Tag Archives: wife

Tell Frank I say hi

If you see Frank, tell him I said hi. Tell him, “Hey Frank, I just ran into Rob, and he says hi.” And then give me a call and tell me if he says anything back. Like maybe Frank’s going to be like, “Oh, that’s really nice. Tell Rob I say hi also!” And then I’ll text you back, I’ll say something like, “Tell Frank I say thanks for saying hi. Ask him how he’s doing.” Just ask him. Just be like, “Frank, I just got a text back from Rob, he says thanks for saying hi back. He wants know how you’re doing.”

Let me know what he says. I’m assuming it’ll be something like, “I’m doing great. Ask Rob how he’s doing,” to which I’ll have you tell him, “Rob says he’s also doing great,” onto which I’ll change topics slightly, tell him, “Rob wants to know if you’ve seen Riddick.” If I know Frank like I think I know Frank, the answer’s going to be something like, “Rob, Frank says he hasn’t seen Riddick yet, although he liked Pitch Black when he was in high school.” I need you tell him, “Frank, Rob wants me to tell you to do yourself a favor, to go and see Riddick. Rob says he saw it last week and it was awesome. Even though he saw it already, he said that he’s more than happy to go see it again with you next weekend.”

And then I think I know how things are going to play out from there, let me know what he says, because I’ll bet you anything it’s going to be something like, “Well, tell Rob that I’d love to go to the movies with him, but you know, with the wife and kids, it’s really not as easy to get out like it was when we were younger.” Frank’s always saying stuff like that, like, “Another time maybe,” or, “Yeah, we should make plans to do something sometime soon.”

I’ll be like, “How’s next week?” and he’ll be like, “To make plans to do something?” and I’ll say, “No, to do something. This is the making plans.” He’ll give me some nonsense, last time it was something like, “Well, next week I might be able to make plans for something in the future sometime, but I don’t know. You know how it is. Wife. Kids. But hey, let’s think about maybe calling each other up someday, maybe we’ll eventually figure something out.”

So tell him, tell Frank, “Frank, look, Rob wants you to know that he knows where you’re headed with all of this. He says not to worry about it. He hired a sitter. He told his sister that your wife can come over and hang out with her. Also, Rob says that he bought two tickets for Friday night. It’s Riddick. It’s IMAX. Look, I don’t want to get in the middle here, but you should totally go for it. I mean, a free night out? Not having to worry about the wife and kids? IMAX? That sounds too good to be true.”

Come on, just tell him that. Well, if the conversation gets that far, just please, tell him about the tickets, about the sitter, remind him that we were supposed to go see Pearl Jam back in 2009, and that even after I bought the tickets, he texted me a month before the show, “Is it too late to back out? I think it’s my sister-in-law’s birthday that night.” And those were not easy tickets to get, no. Just, you don’t have to mention Pearl Jam, but keep it in your head. I guess use it if you have to.

Exactly, if it gets that far. Start by telling him I said hi. Eventually get to Riddick. It’s a ten-fifteen show, which, I know, it’s kind of late for a dude with kids, but it’s an all-night sitter, I found her on craigslist. We could even go out afterward. Like, we could really go out, bars, clubs, everything. My sister could take his wife out too, if she’s into it.

All right, well, tell him I said hi. Tell him “hey” for me.

Hey Steve! If you see Shaun, tell him I say “What’s up,” and also, tell him, “Shaun, Rob wants me to remind you to tell Frank that he says hi, and something about Riddick and maybe Pearl Jam, he didn’t give me all of the details, but he says you’ll know what I’m talking about. Here, he wrote it down. Do you want me to read it to you? Do you want me to come with you and read it to Frank? Can you just give me Frank’s new phone number to give to Rob? He says he promises no more late night phone calls. Just tell him hey. Tell everyone Rob says hi, it’s been too long, we all really need to get together soon.”

