Back when we met, there was almost nothing that The Historian and I disagreed about except for “mushrooms are a delicious food item,” which remains a point of disagreement between me and the rest of my household. But other than that, there was nothing that we disagreed about, and no doubt that helped our relationship.
Once you have children, things to disagree about multiply. Most recently, we disagree about which podcasts I should listen to while on the same floor of the house as our children, ages 11 and 8. In truth, I like to listen to podcasts, sometimes while I am cooking. Sometimes the children are potentially within hearing distance. And sometimes these podcasts combine legitimate family topics like politics with profanity or flippant views of humanity, as does Pod Save America. Sometimes they combine favorite family concepts like fantasy with goofy digressions on sex, like badgers who turn into whatever species they have sex with, or or with pointlessly bizarre characters, like flowers who say in a diminutive southern accent, “I will fuck you up!” Now, you could be forgiven for thinking that I could just steer clear of podcasts with profanity and I’d probably be fine, but what if I don’t want to steer clear of podcasts with profanity? What if it exists as a release valve to combine a healthy dose of irreverence with important topics of the day, like the Republican-controlled Congress or dragons? How far do I need to protect my children from profanity and irreverence? I’m pretty sure that no one worked this hard to protect me from these things.
When you are dealing with a home and a family and a genuine health crisis, things to disagree about seem to multiply, .Another thing that we disagree about is whether you call basement flooding, or anything, “an act of God.” The Historian, it seems, is a committed atheist, whereas I am a committed quasi-agnostic. When the temperature goes from -10C (14F) to 2C (35C) overnight, that is notable. When it the temperature then proceeds to climb to a high of 10C (50F) and to rain for 24 hours in Ontario in January, well that’s pretty much an act of God, in my book. And if your basement decides to then leak like it’s never leaked before, well, there’s probably nothing to be done. There is especially nothing to be done if it coincides with your fatigue levels being elevated by the previous radiation treatment, which tends to cause levels of side effects that increase for several weeks following treatment. How else does one explain these things?