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passing the time

I alternate between two extremes: busy and lazy. I hate being busy. I love being busy. I’m going to sound REALLY bipolar in this. I just, I love to keep busy because I feel super unproductive when I’m not busy…hence, the lazy. Seriously though, if I’m not busy (the month of July), I get nothing done. Nothing. At. All. So, I wondered how I pass the time tonight. I mean, typically it’s in to-do lists, report card deadlines, meetings, 100th days of school, hours on the clock. Then, I realized (through a long system of tangents in my not-so-sane mind) that it’s a lot of weird little things that represent “times” to me. 

Nothing in this post is particularly important. Everything in this post is particularly important. What I mean is, the conversation tonight wasn’t abnormal, but it did start me thinking of how we pass time. My husband said something to me and I thought of how weird it was. Anyway, let me start at the beginning.

He agreed to go get me a milkshake tonight. I have been on a serious milkshake kick. I mean, we’re talking I crave milkshakes 3 times a week. I don’t usually want dessert, but cookies and cream milkshakes are my jam right now. On the way to get milkshakes, I felt that awkward feeling.  You know, the one where someone’s staring. Well, it was my creepster husband. 

Me: What?
Husband: Nothing.
Me: What?
Husband: I just like your face. 
Me: (thinking, “That’s gross. I have no makeup on and didn’t shower today.) Is that all?
Husband: Yeah.
Me: How much? 
Husband: A lot. 
–I’m too much of a jerk to accept this answer.–
Me: How much?
Husband: I like your face more than anything else in the world.
Me: Like what? (I know, right? Don’t you wish you were married to someone as obnoxious as me?)
Husband: I like your face more than…I like to cook. 
Me: …oh… That really is a lot. 

Seriously. SO much. Thanks, honey. Now, the moral of this story is NOT how great my husband is, but that is an added bonus. It’s just, I feel like we don’t hang on to these things. We went to a restaurant/bar last night with some friends and talked about the road changes over time. He asked me if I was here when a cut-through was made. I have no idea whether or not it was here when I moved here. Then I realized how many things like this little conversation I’ve forgotten. For example, I’ve been here 8 years this August (weird) and I’m sure I went to multiple movies, restaurants, etc with people from college, but I just don’t remember. Maybe that’s no big deal. Some people probably think, “If it were that important, you’d remember.” Two things, though: #1- I’m a rememberer. Ask anyone. I remember things. #2- Were they not important? If I chose to go with random freshman year students A-F, wasn’t it important, at least at the time? Isn’t it, then, a little sad that I can’t remember anything significant from those times? Maybe not. Maybe it doesn’t matter. I just worry that these day-to-day things will go the way of the random college movie outing.  


We’re at a place in the month where I wonder if we have money for two milkshakes this close to pay day. So, while in line, he said to me, “We finished another roll of quarters.” My husband and I are saving change. We had a yard sale in April and started saving all of the change we had left over. We spent a night earlier this month rolling quarters and figuring out how many of each type of coin we need to finish an additional roll. We ended up with 40 bucks, I think. 30 of it goes to our savings to make it an even number (because I’m insane). The purpose for the remainder is TBD. Today, it may be to buy milkshakes. I’m not really sure where we conjured the cash for them. They were worth it, in case you were wondering. So. Worth it. Anyhow, I thought of how we hadn’t finished a roll in a while. It made me realize that today marked some kind of an ending: the end of another roll of quarters. I don’t know that it matters. It certainly isn’t a worldwide event. I just remember when we started saving change we had about 4 quarters, 10 dimes, 12 nickels, and 542938 pennies. So, in a way, it showed me that time was moving on. Things are progressing. One day we’ll put these quarters in a piggy bank, a college fund, a candy machine. Today, our quarters are for us. Hopefully by the time we’re putting them in piggy banks, we won’t need them for the savings account. 


As I said, this gave my brain enough material for a tangent. It doesn’t take much. The biggest memory I have of rolling coins is from when I was a kid (late elementary-early middle school-ish) and we were preparing for a trip to the beach (best time of every year). We had a huge glass jar from the Williamsburg Pottery that my mom had as a kid. The jar was later tapped with a vacuum for the millionth time, where it split and cracked. RIP, jar. Anyway, my mom, stepdad, and myself were rolling coins and we ended up paying for, like, the whole trip with these dang coins. It was so cool. I was so proud that I could fold the ends to keep the coins from falling out. It’s the little things. Right? I’m pretty sure we did this multiple times, but for some reason, rolling coins brings a happy feeling every time. Then I smell my hands, throw up in my mouth, and remember how gross money is. On with the tangent! I remember that rolling coins is one of two supremely happy things I remember from hanging out on Mom & Steve’s bed as a kid. The second? Tickle fights. I don’t know about you guys, but Saturdays are either super lazy or super busy (are you sensing a theme in my life?). Some Saturdays, I woke up first. My husband is blown away by that sentence. I’m a great sleeper. I would go into my parents’ room and see if they were awake. This typically ended up in some crazy tickle-fest when I was in elementary school. We’d end up ticking until a) we all ended up in tears, or b) someone got so annoyed that we had to stop. I’m not sure which actually happened more frequently. All three of us have pretty intense personalities, it could go either way. Somewhere along the line, I ended up being the late sleeper, tickling (and being tickled by) your parents stopped being fun, and my family stopped needing to roll coins to afford vacations. Somewhere along the line we probably even forgot how fun it was, but it was. It really was. 


So, I want to remember late-night milkshake runs. I want to remember stupid conversations in the car. I want to remember that, for today at least, my husband likes my face better than cooking and we’re so broke that we might start paying for milkshakes with rolls of nickels (they’re $5, like two small Chick-Fil-A milkshakes). But, I don’t want to lose it. This is better than clocks and calendars. It’s better than meetings and report cards (what isn’t?). This is how we pass the time. It makes me equal parts sad that it’s passing and happy to be in it. I don’t remember thinking of it this way before. I hope I don’t forget now.

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