Sep 01 2005

How Some Married People Irritate The Crap Out Of Me

Bert and the Puffy Ball

To the fancy-free spinster aunt there is no greater symbol of patriarchal oppression than matrimony. So it’s no surprise that in our spare time, nothing gives us greater pleasure than mocking it. Today the always-effervescent Drunken Lagomorph reads my mind with a short but satisfying vituperation on the creepy phenomenon of conjugal email accounts.

I am also driven up the wall by married people who eat off each other’s plates in restaurants, who say "I’ll have to check with Rocko" before they will commit to so much as meeting for a cup of coffee, who say "I’ll have to check with Rocko" when what they really mean is, "I would rather die than meet you for coffee and am stalling until I can think up an excuse," and who, no matter what the topic of conversation, must quote the brilliant Rocko as though he were Confucius, or Jon Stewart, or something.


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  1. jenofiniquity

    i don’t share my email password with anyone, not even my husband – and when i’ve mentioned it a couple of times in conversation, i’ve been surprised at how vehemently people react against it. when it comes to marriage, “if you want privacy you must have something to hide” seems to be the prevailing philosophy.

  2. Chris Clarke

    Hell, Twisty, I’m married…

    sorry, meant to say “I’ve sold out my abiding love for Becky to the Patriarchy”

    … and that shit still drives me up a wall.

  3. Josef K

    What about couples who use the address of their house as their email address? Have you ever come across that? Creepy as hell, and they have to change emails when they move house.

  4. Tony Patti

    Thanks for the dog shot and the snarky comment about matrimony! That’s my friend Twisty! Now! How about some bugs? It’s bug season uo here in St Louis…

  5. D Bunny

    I love your puppy and want to hug him and smoosh his face!


  6. D Bunny

    I love your puppy and want to hug him and smoosh his face!


  7. Emma

    I want to rub the fuzzy bit on his head.

  8. WookieMonster

    I even set up a separate account on my computer for my boyfriend so he wouldn’t have my password. He just doesn’t need access to my personal stuff. Of course since I’m the only one who knows how to use the computer, I end up loging on as him and doing stuff for him instead of him actually using it himself, but it keeps account info separate which makes it all easier.

  9. WookieMonster

    Oh, and Bert is adorable of course. How durable is that fluffy ball and where did you get it? I have a destructo-mutt, but she loves to destroy toys so much I get her them sometimes anyway if I think they’ll last longer than a day.

  10. Sylvanite

    I want to play tug-of-war with that cute pup.

    Yeah, my boyfriend and I have separate e-mail accounts. I remember when one of my friends got married, whenever I’d call her, her husband would pick up the other phone in their apartment to take part in the conversation, even though I had only met him once before they married. This moved on to me never being able to get her on the phone, but somehow always ending up talking to him instead. I found this really weird and creepy. I finally told her that, and that seems to have been the end of our friendship…Yeah, I suspect there may be some control and abuse issues there.

  11. ae

    Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh! I mean, the cuteness! The furballosity! The fuzzy adorable deliciousness! Stop it! No, don’t!


    Dude, is it just me, or do married folks at some point seem to forget their partners’ names and refer to them almost exclusively as “my wife” or “my husband” in conversation? What is that? Dude, I know your husband! Call him Jim!

    I do hope that that conjugal email acct thing is a generational phenom. I just don’t know anyone younger than, say, 60 who does that. Not saying it doesn’t happen; I’ve just not seen it among my g-g-g-generation.

  12. magikmama

    Yeah – the email thing is creepy. And that phone thing? Definitly smells of abusive bullshit.

    I do admit to doing the “I have to check with (name)” thing, but it’s because we have to keep tabs that neither of us has child-free activities planned at the same time. I’m not saying I need permission – just I need to make sure that someone is planning on attending to the monster.

    yeah – AND I FUCKING HATE IT when people refer to me as (name’s) wife. Dude – I have a name. That’s what people call me. I don’t think of myself as an appendage to someone who already has one too many, IMHO, and I’d appreciate it if you could do me the courtesy of at least pretending that I am an independent human being.

  13. AndiF

    That kind of stuff is what people who haven’t been together long do. People who have lived together a long time have long since gotten over the idea that sharing is what marriage is all about and know that marriage is really all about learning how not to kill the other irritating person in the house (monday’s my 34th anniversary without a murder so I’m claiming expert status).

    What’s more they each know only too well what filthy, disgusting habits the other person has and would deliver a ringing bitch slap for even thinking about making a move toward the plate.

