Category Archives: the P-Dawg

How to Ask Your Husband on a Date

Recently, I realized that the P-Dawg and I hadn’t been on a date in a long time. The problem was that between the two of us, I was the only one who’d realized it.

I began turning it over in my mind. Some might say, “perseverating.” I really wanted to go on a date! Sure, I could have just asked him. But that would have defeated the whole purpose, which was for my husband to naturally arrive at the realization that what he wants, more than anything in the world, is to wine and dine his smart, beautiful, and not quite thirty-nine year old wife.

Reluctantly, I activated the handy, but not always reliable first tier persuasion mechanism: mind control. Whenever the two of us were together, I would close my eyes, furrow my brow, and direct pointed thoughts about going on a date toward my husband.

“Why are you making that face?” he asked me. “Do you have to go to the bathroom?”

Next, I dropped strategic hints, such as naming some couples I knew of who had gone on a date. “I heard it can be fun,” I told him.

Finally, there was no choice but to broach the subject directly.

Husband: “What’s wrong?”

Me: “Nothing.”

Husband: “Are you sure?”

Me: “I guess.”

Husband: “What?”

Me: “Forget it.”

Husband: “No, what?”

Me: “It’s just that . . . oh, nevermind!”

Husband: “Okay.”

Me (sulking): “Okay.”

(Time passes. Husband pays some bills, organizes his fishing gear, and putzes around on computer.)

Me: “Unbelievable.”

Husband: “What?”

Me: “It’s like you forgot we were even having a conversation.”

Husband: “I thought our conversation was over.”

Me: “That just goes to show you how out of synch our energy is. I don’t even remember the last time we went out together.”

Husband: “You know, you’re right. We should go on a date! Why didn’t you mention it earlier?”

Me: “I don’t see how I could have made myself any clearer.”

Sometimes, you just have to spell it out for them.


(By the way, we went on a date and it was really fun, just as I heard it could be from some couples! Also, I feel I must tell you that the P-Dawg is actually a fantastic husband. In fact, I really think he got the short end of the stick when he married me. There is really nothing for me to complain about in our relationship, except the fact that after almost twelve years of marriage, he has not yet mastered the subtle art of mind reading.)


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The First Rule of Hiking is “Stay on the Trail”

“Stay on the trail, kids! The first rule of hiking is ‘Stay on the Trail’.”

“You’ll know it because it’s been cleared of brush.”

“Isn’t it beautiful here, guys? Just imagine! This is what Ohio looked like when only the Native Americans lived here.”

“Wait up.”


“Look at that tree.”

“Watch out for poison ivy.”

“Stop waving those sticks around. It’s always funny until someone loses an eye.”

“JONAS, GET AWAY FROM THAT LEDGE! Do you want to fall and crack your head open?”

“Wait up.”

“Wait up.”

“Wait up!”

“Don’t touch that. It could be poison ivy.”

“Let’s stop here for a rest and to look at the beauty of nature.”

“Seriously, guys, what did I tell you about those sticks?”

“No, no snacks.”

“Because we just ate breakfast. Besides, it’s not like we’re climbing Mount Everest.”

“Wait up.”

“You think the Native Americans had juice boxes and granola bars?¬†If a Native American got hungry, he would just go down to the lake and scoop out a fish with his bare hands.”


“Because we’re not Native Americans.”

“Are you kidding me? We’ve only been out here for like twenty minutes.”

“JONAS STAY AWAY FROM THE LEDGE. What do I have to do, get you a collar?”

“Look at those huge boulders, kids. That right there is what the Native American kids called a ‘playground’.”

“Don’t climb on that.”

“Wait up.”

“Leaves of three, let them be.”

“No, I don’t actually know what poison ivy looks like. Ask Daddy to Google it on his phone.”

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The Tao of Decorating

This January has been a time of creativity and renewal here in the Rama household. After the holidays, I was seized with a deep and immediate desire to re-arrange furniture.

