Monday, December 27, 2010

Being pregnant stinks OR If your wife is pregnant, good luck trying to eat anything

Pregnancy has turned my wife into a super-powered mutant. Her sense of smell is so heightened that she can smell tater tots up to 10 miles away.

I say tater tots because, in addition to super mutant olfactory senses, my wife also now cannot stand the smell of all kinds of things that don't bother normal people, like tater tots. Tater tots seem innocuous enough, but to a pregnant woman you might as well be putting ketchup on a skunk dipped in sewage.

Speaking of which, do you know what makes my mouth water? The smell of spicy chicken curry. Do you know what makes a pregnant woman retch and reach for the closest thing she can puke into? The smell of spicy chicken curry.

When I get home from the gym I must hop directly into the shower before my wife starts gagging. Once my wife got pregnant she promptly decided that her body wash smelled almost as putrid as chicken curry, so she started stealing mine. This confused me quite a bit, because I was like, “Hey, that’s new! You smell like... me? Wait a minute!”

I didn't want her perfectly good body wash to go to waste and she was using mine up, so I tried using her old stuff. Not very well thought out, I know. The minute I was out of the shower and dressed she said, “Get away! Get away!” like she was Dracula and I was the biggest clove of garlic in all of Transylvania. I had to go shower all over again.

My wife also cannot stand the smell of bathrooms, even clean ones. At first it was just public restrooms, but now she can't stand the smell of our bathroom at home, which is relatively clean. We tried cleaning everything in it with Lysol but the smell of Lysol makes her gag even more, so it looks like she just might have to hold it until the baby is born, poor woman.

The upside is that I now have an extra stream of income because I contract my wife out to law enforcement agencies to help them track fugitives. We’re undercutting all the bloodhounds in town on prices and making a fortune.

Pregnant or no, are there certain smells that make you gag? Leave a comment if you please.

Monday, December 20, 2010

A little potato for Christmas

My wife contracted a parasite that is making her violently sick. It’s leeching nutrients from her body, growing rapidly and is currently the size of a lemon. That’s right, clever reader, as a good friend of ours used to say, my wife caught “baby.” There’s no time like the present to reproduce, I always say.

For those of you who are unsettled by the thought of a little Jesse running around just remember that it is only half me, so you can all breathe a sigh of relief.

When Wifey called people to tell them our good news they kept saying, “Aren’t you so excited?” She was excited, but she felt guilty for being afraid too. She also felt guilty for being a little grossed out by the whole process.

There’s, like, a little thing growing in there!” she said to me. “It’s like some sci-fi movie where the alien thing grows inside the human host and then violently bursts out covered in blood and guts!”

She has a good point, but all joking aside, we are very happy. However, what a lot of expectant parents won’t tell you - but we will - is that with the happiness also comes a fair amount of pure terror. I think paralyzing fear is an intelligent and appropriate response to finding out you are going to become a parent. We wanted and planned for a baby, but now that it’s actually under construction we are scared to death.

My face has broken out like never before, and sometimes I wake up in middle of the night thinking, “How are we going to afford a baby? What if we make sucky parents? What if our baby turns out to be a bratty troll child?”

Sometimes I think, This is crazy! Maybe I just dreamed that we were going to have a baby. And just when I had convinced myself it was a dream my wife got her first ultrasound, which was pretty clear proof that something was in there. An ultrasound doesn't have a lot of details, you see. It basically looked like someone had tried to photocopy a potato or a chicken nugget.

That’s a baby?” I asked the ultrasound tech. “Are you sure?”

She assured me that it was a baby and politely labeled the head and bottom, which was good because I wasn't sure which was which.

For parents: How did you feel when you got the big news? 
For non-parents: Do you plan on having kids? Why or why not? 
Leave a comment if you please.

Monday, December 13, 2010

A Merry Christmas is just not in the cards


I dislike Christmas cards, or rather I dislike sending out Christmas cards. It is not my idea of fun to spend my holiday season rounding up addresses, trying to think of something meaningful to write in each card, addressing envelopes and licking stamps. Now if people sent money after receiving your Christmas card, like a graduation or wedding announcement, I’d be all for it. But they don’t, and I’m not.
Therefore when my wife announced she would be sending out Christmas cards I groaned within myself. I tried to talk her out of it. I tried to deter her by saying that if we were going to send out Christmas cards we would have to include a family newsletter called the “Barben Beacon” that details everything we have done this year along with a color photo of ourselves in festive sweaters. It was a bluff, of course, but it only made her more determined to send out Christmas cards and very angry.
Here I will pause and ask a question: when two women argue, who wins? I ask because it has been well documented that when a man and a woman argue, the man will lose every time. But if two women argue, will the argument go on indefinitely until one of them dies of starvation because there is no man around to lose said argument? But I digress.
As you may have gathered, we’re sending out Christmas cards. I told my wife not to bother with my side of the family or my friends because I communicate with them regularly throughout the year and I say that is good enough. We don't need to get Hallmark involved. Plus, they would be suspicious if they started getting Christmas cards from me all of a sudden.
“I already sent him money when he graduated and when he got married!” they would say. “What more does he want?”
I dislike Christmas cards so much because they are one of many sinister things that put unnecessary stress into a season that should be calm and happy. I get sad when I hear people complaining about how the holidays are so stressful. If Christmas is stressful for you it is because you are making it stressful and you need to chill the heck out and stop trying to do everything.
Here are no-stress ideas on how to handle common holiday tasks:
Christmas cards: E-mail. (You will save a fortune on cards, postage and holiday sweaters.)
Shopping: Gift cards. Or cash. And purge a few people from your shopping list.
Baking: Pillsbury.
Dinners: Chinese take-out.
Parties: Skype.
See? It’s as easy as that. You can thank me later.

Is anyone else anti-Christmas card? Do you have other ways to de-stress for the holidays? Leave a comment if you please.

Monday, December 6, 2010

It's just as I feared, my beard has disappeared

Well, I have shaved off my beard, and, after a sufficient period of mourning, I have found the courage to write about it.

Don’t blame my wife because it isn’t her fault. My wife is very sweet and told me that I am a grown person, can groom myself however I want and if I want to look like a homeless drifter it is my business. That is fortunate, because if she had demanded that I shave I would have grown the beard longer just to spite her. I am a man and I am in control of my own face! More or less.

I decided shaving was in my best interest (see the “Spousal Kisses versus Beardity” graph) so I just got out the shaving cream, cried a little and did the deed. I don’t miss it too terribly, but it is strange to see my own face again. Plus, shaving a beard adds, like, 30 pounds to your face. And my face always feels cold now.

Not only did my wife hate to kiss me when I was bearded, but she is also half-Cuban and believes that all bearded men are communists. (Fidel and Che ruined it for everyone. Thanks for nothing, fellas!) My wife got this deep-seated political beard belief from her mother, who fled Cuba in the ‘60s to escape Castro’s regime. As you can imagine, the beard made my mother-in-law very uneasy.

But now the beard is gone and family relations are once again firing on all cylinders. It’s not over, though. I told my wife that she hadn’t seen the last of The Beard, and it would likely return when she least expected it like some villain in a bad movie sequel. I told my wife I will probably re-grow it when we’ve been married a long time, are bored of each other and aren’t kissing anyway.

Problem solved.

Have you ever done something you didn't want to do for love? Leave a comment, if you please.