Thursday, August 18, 2011
On a honeymoon in France in 1983, I was responsible -- with my five years of French language schooling -- for asking for a hotel room on our spontaneous jaunt through the countryside. My skills were such that I could say nearly anything (except a joke, which was a challenge ) and understand nothing, while Mark, my new husband with his one year of French language schooling, could say nearly nothing and understand just about everything. There ensued, in every new town, a hilarious three-way conversation where the hotel clerk expected "The Husband" the do all the talking. There was always a double-take when I began the conversation, a quick swivel of the head, and then a second double-take when Mark had to translate for me.
But my favorite tale from that three week lune de miel came one night when Mark, ever-mischievous, picked up a menu at dinner and said,
"Ah....Gidget of Agnew! I think I'll order that."
He knew damn well how to pronounce Gigot d'Agneau (jee-joh dahn-yo) [roast lamb] but never missed a chance to be hilarious.
Gidget of Agnew it was.
From then on, at random moments in our twenty years of marriage, he'd manage to sneak the words Gigot d'Agneau into our private conversations. Of course it had the effect of making me fall off my chair with laughter, and bring an end to any serious point in the conversation.
Bottom line: there were few serious conversations.
Now, all these years later and Mark long scattered -- ashes to ashes, dust to dust -- in Thornton Creek -- there exists the Gidget of Agnew Club.
I'm the president.
Members include one dead husband, one nearly-divorced husband (who expressed only disinterest when I informed him of his membership status), a son, a sister, a college friend (who remains yet to be informed of her membership) and a former employer. The only requirement is that you travel somewhere with only me.
I was reminded last night that my sister and my son (that would be the aunt-nephew relationship) periodically have secret luncheon meetings! In Chinese restaurants! In Seattle! And I've never been invited!
Remind me to put this on the agenda at the next General Board Meeting. (That is, if we ever have a General Board Meeting.)
And while you're at it, pass the lamb.