First I organized some bookshelves into a rainbow:

Then I pushed various items of furniture back and forth, back and forth across the family room and re-arranged objets d’art until I was blue in the face.

The family room overhaul necessitated an emergency trip to TJ Maxx for some accent pieces, plus a new KitchenAid ice cream scooper, a bar of oatmeal soap and a special microfiber towel that is supposed to dry your hair in five minutes flat.

It’s not something I’m proud of, but I have a weak spot for fake plants. I feel strongly that fake greenery lends a certain je ne sais quoi to a room’s atmosphere and never dies, but it’s been a sore spot in our marriage from day one. Over the past eleven years, I’ve managed to sneak a fake boxwood garland, several clumps of fake ivy, some fake poinsettias, hyacinths, dogwood, and one fake ficus into the house. But while at TJ Maxx the other day, I limited myself to only one fake item: a plastic yellow pear.

The P-Dawg has thus far tolerated the faux plants because they are so tasteful and unobtrusive, but I wondered if he would draw the line at fruit? I worried, too, for myself. One day it’s a plastic pear on the bookshelf, the next it’s a cornucopia straw hat with the price tag still dangling from the brim.

“Is that a plastic pear up there?” the P-Dawg asked me as we settled in to watch TV the other night.

“Do you like it?” I asked him. “I needed something yellow to offset the new lamp and the blue bird figurines.”

“What lamp?” the P-Dawg asked with a glance around the room. “What blue accent figurines?”

Easy to miss

I didn’t let it offend me because I know that a good interior designer often makes nearly imperceptible changes which nevertheless enhance the entire feel of a space.

“Do you notice that the entire feel of this space is different?” I asked my husband.

“That pear is really yellow,” he said.

Later the P-Dawg decided to do some re-decorating of his own. He went ahead and got a bunch of his Japanese prints professionally framed and hung them up all willy-nilly around the house.

We don’t have a good marital track record when it comes to picture hanging, the P-Dawg and I. In fact, I’d say it ranks right up there with “having a baby” on the list of Top Ten Marital Stressors (see also, loading dishwasher, finding a parking space, rinsing out the bathroom sink).

I was standing on a credenza in the office, nudging one of my knickknacks over by a half a millimeter when he came in to inform me that he’d hung up some prints. He asked that instead of taking them down immediately, I should have an open mind.

“Just let them hang there for a couple of days before you make any decisions,” my husband suggested. Then he left the house.

This one is in our formal living room, right above the photos of the kids. I’m still warming up to it, but it sure beats the plastic pear from TJ Maxx.

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Nobody Puts Rima at the Kids’ Table

You won’t find me knocking around frozen turkeys by the Butterball display this year. That’s because we’re ordering from our CSA, so there’s a turkey with my name on it still pecking around somewhere in the southern Ohio dirt.

I got to worrying about that turkey. Not about its impending death, but rather, “Did I order a big enough bird?” I asked the P-Dawg if he was sure we’d have enough turkey meat for each person at the table, he said yes.

According to my husband’s calculations, here is how the turkey rations break down:

Adults – 2 pounds each

Kids – 1/2 pound each

Rima – 1 pound of turkey

I have my own special category. “Kid and a Half.”

Well, I immediately turned around and posted this all over Facebook. I was hoping for some righteous indignation in the comments, but what I got instead was a lot of “Bwahahaha LOL that’s hilarious!” instead.

I guess I know now who my friends are.

When I told the P-Dawg that I had aired my grievance, he took offense.

“That’s not entirely accurate,” he answered, “I never said you weren’t an adult.”

“It’s not that I really want it, P-Dawg,” I explained to my husband. “It’s just that I’d like to be given the opportunity, if I so desired, to eat two pounds of turkey meat.”

“I guarantee you won’t leave hungry.”

“Well. I’m not sitting at the kids’ table, I’ll tell you that much.”

What’s more, I’m making it my own personal mission to eat 2 pounds of turkey, at the very least.

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