The other day I realized my favorite author David Sedaris was coming to town for a reading, and I casually brought this up with Brett over dinner. And by casually "brought it up" I mean I was jumping up and down in my chair with excitement as I yelled the news in my husband's face.
"DO YOU WANT TO GO?! WE HAVE TO GET FRONT ROW SEATS. OH MY GOD, I DON'T EVEN CARE HOW MUCH THE TICKETS ARE. DO YOU THINK HE'LL HAVE T-SHIRTS?!"
Brett leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes for a minute. He does this a lot when I am excited. Or talking. Or in the room.
"Are...you going to be weird? Like the last time we saw him?"
"I was not weird the last time we saw him. I was an appreciative fan."
"You held up the line for 20 minutes and invited him to our wedding. Repeatedly."
"That wasn't weird. That was polite."
"You understand the man is in a committed relationship right? And gay?"
"I'm not in love with him, Brett."
"You told him you were in love with him. 97 times. Before we were basically asked to leave."
"That is just something...fans say. I'm a fan."
It's true, in a way. I get a little...excited about my favorite authors. Some women go crazy for their favorite band- fainting and screaming and flinging their panties at the musicians as they are pressed up against the stage, sweaty and hopeful and delirious in their adoration.
I'm kind of like that at book readings.
Even the authors that have long since died get the full weight of my frothy fandom. When we went to Rome on our honeymoon, Brett brought me to the Spanish Steps at twilight in a sweet attempt at romance. I was beyond excited, and could barely keep still as he tried to hold my hand. He seemed pleased I was so obviously thrilled, and as he bent to kiss me, he pulled back, alarmed.
"Your hands are sweating like crazy, are you ok?"
"I'm ok." I panted, lifting my gaze away from his eyes and fixing it on the house behind him. "I just...oh my God. Keats died in that house right behind you! Oh God. I can't breathe. This is amazing. Can you take my picture?!"
Which is how, on my honeymoon in one of the most romantic places in the world, I posed for a picture with a house as couples all around us made out like teenagers.
Brett puts up with my obsessive adoration with a level of patience I think is beginning to wane. Last year I had to do a project on Emily Dickinson, and for 3 nights in a row I locked myself in our office, drank wine in the dark, and memorized her poetry. He would pop his head in once and awhile to check on me, shaking his head when I whispered drunkenly that I "just loved her so much."
"Isn't your project a painting? How is getting drunk in the dark helping you with the painting? Do you even have any paint in here?" He asked, trying to flick on the lights.
"I have to FEEL her first, Brett. I can't just paint. Don't be ridiculous."
"So you feel her through a bottle of red wine?"
"It's my way of tapping into her."
"She didn't drink you know. She was a recluse."
"ExACTly! Which is why I am reclusing myself!"
"Not a word."
(I got an A on the project, so it shows how much he knows.)
I realized the other day that if my own husband was nervous about attending a BOOK READING with me, I should probably pull the ridiculousness back a little bit. It's ok to be excited about the artists we admire, but I could probably swing a little of the fandom his way.
On our walk today I told him I was a big fan...of him.
And asked him again to go see David Sedaris with me.
And I solemnly promised to only take 15 minutes in the book signing line.
Because marriage is all about compromise.