That’s SO not a wolf

I thought John had got his middle-aged crisis out of his system some years ago: it’s thirsty, British Racing Green, the same age as him, requires arms like a fucking gorilla to steer, and does about 400 miles a year.

thin patch

(I can see the thin patch. His mother can see the thin patch. I know YOU can see the thin patch. John REFUSES TO ACKNOWLEDGE the thin patch, so if we could not dwell on it anymore that’d be… um… diplomatic. Kthx.)

It seems I was being optimistic. A pal came round last night to show us both the finishing touches to his new tattoo and his latest love;

 motorbike middle age crisis

Hubby displayed distinct signs of (I pray: transient) acquisitive fervour (“I think I want one”).

name that beastie! 

We spent a fair old time hotly debating the actual species depicted: ‘feline’ and ‘canine’ both had their staunch adherents and we were eventually obliged to compromise on ‘mythical’.

dog or cat 

If he does get a motorbike (which, incidentally, he would have to ride over my bloody twitching corpse before he got onto an actual road with) then I’m not sure quite where it will fit. The household already contains a sports car, one telescope that is literally bigger than I am, plus a behemothic tripod and accoutrements, three rucksacks and dozens of cardboard boxes containing his camera equipment, an enormous hi-fi complete with floor-standing speakers that he is – seemingly – emotionally attached to, and several squillion back copies of The Sky At Night and Practical Photography magazines.

If he moves a motorbike in, then something will certainly have to leave. John has accused me plaintively of orchestrating a subtle campaign to move him – and all of his possessions – out of the house and into a shed somewhere in the garden. Apparently, the under-stairs cupboard, the garage and the spare bedrooms are only the thin end of my gradual-spousal-eviction wedge. These wild and bitter insinations are a vile… vile… um… accuracy.

Speaking of garden, some of you may remember my wails of woe when we had no lawn suitable to host Harry’s first birthday party on. The whole topic of ‘garden’ is a contentious one currently – it hovers somewhere on the marital stress chart between ‘divorce proceedings’ and ‘frosty’, and any mention of the word ‘summerhouse’ generally triggers tears in one or other of us – but John has undoubtedly provided… green.


I, personally, would be reluctant to term it lawn just yet.

sparse grass

In response to my frantic yammering, John keeps giving assurances that it will ’tiller out’, but I think my chances of having a lush playing surface for the beginning of August are non-existent. Once again, I am seeing… thin patches. 

If the lawn doesn’t break us apart, the steps leading up to it just might. This is the product of over 2 years of collective masterly non-activity:


and I am thinking of holding a pickaxe party in the desperate hope of getting it finished before ummm… summer.

That thing that’s already, like… here.


16 Responses

  1. You need to tell him that in the states we medical professionals call them “donormobiles” because of all the young healthy males who drive around and give up their lives and organs so that others may live. Perhaps that will dampen his enthusiasm. It certainly did for me, every time I see a young man on a motorcycle, especially one without a helmet I cringe and pray that he makes it home safely.
    Your yard is coming along, it looks loads better, really a long flat area to play, can you throw down some quick growing winter seed like rye grass just before the party? I know that it will only last a week or two but desperate times and all that, you know. It is very green and looks very pretty. I had to do that once to fill in a fading yard before an big family affair and to my surprise it worked so you may give it an try.

  2. Freeze the bank account, confiscate the camera equipment, and hide the car at a friend’s until he unequivocally promises never to get on one or let your child near one! Donormobiles is right. Tell him you don’t want to be a single parent, you don’t want to be married to a vegetable, and you’d like to be able to fly without him getting searched for bomb equipment. (Due of course to the inevitable metal implements that will soon be holding his bones together.) I’ve had too many cases where I’ve had to patch up heads, legs, and direct the organ donor harvest team to ever let anyone I love get on a motorcycle again. I’m an OR nurse, too. Too many kids nowadays want to ride the “crotch rockets” and try to be Evel Knievel and end up dead. I’m serious about the freezing, hiding, and confiscating.

