When Brian and I met, he wasn’t the pseudo-techno-nerd that he is today.* Nope, back then he sold suits for a living and, as a suit salesman, he wore a suit to work every day. My throat is sore from the snorting that comes with the memory of him, all buttoned up in his silly suits and ties everyday, but back then? All normal.
Back then too? We had security gates on all our doors, so we never locked the doors themselves and, in fact, neither of us carried keys to the doors.
When he was a seller of men’s suits, Brian worked weekends and on this particular Saturday, the kids and I went out for the day with one of my friends and her kids, all of us in her minivan. I don’t remember what we did, but I’m sure a fabulous time was had by all. What I was doing? Not germane to this discussion.
Meantime, Brian went home from work, sick. Like gastrointestinal sick. Like vomiting and diarrhea sick. Like all you want to do is get into the house and get cozy with the toilet sick.
He went home and unlocked the front security gate, but what’s this? The doorknob wouldn’t turn. One of the kids had played with the knob and locked it, this lock to which no one carried a key.
Since I had gone in my friend’s car and mine was still in the driveway, Brian thought I was home. He started by ringing the bell and knocking on the door. When he got no answer, he rang and knocked more and louder because for Brian, if a little bit is good? Lots more is lots better. Besides, you never know. Perhaps I was inside, stricken with intermittent deafness.
Brian was out there on the front porch, in dire need of a toilet, sweating and shivering and hating me, so he took off his suit jacket and hung it on the side of the flower box. Then, suddenly, he was possessed of an idea. Perhaps the doorbell was broken? Maybe I just couldn’t hear the knocking and the doorbell was broken! Yes! So he backed off the porch and into the yard and started yelling:
Adrienne! YO Adrienne! Adriiieeenne!!! (It will work better if you read that last part to yourself in your very best Rocky Balboa voice.)
No answer, and he was starting to get seriously pissed off because I wouldn’t answer the damn door. He decided he’d better break into the house, but it was hot that day and he was sick.
So he took off his pants. Socks and shoes and tie, too.
Still pretty hot, though, so he took off his shirt. My husband was in the front yard in his skivvies.
Sort of. We had a puppy at the time and the puppy had chewed out the seat of Brian’s undershorts.
You have the image? A white man with red hair, in the front yard of a nondescript suburban house, wearing nothing but his undershorts with a giant hole in the back. Good. Moving on.
He knew the best way to get into the house was to first break into the garage as that was the only door that wasn’t bolted shut against the zombie apocalypse. Seriously, the people who owned that house before us? I think they’d be happiest living in Fort Knox.
Luckily, the garage door needed replacing and we hadn’t done it yet, so Brian squatted down in front of the door, worked his fingers underneath, and started to pull. Bare ass pointed at the street, vomit and diarrhea barely contained, he pulled hard, harder, just a little more, and BAM! The door came open with a sound like a gunshot.
And knocked Brian ass over teakettle down the driveway.
Undaunted and motivated by an urgent desire for some quality toilet time, he climbed over the lawn mower and got out the biggest hammer we owned.
Our biggest hammer? More “huge” than “big,” one of half a dozen in various sizes because Brian subscribes to the theory that if it can’t be fixed with a hammer, it can’t be fixed.
Brian walked across to the front porch and started beating on that doorknob with his big-ass hammer, just pounding the crap out of it. Naked except for his ventilated undershorts he smashed his way into our house, pausing just once to vomit into the bushes.
This whole time? (And the whole thing took awhile, maybe 25 minutes.) Not one of our neighbors came over to see what was going on.
I told Brian I was writing this story and he was fine with that until he heard me laughing. He said, “People are going to start thinking I’m some kind of clown. Maybe you should tell some smart stories about me? Or at least some dumb stories about you.”
I’ll take it under advisement.
*Why pseudo? Because left to his own devices, he prefers to use no technology more advanced than a sharp stick. He goes to work and sells some seriously high-tech stuff all day and uses words I can’t hope to understand, but at home? I am in charge of every device that has buttons as part of its operation. He can’t log onto his Facebook page without my help. He doesn’t know how to use half of the features on his cell phone. If something goes wrong with the TV or the cable box? Spencer is more likely to understand what has gone wrong than Brian is.