  14. nazrafel

    LOL! Andif, I cannot TELL you how right you are (am approaching 5th anniversary and have lately been considering actions that most likely fall into the “premeditation” category)

    My husband and I not only have seperate emails, but seperate COMPUTERS (joint desktop died, he wanted/bought laptop, didn’t want to share, i bought my own damn laptop). In the long run, this is DEFINATELY the better set up (my computer is not infested with viruses, as is his, tee-hee :) )

    sigh, I married under the bizzare impression that we were going to be friends and equals for life. Now i realize that we will be friends and equals as long as I take care of All Things Important while he surfs the net. GGggggggrrr

  15. Sam

    My life partner (we’re anti-marriage for a host of reasons) knows my email password and has had occassion to get some info stored in my email account, but he has it because I trust him completely and know he won’t snoop around. Knowing my email account password is nothing when I consider that I trust him with all my possessions, our shared finances, my bodily and sexual health and everything else.

    It’s not about having something to hide, it’s knowing I can leave my diary on the kitchen table and he won’t read it because it was his respect for me and high ethical standards in general that had me falling googely-eyed in love in the first place.

  16. Twisty

    Wookie, I LOVE the puffy ball! I think I got it at Pestmart. It’s made out of frayed nylon rope and thus far has broken all durability records. The manufacturer warns that some dogs, left unsupervised, might chew off the green rope handle, but I swear, it would take some mighty mandiblizing.

    It’s not just festive; it floats, too!

    Have you tried the Velvet Bimples?

  17. Knotted Knickers

    AE wrote:
    I do hope that that conjugal email acct thing is a generational phenom. I just don’t know anyone younger than, say, 60 who does that. Not saying it doesn’t happen; I’ve just not seen it among my g-g-g-generation.

    AE, you don’t mention your age, but I have to tell you, I’ve seen plenty of young people with joint email accounts. Last year, I had a married pair of grad students in one of my classes, and I regularly received email from both of them at their joint account.* Their address included the phrase “twogether4ever” or something like that. It wasn’t just creepy, it was highly unprofessional.

    *I never asked their ages, but I’m pretty sure they were both under 30.

  18. Chris Clarke

    Their address included the phrase “twogether4ever” or something like that.

    It’s bad enough that Zeke just barfed on the rug: now I need to too.

  19. Chris Clarke

    Oh, and Twisty: I love your puppy and want to hug him and smoosh his face!

  20. jenofiniquity

    Saying “I trust my partner with xyz information” is waaay different that saying “you OUGHT to share such-and-such information with your partner because if you don’t, your motives are suspect.”

  21. miz_geek

    I hadn’t really thought about the email thing until somewhat recently. When we first got an email account, we only had the one address, so we shared. Later, as technology improved, we added extra ones, but the home emails all went to the same Outlook box anyway, so it didn’t really matter. Then you get into work email vs. home vs. yahoo or google. But now that we’ve each got our own computers, we keep the emails separate. I think I like that better.

    So the question is, how many married couples have separate accounts at Amazon, NYTimes, Orbitz, etc.?

    And Bert is so damn adorable! Makes me want to squeal and giggle in a manner I should blame the patriarchy for.

  22. Tony Patti

    I’m married. I call my wife Cathy Koch, her maiden name. I have lots of friends named Cathy so it just makes sense, though it might seem a little cold to those who don’t know how much I love the sound of the name Cathy Koch (pronounced “Coke”).

    All of our digital files are separate and I know her password and she (I think) knows mine, so we can get into each other’s stuff if we need to for some reason. But I just don’t have any reason to look at her stuff and she rarely needs to look at mine. She has her own computer, one of my old Mac PowerBooks, a Pismo…

    It makes me crazy when I hear women are still allowing men to sit around while they do everything. Cathy never says that about me. I insist that she cook at least twice a week because I get tired of it, but a lot of the housework is mine to do because I’m home and I like it clean.

    We recently were invaded by those huge carpenter ants, which shook me to the very core of my being. Now I can’t even let a fucking dish sit out for five minutes for fear that they’ll be back. Stupid ants! (say it with a Homer Simpson voice)

    My vigorous spraying of all the surfaces of the deck outside seems to have dissuaded them for the moment. I will not tolerate ants in our house. I’d rather have cancer!!!

  23. Twisty

    Alas, anyone who tries to smoosh Bert’s face gets humped. He’s just that macho.

  24. Penny

    Bert-EEE! Whoza good boy, whoza puppy DOG!

    Oh, sorry Twisty, you were saying?

  25. Chris Clarke

    Alas, anyone who tries to smoosh Bert’s face gets humped. He’s just that macho.

    I’m pretty sure I could take him, though.

  26. WookieMonster

    Wookie’s got the jaw power to destroy any toy, given enough time (she’s a 90 lb. rottie mix, she’s got the size and the amazing jaw strength going for her). All I can hope for is a sufficient length of time between purchase and complete destruction to justify the cost.

    I was in an obedience class with her once, was watching the instructor for a second, looked down, and was holding a chewed off nice thick cotton leash with a unconnected dog still in a perfect down stay at my feet looking very proud of herself (I have since curbed the horrible leash chewing habit, but I think it illustrates her amazing mandiblizing powers well).

