What’s the Big Deal?

This post also appeared on www.capecodonline.com/blogs in the opinion section of the Cape Cod Times, a division of Ottaway Newspapers, Inc.

I know lately it seems I’ve been all up in arms with moms and women in general. But you’ll be happy to know that in this particular post…I’m still pissed off!

So rewind to Tuesday night. Actually, rewind a little farther. You see, I don’t usually have the time to watch TV shows live. So I wait until they come out on Netflix and then I order them so I don’t have to put up with the waiting or the commercials. Currently, I’m engrossed in the TV show “Lost.” And when I really get into something, I devour it rapidly. Like a fat kid to a cupcake. I’ll stay up into the wee hours of the morning vowing to watch “just one more episode” until all of a sudden the sun has risen.

So on Tuesday night I realized the remainder of Season 2 of Lost would not be arriving from Netflix in time for my day off yesterday. So while we were out on Tuesday night in North Falmouth, I asked MJ if we could stop by Blockbuster so I could rent the remaining Season 2 DVDs and change my Netflix to start Season 3 later this week. Well what I thought was an innocuous request was met with complete attitude from my wife.

“Can’t you order it on Netflix?” she asked.
I explained my predicament and that I just wanted Season 2 for my day off.
“So you’re going to pay for it at Blockbuster instead of just waiting a couple of days?”

Well excuse me!! I can’t believe my own audacity at wanting to spend $10 to rent some frickin DVDs on my day off. I’m sorry, but it just doesn’t seem like too much to ask. A few DVDs to watch in between taking care of Will. That’s it. That’s all I was asking for. But when I argued with MJ, I was met with the all-too-familiar tactical response that is constantly thrown out there by women:

“Fine, do whatever you want.”

This is a complete trap! If I go and pick up the DVDs she’s pissed off at me. But if I don’t go then she gets to say “Why are you mad? I told you you could do whatever you want.” It’s an impossible situation.

So I gave her the silent treatment and drove straight past the video store. Then she got even more upset, telling me to just go and get them. But at this point, there was no chance I was going to cave in to her. I told her I’d go and get them without her on Wednesday so I wouldn’t inconvenience her. This seemed to upset her even more and we ended up in a screaming match on the highway. Then she told me she had changed her mind and she wanted me to get them because that way I would stay home, instead of driving Will all over the Cape on my day off and wasting gas. Real nice, throw a cheap shot at me because I’m antsy at home and like to take my son to different places. And the cherry on top of this bitchy sundae? She said “Well I just assumed you’d wait for me and we’d watch it together.”

Now please keep in mind, MJ is not a TV watcher. She lays on the couch and falls asleep usually before making it through even 30 minutes of programming. So the notion that we were watching this together is patently untrue. I was watching it while she was asleep on the couch and drooling!

The point is, none of it had to happen. I just don’t understand why she’d pick a fight over something so small. All I wanted to do was watch my DVDs. It wasn’t going to affect her at all, yet she chose to give me crap about it and make a mountain out of a molehill.

But it did give me great satisfaction yesterday when she came home from work, as Will was asleep and I had my feet kicked up on the coffee table watching my Blockbuster Lost DVDs. At this point I’m so irritated I’m thinking about renting the remainder from Blockbuster just out of spite.

Why can’t some women learn to pick their battles a little more discerningly?

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28 thoughts on “What’s the Big Deal?

  1. Whoa, Buddy. Hope the wife doesn’t read this. I hate it when my wife says “Fine. Do whatever you want.” There is no way out of the situation then.

  2. My guess is she’s upset about something else and taking it out on you…totally not fair…and you can’t ask her, because then she’ll get upset that she was being unfair. I know it’s not fair that she has excuses to be upset and hormonal all the time but it sounds like something I would have done because I was unhappy about something.

    Maybe she’s bored with going to work and doing the same old things all the time and was hoping you’d do something “with” her or as a family but felt too guilty to mention it?

    I dunno…just seems to me there must be a reason behind it…maybe you could try and find out by saying “Does it bother you that I am into this series of “Lost”? “Is there something you’d like to do to relax and unwind?”
    Communicate before it gets heated…thats always the key in these situations.

  3. Ah, the folly of youth!

    You remain under the mistaken impression that somehow there is a way that you can “win” the fight, or that you will be proven “right”. What you apparently have not yet learned is that when fighting with your wife, there is no “winning” or “right” as far as you are concerned.

