Tag Archives: husband

Math geeks are weird

Being married to a math geek has its advantages. He can calculate the day of the week for just about any date. He knows how many miles per gallon both our cars get because he actually tracks it. Of course there’s the big one, the super shiny actuarial career that has provided the opportunity for me to stay at home with the kids.

Naturally there are disadvantages… like come playoff time during any of the various sports seasons he follows, he will create for himself and get absorbed in various Excel spreadsheets wherein he figures the odds of each team making the playoffs, and I-don’t-know what-else. I know for a fact that actuaries often create complex Excel spreadsheets for fun; his co-worker Paul runs an Us Weekly celebrity pool, and oh-my you should see the spreadsheets this man puts together and sends out each week that tabulate the scores. Criminy. Also, since he likes the really complex math stuff, simple math is apparently boring and blase for him, because I often beat him to quick calculations in the head, and somehow early in the marriage all the bill-paying and balancing fell to me.

Then there’s just the funny consequences. Frank slept in a bit today, (and actually this reminds me he might still be sleeping, because I don’t hear him up. Better check after I’m done here!) Anyway! About 8:30 I give him an elbow and tell him it’s 8:30 and he should probably get up (I was nursing Jake in bed at the time). I have to repeat it with another elbow accompaniment to get his attention. He sits half-up and says, “830? 830 what?”

I say, “The time. It’s 8:30 a.m. What the hell else would I be talking about?”

And he says, in his sleepy haze: “I don’t know…. average minutes, maybe?”

I can’t even fathom what average minutes he thinks I’d be working on in the morning, in bed, and that would be so important as to wake him up to tell him the results.


John McCain referred to “Czechoslovakia” in a couple public statements recently, and a few people noticed.

He did it last year, too.

Problem is, as you may or may not realize, Czechoslovakia isn’t a country anymore, and hasn’t been for like 15 years. If he were making the reference in an historical context that would certainly be OK, but not when he’s talking about current events.

Now, I really don’t care much. I mean, GWB referred to people from Greece as “Grecians” and still got elected. The fact is that like 90% of Americans are probably saying “Czechoslovakia isn’t a country anymore? When did that happen?” (Linkified in case you care to learn more about it.) Normally I would probably really not care at all.

But it raises an interesting little scenario in my family. My husband is Czech. His parents are from the Czech Republic. They came here to escape Communism in the late 60s. Thus, Frank is the first of his whole family born in the U.S.

And they are all die-hard Republicans.

I showed Frank the story, and he read it with interest, but kept a good poker face (he very much dislikes talking politics and I mostly respect that and just make sure I vote to cancel out his vote). I’m not sure where his reaction fell. But his parents are HAPPY to talk politics. I’m so interested to ask them what they think. They get very offended when people don’t know that their country was dissolved and refer to them as Czechoslovakians. (Technically I guess they were born Czechoslovakians, and when they came here they were still Czechoslovakians, but even then, the Czech side and the Slovak side had very separate identities. The sides were further broken up into different regions – Moravia, Bohemia, etc. – and folks very much identify with their home regions. On a “Don’t Mess With Texas” level of allegiance.)

Anyway, we’re having dinner with them tomorrow so I shall report back. I doubt the gaffe will be enough to sway them away from the GOP camp, but it will be interesting to see how forgiving they are.

Not a calendar girl

My memory is odd.

I can remember numbers forever.  I know all my credit card numbers (and expiration dates) by heart.  I know my current checking account number by heart.  I used to know my old driver’s license number when we used to live in NY, and know most of my NJ driver’s license number.  I know my checking account from when I was in college.  I remember a bunch of my friends’ old phone numbers going as far back as middle school.

But if it’s not numerical, forget it.  I suck with names, I suck with dates in general, and birthdays specifically.  I only remember my dad’s birthday because it’s two days before July 4th.  My brother and one of my friends have birthdays on February 1st and 2nd… but often I cannot sort out who has which birthday.  If you asked me, I would be hard-pressed to come up with my mother’s birthday, though I would be within a day or two.  One of my kids was born on July 21st, and one was born on February 23rd, and I am constantly forgetting which one was born when.  I have to take time to process to make sure I don’t decree one birthday July 23rd and the other February 21st.  And even then, I’ve made the mistake more than once.  I totally suck.

And the dates I do remember, I never remember them on the date.  My grandmother’s birthday is May 31st.  Do you think I’d have any sort of red-flag go up in my head when that date was approaching, so that I could remember to send her a card?!?

I’m sure part of the problem is that I have a lackadaisical attitude about dates in general.  I don’t care much to know what date it is.  I’ve tried, but the interest peters out pretty quickly.  I like to know the day of the week, and am pretty consistently good about knowing what day it is even when schedules are screwy.  It’s rare for me to say “Today feels like a Tuesday even though it’s a Monday” or something similar.  But that today is the 25th?  It just never crosses my mind, unless a very specific need comes up, to activate such information in my brain.  Maybe I’m just clogged up with old phone numbers.

