I often trudge, stone-faced, through the hours of 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
At 8:01 p.m., however, I go all Tom-Cruise-On-Oprah’s-Couch.
Without fail, once darkness falls, the quarter slides into my internal jukebox, and I light up, song lyrics tumbling from my lips; spontaneous-yet-well-choreographed musicals high kicking it in the kitchen; animated one-way conversations with the creators of The Wire perking out of my mouth; grocery lists for the Girl’s quinceanera party (in seven years) scritching on to paper; Scrabulous tiles, particularly the “q” without a “u,” pouring onto the board; slates of enemies receiving a well-deserved in absentia back-stabbing; blog posts sliding out of the birth canal, still slathered in vernix.
If I were a Magic Treehouse book written by formulaic-yet-educational children’s authoress Mary Pope Osborne, I would be entitled Mania in the Moonlight. You would not buy me, even from the clearance shelves at Barnes & Noble. Instead, you would back away slowly, refusing eye contact (How dippy are you for that? I’m a book, you twittering fool. I don’t have eyes), easing the blow by feigning an interest in the gnome calendars, magnetic poetry kits, and color sudoku books that lodge up front by the cash registers.
Fortuitously, my night-time energies play nicely into the fact that I’m one of the twenty-nine married women in Minnesota who still look affectionately at their husbands and think, “Yea, I could hit that.” Indeed, once I’ve stretched out and folded up my leg warmers after the high kicks, jazz hands, and pas de bourrees by the refrigerator, I often still have enough steam to go tackle My Man.
As it turns out, when I’m really in the throes of the Night Time Happies, I can also get giggly. Loopy. Babbley and burbley in the boudoir (take that, Mary Pope Osborne).
The other night, my state of laughing gabble just about derailed us. As we lay there, working into an esprit d’amour, I just could not stop yucking and yacking, blicking and blacking. Every time I’d move in for the kiss, a snortle would come blowing out my nostrils.
Yea. I know. Hot.
Finally, I did a few slow breaths and announced, “I just have to stop thinking of things that crack me up. I need a change of mental scenery. So, okay, we’re going to…” I stumped around, looking for an appropos locale, “…Sexy Island now.”
When I get snortley, I also get prodigiously lame.
Ever my willing playmate, though, Groom joined in. “So what’s on Sexy Island?”
“Well, there’d be monkeys, for sure.”
Cuz, you know. Monkeys in a Love Fantasy imply, welllllllllllllll, swinging and peeling.
Groom knows my brain; he free associated right into the peeling. “Yea, monkeys. What else?”
Upping the ante, I noted, “I’m pretty sure there’s buried treasure on Sexy Island, from some pirates. They’re a bad, bad lot, aren’t they? Very naughty?”
Groom was with me: “Yea, okay, treasure. I can dig that. And I’ll be more than happy to lay hands on your booty and shiver your timbers. ”
After that, it was quiet for a beat.
Then the Hot Mess that is Groomeo queried, “But is there poi on Sexy Island?”
Afternote, to be read while smoking a cigarette and running a hand through your rumpled hair:
Yes, yes, there was poi bubbling over the fire that night. And what a way to find out that the consistency of poi is often described as being either “two-finger” or “three-finger.”
I am a fan of life-long experiential learning.