Home > Gaijin Chronicles > Girl Who Cried Wolf

Girl Who Cried Wolf

So my wife calls me a lot. My cell phone history displays an average of about 3-4 times a day. Ordinarily I wouldn’t mind too much, but she has this habit of calling me at times when I’m not really in a position to be having a regular conversation on the phone. For example…say…at 2:15 PM on a Tuesday.

*phone rings*
Me: Hello?
Her: Hi.
Me: Um, hi. What’s up?
Her: Oh, nothing much. How about you?
Me: Um…working. It being Tuesday afternoon and all.
Her: Right, yeah. What are you doing at work?
Me: Um…work. Did you have a point to this conversation?
Her: No, just wanted to talk.
Me: Okay, hanging up now.
Her: …Why?
Me: Remember that whole work thing we just discussed?

Unfortunately my wife is a woman of extremes. So if I tell her not to call me at work, she never calls…ever. And then I feel all sad and neglected. Yes, I know this is all very counter-productive. These are the things that happen when a guy gets married. So my solution is to let her call, and when I can answer, I will. When I can’t, I won’t. She knows this system and is also okay with it. For the most part, it works pretty well.

However, the monkey wrench here is that my wife is now 9 months pregnant. The phone call I ignore may very well be the phone call alerting me that a baby is emerging out of her. Maybe one day in the future, we’ll have cell phones where you can actually preface your call with a title or something. Imagine how convenient that would be! If you got a call from your shift manager on your day off with the title “Work Related”, you could always just throw the phone in the lake you are hanging out at and then claim it fell out of your pocket when you tried to answer it. I could also utilize this system to distinguish between “Just want to say hi” and “Giving birth to child.” Unfortunately, we don’t yet have this feature, so I had to change up our calling system. It was a simple change – if baby is coming out of you, call. If not, don’t. I felt this was a straightforward yet effective approach to the situation.

Now let’s jump back to last Friday. It’s lunch, and per our Friday ritual, some co-workers and I headed out for some Indian curry. While my wife’s anticipated due date is still two weeks away, the baby is quite big (doctor’s response to wife: well, looking at your husband I suppose that’s to be expected) so labor could happen pretty much at any moment. Just as we settle into a table and put in our orders, my phone begins ringing. It’s my wife. I suppose lunch could be considered “not working”, but it also happens to be the time when I like to use my mouth for eating food and not talking. At any rate, our system is in place and I don’t feel like I can risk not answering.

Me: Hello?
Her: Hi. So…
Me: Your water broke?
Her: …No. So I went downtown, and I want to buy this bunny rabbit stuffed animal for our baby, and I found a really cute one! But I’m not sure whether I should get the 20cm or the 30cm one. Smaller is better for babies, but the bigger one will last longer into her childhood…
Me:

I remind my wife of our new system (don’t call me unless babby is forming), inform her that I’m on the verge of eating, and recommend the smaller 20cm rabbit. A few minutes later, I get email – a picture to help in my stuffed rabbit deliberations.

Eventually our food comes, and as I am enjoying my Indian cuisine, the phone rings again. Literally, I have a mouth full of tandoori chicken and I feel the phone call ring vibrating in my pocket. Well, the last call was trivial…but I did remind her of our system, and by now she should realize I’d be right in the middle of lunch. Besides, do I really want to tell my daughter a few years later that I wasn’t at her birth because Mommy asked me about stuffed bunny rabbits and I was eating Indian chicken? No, that’s the kind of conversation she’d re-tell to Johnny, right before he laid her out a nice line of coke and threw her a rolled-up $1 bill, before lying to her about going out with the guys while he really goes out to hustle on the corner of 3rd and Vine. How did this happen to you, sweet little girl? Because Daddy didn’t care enough about me to help choose my bunny rabbit, and he missed my birth. …I’d better answer.

