Tuesday, November 26, 2013
So last night we get into bed, and Matt is talking about how he's reading one of those Roger Zelazny Amber Chronicles books, and how, as he put it, he really wants to have read it, but he doesn't want to actually do the actual reading of it, because it is tedious. I remarked that I was having the opposite experience with Wolf Hall. I've been reading it forever and I don't want it to be over, or really it's that I don't think about the story in terms of an endpoint, each part is so good. I read each paragraph about two to three times.
I said, "Yeah, that Amber book. I read a page of it while I was in the bathroom, and I thought it might be a joke, it was so bad. So mannered in an icky way."
He said, "Well, yeah, mannered, but there's something about them. I thought they'd be fun to pick back up; I read all eight or nine of the books in the series one time." I went, "When did you do that?" He goes, "Like fifteen years ago."
"No you didn't," I said. He gawped at me. Then he protested.
"Listen, miss! I've read and done lots of things that you may not be aware of," he said.
"Maybe you don't realize how closely I pay attention," I rejoined.
I mean, I don't know why I feel so confident in this area. Maybe it's the same way I can remember what I was wearing at every significant and many insignificant occasions in my life. Or maybe it's that he's my husband and I really do pay attention to everything about him. And my interest in him is not casual. I just know.
"Fine," he said. "I'll name a book and you tell me whether I've read it or not."
"All right, go," I said. He paused, seeming at a loss.
"Okay," I prompted. "First you just have to think of a book that you either have OR have not read."
Then he started laughing and pummeled me with blows. But, you know, lovingly.
"So," he said, "On Stranger Tides."
"You have not."
"Correct." he said. "How about Shogun."
"You have," I said. "This isn't even hard. I could do this forever."
"Okay," he said. "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell."
"You did not read that," I said.
"Aha!" he cried, "That's a trick question, because I read half of it!" This pleased him so much he started giggling. If you have never heard Matt giggle, and so few people have, it is really something. I rolled my eyes while he chortled at the notion that he was getting half-credit.
"Okay," he said. "Huckleberry Finn as an adult." I asked what we were calling adulthood, and he said anytime after high school. This was a tough one. I thought. I went into my mind palace and surveyed the landscape. Matt had a pretty serious Mark Twain phase about five years ago. I could remember that Roughing It and Life on the Mississippi figured prominently. He would crank up the audiobooks while he cleaned the kitchen at night, and he would laugh and repeat bits of dialogue.
"You didn't read it," I said.
"I did." he said, so satisfied. "Okay," I said, "You got me on that one. You get ONE."
We called a truce.
But I still think he was confusing it with Puddinhead Wilson.
File under: Pillowtalk.