There is a member (choke..snort...giggle) of our family that we don't talk about much. She's much like the crazy, obnoxious, aunt who dresses in flashy clothes that you hate to invite for the holidays, but is kind of a necessary evil in your family.
On occasion you may have heard Chilly speak these phrases...
"Don't touch the paint!" "Christine is mad at you." "Christine needs a bath." "Christine wants some new stuff." and so on. You may have wondered, "Who the heck is Christine? Does Minnie (that would be me, the wife) know about her?" Sadly, I do know about Christine. Here's what I know...
A few years back, my husband called me from work, giggling like a school girl who just discovered her latest crush. "Hey Minnie! You're not going to believe what I just found!" Oh @$#%...it can't possibly be what I think it might be. When I didn't respond with the same enthusiasm he was sharing with me, he knew he was in trouble...BIG trouble. "That sounds lovely, dear," I said in my "why must you do this to me every two years" voice. Then the whining started and went on and on for what seemed like years (it was probably really only a few minutes, but the way he whines makes it feel like years...) "Come on, Minnie. You just don't find this kind of thing that often...pleeeeaaase???" "Fine, whatever!" I snapped and slammed down the phone. You may think that is a bit over-reactive on my behalf, but for those of you who know Chilly's history, you are probably surprised I didn't hire a hit man to take him out.
By now, you are thinking, what in the world could make this normally happy go lucky mommy snap like a twig in winter? An 05 Dodge Ram, that's what. Yep, a black truck with yellow stripes and bee logos...the Rumblebee. I know, I know...I can hear you snickering, trying very politely not to laugh. Rumble what? Bee...I said bee...you know...buzz buzz bee...I know...you want to crack up right about now...My husband wanted a new truck..again..for the 1000th time in 13 years.
For those of you not familiar to Chilly and his bizarre behaviors, he has this "thing" that happens every two years. He is overcome with an insatiable desire to buy a new vehicle. It's usually something a 16 year old would drive. (However, the big black 4 door Dodge Ram was actually a big boy truck...I'll give him props on that one.) So here we were again...having a meltdown over another truck. Oy!
One sunny afternoon, Christine arrived in all her splendor (oh, sorry if I spit coffee on your computer screen from my choking/laughing.) Chilly was like a proud papa bringing home his new baby girl from the hospital. "Isn't she beautiful?" he grinned. The kids and I just looked at each other trying to be supportive, but really trying to understand why Daddy was on the fast train to Looney Town. "Her name is Christine." Wow, I guess he skipped the train and caught a ride on a jet. "She's nice" I tried to smile. "Look at the bees on the back, kids! Aren't they cute?" We ooohed and aaahed our way around the truck and checked out the interior. More ooohing and aaahing. He was like a pig in...mud. (you thought I was gonna say something else, didn't you...hee hee hee..)
Over the years, Christine has had all sorts of accoutrement added here and there to increase her "lovliness". A while back, Chilly wanted to give her a "lift". He asked me what I thought and I replied, "It doesn't matter how fancy her high heels are, a hooker is still a hooker. The only difference is that she's wearing nicer shoes." He didn't find that amusing. (but I sure did...evil laugh...) More recently, he has decided to "lower" her. Apparently, he is hanging out in "gangsta" town in his free time. Whatever he decides, I am sure Christine will be grateful.
I will say that Christine did "step up" last spring to help me during a very dark time. Chilly (age 40) had a triple bypass (surprise!) in March and it was a not a fun time in our family history. I would go to the hospital and try to nurse him back to health with stories of Christine. I told him that she was so excited about her upcoming makeover that he had planned that he needed to hurry and get better. I almost had to bring photos in. He seemed to be improving until one evening when he actually "died". He coded and the staff was able to bring him back. He survived, we are happy to report, and is coming along slowly but surely. Later, I asked him if he remembered anything about that experience...were there angels, aliens, anything? He shared his experience with me (for which I am truly grateful, Chilly). I will keep that private, but will tell you there was a gentle tugging to come back to us. My children and I are glad that he did. Was it angels? Hmmm...I think it was Christine.....(maybe I'll take her to the car spa this weekend....)
There you have it...the good, the bad and the ugly about Christine. Are we amused by her? Yes. Do we find it bizarre that Daddy talks to her like she can actually understand the English language? Absolutely. Are we embarrased by the fact that the head of our family (wait, that's me..) I mean, the 2nd in command of our family drives a truck meant for a teenage boy? Are you kidding?! But overall, she does make him smile and give him a reason to live. So Christine, here's your "coming out" party. It's official...you're here to stay.