Me: Hello?
Her: …I also found a nice black bunny, and now I don’t know which one to buy.
Me:

Between chewing, I tell her to get the black one. You first-year psych students may want to analyse why I choose the black rabbit over the white one, and what that says about black men who live outside of their home country…but the simple answer is that black is the easiest to say with a mouthful of chicken. …That answer also sounds wonderfully racially loaded, but that’s just how it was. You try saying “white” with a mouthful of Indian chicken and see how well it comes out.

Again, a few moments later she sends me a picture of the rabbit in question.

We finish eating and are on our way out of the restaurant. Yet again, my phone rings. What now, a turquoise 40cm rabbit? I move to ignore, but having finished eating I don’t have a real reason not to answer it…and the image of my daughter doing coke lines flashes through my head. All right, better answer it.

Me: Hello?
Her: …I bought the 30cm white rabbit. Just thought you would like to know.
Me:

…Do I really need to post the image again?

I do find it interesting that of all the rabbits she proposed, the one she bought was the one I never actually recommended. Which confirms my suspicion that when women ask men a shopping question, they either don’t care what you have to say because ultimately they’re going to do what they want, or they are making a concerted effort to do the exact opposite of what the guy suggests. But hey, at least my daughter has a cute, white, 30cm bunny rabbit to play with?

But I think I need to have another talk with my wife on our new phone call system. Something tells me that she doesn’t quite get the concept.

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Categories: Gaijin Chronicles
  1. Bizzy
    October 21, 2010 at 6:32 pm

    Nice Post Az.

    Maybe you should convince your wife to send you a text message with a preface before calling.
    And if you ever miss a call your daughter will understand why after reading this :).

  2. OZ
    October 21, 2010 at 6:39 pm

    Well Az. On the bright side, her crying Bunny instead of Baby may just have been for the better at the time. The risk of you choking on your mouthful of indian chicken, and then get sent to another hospital, thus missing the birth anyway, seems very real to me.

    In any case. It’s, hopefully, only for a couple of weeks you’ll have to put up with it. Ganbatte.

  3. Sam G
    October 21, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    Sounds annoying, but I suppose it could be worse. She might not call you at all, even if she’s having the baby. At least this seems to show that she really likes talking to you, even if she doesn’t exactly listen to your recommendations.

  4. Naba
    October 21, 2010 at 7:04 pm

    She’s probably just as nervous about the baby thing as you are. A case of knowing you’re there when the belly popping begins, or just having something to stem the ever-building fear that something’s going to go wrong, no matter how much you reassure her it won’t.

    Reminds me of Cousin Mil, she’d go spree shopping (We’d usually keep the receipt and sneak back to refund about three quarters of the stuff while she was asleep so she wouldn’t bankrupt us) just so she had something to think about other than pregnancy, labor and being unable to see her own feet (And let me tell you, trimming her nails was no picnic. She’s ticklish, you see).

    Hoping the birth goes well, Jeff. Congratulations on making it this far, but the best bits are still ahead! (Just keep a few energy drinks on the side of the bed. Those kids need at least an hour of lullaby before they go back to sleep in the middle of the night).

  5. October 21, 2010 at 7:14 pm

    As always, another twisted story from your life delivered in an epic way:) Really hope your wife gets an easy birth!

  6. nmtbuzzfox
    October 21, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    Is it weird that I want to ask whether you were talking about how hard it is to say “white” with a mouthful in English, or in Japanese… just in case I need to know for emergencies and suchwhat

    • Vonbootystein
      October 21, 2010 at 11:35 pm

      i was thinking the same thing!

    • vaidkun
      October 22, 2010 at 2:34 am

      i bet 10000en it was japanese πŸ™‚
      but im not sure was it kuro-black shiro-white because to me its same risk of choking to say both.

      • October 22, 2010 at 5:58 am

        I would imagine that trying to say “SHIro” with a mouth full of Indian chicken would swiftly result in tableguests with faces full of Indian chicken, though.

      • joshuad31
        October 23, 2010 at 9:51 am

        Both end in RO. ShiRO, KuRO so umm what would be the difference? The hiss of the shi resulting in Curry spray?

        Burakku Uaitou?

      • October 24, 2010 at 3:26 am

        Yeah, that was what I was getting at. A danger on both syllables!

