I love the Long Suffering Husband. I do. He not only puts up with me, but he's a very involved father; modern enough to realize when both partners work, both should pitch in around the house; and very supportive of my career (such as it is).
That said? Sometimes I just want to throttle him until he is blue.
I spend a lot of weekends in the office. I actually prefer the weekends, because, during the week, people are coming in and out and I have to answer the phone. On weekends, I can pretend I'm not there. Do people really expect to get an answer in the newsroom at 7 p.m. on a Sunday? (You can try, I guess, but I won't pick up if I'm there.)
It's quiet, and, if I want to watch hockey on all of the newsroom televisions, I can. Well, once I wrest control of the clicker from the Sports Desk. (They claim there is no such word as "clicker," but she who holds the clicker controls the television station, so there, Sports Desk.)
The one phone I do answer in the office on weekends is my cellphone, and it gets quite a workout.
Because the LSH won't stop calling me. It. Is. Maddening.
The phone rings: "Are you coming home for dinner?"
A little while later: "I'm starting dinner now. Are you leaving?"
Again: "I fixed you a plate and put it in the microwave so you can warm it up when you get home."
And: "I'm going to bed. Please lock the door and turn off the porch light when you get in."
He accuses me of being a workaholic. I am not a workaholic. He's clearly delusional. Workaholics bring their work home with them, and I only bring mine home sometimes. And I'm not at the office all of the time. I do have to sleep - coffee can carry a person only so far - and Executive Editor Ross won't let me keep a nest of discarded newspapers under my desk. He says it's a fire hazard. More like a napping hazard. Plus, he's annoyingly tidy, and has been known to complain about my desktop filing system. He says it's haphazard piles of papers. I say that it's organized chaos, and, since it's my desk, he can only force me to "refile" things once every quarter or so.
The LSH will call and consult with me on matters ranging from what store would be the best to shop for the Sainted Child's new pair of cleats, as the ones she wore last year disappeared into a black hole since last summer, to what family movie I prefer they rent, working under the assumption I will actually be there to watch the movie.
Either he's trying to keep me apprised of what is going on or he is trying to hint I spend too much time at the office.
One of my favorite things to do when he calls to check and see if I left yet - usually about 15 to 20 minutes after I promised I'd be home - is to assure him that I am "on my way out the door" when I am actually in the middle of something.
"I just walked out the door," I'll tell him as I am saving files and shutting down. "I'm getting into the car now," as I collect my things. "Wow, is traffic heavy!"
I don't think he's caught on yet, do you?
(Wallace-Minger is The Weirton Daily Times community editor and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. She is a Weirton resident.)