  3. Another one who thinks bikes are carzy things. However I’m going to vote for Sabre tooth tigers rather than “mythical”!

  4. “Of course, I don’t really want one. Except I do a bit!”

    I don’t think he’s very serious about it – despite the intense eyeing-up! He doesn’t have a basic motorbike license – although oddly enough, I have – and, having had a biker commit speed-suicide all over his tractor a while ago, is horribly aware of the perils of two wheels.

    Yet despite all this, he still fancies one. He’s… conflicted!

    He has, in fact, just said that he would like to be like Charlie Watts from the Rolling Stones – who doesn’t drive, but owns a garage full of super cars – in which he likes to sit (dressed in car-interior-trim matching suits!) and idle the engines!

    In all seriousness – he’ll never be allowed one! He has attention-span issues driving a car, let alone a motorbike. I do indeed like my hubbies warm, not cold.

  5. Now, if you lived here in the midwest, your lawn would look like that in August anyway. It rains in April, May, parts of June, and then we get an occasional heat/humidity spawned downpour about once every two weeks through July and August (unless there’s a tropical storm or hurricane). So by the time August comes along, the lawn is burned to a crisp, and the dry, dusty dirt spots make little difference.

    I like the steps…but we use a lot of rocks in our landscaping. I know, not the best for toddlers (yes, we have one) or clumsy people (yes, I am one), but they look pretty!

  6. After reading this I guess I have to be thankful that my fella’s mid-life crisis is manifesting itself in a new found passion for pipe smoking.

    Oh and the artwork on the bike, no, just no.

  7. The “art” is hilarious. So bad it’s good. (Well, not quite.) I thought they were (only vaguely accurate) wolves, no?

    In a funny way, given that I am not a middle-aged male, I think I understand his bike fervor. I *am* the type to pick up and then leave hobbies at the drop of a hat, Mr. Toad-ish but not as wealthy. One can wistfully wish for something at the same time that one knows it wouldn’t be a good idea. I am currently feeling this way about a Blackberry phone. (Of course, if I give in to my lusts, no one will harvest my organs; just the funds from my bank account.)

  8. My husband went to get his hair cut over the weekend and the stylist offered him some special sunscreen designed for thin spots.

    He was displeased.

    (hee hee hee)

  9. Oh dear HFF. So many topics, so little time. Ergo…no to the motorbike; keep the pressure on to keep moving his assorted kit out and then farther and farther away from the house; lawn – we have problems with carpeting of dead gum leaves over burned crisp grass every summer, we adjourn to a shaded deck instead; yes to the thin patch and finally…I have lusted after a pretty English summerhouse since I was old enough to read The Adventures of Rupert Bear. Even though the temperatures here would turn it into a large, glass fronted oven by lunchtime.

  10. for some reason, on the first reading, I saw “Practical Pornography magazines”.

    giggle of the day.

  11. What thin patch?

    Truly, I cannot pick a side vis a vis the “art” work. Wow. I have a motorcycle riding uncle and although I think it’s dangerous (agree with the term “donormobile”) I have to admit that Uncle R has been doing it an awfully long time with only the occasional case of roadrash to show for it. Still, John might ought to play it safe.

    Our lawn is mostly clover. Full of bees. Sad.

  12. @ QoB
    We totally have those too!

  13. If you need to send that MG to the state of Illinois to make room for John’s next hobby, I have a husband who would eagerly make a home for it!

  14. My spouse has hair so thin it’s all scalp. Took him YEARS to acknowledge it.


  15. @ HFF: I would pay to be responsible for article headlines in that mag!

  16. Loving the car. My Lotus Elan went to pay for ivf 3 but I have a residual soft spot for British 2 seat sports car.

    Motorbikes – NO, no and many times no. One dead friend is one dead friend too many.

    Why is it men only have hobbies which require so much equipment? The only good thing is e-b.ay through which a heap of old photographic and hi fi stuff from this house has recently been ofloaded.

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