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I Can’t Tell You How Much I Love You

16 April 2010 Lies and Entertainment 5,250 views 4 CommentsPrint This Post Print This Post Email This Post Email This Post

Dearest Norma,

Wow, it’s harder than I thought to tell you how much I love you. I’m not the kind of guy that’s good with words. You know me, I’d rather putter around the house than talk about this kind of stuff. We’ve been married for 38 years, so I expect you know how I am. When I’m out in my workshop with Charlie and you’re working on your decoupage projects it seems like that’s when we’re at our happiest.

Still, I feel like you’ve been drifting away from me lately. We haven’t been as close since the incident at Bob Evans while we were sharing the slice of apple pie, during the double date with Charlie and his wife, and that accident with the fork which I still maintain was defective. But, I don’t want to open old wounds.

While I was at my general practitioners office looking through a stack of old Women’s Health magazines I came across an article called “10 ways to recharge your relationship.” I thought to myself that I couldn’t really lose anything by trying them. Writing a love letter is #7 and I’m only doing it because you didn’t respond to the first six. (They included provocative outfits, thoughtful gifts and an increase in compliments. All of those mostly irritated you, but I do think you appreciated that new pair of spring action pinking shears I got you when Charlie and I went to the swap meet.)

I have been struggling to come up with a metaphor for this letter that would let you know how much I love you because that’s what it said to do in the article. But, I’m stymied.

First, I thought I would just think of something big and that would cover it. But, when it comes to big things, most of them are pretty disgusting. I caught that big bass last year when Charlie and I went out to the lake, but I remembered you don’t even like fish and when I brought it to you to clean you rolled your eyes and gutted it while you stared at me all angry. Not exactly something I wanted to compare our relationship to.

Still, that was a big bass, biggest I ever caught. But, I decided that “big” probably wasn’t the way to go. Women don’t like to be called big and that show you like on HBO about the Mormons isn’t exactly what I want to say about us either.

I tried to think of something long to compare it to, like the Great Wall of China which is so long you can see it from space, but most of those just made us seem old. All the solid stuff I could compare us to, rocks, hammers and engine blocks, didn’t really work either. It didn’t seem romantic enough.

While Charlie and I were hunting last weekend I was thinking about this the whole time. Which is why I came home empty-handed. Charlie won’t let me hear the end of it!

Then, I got the answer. “Law and Order.” Our love is like “Law and Order.”

You know, there have been so many episodes that there really isn’t much surprise left. You know when the twist is coming before the commercial break and you know when the case is getting passed over the DA. The details change, but the surprise is gone. You watch it because it’s so comforting and familiar.

I remembered when Ben died and we couldn’t sleep. No one ever expects to lose a child and I don’t know if there was anything we could say to one another to feel better. I know that all those nights we couldn’t sleep, no matter what time it was, we could watch “Law and Order” on TV. It was always there waiting for us.

It was us being together, sitting in the dark, experiencing the same thing. I don’t know why, but that feels important.

We even stopped talking about the actors as if they were characters. We could see them age 10 years from one episode to the next and talk about who was gaining weight and how Ice-T showed up for that one episode with a really bad cold. It wasn’t so much a show as a thing we had.

Even when I didn’t watch it, it was still comforting to know it was there if I wanted it. To this day, when I feel sad it calms me to know that somewhere in the world “Law and Order” is on.

That’s how I feel about you. Except you are prettier and you make laugh.

I know this probably didn’t come out the way I wanted it to, but I’m hoping you at least pretend it did.

Number eight on the list from the article is for me to greet you naked at the door.

Neither of us want that, but if that’s what it takes I’m willing to do it.

I should be home soon, I just had to run to Home Depot with Charlie.

If this didn’t work, throw it away. We don’t ever have to talk about it.

Love,

Carl

David Wahl

PHOTO BY DANIEL GREENE

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4 Comments »

  1. Kind of reminds me of a Magnetic Fields song.

  2. I take that as a compliment.

  3. Yes. It is a difficult thing to pull off.

  4. OH. I missed this one till now… It is harder than I thought to say how good it is.

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