    Even if you prove her wrong, or demonstrate beyond any form of plausible deniability that your position is correct and hers is ioncorrect – you still lose. Wives are not motivated by locic or fairness. The rules in these bitter engagements are flexible and fluid, changing as the needs of the female half changes

    If you are wrong – you will pay for being wrong. If you are right – you will pay for being right. There is no winning – there are only degrees of losing.

    Thus endeth the lesson…

  4. If your wife is anything like me she probably was hoping you were going to clean the house and do some laundry on your day off rather than watch TV because that’s what she has to do when she’s “off.” My husband and I have had this same argument many times until we split the household chores and made sure we both did some work and something fun on each of our days off.

  5. Now that I think of it…I agree with Erica…

    If you’re going to take time off to watch DVD’s at least include her to put her feet up too…

    I was just thinking I wish I had included that part…why would i be mad…probably because there’s things that need to be done that NEVER have enough time for…Also, when she’s home, she probably does more than watch Will, i.e. laundry, dishes, straightening…

    I’m not saying you don’t…I’m ust wondering if thats where she’s coming from.

  6. If he’s going to take time off to watch DVD’s at least include her? She’s at work! If she’s not home, how is he supposed to include her?

    Let’s be realistic, read this again. It has nothing to do with cleaning the house, doing the laundry, or doing something with(out) her. It has to do with spending money on the DVD’s instead of waiting a couple of days to get them for no additional money.

    My guess is that she’s thinking why would you pay for dvd’s when you already pay for netflix. Understandable. He’s thinking I want them now because I have time to watch them now and I’ll pay the little extra. Also understandable.

    I don’t see how everyone leaps to the logic that she doesn’t get “off” time without household chores, so he should do more instead of watch tv. I don’t see how any of this stuff has anything to do with this particular post.

  7. Mr. Eko…hahahaha! Very nice.

    The chores are not the issue. Even yesterday I did some of the dishes, cleaned up the living room a little, did some “Tummy Time” with Will and took out the trash. It’s not like I was being some shiftless layabout.

  8. Unlike some people who continuously kiss your butt, I know you are a self centered bastard. MAYBE if you helped out around the house on your day off, maybe if you didn’t waste extra money ie blockbuster when you have Netflix (oh wait YOU are the bread winner in the family right…)maybe if you tried to fix something. Is it still to hot for the baby to nurse because you can’t fix the AC? Does the back porch still look like Sanford and Sons because you need a break from your physically demanding job? I understand needing a break but didn’t you just go out with the guys? AS far as “something so small” ever heard of the straw that broke the camels back? Well how much crap do you expect her to put up with before she snaps? She is concerned with reality; money, the increasing price of everything,and the house being sanitary for your son. All you are concerned with is sex, a night out with the guys, and sitting on the couch watching tv. Got news for you YOU ARE NOT IN COLLEGE ANYMORE.

  9. Whoa, whoa, whoa there AL! You’re way off base. But I’ll be happy to address all the mistakes you made.

    1) The AC was on yesterday and the temperature was just fine. It still works, we just have a newer one we’re going to put in.

    2) The back porch has a sleeper sofa, a chair and a grill on it. Even though I’ve been working out, I cannot lift a sleeper sofa by myself. And even if I could, I don’t have a truck to put it in. My friend does, but he has kids as well and seeing as how I opted to work on the weekend in order to take care of my son, time is scarce.

    3) The breadwinner comment is funny because it was my wife who convinced me to leave a lucrative job and go back to journalism. Had I stayed where I was I would be the breadwinner. But I would also be in sales which means I’d be miserable and probably divorced.

    4) I know I’m not in college anymore. That was clear when I was TAKING CARE OF MY SON yesterday, which included playing with him and reading to him. Wanting to watch some DVDs while he’s asleep and I have the day off is not lazy.

    I’m not sure what’s in the air down in N. Carolina, but I can only assume there’s some PSYCHOTIC CRAZY AIR POLLUTION that’s poisoning your mind and causing you to spew forth half-truths and insults. Or are you in a bad mood because somebody shot your goat too?

