While listening to This American Life’s Radio Drama* episode, I was struck by something Mike Birbiglia said during Act II: Of Mice and Men: That one of the best things about being in a relationship is the inside jokes you have that are only funny to the two of you. He goes on to discuss “Catssachusetts” briefly, an inside joke between him and his wife.
This rang so true because I feel like rarely do we share those inside jokes – the moments that happen somewhere between the public eye and waking up. And I can’t tell if this is a product of us intrinsically believing the moments can’t be recreated, that our friends will be bored out of their gourds if we talk about them, or if they’re somehow too intimate. But I love those moments. They’re the ones I live for in relationships, the ones you can’t create – they just happen – and they keep both of you laughing for no reason, over and over again, day after day.
Regardless, all these thoughts bubbled up tiny stories from boyfriends and fauxlationships that barely make sense in context, let alone out of it. Here are some:
“You’re so warm. You’re like a blanket.”
“Ah yes, my people were blanket people.”
“Where did they live? In tee-pees? Or is that too cannibalistic of blankets?”
“Clotheslines, actually. But then came the wars, and blanket forts were made. It was a bloody time history doesn’t talk about. And don’t get me started on the pillow fights.”
“What if there was a video camera filming us right now?” one of us says to the other, as we sit in bed singing Call Me Maybe while he strums the ukulele.
“We’d call it Naked Musical Mornings.”
So began a tradition of concerts to no one while we pretended we were being video live-streamed into people’s homes.
The on-going joke about how his radiator talked to him about life, and he talked in a radiator voice.
The phrase “wimpy vegetables” along with descriptions of what limp mushrooms would be like.
“You smell like a museum. I meant that in the best way possible.”
“So, old man musty?”
“No, just…comforting. Like a bookstore, maybe. No, definitely a museum.”
“Well…” (deep inhale) “You smell like City Hall.” (Pause) “The small claim’s court room.”
“KANGAROO WAKEUP!!” I’d yell, while jumping on the bed as he slept.
“I really don’t think any of my clothes will fit you,” I mused.
“We’ll just see about that,” he called out from the bathroom, before walking out, completely covered by my robe.
His wearing my robe became a thing.
“Get excited,” we’d whisper to each other, followed by yelling “RELAX.”
I texted him that sometimes when I’m doing something mundane, like washing dishes, I imagine that I’m being filmed and making a YouTube video of lessons on how to be an adult. He built on it, saying a video like that would have to pan out and show that I had maids helping me at every turn. This rapidly became him and I texting things we were doing that were really un-adult like (him: buying everyone the same Christmas present. Me: eating cookie butter for dinner) and using the hashtag #pretendadult.
The concept of the half-hearted magician.
The words “acodaco” instead of avocado and “cliterature” instead of “literature” (the latter only repeated when said during podcasts when an announcer is talking about Audible).
What are some of your tiny moments from relationships now or in the past? Share them in the comments or tweet me @50Dates_States.
*If you haven’t listened to this episodes, it’s pretty great. The 21 Chump Street musical is kind of amazing, and captures emotions in a way that the original airing of the story did not. And the third act is heartbreaking. Oh man. I can’t say enough good things about this.