  7. Mew
    October 21, 2010 at 8:40 pm

    I hope everything is going well with you.

    Have you considered setting up a birth registry/PayPal account? I hear that birth gifts are uncommon here, but I’m sure that the “need to buy stuff for baby” factor is overwhelming.

    That and I’m sure your Japan OP9 peeps (me included) would love to pitch in.

    • October 22, 2010 at 2:34 pm

      I have a PayPal donation button in the sidebar.

      Baby donations would be very helped, and much appreciated.

  8. Jill, Mawande
    October 21, 2010 at 10:16 pm

    Yeah! Az, we want to send baby-shower gifts! Or you could tell Pierre to hire a place and we’ll tromp over from all parts of Japan to dump money on you.

  9. Aris
    October 21, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    Great post – thank you!

    Typically my wife sends me text messages on my phone when she wants to send me a message without ‘disturbing’ me. Maybe that would work for you? Or are text messages really difficult to do in Japanese?

  10. ShireNomad
    October 22, 2010 at 2:17 am

    This is why my fiancee and I stick to texts for the most part. Usually we’re both at work during the day and could be incredibly busy at any given moment.

    But I’m assuming your bride is a stay-at-home and doesn’t appreciate the concept of “too busy.” (To which I respond, wait until she has that kid, THEN she’ll understand the concept.)

  11. October 22, 2010 at 3:59 am

    Actually, the “white” bunny looks more Japanese to me.

  12. Michael from Denmark
    October 22, 2010 at 7:19 am

    Getting closer!
    When I saw there was an update for you, i thought that this was it. But alas your nerves have to be strung a bit further.
    Best of luck when the baby does arrive and i concur on the baby shower thing. Your writing have given me countless hours of fun and thoughts through many years! Whatever happened to that book deal?

  13. October 22, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Man… it sounds like hard work. Well, in a month’s time you’ll only need to worry about sleepless nights and calls about baby burps.

  14. Chibi
    October 22, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    Which confirms my suspicion that when women ask men a shopping question, they either don’t care what you have to say because ultimately they’re going to do what they want, or they are making a concerted effort to do the exact opposite of what the guy suggests.

    THIS! As a woman I can tell you is completely true.

    Best of luck to you in the next few weeks, your going to need it.

  15. Dancingrage
    October 22, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    Might I suggest not eating before hand unless you know for a 100% assured fact you have an iron stomach? Maybe make preparations for potentially passing out (I know of ‘manly men’ who passed out watching a birth) in the event that happens. Last minute items you could look at getting would be…Hm…gas drops, gripe water, dark corn syrup, couple of extra cloths for bundling up the little one (bundling tends to put a baby to sleep pretty easily for the first 6 to 9 months) some peaceful quiet music via MP3 or whatnot, if you already have the bed/crib/side thing covered you should be good there. Maybe a humidifier if it’s really dry in your apartment, but I’m guessing that’s not the case given earlier posts…oh, and most importantly, get a system or plan ready for what you can do in the eventuality that your daughter starts crying and you have not one damn idea what’s causing it. Think that covers it from my experience playbook, hope it helps.

    Ganbatte, Az-san!

  16. RVIsh
    October 22, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    Halloween baby?!

    I suppose that would mean more in the States, but still. It would be pretty cool.

  17. Ncrdrg
    October 23, 2010 at 6:10 am

    Well, considering she’s going to do whatever she wants anyway, just tell her exactly that next time she tries to do the same thing. (You know there’s going to be a next one soon enough).

    For the work thing, tell her to call if her water’s breaking and to text you if it’s not. Should be simple enough to understand.

  18. HiEv
    October 23, 2010 at 7:01 am

    Bah! You should have titled this one “The Girl Who Cried ‘Bunny'”. πŸ˜‰

    • joshuad31
      October 23, 2010 at 9:48 am

      I totally agree!

  19. October 23, 2010 at 10:09 am

    Hahahaha!! To be honest, women just want a second opinion to see how they’d feel if they picked that option. Which is why they often go with their initial feeling. It’s like tossing a coin in the air to find out which choice you really want.