  10. Self centered bastard? That mmight be a little strong – after all, I can vouch for your parentage. See? All because you wanted to watch a DVD, now everything you do is questioned? Do me favor – apologize and move on. In fact, every day when you come home, just walk in and say “Hi – I’m home – I’m sorry!” It still won’t keep you out of trouble, but it’s a start.

  11. Mr. Eko and Aaron…how little you know about women! Just because she SAID it was the money (or atleast that’s how HE HEARD it) doesn’t mean that’s what it IS, first of all. And secondly, I didn’t say it WAS that way, I suggested that at MY house it would be that way, So chill out! By the way Aaron, “some dishes” and cleaning “a little” wouldn’t get you far in my house- good thing you don’t live with me!

  12. This is a prime example of how men do nothing wrong, yet still end up in the dog house.

    To recap: I am gainfully employed working 40+ hours a week. I gave up my Saturday nights so that I could be with my son for a day during the week to avoid higher day care costs. I do the dishes, take out the trash, pick up around the house, occasionally cook dinner, walk the dogs 100 percent of the time, read to my child, play with my child, fixed up the entire nursery to my wife’s liking and laid the laminate hardwood floors in our living room.

    I tell my wife how beautiful she is each and every day and I offer to watch Will so she can run errands, go to the gym, go out with friends, etc whenever she needs to.

    I do all this, yet I get lambasted on this board. And why? Because I wanted to rent a movie on my day off!

    Do I understand women? Not at all. And to that I say THANK GOD because if I actually understood why I’m being trashed today, my head would explode from the complete lack of reason.

    Mr. Eko, I think it’s time to get off this crazy island!

  13. WOW Ok you are right something is wrong with the air quality here. Theoldguy My sincere apologies he inherited your gift to write. I wasn’t questioning his parentage. I think the world of your offspring. I meant it in the most affectionate manner possible. I am sorry.

  14. Al –

    You never have to apologize to me! Love ya! Obviously, this is all HIS fault! 🙂

  15. There is no doubt you are a good dad…and that you’ve made sacrificies for Will. We all do it for our kids. But be glad you don’t understand us Aaron…if you did we’d have nothing fun left to do!

  16. Wow…I see the other side of things are stirring.

    This is why i was thinking there some “something else” in the mix. Maybe if she could communicate her feelings to you it would be helpful to you both so you could see BOTH sides. Maybe her priorities are different than yours…hey I cherish a few episodes of my favorite show here and there and my husband does 60+ hours a week, cooks, cleans, takes care of me and my son…and works overtime on the weekends, to afford the house and the only time he’s asked to do something is with me…his priorities are different than yours. But that doesn’t make anything wrong…just a different opinion.

    I think listening needs to be done…talking and listening, no heated discussions or arguments necessary…it takes time to learn how to do that and a child is the best reason. A home where MOm and Dad put each other first, is a home where a child is happy. And if you put her first, she’ll do the same…and everyone ends up happy. I’m not an expert at this we just figured it out through trial and error…and I have a lot to work on still as I’ve been in the spoiled spot light throughout this pregnancy. Seems like with you letting her drink and you being the designated driver came back to you when she arranged a night with Alex and Co…

    And for the record, I know you do a lot…just maybe you need to communicate your mental breaks ahead of time.

  17. Wow, you people are nuts. I love it. This blog just became a daily ritual. Here’s my 2 cents:

    Aaron, stop listening to The Old Guy. I know this might go without saying, but just in case.

    And you want to know how these things usually get so out of control? Aaron keeps gasoline in his fire extinguisher. His answer to an inexplicably snippy wife? “The silent treatment and [drive] straight past the video store.” Instantly whatever might have been the problem gets put aside, and now the problem is his attitude. Dumbass.

    Of course, there’s an upside. Those little problems that start these things? The ones that build up over time when ignored and kill couples in some ridicules fight over silverware? Those little time bombs get exploded along with everything else. Now all they have to deal with is the fight aftermath and they’re on their merry way.

    It seems to work for them. What can you say, the Gouveias are nothing if not great theater. That’s one of the reasons we love ‘em so much.

  18. Relationship advice from Bear????

    Good idea – then you can call Barry Bonds for ethics advice and Paris Hilton for marriage counseling. They are all equally adept at their respective subjects!

    Save time – apologize and move on. Fight the fights you can win.

