This weekend Todd and I "escaped" from normal life to enjoy a day together. Because it was supposed to be the rainiest of rainy days (which it totally wasn't, after all), we didn't make any outdoor plans and instead cooked a fabulous dinner and watched not one, but two movies.
Movie #1 was Babel. I resisted this movie for a long time because I am currently in an anti-Brad Pitt phase of my life. (Dude, you can't dump Rachel and not expect some fallout.) All I have to say about it now is if you absolutely must watch it, at least make sure you are up to date on your chosen anti-depressant. Because if you combined that movie with the song "Yesterday," you would have a big-time global weapon on your hands. Mass suicides would ensue.
Happily, our Movie #2 was one of my old favorites, Same Time Next Year. I don't think it was as well-received around the house as I had hoped, though, and I've been doing some thinking about why.
I fell in love with this movie in a past life when I was very unhappily married. At that time, the story of two people, both married to others, carrying out a 25-year affair one weekend of every year, seemed like the most romantic thing ever. I was convinced that was the best I could ever hope for -- a really great guy on the side.
But now, in my current life, I have that great guy as the main course, every single day. I don't have to wait for one weekend a year. So the whole adultery thing isn't quite so attractive.
And the whole we-have-such-a-wonderful-relationship-that-we-can-sustain-it-in-only-one-weekend-a-year thing? It just seems like cheating.
No, not just cheating on their respective spouses, but cheating as in that's-not-a-real-relationship-at-all kind of cheating.
Because really, who couldn't sustain that kind of attraction for 48 hours out of a year? Think of all the things that don't have to clog up those 48 hours: laundry, badly behaved pets, conversations about money, cleaning the bathroom, summertime colds, etc., etc. It's easy to envy them, in a way, seeing as how they've essentially cut out all the steamed broccoli of life and cut right to the chocolate cake.
But then there are the other things that won't be in those 48 hours: long lazy Saturday evenings on the couch, cooking dinner together, teaching the dog to give hugs, earnest conversations about life, falling asleep by a campfire, explaining to your niece that she's descended from monkeys, etc., etc. All those "broccoli" things.
And I think that what I know now is that without the broccoli to hold you together, one of you might end up with chocolate cake and the other with banana pudding or something. Or you might both end up with chocolate cake, but one has suddenly developed some kind of chocolate allergy and the other is . . .
Okay, maybe the cake analogy can only go so far. What I mean is, the great thing about a 365-day marriage is that you and your chosen honey can grow and change and have adventures TOGETHER, not just talk about your adventures once a year.
Now, don't get me wrong, I still love the movie. Those two are so cute together you'll need to eat a potato chip after watching it. But I don't envy them anymore. (I mean, aside from Ellen Burstyn's fabulous skin. That woman can't ever have had a zit in her life.)
I'll keep my 365-day marriage, thank you very much. Broccoli and all.