The Things We Fight About

A somewhat frequent point of contention between Jesse and I is determining what makes up acceptable attire.

On Sunday morning before church he informed me that he was about to start a fight by putting on a particular pair of pants that I don't like very much because they are a little small, but that they were his only option. After some investigation and negotiation I disagreed that they were his only option - or even his best option, but assented without further argument that I wouldn't be upset with him for wearing them.

What I was NOT prepared for was the awl-like tool* I saw him using in the middle of the church service. He was just sitting there, sawing away, attempting to make another hole in his already-too-small belt. After a few sharp glances from me, he stopped and no more was said about it until we got home and Sara and I demanded answers.

Apparently the belt was not large enough to go low enough around his waist for that pair of pants. I think that a good general rule for belts, regardless of style or placement on waist, is: if you are attempting to insert another hole in a belt a mere 2-3 centimeters from the end of the belt, that belt is too small. I said as much, he did not agree. A heated, quite humorous argument ensued.

Round 1:
"Maybe it's time for us to get you some more belts."
"No! I have plenty of belts."
"Why don't you wear a different belt with those pants then?"
"Well, I have two that are exactly the same as this one that I got for free from my job at Fort Vancouver, and my other belt has paint all over it."
"...So we should get you a new belt."
"But this one is fine! I just have to make a new hole in it."
"The end won't even tuck into the flap! It will stick out!"
"It's okay, my shirt covers it, it's not that bad."
Sara and I: "It is that bad."

Round 2:
"Jesse, I really admire your resourcefulness and creativity. If you were a homeless person figuring out how to survive, or if we just couldn't afford to clothe ourselves and you were coming up with solutions to shield yourself from the elements, I would be impressed. But this is an accessory. You are violating all laws of fashion and aesthetic appeal for an accessory! Just take the belt off! It's like making a decorative hat out of old grocery bags to impress people."
(I was grasping at straws here for illustrations and that one didn't work quite so well, but it served it's purpose.)
Ignoring me: "Sara, it's a good thing she's funny or I would be really mad right now."
Then, continuing: "But Alexis, I need a belt with these pants." He then demonstrated why by bending over and explaining how he didn't like them to move up and down his waist/butt when leaning forward or sitting.

Round 3:
In the midst of more circular assertions, Sara and I both tried on the jeans in question. Me for some unknown reason, her to see if they would work for maternity pants.
This helped me deliver some more potent blows:

"Okay, remember when I had your pants on? And they were huge on me? I was swimming around in them? Right. So, from that we know that I am smaller than you."
Holding up my belt next to his belt: "Why, then, is my belt SO MUCH BIGGER THAN YOURS???"
"Fine, then give me your belt."
Sputtering: "Uhhhh...okay...but..."
So, we traded belts. His response, "See? Getting stuff for free is WAY better than buying it!"**

It all ended - or at least recessed - a while later with Sara wisely proclaiming, "Where fashion and frugality collide is where a home is made!"

When he got home from frisbee hours later, he asked, "Is Sara still here?"
"No, she went home a while ago."
"Oh, I was hoping she'd still be here."
"So I could flip you guys some more bull... [pause] I love flipping bull."

*I learned later it was a center-punch.
**Jesse is not criminally frugal in all areas, by any means. He's really very generous with me, just not with himself.


Matt Mikalatos said…
Any time your wife says, "IF you were a homeless person" you know that you are about to lose the fight.
Anonymous said…
I finally got to read this all the way through and it was heart-warmingly hilarious.

I think, after four-plus years of marriage, it's amazing to me that most of what we argue about is still the trivial stuff. Maybe not the merits of belt augmentation, but if I really dug through my memory I'm sure I could recall something on a similar level :-)

I generally come away from these looking like a 7-year-old stubborn boy...

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