Did anyone see you?

Although he will deny it if you ask him directly, I embarrass my husband occasionally. When we first met, I was in college. I was a junior at George Mason University. One fall morning, I was rushing to class and, as parts of the campus were fairly woodsy, I slipped on a leaf-covered path and fell. My backpack went flying and my tights ripped as my knee hit the asphalt. When I got home that evening I told P what had happened. His response: "Oh, did anyone see you?"  Not, "Are you okay?" or "I'm sorry to hear that" but "Did anyone see you?" I am not sure how I could have embarrassed him in absentia, but apparently it was possible.

So, I have known since then that the dude does not want to stand out in a crowd. He'd prefer if I stay pretty low-key, too. When I got home on Friday and told him I had gotten a tattoo, he looked at my cream-colored camisole and the pink button-down I'd worn over it. My tattoo was hidden under a glob of vaseline and a bandage at that point. I watched his expression closely and saw the corners of his mouth turn downward. "Can someone see the tattoo through that shirt?" he asked.

Growing up, my family members made fun of each other mercilessly (but all in good fun). I mean, we elevated it to an art form. You had to be able to dish it out and take it. So for me, I don't get embarrassed that easily. Last night the three of us went to a hockey game. After the first period, a handful of inflated beach balls were let loose into the crowd. One of the balls was batted around pretty vigorously in our section. I was hit in the head not once but TWICE by the ball. I did manage to bat it away once. My lightning quick reflexes and athletic prowess are clearly unmatched. After the ball grazed my skull for the second time, my exasperated husband said, "You are supposed to HIT it." But you see, I didn't really care. I was busy sending a text to my friend Karen and taking a ball to the head wasn't all that traumatic to me.

As luck would have it, the annual circus cruelty extravaganza was taking place in the building next to the arena where the hockey game was held. As we walked across the parking lot, I spotted some protesters holding signs. I stopped to talk to one of them so I could find out what organization they represented (P kept walking so as to make it clear he is not acquainted with the crazy lady who talks to protesters). The lady gave me the name of their organization and told me how to find it on Facebook. I think I may get out there and protest with them next year. The circus blows. I'll never understand how abject cruelty gets billed as "family entertainment." Maybe that's what I'll put on my sign when I join the protest next year. That should put my husband over the edge. I can hear him now . . . "Will anyone see you?"  Well, the protesters stand on the busiest road in town so . . . probably.

Another thing that's making him nervous: the location of my tattoo. It's near my heart so also . . . perilously close to my left, um . . . armpit. After the game last night I joined my friend Karen (and her friend Tammy) for a drink downtown. Before I left the house I implied that I might show my tattoo (and, by extension, part of my left bazoom) to a few random strangers and I could tell that part of him was worried that I might just do it. For the record, I only showed it to the bartender.

I'm generally pretty introverted so he doesn't have to worry about me singing at open mike nights or walking around at the state fair in a tube top and daisy dukes. But if there's something that's important to me, I'm not afraid to stir up a little shit. When we were on our honeymoon in Myrtle Beach, we stopped at a toy store. We were having the time our lives - we had so much fun that week. Anyway, as I was checking out, the cashier said something about how I had the whitest skin she had ever seen. At first I just let it go and walked back out into the mall. Then I thought better of it. I turned on my heel, walked back to the store, and verbally shredded her. My husband just stood there with a look on his face that seemed to say, "Oh God, what have I married?"

I don't know why he's so worried about me and the possibility that I might embarrass him, though. At the game last night, his kid is the one who threw off her coat so that she could fling herself into the aisle in order to (vigorously and enthusiastically) do the YMCA dance. She's the real loose cannon around here.

Oh dear God, you can see the edge of it. WHAT WILL PEOPLE SAY?


Sam said…
But what did you say to the cashier in Myrtle Beach?? I'm so curious!

This is a fun post. I'm definitely a combination--extroverted, yet completely self-conscious. If I slipped and fell, my only concern would be who saw.
Lisa said…
Ok, I have no idea about the tattoo, but you are so beautiful! :)
The Lovely One said…
I saw the tattoo on Facebook and I love it! And I must say, you are very brave for not telling your husband ahead of time!

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