TheWife turned 30something earlier this week. We celebrated with a festival of steak and red wine - as is her inclination - as well as a shower of modest gifts, including a couple of recommendations from imaginary friends (who'd better be right if they know what's good for them).
Anyhow. In recognition of her advancing years... I present 30something reasons to rejoice in TheWife.
1. I don't have a single male friend who doesn't think that I married up.
2. She is totally The Man at her job.
3. Two weeks ago, I had to explain to her what a MILF is.
5. When she was a child, her parents used to pull her out of school to go mining. Seriously.
6. Her first name doesn't fit her at all. It's an antiquated name -- the kind you'd associate with a great aunt or a lunch lady.
7. Which means that when people hear her name, they have a mental image that's completely blown out of the water the first time they meet her.
8. Which is what happened to me.
9. Want to reduce her to helpless tears? Show her somebody walking into a plate glass door, or unexpectedly tripping over their own feet. She's a sucker for slapstick.
10. She has an unerring gift in that she always gravitates toward the most expensive item in any store. It doesn't matter if no prices are posted -- she'll find and declare lovely the subtle crown jewel of their wares. She says it's an indication of good taste; I prefer to think that she's possessed by malevolent spirits.
11. When she planned our wedding - and make no mistake, she planned just about all of it herself - she decided that dancing wasn't important. Hence: we had a string quartet. Which turned our reception into less of a goofy party and more into a low-key, enjoyable afternoon with friends and family. And blueberry beer.
12. The first time I told her I loved her, it was because I misheard something she said and mistakenly thought she'd just said that she loved me. (Oops.)
14. We got engaged on top of a mountain. We hiked up, and after we summited we spent a few minutes looking out over the forest and water. Then I told her that I'd brought along a little something special for her, and to grab it out of the front pocket of my backpack. She reached in and pulled out a plastic baggie. "Gummy bears! Good call," she said. "Uh... that's not what I meant. Try again." She so reached in again, and this time pulled out a small box. Which had a ring inside.
15. She doesn't mind that I refer to this as "the time I propositioned her."
16. Back in olden times - before TheWife was even TheGirlfriend - I dragged a friend (in fact, one of the friends I'll be seeing in DC this weekend) to enjoy her flautist skillz in action. My friend and I spent the entire concert talking about TheGirlWhoWouldBecomeTheGirlfriend and strategies that I might enact to land her like a marlin. After the concert, she made her way back into the audience, and I got all excited thinking she was coming to see me. Nope: it turned out the white-haired old dude who had been sitting in the row in front of us the entire time was... wait for it... her father.
Yup. I really am that smooth.
17. She's really, honestly, truly excited that her big birthday gift is two sweet tickets to a Sox matinee game next month (as well as the accompanying day of hooky from work and lunch somewhere in the Back Bay). And I'm really, honestly, truly grateful that I've got a girl who's capable of appreciating that.
18. You know how some women get all "I'm aglow with new life and overflowing with love" when pregnant? Not TheWife. She wasn't miserable... she just didn't enjoy the whole pregnancy thing. Which I can totally respect.
19. Speaking of which: she rocked her way through not one but two - count 'em, two - rounds of modified bedrest while knocked up. In (relative) good humor.
(Thank you, Netflix.)
20. . I married a brunette. Then she started getting kind of... stripey. Then she got blonde. Then she got really blonde. Then I reminded her that I married a brunette. Now, a year and a half later, she's back in (brownish) black.
21. When we decided to move to west coast, she wanted to move to San Francisco; I wanted Seattle or Portland.
22. When, four years later, I wanted to move back to Boston... she let me win.
23. When we first moved to San Francisco - during the depths of the first Bush's recession - I struggled to find work. I ended up temping for more than a year before I found a full-time job. She was never less than completely supportive.
24. This was somewhat facilitated by the fact that when we first moved to San Francisco, she - at age 24 - was given the opportunity to open a new SF office by her Boston employer, who very quickly recognized her superstar qualities. She spent a year alone in an office suite, handling clients and building business, and eventually planted a stake in the ground for what is now the huge SF office of a huge national communications agency.
25. She left for the corporate side a couple of years later. Where she continued to rise and rise. I honestly don't understand half of what she's talking about when she talks about her job... but it's clear that she is terrifyingly good at it.
26. She looks great in a black dress.
27. She also looks great in a fleece vest and jeans. (Yes, we live in New England.)
28. She finds a sense of humor attractive.
30. Of all the wedding gifts we received, I think her favorite came from my best man (whom I'm staying with in DC this weekend), who gave us 5th row tickets to a Jazz/Celtics game. Given that this was in '99, that meant my best man's gift was the opportunity for my wife to spend close to 3 hours ogling Karl Malone up close.
31. I still can't believe she went out with me in the first place.
32. She looks prettier without makeup.
33. She sleeps with her head under her pillow.
34. Her car has a 6-CD changer, but she tends to focus on one thing that she loves -- listening to it over and over and over again. Right now, she's beating this into the ground.
35. I just realized that next week marks 15 years since we first starting being an "us."
36. That first night involved a moonlit drive, a beautiful, placid lake, and the sudden appearance of a lot of dead fish.
37. I was a lucky bastard to be with her then. And I'm a lucky bastard to be with her now.