to be free for each of us to find someone who will love and adore and cherish us again.  I love him that much.  I love myself that much.  If a paper and public vow is the only thing holding him here, I say GO!  The only thing that hurts more than breakup and divorce are lies and regret.

While it is true we don’t have a wedding anniversary, I think we have something better.  Sometimes when we are going to a nice dinner, Bubba will say, “This is our anniversary, isn’t it?”  And then we will spend the evening in celebration.  It might be any month(s) of the year, but we celebrate.  At some point, I will usually estimate how many years and months we have been together.  Bubba typically responds, “Really?  Well, I’ll be go ta heck!”

“Bert + Ernie for Marriage Equality” / Toy Sto...
“Bert + Ernie for Marriage Equality”

As for those around me with different points of view, I support you wholeheartedly to keep them.  I will attend your wedding, raise a glass to the honored couple, and hand-wrap the gift.  As a matter of fact, some of my favorite people live in wedded bliss or will soon, and I am glad for them.  And some of those people only recently received the right to marry.  It’s shameful to believe this took so long in a nation that claims separation of church and state.

Whatever your intention, no one should enter into a relationship feeling like the other is the better half, or that they are not complete without the other.  Rather, offer a whole person to the other, that you will form a partnership together.  Merge your lives together as a strong force of two, and not a single bond of one.


Peace . . .


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