Every time we walk past that spot, I smile, thinking of the time, thirty years ago, the pickup truck we borrowed to get a load of manure broke down right there, and I sat in the cab as Dave popped the hood, had a look inside, and walked into the business establishment ten feet away. Five seconds later he was back out again with a fire extinguisher, and I shot out of the truck like a Heimliched meatwad, visualizing the tremendous explosion, the ball of flame, and the ensuing rain of Murr fragments mingled with aerosolized cow shit. I mean, come on. I’ve seen the movies.
“It was just a small fire on a wire. It had burned itself out by the time I got back. I just didn’t want to do any damage to Scott’s truck. I would never,” Dave says, with a bit of tension in his voice, every time I bring it up, “endanger you in any way.”
And that is probably true. After all, the man has made dinner for me virtually every night for forty years, and if he’d been at all interested in doing me harm, he’s had plenty of opportunity. But he never poisoned me, except that once, and he didn’t feel so hot then, either.
So I’m sure he had assessed the situation correctly and I was never going to perish in a spectacular and yet comedic fashion that would have lived on in video to this day. But I can’t say his record for this sort of thing is entirely spotless.
There was that stormy night I lay awake listening to a gale-force wind slam into the thin old window directly over our bed. “Wake up,” I said. “I think that window’s going to come in on us.”
It’s hard to say if Dave woke up all the way. His mumbling seemed designed to maintain unconsciousness. “That window has been there for seventy years,” he slurred between snores. “It isn’t going anywhere.”
I’m easily comforted. His word was good enough for me, and besides, it made sense. Two seconds later an especially mighty gust hit the south side of the house and Dave launched himself horizontally into the air and on top of me like one of those safes that’s always falling out of buildings in the cartoons, to shield me from broken glass, and a minute later, when I could get my chest going up and down again, I thought it was sort of sweet. Plus it was an acknowledgement that I might have had a valid concern. To be fair, he was also correct about the window, which was still sound.
Then there was the time I broadsided a deer with my Subaru, and while the deer sprang up and bounded off to die courteously somewhere else, my hood was so crumpled that it wouldn’t shut. Dave tied it down tight with the only thing we had, a bungee cord, and we took off again. Later, at highway speeds, I looked nervously at the hood bouncing around with the wind getting under it, and said “I don’t like the looks of that. Do you think we should pull over and do something about it?” and Dave said “It’s fine. It’s not going anywhere.” BLAM.
Really, it’s not often you get vindicated that fast. There we were doing sixty on the highway and the hood whacketed open and hit the windshield and folded back over the top of the car and we had to stick our heads out the windows to locate the shoulder, where we sat for a few trembly minutes, and Dave said “wire might be a better idea.”
As long as it’s not on fire.
My husband is at the opposite end of the worry spectrum. If I'm a little late coming home from running errands, he greets me with "I was starting to worry…" when I come home. If I'm really running late, he calls me, which necessitates my pulling over to the shoulder, fishing the phone out of my purse, and losing even more time. The guy does his own brakes, but refuses to do mine because he's afraid of making a mistake. It's adorable, but can be somewhat exasperating as well.
"I love that you care. Could you care a little less?"
And to make matters worse, I bet the deer didn't have collision insurance, right?
It's too bad you didn't get to actually witness the cow manure truck explosion (from a safe distance). I know it would have been a mess, but the resulting blog post would have made it all worthwhile.
No, but the deer was an uninsured motorist. I had to fill out two collision reports. The first one had a diagram of Vehicle 1 (mine) and Vehicle 2 (deer). The second had Vehicle 1 (mine) and Vehicle 2 (mine).
Well, my husband slept through every crying baby and ill child, but did wake up when we lived in Indonesia to get us our of rather odd concrete built house during an earthquake.
I'm not 100% sure Dave would wake up for an earthquake. He'd probably put it down to flatulence.
Not even Super Dave is right 100% of the time. But I can see he's a very good back up plan.
Now, "backing up" we could have done.
Ah, this reminds me of one night when Martha saved my life. She dreamt that a huge chandelier suspended above us had snapped its chain and was plummeting toward me, and she flung herself on top of me to save me. It was an invigorating way to wake up, and very touching, once my heart rate came down a bit.
I think it's sweet. But where's that sleep paralysis when you really need it?
Clearly Dave was getting too accustomed to being right, and if it took a scare like that to bring him down a peg, well, karma doesn't care that you had to suffer a bit, too. Good lord, what a close call.
Love the last photo. Dave's arms lovingly encircling your … NECK!
Apparently that is a very comfortable position for him.
Something I have done to a cat or two.
Hooray for caring.
And forty years cooking is caring in capitals…
A friend of mine once said, matter-of-factly, that cooking is the nicest thing you can do for somebody. I tend to agree. I should be nicer.
Be grateful you don't have a hatch-back vehicle as Dave might inadvertently slam the hatch shut….while you're still getting your groceries out of the back.
I have a hatchback vehicle.
Then be careful…
….and when does Murr get groceries….?
Another good point.
Dave sounds like a hero! *Romantic sigh* Wonder if he would take a bullet for you? Betcha he would! Was he a veteran??
Yeah, he probably would, without thinking about it, and no, he wasn't a vet. He tried to be a conscientious objector in Vietnam era but did not have the Religious Credentials to back him up. And then he flunked the physical. Go figure.
Yeah, my brother was 4F too, because of severe scoliosis, so my parents finally had reason to be thankful.
The Board works in mysterious ways.
I love you two.
Cool! We're coming to stay.
This was a good one, Murr.
Thanks! A bit of a grab-bag.
In Alaska we lived on a granite outcrop high over the Eagle River. 2:00 a.m. temblors were regular winter fare, especially when it was more than 25 degrees below freezing. I would be down the stairs, standing by the boot box at the front door, with 5 quilts, two kids and a poodle within 5 seconds of the first strong shake. And the Fighter Pilot upstairs in bed would mumble, "It'll stop." It always did, but it would take me a couple of hours each time to dissipate the adrenalin and I got more and more pissed every time. Eventually we had to move to the South for Bill's health.
I love this story. I once woke Dave up because the house next door was on fire, and it was only a few yards away. I grabbed the dog and was all the way outside before I noticed he wasn't coming. Sound asleep. I smacked him again and he said "I saw the fire trucks were out there. What more could I do?"
Good for you two. I remember when Cary and I lived over in NW, 1811 NW Couch, that red building. We had the upper left apt, on the 5th or 6th floor, whichever. We wondered then what would become of us, and later living out in Boring and commuting in to downtow in 45 minutes in the am.
Now she's gone, I live in Montana, it's winter, and I wonder.
Now you've got us wondering.
That bit with the car hood was scary. I was driving here in town once when the hood of the car ahead of me flipped up, broke off at the hinges, and cartwheeled through the air, just missing the car next to me before slamming onto the road. If it had gone through somebody's windshield, it probably would have killed them. I think of that whenever I see a car with the hood wired or bungeed shut, and keep my distance.
The good news is, if you ARE following such a car, and the hood snaps off and comes toward you, if you're texting at the time, you'll never know what hit you.
I'm relieved the truck didn't explode and send Murr fragments in all directions. How would a reporter describe that tactfully in a headline?
Greater Admurration in the Hood
Dave, He has made dinner for you for forty years – what a wuss! I have made dinner for my wife for only thirty-five years.
Clearly, you are more of a Man.
Clearly Dave’s priorities are spot on (-:
"SAVE THE TRUCK! SAVE THE TRUCK! uhh…where's my wife?"
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