  27. ae

    KnotKnick, I’m of that much-maligned generation known as X, and “twogether4ever” is so singularly vomit-inducing, I’m biting back the bile here. Thankfully, I’m not built for that kind of cute, if that’s what that is, which calls to mind a “clever” platitude one would read on the base of a Precious Moments figurine. Bleah.

    Conjugal email accts are just not practical in my reality. Both my partner and I have professional accts, as well as private ones, and why, pray tell, would I want to sift through his and he mine? (Well, mine is interesting; I can see why he’d want to sift through mine.) We just don’t have that kind of time. I’m already hopelessly behind in my correspondence. That said, it’s a little creepy to me. I want my own identity in everything and not every communication is meant for every eyeball. People are weird.

    MagikMama, I hear you! One benefit of that insidious subsuming of our identities though is that anytime a solicitor calls asking for Mrs. (partner’s name), I’m like, Dude, wrong number. There’s no Mrs. (partner’s name) here.

    And as usual, Sam, ditto what you said.

  28. ae

    Twisty, re: the Puffy Ball, I need a chew toy for the Dingo that has some give but one she can’t pick and worry until it ends in shreds. She This dog can seriously mandibilize some so-called indestructable toys. I’m less worried she’ll gnaw through the heavy-duty rope than whatever constitutes the “Puffy.” (And shouldn’t that be just Diddy now anyway? Har.) You think the Puffy Ball will work?

  29. ae

    Er, I realize “ditto what you said” is a repetitive redundancy. Apologies.

  30. Kyra

    Regarding eating off each other’s plates, what else would you do if he has something delicious that you love, which you didn’t order because you have something else delicious that you love, and the damn restaurant won’t let you order half of each?

  31. StealthBadger


    o.o Conjugal e-mail addresses? That sounds like a porn thing…

    In any case. Joint accounts, two people signing the lease… all of that… All it does is expose just how much of a business contract marriage really is, and incite a power struggle that if both people are sane, neither of them want but both should have expected.

    My ex-wife ran into this when we moved into our first house, and she was asked if she wanted to have the gas bill put in my name. I ran into it when she spoke her mind to someone, and I was expected to set her back on her heels. It turned out that we weren’t meant for marriage with each other (the jury is still out on whether I’m meant for marriage at all :P), but we never succumbed to that garbage.

    When we were doing the property division?

    We sat down, and in two hours, we were done. One of the biggest reasons for that was that we respected each other the whole time, which made determining whose was whose, and who needed which of the “common stuff” more very, very easy.

  32. Twisty

    Regarding eating off each other’s plates, what else would you do if he has something delicious that you love, which you didn’t order because you have something else delicious that you love, and the damn restaurant won’t let you order half of each?

    Kyra, the least nauseating protocol in this instance is the utilization of the bread plate as a makeshift serving dish. But my real advice is to avoid restaurants that refuse to hook you up the way you so richly deserve.

  33. BritGirlSF

    I must confess that I’m one of those who eats off my SOs plate…thing is, I don’t just do it with him, I do it with all of my close friends, with my family, with some of my co-workers…
    I don’t think it’s a nauseating couple thing so much as it’s a cultural thing. In some cultures sharing one’s food is OK, in others it’s a bit wierd.
    Sharing an e-mail account on the other hand really is creepy. My Dad does it, and it bugs the hell out of me. I don’t want my step-mother reading messages I send to my Dad if the message wasn’t addressed to her, and I find it intrusive that she does. One way to solve the problem is to send messages to a person’s work e-mail – this is what I did with Dad, and he seems to have gotten the message without me having to explain further.

  34. Alice

    The most nauseating thing is when married guys say, “When we were pregnant…” You weren’t pregnant! You’re a man! She was pregnant! You can’t get pregnant!

    Whew. I feel better.

    Next time it happens, I’m going to mention “our vasectomy.”

    But, here’s the more important point, Twisty: How about a photo of your other dog?

  35. Twisty

    Damn, Alice, I forgot about that one. I fucking HATE that one!

    Photos of Zippy are forthcoming. All in good time.

  36. natasha fialkov

    i have the sort of marriage where i am the inconsiderate, distant one telling my husband to be quiet because i am counting stitches or whatever. and he generally tells people that he has to ask me before making plans. not necessary, but really nice, eh? i went to a women’s college and consider myself a staunch feminist, never thought i would get married. but my husband is so amazingly supportive of anything i want to do and at the same time gives me space, and always has, no questions asked. are you puking? well, most of my friends who are married are sad excuses for women. shameful! but when they were dating, they were no better. and then, they have kids and their brains turn into baby-poo. how do your brains go from a masters degree in mathematic engineering to baby poos? anna sui to birkenstocks and socks and pleated khaki bermuda shorts. hard to understand. my cats never ask me to wear bad clothes. although i do dress them up and take pictures. maybe my brains are poo. i love your blog. it assures that i keep my feminist fury fresh. you are so cute when you are mad. well, all the time.

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