  19. Wow, this is some real Dr. phil shit going on right now.

    I hate to disappoint, but there are no deeper issues here. I wanted to watch a video and I wanted to do it sooner than later. She wanted me to wait because she saw it as impetuous and unnecessary. That’s it folks. Done and done.

    Nothing to do with chores, breadwinner status, communication or all the other happy horseshit some of you are talking about. In fact, we’re both over it. The Bear is actually correct in that we argue, blow it out and then move on. We have a happy marriage, and that happy marriage includes some fighting. Some yelling. Some arguing. And in fact if I didn’t have this, there would be no marriage.

    Sometimes I ask for advice in my posts. However, this was not one of those times. I already know how to make a marriage work and we’re doing just fine. My priorities are right where they need to be. I think some people need to take a step back and stop overanalyzing everything as if they have a degree in clinical psychology for God’s sake.


  20. Note: The title of your blog is “What’s the big deal?”

    I think thats where everyone was coming from…just an idea though…

  21. Okay, I always said I would never read his blogs or do a post, but when Aaron and my best friend call and tell me that they of all people are at odds, it is time for me to read and put up a post. After, I read all the things that were being said, I really felt the needed to post.
    First, of all the fight started because I thought it was ridicules that he wanted to waste money of the DVD’s. Money is already tight because of the economic down fall and the cost of goods doubling in the last 6 month it puts a strain on many things in everyone’s house especially ours.
    Since I have had Will I don’t go out and buy foolish things because there are other things that need to buy formula, diapers, day care and dog/cat food for our other 4 legged babies.
    When he asked to get the DVD’s all I could think about was WOW! “That is like 2 gallons of milk and a bottle of OJ, and I don’t go out and spend money on my day off. I go grocery shopping or to my families house down the street.” “Why would he want to spend money?”
    I have always been the one that does the finances in the house, so my thought is always on money and how not to spend it. If I spend money it is to fix the house, buy clothes or get things we need (Do not get me wrong, before Will and the economic down turn I spend money like water).
    Now all that I think about is how can I provide for my family and pay for college.
    Yes, that may seem a little extreme because Will is 3 months old, but understand what I see everyday and what money does to people. I see it destroy families and eats peoples’ souls.
    Aaron and I never talk about money. When we started dating it was never discussed and it is not discussed now. So people may think it is bad, but it works for us. We realized long ago that money is the root of all evil! By having this fight it just proves that money is truly EVIL!!!!

  22. Oh Wifey Wife Wife…I love you.

    But did you forget about your morning coffee? Those charges at Dunkin Donuts when you can make your own ice coffee at home for free? Or what about the times when the mysterious Burger King gnomes steal your debit card and treat themselves to lunch with The King? Are these not frivolous expenses too? Methinks they are.

    I can’t believe you actually posted. I’m impressed! =)

  23. Honestly, if you guys don’t turn this blog into a sitcom, it’d be a huge waste!

    We need something to replace the series of Everyone loves Raymond…I’d rent those DVD’s at Blockbuster AND Netflicks, and on my way home I’d get the iced coffee and a bagel:)

    You should talk to Scott Fleichman…he’s got connections with CBS comedy:)

  24. Actually, the quote is, “the LOVE of Money is the root of all evil” However, don’t you think that each of you should have your own spending money that you can do what you want with and not have to report back to the other about??? My husband and I each have spending money. weekly, we each take an equal amount for us to spend, however we want. I try not to bash him, even though recently he drove to Hingham to buy SOCKS. Yes HINGHAM for SOCKS. it’s his money, it’s his gas, his choice. Whatever! I am the more money wise person, but I let him do what he wants. he works hard, he can have what he wants, I make sure WE have what we NEED. I can’t believe a full blown screaming match came out of a request for $10.00. Was it worth it? all the bad feelings, and this whole entire blog, for $10.00??? sure, it would have been cheaper to just wait from NetFlix, and maybe that is what you (MJ) would have done (I would have waited too) but the bigger question is … Was it worth it???

  25. Here is the truth about women. They know what they want, but purposely do not tell us. They know how they feel, but purposely do not tell us. It is a twisted game to see how much we care, and we do. But, there are times where we lose it and Aaron’s Netflix incident is the result.

    I wish I were Will right now. Wake up, play, take a crap and someone cleans up after me, and boobie time. Good times!

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