Very early on in our marriage, I decided that being Asian, being adopted, being from Oregon, being liberal were not enough to make a real impression on Husband’s entire family. So there was, of course, the swimsuit flashing of 2010, which occurred the summer following our blessed union, but there was also the Truck Incident of which I haven’t really spoken. In my mind, it’s not particularly horrible, but in Brother-in-law’s mind, it’s basically the worst ever. Brother-in-law is really awesome. Except, you know, when he reminds me of the Truck Incident every time I see him, which is really, really often, and there are no actual signs of this letting up.
Something that cracks Husband up but isn’t actually that funny: Being from Oregon, the road signage doesn’t really phase me. I mean, we’re on a road, and there are signs, and they are generally pretty self-explanatory. But, I suppose, that’s what intrinsically cracks Husband up.
And so you’ll be driving down the road and you’ll see a sign exactly like this one, indicating for the entire world that rocks are going to happen. They just are. [An aside: in all my years of living in Oregon, I’ve never actually come across these well-advertised rocks, but maybe I’m driving around at the wrong time of day.] To be honest, I’m unsure what exactly about these signs tickle Husband so much — if you’re driving at about 65 miles per hour, you’re not really going to have time to stop and read a sign that says something like, “You are now on a road upon which rocks might fall, so you’ll want to be careful.”
It’s times like these when you want a sign that very clearly states: “Rocks.”
Now onto the Truck Incident: The first time I met Sister and Brother-in-law was for a nice double date out at Texas Roadhouse (at which I ate the most divine dinner rolls of my life; if you’ve had them, then you know what I mean). This would have probably been a really nice experience but for the fact that Husband was deliriously ill with headaches and dizziness and nausea, and it was finally determined, right as soon as our food had been delivered, hot and fresh to our table, that we needed to leave.
Right then. We had to leave right then.
So we asked for take-out containers and boxed everything up and headed to Brother-in-law’s truck, which was big and shiny, and Husband said, somewhat weakly, “Hey, there’s a big rock.”
. . .
There have been fairly regular familial arguments about what took place next, and they are essentially all them vs. me, but I will not shake, people. “I am like a lone reed.” I realize in publishing this for the whole world to see, I am opening things up to what could be a slew of comments from strangers who believe I am in the wrong, right along with the family, but I’m actually not too concerned because, after all, there are only about twenty of you. And you all really like me and don’t want to make me sad. This I believe from the bottom of my heart.
In my world, a statement like, “There’s a big rock” carries with it a certain matter-of-factness. It’s declaratory at best, but it definitively does not carry with it an implication like, for example, “You should probably know right now, dear wife, that this truck is as much a member of Brother-in-law’s family as his children, probably even moreso than the dogs, and he is one of the most meticulous truck owners on earth, so whatever you do, AVOID THE BIG ROCK RIGHT THERE. Risk life and limb if need be because honey, you don’t want to deal with the aftermath.”
So I opened the back door of the truck and — you already know what happens — did so into that big rock.
Arguments in my defense
- There’s the whole “Hey a big rock” matter-of-fact declaration that is nothing more than that.
- Husband could have said something like, “Look out for that rock.” or “Watch out for the rock.” or “Don’t open the door into the rock.” For an individual who finds a sign that says “Rocks” to be downright silly, you’d think he wouldn’t be one himself.
- I was an extremely new wife, distraught over her husband being remarkably ill.
- I was hungry and you get what you deserve when you deprive me the chance to eat.
- I mean, it was kind of dark outside.
- Brother-in-law parked by the big rock in the first place.
- Landscapers thought it a brilliant idea to plop down a big rock in the parking lot, where basically every backseat passenger could open a car door into it for the rest of eternity, so long as the driver parks by it. In the first place.
In the end, absolutely no damage was caused, which, for an only child much like myself, means the case is closed and doesn’t really need to be brought up again. This is not the case for individuals with siblings, apparently, and that’s something I’m not really going to argue. Siblings really mess a person up, man.