My husband's job requires him to be out of town one or two nights a week, often just across the state. As I help him pare down his packing checklist (Clean underwear? Check. A pair of my underwear for doing goodness knows what? Check. Stuffed monkey? Check. Toothbrush and deodorant? Check.), I create my own list of activities to do while he's away because, honestly, I can't often do them when he's underfoot, begging me for sex or asking me what's for dinner. These ideas include:
- Falling into an orgasmic stupor on the couch while watching Mike Rowe and the eight hours of Dirty Jobs I have Tivo'd.
- Getting my band, Penchant for Panties, together for an early evening jam and photo session to update our MySpace page.
- Spiritual awakening.
- Practicing my lap dance routine (note: working with major tools can make a man lonely for the touch of a woman).
- Reading stacks of books I normally never touch because of all the wifely duties I'm performing during normal business hours.
- Sitting around in my pajamas all day, watching VH1 Classics, carrying on sordid instant message conversations with strangers, and eating cereal for every meal.
I had to scratch that last item off my list when my husband graciously pointed out I sometimes do that even on the days he's around. Whatever. Geez. Like he's got a problem with me watching Winger videos and LOL'ing with strangers or something.
So, minus that last idea, I do try to find things to keep me busy when he's gone because, when it boils right down to it, I don't enjoy being home alone at night.
Because I'm a weenie ass.
"But you have two kids at home with you, Weenie Ass. You're not exactly home alone, you know."
I hear you, and thank you for reminding me. However, unless a potential home invader can be deterred by nonstop talk of all things Star Wars, Webkinz, basketball, and Hannah Montana, my personal safety and that of my two kids you reminded me of is pretty much screwed. The only chance I have of coming out of this type of scenario alive is if a 10 year old boy breaks in. And if that kid starts chanting, "One, two, Freddy's coming for you..." then screw it. I'm as good as freaked.
I'm good with being home alone up until the part where it gets dark outside. After I put the kids to bed, I come back downstairs to check and re-check the doors to make sure they're all locked, and peek out into the garage to ensure no one snuck in when we came home three hours earlier and is now laying in wait for the moment when they can tap me on the shoulder in the middle of the night and greet me with a hearty "I'm your boyfriend now, Nancy." Or a knife. Most likely a knife.
If the telephone rings, before saying "hello," I say a little prayer it's someone I know on the other end and not some breathy voiced ne'er do well telling me he wants to play a game or kindly suggesting I check the children. When the furnace kicks on and the house starts popping and creaking like an old man trying to roll his way out of bed in the morning, I'm prone to thoughts that involve Big Foot (just a little something rooted in childhood, if you have to know), and/or roving bands of hooligans trying to break into my house. God forbid I turn on the television to calm myself with some sitcom banter and come face to face with the mugshot of an escaped prisoner police are hunting down in a massive nationwide search. Because believe me, they may have escaped from Alaska, but I've little doubt in my stress-adled mind they've traveled undetected and are standing outside my little Midwest front door as the newscaster is telling me to consider my visitor armed and extremely dangerous.
My mother, who has lived alone for nearly 15 years, rolls her eyes and shakes her head when I tell her these fears. First, it takes me a moment to figure out if she's just rolling her eyes and shaking her head because that's pretty much how she communicates with me day to day, or because she believes I'm lame to think this way about being alone. She usually clears things up for me when she states, "You really think that? That of all the places a killer could go in this town, the first place they're gonna show up is your house? And by the way, you are aware we live in one of the safest, most crime free utopias known to man? Men who aren't killers?"
Fine. She's got me there. But tell that to Big Foot, or the shadow that looks like a hunchbacked, one armed, machete-wielding ogre, as it lumbers past my living room window, which is perfectly in line with where my head is, thus serving as bait. And make sure he grunts it to the person laying low under my minivan parked in the garage, who will in turn sneak into the house just as I drift off to sleep (a sleep wherein I pretend to already be dead to save a potential killer's time and me the pain of the inflicting death part). Tell them all that and maybe - MAYBE! - I'll feel better about being home alone at night. If she won't do that, I kindly ask her to leave her backdoor unlocked so we can take solace in her no crime zone of a house.
My husband leaves Monday morning for a week in Atlanta, so not only will I be alone for several nights, but now several states separate us in the event he must rush home and identify the bodies. I've known of this trip for months and have been bracing myself for them since, but now it's here and the furnace is popping and clanging.
At least, I'm hoping that's just the furnace. Because other than that, I think the only thing that may save me is my stellar ability to play dead. Just ask my husband when he comes home!
Labels: that and the fact my name isn't Nancy