Anyway, today’s weather was forecast to be gorgeous, so it seemed a trip to our town pool (which is fabulous) was in order.  We hadn’t seen them in a few days, so I called the in-laws and asked if they wanted to meet us there.  They had nothing pressing on their schedule for the afternoon, so they met us at the pool, where we hung out and frolicked with the kids and just had fun for a couple hours.  Then as we’re packing up, my mother in-law asks if we’d like to come over for dinner tonight.  I thought about how, with more forethought than is normal for me, I’d prepped all the ingredients to make chili tonight.  So, I asked if it would be OK if we did it Saturday or Sunday instead.  They said OK, but my mother in-law seemed miffed, or disappointed, or something.  I noticed it for like a millisecond and then Jake was trying to launch himself into the pool with his clothes on, so I didn’t dwell on it and put it out of my mind.

Then Frank called this evening.  He said he was out of work but was going to stop at his parents before coming home.  Why, I wondered aloud.  Because it’s his mom’s birthday, duh! he responds.  Oh… well doesn’t that explain a lot.  Seriously, I would have sworn three ways ’til Tuesday that her birthday was August 3rd.

My husband’s a kind soul and tried to make me feel better by shouldering a little of the blame, because he didn’t remind me.  Really, he shouldn’t need to.  But at least he knows my date-memory enough to realize that maybe date reminders are a good idea.  And I’d love to take the opportunity to lay the blame at his feet but I don’t have the heart.  I need a system for this stuff.  Maybe something like, oh I don’t know… a method of tracking dates, perhaps in grid format.  Possibly on paper, to allow for writing in pertinent information.

I should look into that.

So, your husband wants to breastfeed? Breastfeeding Narrative #4

Honestly, I have no experience with this.  But judging from the search results of people who come across my blog, it seems to be fairly commonplace.  Apparently husbands are making this request a lot.  Or, people are looking for pictures of this, which is slightly odd.  Or there are a few prolific perverts hitting my blog continually.  In any event, you’re not the first person to think of it.

I would say if you’re comfortable with it, there’s no reason not to give it a try.  But I don’t want to hear about it.

A Very Big Wait

Frank finished his final assessment, and he’s feeling cautiously confident. He should hear whether he passed or not in anywhere from 72 hours to six weeks. They say it can say six weeks; one of his coworkers heard in 3 days. So…. I’ll share the news when he gets it but we have little idea when that will be.

For now though, I have my husband back. Even if he is wiped out. 🙂

What is it with men and shoes?

Frank owns three pairs of work shoes: an everyday black pair, and everyday brown pair, and a dressier black pair that he can wear with suits.

His brown pair, oh they have seen better days.  We can’t pin it down exactly but we are pretty sure he bought them at least five years ago, maybe six or seven.  So we went to the mall yesterday to get him a pair of shoes.  We went to DSW Shoe Warehouse.  (I do love that store.  I wear size 11 shoes, and it ain’t always easy to find shoes in that size.  DSW and Nordstrom’s are the only places I have decent luck.  Online, too, but online lacks the tactile satisfaction and instant gratification of bricks-and-mortar shoe shopping.)

We found a pair of brown Eccos.  Really nice looking, Frank reported they were very comfortable.  They were $120 and he scoffed.  I explained to him some basic shoe logic — they are an investment of sorts – if wears them for three years, that is only $40 a year.  This seemed to thwart his initial knee-jerk OMG reaction and he carried the box with him as he tried on other shoes.

Then I showed him the clearance section in the back, and his eyes lit up.  Bargains!  He was beside himself with glee.  To his credit, he persevered through, and found a clearance pair of Bostonians, which he liked nearly as much as the Eccos, on clearance for $47.

He has seriously needed a new pair of brown shoes for a year.  He could have gotten a new pair two years ago.  I think he wore the old pair to work today, even though he brought the new ones home yesterday.

He criticizes me for having too many shoes, for having shoes I don’t need.  I would argue he has a related affliction — he gets too attached to the shoes he already owns.

Actuarial Widowhood

Frank is an actuary.  My father’s girlfriend has come up with the best way to describe this profession — he’s a legit bookie.  He does some sort of magic and figures out how much companies should pay/charge/make their employees pay for their health benefits.  OK, so maybe it really isn’t magic, but I’m not sure what it is.  Something with math.  And Excel.  And something called FAS, I think.

January is to him what March & April is to a tax accountant.  Busy busy busy.  Most companies close their books on December 31, so January means they all need to shuffle last minute for all the stuff they need to really, officially, close their books.  Stuff that only my husband, apparently, has the power to provide.

So, I haven’t seen him much this month, and neither have the kids.  We woke up this morning before Frank left for work and Lane thought it was so weird that Daddy was around in the morning.  (Granted, even when he’s not busy we usually are still asleep when he leaves — not because he leaves so early but because we sleep so late, for which I will make no apologies.)

But, there are plans this weekend.  Plans for his uncle’s birthday party tonight.  Plans to hang out with friends in Connecticut tomorrow.  Plans to eat dinner with his parents on Sunday.  We will see him, and it will be socially unacceptable for him to be on his laptop.  Hurrah!