  20. Mediafag
    October 23, 2010 at 12:48 pm

    Woman: “What do you want for dinner, hun?”
    Man: “Curry would be nice…”
    Woman: “Curry will make you yellow. I’ll make meatloaf instead.”
    Man: *Facepalm*

    It’s a fact of life, folks. Deal with it.

    • arthurfrdent
      October 25, 2010 at 6:50 am

      heh, from Dual!parallel…

      best of luck with the wife and calling Az… as long as she can’t see your reaction to it, you’re good.

      things will get more weird before they get less.

  21. Francine
    October 23, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    Ahaha! That was funny!
    After seeing the photos though, I’d have to say the black one looks way better than other one…which seems to be more yellow than white! Not that you mind anyway πŸ™‚

  22. Ignorance
    October 24, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Captain Picard has so many great facial expressions.

    Hope the babies birth goes well, and your wife doesn’t drive you to miss the call.

  23. Cecilia
    October 24, 2010 at 7:27 pm

    I personally would’ve gone for the white myself, but then, I did have a albino pet bunny when I was a young girl.

    I don’t really know how true that shopping thing is, being female but uniteristed in shopping that’s not for video games, art supplies, comics, ect. I just go with whatever I want.

    Good luck with your daughter, Az. …And don’t worry about the predicted due date. It’s not a perfect science yet considering each pregenancy is different, so it’s something like a three week period around the predicted date that is considered to be more or less on time. Anything before and after that time is when you get true early and late. In case you didn’t already know. ^^;

  24. david
    October 24, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    We all agree that she should have bought teh balck and the white of that 2nd picture, so they could have been a substitute for papa and mama right ?
    also, those cute rabbits are cute.

  25. Athlynne
    October 25, 2010 at 6:05 am

    Well, the most important thing is that your daughter’s stuffed bunny was chosen carefully, right? πŸ™‚

  26. Drew
    October 25, 2010 at 9:48 am

    Being newly married to my long time Japanese girlfriend(now wife), I can relate to this so very well. She calls during work at the most undesirable times. Then if I ignore it, i will have like 4 missed calls. So funny. I never got serious enough with other Japanese women to know if this is universal, but I suspect it is.

  27. Joe
    October 26, 2010 at 12:51 am

    Take my advice, Az. Don’t look when the baby is being born. People will tell you that childbirth is a beautiful thing. Don’t believe them. They don’t know what they’re talking about or they’re lying.

    Don’t get me wrong, when your daughter first enters this world and you finally meet her it is beautiful. But Oh My God, you won’t believe what your wife’s vagina will do to make that happen! It is truly Kafkaesque.

    Don’t let curiosity get the better of you. Remember what happened to those Nazis who looked into the Arc of the Covenant.

  28. hannie
    October 26, 2010 at 2:15 am

    Are you that Azrael Outpost Nine guy? You’re married now?

    • October 26, 2010 at 7:59 am

      Yes and yes.

  29. Jacob
    October 27, 2010 at 6:43 am

    Hey, you said that you have a new job that is different from the ordinary Japanese business man’s right? Could you possibly tell me what it is or how you got it? I am currently searching for jobs in Japan for when I graduate. Thanks and your posts are still great. Keep them coming!

  30. cee
    October 27, 2010 at 11:26 am

    made a donation. maybe you could buy your daughter the other two rabbits so she can have a family? you’re going to be a great father.

  31. Justin
    November 8, 2010 at 5:41 pm

    LOL, your wife is pregnant and she can do whatever she wants. Get over it πŸ˜‰

  32. Mike
    November 10, 2010 at 5:01 am

    Three day reader, second time poster. But the first time was somewhere on an old Gaijin Smash post from 2008. Anyway i hope that when she was actually giving birth she did actually ring and say “A baby is emerging out of me”.

  33. Blayne Bradley
    April 18, 2011 at 5:30 am

    This was great, I haven’t laughed this much in a few updates and the picard facepalm images were icing on the cake.

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