This past weekend, I mowed the lawn in preparation for the torrential rainstorm that propelled another grass growth spurt. I don’t mind mowing. However, the pre-mowing ritual is getting longer. With autumn descending, it includes picking up sticks, raking up acorns and chasing toads out of the way.
However, during this process I had an epiphany. Or maybe her name was Tiffany. At any rate, a pint-sized neighbor ambled by and, during the course of our conversation, informed me that I could save myself the trouble of mowing a lawn if I got myself a boyfriend. If she were an adult, I would have been aghast at her mercenary heart. (And if she were one of the Middle School Mafia, I would have pelted her with sticks, acorns, and possibly toads.)
However, a child’s perspective is simultaneously amusing and enlightening. Why not approach dating like a job interview? Lord knows it can’t hurt. In fact, maybe this would be a way to focus on what’s really important in a relationship: House maintenance.
Picture the following scenarios, and it’s easy to see who’s the best boyfriend:
Charming Fellow #1: Baby, you say we ‘need to talk.’ (does air-quotes) If this is about that stripper at my bro’s bachelor party, well, it was just one time.
Me: No. And it’s not about the married dame at your company party, either. Sheesh! She kept playing footsie with me under the table.
CF#1: She was so drunk she didn’t realize I don’t wear nylons and a skirt.
Me: At least not at work.
CF#1: Babe, I can change…
Me: Oh, I don’t doubt that you’ll be changing. Diaper changing, if what your ex-girlfriend says is true.
CF#1: My ex who leaves dead squirrels on your porch?
Me: No, the one with the hair. But never mind that. None of them have anything to do with this break-up.
CF#1: No? Than what is it?
Me: You ran over my daylilies and then you tried to cover it up with mulch. I can’t trust you anymore.
Charming Fellow #2: We’ve been dating for a month now, and I’d like to get to know you better. If you know what I mean.
Me: I think I do. Is your mind in the gutter?
Me: Great! (jumps up) I’ll get the ladder!
CF#2: Uh, ladder?
Me: A shorty like you can’t reach the gutters on a stepstool.
CF#2: Are you talking about your rain gutt…. Wait, did you just call me “shorty”?
Charming Fellow #3: I’ll be honest: I don’t know if I’m good enough for you. I mean, you say you don’t mind my prison record and you think my old gang tattoos are adorable, but when push comes to shove, most girls want someone successful. My last girlfriend said she couldn’t stay with a guy who doesn’t have ambition. She said the last straw was when she wanted to go to Vegas for her sister’s destination wedding, but I just couldn’t do it.
Me: Didn’t have the money?
CF#3: I did, but I wanted to buy a snowplow for my truck.
Me: Talk about messed up priorities.
CF#3: Yeah. I shoulda took her to Vegas.
Me: I’m talking about her.
CF#3 (incredulous): Really? I mean… Yeah, you’re right. She ran off with my lawyer.
Me: What sort of woman chooses a lawyer over a man with a snowplow? (pause) Was she on drugs?