Wallpaper [ 2005-08-30, 7:21 p.m. ]

My husband has a new favorite game to play, and it is called Change The Wallpaper On The Computer Every Day To Different Lesbian Porn Pictures. He is very good at it. Sometimes the lesbians are young, sometimes older, sometimes the ethnicities are mixed up, and sometimes he goes for milk-and-cookies blondes. He normally prefers pictures with boobies and tongues, but sometimes will chose, er...more creative poses. Occasionally, there is an EXTREME CLOSE-UP, and once, there was even a man in the mix. I usually change the wallpaper back to something I prefer, like a photo of our dog or a picture from our vacation, or the NYC skyline. On Thursday night I turned on the computer and it was a Naughty Nurse tableau, which I replaced with a picture of Mark Ruffalo. On Friday, Kent left for a weekend in Ohio and Caroline came up to visit, and when I turned on the computer the wallpaper was set to George Clooney and Brad Pitt in Ocean's 11, which as anyone who knows my husband can attest is his TRUE porn. He has a wicked man crush on the entire cast. Except the old guys. And maybe the Chinese acrobat. And the techie. But George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon make my husband very, very happy, in a way that almost disturbs me.

He swears he just likes looking at their clothes.

He has been making me laugh lately, which is much better than making me cry, yell or throw things. He made me laugh last week when he painted the bathroom. The painting itself was not funny at all -- white, with mildew repellent. Not funny at all. But, the way in which he strutted around as if he'd DISCOVERED FIRE after painting the bathroom was very amusing. His mom said, WOW I AM SO IMPRESSED and fawned all over him and I rolled my eyes because I painted the kitchen and bedroom - actual colors, even! - and barely anyone even noticed.

But Kent painted white over white in a 4' by 6' room and do not think FOR AN INSTANT that doing so is anything less that amazing.

We've had a good summer. Winter was long and by the end, I occasionally found myself looking at him, as we sat inside for lack of anything better to do, thinking, I know I am supposed to love you but right now I kind of want to throw something at your head you are always here please give me some space and for the love of all things holy must you pull the chair up to the coffee table and eat hunched over like a fucking caveman?

But the summer has been good. We have laughed and played and even taken a road trip without getting in any fights, except when we were trying to get back on the highway and I was clearly telling Kent how and he was apparently wearing a blindfold as well as earplugs and got us all turned around. Still, it's been a good summer and I am sad to see it end.

Except that I really, really want to be able to straighten my hair again.

For our last official summer weekend, Kent and I are going to see my family in California. My brother and his fiancée are coming up from LA and my friend Jay is coming from Florida and my sister in law and her boyfriend are coming from North Carolina and I'm not sure why I had the brilliant idea to invite her but she accepted and is coming and that makes my stomach cramp a little when I think about so we'll just move on and hope that she doesn't try to smother me in my sleep or something more subversive, like slipping me Imodium a la the little kid on Weeds.

This summer flew by. I remember shivering in May and thinking it would never get warm. It got warm. And even though this coming weekend is the official close to summer, I like to think that Emilie and Caroline and Brit and I toasted goodbye to the hot and hazy days this past weekend. After all, I started this summer with them.

(And for those of you who remember :)

Caroline came into town on Friday and we had lunch and bought shoes and then ate dessert before dinner and had wine and more wine and then pizza and we went to a bar where I tried to stay awake while she and her friend Patrick planned world domination via reality television. The next day we met Emilie for brunch on lower Fifth Avenue and I ate seventy million biscuits. And after biscuits and brunch and Bloody Marys, I wanted to shop but not, under any circumstance, try on PANTS. Divine intervention prevailed, as we stumbled into (literally, as Emilie is injured) a shoe store featuring a THREE PAIR FOR $75 SALE. THREE PAIR. $75 DOLLARS. Of real, Made in Italy shoes that are not plastic or bedazzled! We left twenty minutes later with SIX pair between the three of us, surely earning at least a nomination for the Shopping Hall of Fame, if not an actual berth.

Brit popped over to my apartment later with a bottle of wine and we accessorized and went to a play, then to dinner, hoping to spot a celebrity or two. The good and bad was that WE were the celebrities, as far as the other patrons were concerned. I like to pretend that other diners were wondering who we are, but I am not sure we fooled anyone and would it kill Gwyneth to have dinner next to me, just once? I know she is macrobiotic and all, but come on! Have some steak frites and stay a while! But since we were hungry, tired and convinced that other people thought we were famous, we decided to be especially loud and obnoxious and I can't say for sure but I am pretty sure that sorority Rush songs were heard in the far corners of a very noisy bistro. (Interesting discovery: at least four houses have a Rush song to the tune of Edelweiss.) Hannah confirmed this when we called her, in LA, and sang more songs. Because we are so chic.

What we did not do was make out with Mark Ruffalo, Peter Sarsgaard, or Clive Owen. Which is too bad, because we really, really wanted to do those things. We also did not talk to or about our husbands much. I got to spend a weekend with my parallel universe self, who lives with girlfriends and doesn't take the garbage out but signs her own credit card slips at restaurants. She was not half bad.

Kent came home on Sunday night and I was happy to see him. Very happy, until I came home from my book club and found him sitting on the floor with our computer's CPU open and its guts spilling out all around him.

Are you trying to change the wallpaper again, I asked him. He threw a cardboard box at me.

No, he was trying to replace the fan compressor, and in doing so, he broke the Pentium chip and the whole computer is DEAD it's DEAD I can't use it because it's DEAD.

(When he called Dell tech support for the THIRD TIME, the nice tech support guy asked what Kent did, and when Kent told him said, "Oh. That is like you broke the heart of your computer.")

This was when I stopped finding him cute and funny and started getting pissed, especially at the point where he shrugged his shoulders and said, Yup, It's broken, and then huddled over his own shiny laptop greedily, making me beg to check my email.

Computer is still broken. Laptop is still being hoarded. Girlfriends are still back at their own homes and summer is still ending. Husband had better be REALLY FREAKING FUNNY tonight when I get home, or I might post an incriminating picture of him on the internet, to serve as someone else’s wallpaper.

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