Inside Jokes

Dearest Rachel –

Well, that’s one major headache taken care of. I’ve gotten our tax returns back from our preparers, written out the appropriate amounts we owe – both for last year and for this year’s first installment – and will take them to the post office tomorrow and mail them out certified (just as proof they were mailed before the deadlines – and yes, I know the filing deadline got moved back for 2020, but the payments for the first quarter of 2021 haven’t).

Additionally, I had to have Daniel sign off on his own return (he didn’t have any tax to pay, but the paperwork still has to be done). When I indicated he needed to write down the date of his signature, and told him the date (4/12), he responded, almost as a reflex, “What’s a 412?”

And I replied in turn, “Overacting.”

It’s a punchline from Stan Freberg’s “St. George and the Dragonet” (at 2:54 on this link), that we would quote to each other whenever we would encounter the number. Just one of… how many inside jokes we had between us? Some days, it seemed like there was a reference to everything.

There was the crosstalk each time one of us would muse, “I wonder…” which would inevitably be followed by “What?” “Sh-sh-sh, I’m wondering.” I know it was from Tom Baker, but what specific episode of Doctor Who that was from completely escapes me.

And, of course, there were so many references to the Princess Bride. “Juu keep usin’ that werd. Ah doona thinkit means whatyoo thinkit means;” patting oneself down before leaving with a “Shalom;” and, of course, “As you wish.”

And while Daniel and I can still do some of that even now, it serves as a reminder that you aren’t here by virtue of how rarely these sorts of jokes come up anymore. Maybe these references don’t cross our mind as often anymore. Maybe we aren’t exposing ourselves to pop culture the way we used to (I mean, we don’t watch those meme channels anymore since you’ve been gone).

Or maybe it’s just that things aren’t as funny without you.

I don’t know. And it scares me to think that, in order to get to a point where things feel even remotely normal, I’d need to find someone who will ‘get’ the things we do. Either that, or we’ll have to start from scratch.

And that’s a tall order.

Perhaps Prince Humperdinck said it best:

You truly love each other. And so you might have been truly happy. Not one couple in a century has that chance, no matter what the story books say.

Prince Humperdinck to captive Westley in the Pit of Despair, The Princess Bride

Yeah, not as funny as most of the quote from that film. But it’s true, innit?

I’ll probably talk more on this subject another time. But the 4/12 one had to be remarked on today. It’s just one more thing I miss about you, honey.

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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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