Maybe not really. Anne and I do have our sing-a-long moments, whether we’re busting out hymns in the same church service or indulging secret nostalgia on road trips passing through towns where ’80s Top-40 still lives, which describes nearly every small town today outside Footlooseburg. I’m not convinced we could carry our own Broadway show, off-Broadway vanity production, or community performance-art stunt, but if we tried, it would look like this except you could see our jazz hands better on stage. Also, it might be nice if we found a talented stylist to hide all that stately gray that’s overtaking my beard. Nagging aging defects like that can lead to bouts of vain grumpiness and haunting incidents like the time we went to a Red Lobster and the waitress asked me non-jokingly if my daughter would like a children’s menu. True, unfair story.
So this is what nearly twelve years of marriage can look like under miraculous circumstances. We have another anniversary coming up next month, another chance for me to spend a day refusing to believe I deserve someone as gracious, intelligent, discerning, patient, and heartwarming as her. Neither of us is perfect, but thankfully our imperfections aren’t our defining features. Mine often make for good writing fodder here, but she’s quick to disagree when my self-deprecation goes overboard, and quicker to forgive when my self-convicting candor hits the target.
The photo is an outtake from last month’s Indy 500 Festival Parade, an impulsive selfie in front of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, with the Chase Tower back and to the left trying to get an antenna in edgewise. It was a split-second coda to another joyous jaunt with my #1 fan, one of the myriad memories in our time together as husband and wife, travel companions, and willful partners through this thing called life. We’re the Goldens. This is who we are and what we do.
Without this lovely woman’s assistance, it wouldn’t have been nearly as easy for Midlife Crisis Crossover to have reached its 1300th post earlier this month. I usually whip up a commemorative interlude every 100 entries in the grand tradition of comic books, from back in the days when comics were allowed to reach issue #100 and celebrate not getting canceled. June has been so hectic that I passed mile marker 1300 without even realizing it. The actual 1300th entry was our mostly overlooked photo gallery of the erstwhile Times Square Toys R Us. Had I paid attention to the numbering, that writing session would’ve been put to apter use.
In that spirit, I owe endless thanks to Anne as MCC’s other chief photographer, writer/co-writer of a scant handful of entries, dedicated reader, kibitzer, cheerleader, inspiration, fact-checker, and MCC’s top geek model nonpareil. May she find it in her heart to put up with me for the next 1300 entries and some more decades of marriage, and not necessarily in that order.
I wish we had a musical number to insert here as a capper. Pretend this sentence is a seven-minute audiovisual extravaganza in which she and I turn Toto’s “Africa” into a heavenly duet that blows off the roof and makes the cast of Wicked burn their sets in a jealous rage. Yes, that’ll do. We appreciate your imagination’s assistance.