2008.01.23 Wife's whistling drives him nuts

Written by David Green.

By COLLEEN LEDDY

The night before my birthday, my daughter Rozee baked me some peanut butter chocolate chip cookies—with loads of chocolate chips. Rozee was home from Berea College still, taking a long winter break before heading to New Orleans for another round of helping with the rebuilding effort.

I love Berea’s schedule. Between fall and spring semesters, they have “short term” and students take fun courses on campus, or courses involving travel, or they can create their own short term experience.

The upshot of Rozee’s short term experience was lots of cupcakes  and cookies for me. Way too many cookies, in fact, consumed before and while watching the old movie When Harry Met Sally.

It was a great way to ring in my birthday—chocolate, comedy and camaraderie with one out of three children. Three kids at home would have been best, but empty nesters can’t be choosers, so I’m happy with every little morsel I get.

Still smiling from the movie and chocolate, I crawled into bed at 2:30 a.m., both totally exhausted and high on sugar.

I reached for my pillow—I always reach for my pillow when I crawl into bed in the dark. For one thing, it helps orient me, but more importantly, I never know what David might have placed on or inside my pillow case. A child’s teddy bear? A Barbie doll head?  I never know when he might strike.

So I reached for my pillow—and slapped David in the face—thinking I was patting my pillow. I didn't know he had awakened a little while earlier and was now warming up my side of the bed.

How nice of him—and how cruel of me. The juxtaposition of our two opposing actions made me smile and chuckle—but I knew I hadn’t really hurt him.

Then, as I slid into bed, he rolled over and I elbowed him in the hip. While he groaned in pain, I burst into laughter—gales of laughter—and couldn’t quit.

When I came to my senses, I reached up to stroke his face while asking if he was OK. He turned again as I reached up and I hit him in the head. That sent me into spasms of laughter. It all happened so quickly. Whack, bam, boom! And when you’re high on sugar, everything seems funny.

I first relayed that story to Faye VanderHoff who had wished me a happy birthday in an e-mail:  “I hope you have gotten your hands on a loaded chocolate cake and a fine bottle of wine to celebrate!”

I told her the Whack, Bam, Boom story and concluded it was a “great way to start the next half century of my life...lots of chocolate and loads of laughter.”

Of course, David might draw a different conclusion.

He’s pretty resilient, though. Lately, he is even more tolerant of my whistling, which he, to put it mildly, detests. He’s been downright pleasant about it, even helpful.

I whistle a tune and can’t figure out what I’m whistling.

“What is that the music to?” I ask.

“For me, it’s the theme song to the Porky Pig show,” he says. “For you, it might be “Well, the merry-go-round broke down, but that don’t make me frown...” and then he launches into a fast-paced peppy whistle.

But later, I whistled, “Up on the housetop...”

And David retorted with, “Click, click click.”

It was in a monotone voice that says, “Will you please stop that incessant whistling?”

But, he didn’t actually say that, though. He has a new method of making me stop.

I whistle the opening line to an out-of-season Christmas carol and he whistles back the next line. I think he thinks his whistling will annoy me and I’ll stop whistling when I realize what it’s like to listen to a whistler whistle. Kind of like trying to get a toddler to stop biting by biting him back.

Such cruelty doesn’t usually work—except in ways unintended. David’s whistling just makes me smile and want to engage in a whistling duet. Of course, it’s impossible for me to whistle while I’m smiling or laughing so I never can do a duet.

Like I told Faye, I don’t need a bottle of wine. David might, though.

  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • Shadow.salon
    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016