My first piece of IKEA furniture

I always sit down to write at my kitchen table. I’m having one of those days where I can’t think of anything to write about, and so I’m just kind of staring straight ahead, past my computer, at the wall. I have this piece of IKEA furniture, it’s a big unit, I don’t even know what to call it really, but it’s like five pieces of wood horizontally by five pieces of wood vertically. So the end result is this standalone piece, with sixteen square shelves. Does that make sense?


It was the first adult piece of furniture that my wife and I bought when we moved in together after college. I felt like such a big shot, such an adult, driving to IKEA, spending over a hundred dollars on something that I don’t even know how to describe, hauling it home, assembling it, figuring out where to put it and what to keep on its shelves.

I used to have this really small two-door Hyundai Accent. My wife used to call it Porky; she came up with this because its short and stout shape reminded her of a little pig. Also she loved how much it drove me nuts to hear that nickname in reference to my car. This IKEA unit, even disassembled, had absolutely no chance of fitting in my car, and only after making the purchase and wheeling it out to the parking lot did we both realize that neither one of us had the foresight to consider how we’d actually get this thing home.

But what were we going to do, return it? Come on, I was an adult now. I’d figure this out. It’s a good thing that IKEA gave out free rope so you could tie everything to your car. I laid the flat boxes on top of Porky, rolled down the windows, and started tying. I don’t know about you, but whenever I need to make a really strong not, I just start improvising. I’ve always found the strongest knots to be the ones where you don’t have any plan at all. You just start looping and pulling and twisting. Any structural integrity defects are cancelled out by the fact that I’ve knotted and reknotted like fifty times. There’s no way that rope is going to come loose unless I cut it.

All the while my wife, my girlfriend at the time, she was like, “I don’t know Rob, we should call my dad. I’m not sure about this at all,” and I was just like, “Be quiet. I don’t need anybody’s help. I’m a man now. I just co-bought a piece of IKEA furniture. I’ll do this myself.” Yeah I was a man. I was cohabitating with my girlfriend. So what if I was too scared to tell my parents that we moved in together? So what if I had them drop me off several blocks away from our apartment in a lame attempt to trick them into believing that we were still maintaining separate residences?

“There we go,” I said out loud, putting the finishing touches on my knot, giving the boxes a couple of pushes to simulate any bumps we might hit on the road, “We’re good.” And then I tried to open the car door, and it wouldn’t open, because I didn’t think about the fact that I had strung the boxes on top of the car, looping through both open windows, effectively tying both of the doors shut.

“That’s OK,” I tried to act all casual, “we just have to climb in through the windows.” And before she had a minute to protest, I picked up my future wife and shoved her through the passenger side window. I can’t believe we made it home without a major incident. Those parking lot simulation bumps weren’t even close to matching the bumps on the road. Every time we made a turn, I had to keep my arm out of the window, providing some support to prevent the boxes from sliding right off. I’m telling you, that rope should have snapped.

We left that apartment after a year, disassembled the furniture, moved into a new apartment, reassembled it, disassembled it again when we left for the Peace Corps, and put it back together in our current residence, where I barely give it any thought as I stare right at while I’m writing every single day. Most everything else that we own is some sort of a hand-me-down. The couches and bedroom set were given to us by my aunt. The kitchen table is from my parents. The TV stand is from my wife’s cousin, the coffee table we found on the street. But this cubby-hole shelf thing, that’s ours. We bought it. We’ve hung on to it, haven’t lost any its thousands of screws every time we’ve took it apart and put it back together.

People knock IKEA furniture. It’s cheap, yeah, but this piece has definitely made up for the couple of hundred bucks we dropped on it six years ago. Right now the bottom shelf serves as a liquor cabinet, the upper shelves are where we store all of our dried kitchen goods. On the top level we have all of our photo books, our wedding album, the now-dried bouquet that my wife carried as she walked down the aisle. It’s such a generic piece of contemporary living, and I rarely if ever consider it as it stands up against the wall. But when I do notice it, when it occasionally pops out of the invisible background of my life, I still get that feeling, those first steps into adulthood. And I can’t imagine my home without it.