When listing his weekly accomplishments doesn’t ease the internal struggle, I try a little fantasizing of my own. I tell myself that a forty-two year old man changing jerseys three times in one day in support of a pretend dream team is sexy. Sometimes I follow him up to our closet between games, and he lets me watch. Yeah, baby, the blue one. No, the other blue one. No, that other blue one, the one between your little league uniform and your high school letterman jacket. Oh, baby, these thirty-four jerseys taking up valuable real estate in our closet are hot!
Yeah, that’s my fantasy.
To be fair, it’s not like he doesn’t snap right out of it at the end of the evening each Sunday, because he does. Well, right after he does the stats and sends out the newsletter, complete with hilarious football quips, while watching Sports Center. Then, he snaps right back to being the guy I fell in love with, the guy who made me believe in love again, and the guy who continues to hold me after the regular hug has ended. So, why do I roll my eyes when I overhear him on the phone with one of his other fantasy league “owners,” sounding like Jerry McGuire trying to work a last minute trade with Bob Sugarman? I got a trade for you; I’ll show you the money if you show me the vodka.
Right now, you might be thinking that I am that spouse – male or female – for which nothing is ever good enough. Well, the truth is, nearly everything is always good enough, and my husband would be the first to say that I never complain. That is because my husband is a fantasy husband. He is my best friend. He is the guy who never leaves me hanging. He is the guy who sees a pile of clean towels in the laundry room and moves them so he can set his clean laundry down. Just kidding; he carries his clean laundry to his room and folds it and puts it away THE SAME DAY. Hell, he is a husband who actually knows where the laundry room is! (I know a woman who once hired a hooker to hang out in her laundry room, just to see if her husband could find it. Three days later she sent the lonely whore home.)
Maybe it has nothing to do with my husband. Maybe it’s my dad’s fault for punishing me with the same weekly clapping and yelling for my entire childhood – back when fantasy leaguers didn’t have computers. My dad and his friends had fifteen sheets of binder paper taped together that they scribbled their points down on as they happened. Our living room was filled with grown men screaming and jumping up and down. And that was just when my mom brought out the dips.
Perhaps what I need on Sundays is something that gets me out of the house and away from the mental triggers. Just so that I can fully relate to my husband, to see things from his perspective, it will be something that never gets boring, and that I won’t know the outcome of until it’s completely finished. It’ll chew up hours and hours of my time.
Interestingly enough, it rhymes with “ball.”