http://www.one.org Dixie Peach: Fifty Minus Two

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Fifty Minus Two

I have a good reason for getting drunk on a Wednesday if you're looking for one - it's B's birthday!

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This birthday also commemorates the tenth anniversary of the first time I celebrated B's birthday with him and since it is I may as well tell you about that particular celebration and how I made a horse's ass of myself.

It was B's 38th birthday and I was visiting him in Germany for the first time. B's mom was throwing him a big party with lots of people invited to not only celebrate his birthday but to let people meet me for the first time. Boy oh boy, there's no way better to make you feel confident and at ease with the situation than being in an 82 square meter apartment with 25 other people and there's only one other person there who speaks English! And he doesn't even do that all that well!

Our old apartment had two adjoining sitting rooms so the party guests were spread between the two. I kept myself stuck next to B as much as possible except for when I'd have to go to the kitchen to get food for us. I was in fear that I'd do something idiotic and B wouldn't be there to explain anything to me.

The party had been in full swing for a few hours and I was practically dizzy from the noise and gibberish being spoken around me. B wasn't as good at quick translation as he is now and trying to keep up with even the most simple conversation was proving to be work. I spent most of my time smiling and nodding and throwing in the occasional "ja!". Jeez, I felt stupid and all I could think was that I must look like a dolt in front of B's friends. I wanted to be charming and bright and witty and there was no way I was going to pull that off when I only knew a handful of words in German.

Finally I had to excuse myself. The chatter was driving me mad and anyway I had to pee something fierce. I walked down the hall and found the main bathroom, the only one I'd used since my visit began, was occupied. So I ducked into the powder room. While the rest of the rooms in the apartment had solid sliding doors, the powder room had one of those flexible accordion type doors. I did the bathroom type stuff I'd gone there to do and when it was time to leave I found that I couldn't get the door open. I tugged on it; it wouldn't budge. I tugged harder to no avail. I hesitated tugging too hard because I didn't want to break the door. I wasn't all that sure that B's mom liked me all that much and until I did, I didn't want to be responsible for destroying her property.

Still I did a bit more tugging at the door with no results. I wondered if perhaps someone was in the hallway who'd be able to help me so I tried knocking on the door - which was nearly useless as knocking on it only made the door flap around as it was attached to the door frame only at the top - and saying "Hello? Hello? Help? Hello! Help!".

Evidently everyone was busy in the sitting rooms slowly getting bombed.

Minutes were passing - many minutes - and I was still stuck inside. I went to the bathroom window actually considering jumping out until I saw that I truly was too far up. I briefly considered asking a passerby for help but unless I could make him understand my plight by using the only German words I knew at that point - danke, bitte, Liebe, ich, ja, nein, klar, schön, Bier - I didn't think I'd get too far.

I tried the feeble and futile door knocking and pitiful cries for help and still got no response. By now over twenty minutes had passed and I thought surely someone would notice I was missing but logic told me that the only person who would really notice my absence was the one guy who couldn't get up to look for me.

Finally I figured that I either needed to make my escape or spend the rest of my vacation in Germany locked in the bathroom. Broken door be damned, I gave it a hearty yank, the door popped free from it's latch and I was free.

By this time I must have looked like a crazed escapee from a prison and in a way I was. My heart was pounding, I was scared, upset, thirsty and I felt like a sweaty mess. And I must have looked a fright because when I returned to the living room B looked at me and said "Honey, where have you been?! What's happened to you?"

And I just lost it. My nerves were like kindling wood and I simply snapped. I burst into tears and babbled the whole story to B who tried his best to understand rapid-fire English from a hysterical, crying woman.

Naturally the rest of the party guests were wondering what had me in such a state and after hiccuping the story to B a few more times so he could understand it all he relayed the events to them. And they burst out laughing.

I felt like a first class jackass. I wanted so much to impress B's friends and make them think he had a lovely girlfriend from America and all I'd succeeded in doing was looking like a doofus who couldn't figure out how a door opens.

Finally B's mom came to me and hugged me and told me through B that the door in question was forever getting stuck and the only way to get it open was to either yank the hell out of it, as I had done, or lift up on the handle as you pull the door back to release it from its catch. But that one hug saved me. If B's mom thought I wasn't an idiot then the rest wouldn't either. Or if they did they would keep it to themselves.

It's been ten years since that party and I still on occasion get razzed about being locked in the bathroom. Except now if they give me too much shit I can dish it right back to them.

Happy birthday, my darling. I hope your special day is filled with every wish you make coming true and I hope your new life year is filled with good health, good luck, joy, and lots of love. I'd tear down every door in the world just to get back to you. I love you without end.

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18Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Dear Burkie. How I adore you! We are going on our 8th year of knowing each other- I'm 2-10 and still in love!

And if anyone thinks that it is odd that I am blantenly trying to steal my best friends husband- Kim would expect no less.

I knew today wasn't just a great, GORGEOUS day in DC for nothing- heck work was great! That can only mean one thing- it is a VERY special person's birthday. Happy Birthday to my friend who I had to list on my security paperwork- my best "alien" friend!

LOVE YOU! Can't wait to hug you again in person!

What a great story. I laughed and was touched- the mark of a great tale. Doesn't surprise me one bit that Margot was a gracious hostess!

Mollie

3:06 AM  
Anonymous titankt said...

My best wishes to B for a very happy birthday and I hope this coming year is his best year yet!

Hugs and a clank 'o the beer stein to you both! Cheers from the south coast of Texas!

3:49 AM  
Blogger Carol said...

Happy Birthday, B! He looks MAYBE 33, definitely NOT 48!!!

Carol

4:08 AM  
Blogger cncz said...

48?? He looks more like 28! Come on, fess up, you know he's your young boy toy and you are just lying about his age to protect yourself so people don't take you for a sugar momma!
Have a GREAT day!

The first time I met my husband's brother I tripped. For no reason. I was just walking down the street and randomly fell.

9:58 AM  
Blogger jen said...

you made me cry and I never cry. I'm a hard-ass.
Happy birthday B.

Here's to the much love, health and happieness.

10:33 AM  
Blogger Hilda said...

Happy, Happy Birthday B!

Heck Dixie knows that a lot of her friends have a crush on B - that's old news!

Great story Dix. As you kow I can totally relate to the meeting the future MIL in a long-distance relationship - adding the language factor makes it even more intimidating. I'm certain I did something embarrassing (big surprise!) when I first met her, but I think I have successfully repressed the memory.

4:26 PM  
Blogger Jemima said...

Happy Birthday to B. Great story, horrible story, I can certainly relate, even though I've never been trapped in a toilet that I can remember. Enjoy.

9:14 PM  
Anonymous 41 said...

Happy Birthday to B!

But, Dixie, aren't you required by law or something to publish the picture of B as a teenager with the rock star hair? Although he is very handsome in the picture you chose... maybe you could just Photoshop the hair into that picture.

9:16 PM  
Blogger Princess Cat's Pajamas said...

Happy birthday, B!

I have done many embarrassing things in life, but thankfully being trapped in the bathroom isn't amongst them...

9:50 PM  
Blogger Molly said...

Happy Birthday Handsome B.
(is this picture from years ago, back when people locked themselves in powder rooms?)

11:17 PM  
Blogger Dixie said...

That picture was taken last May just after his birthday. I keep telling him he doesn't every look any older. I'll bet there's a portrait of him somewhere that's looking pretty bad.

B thanks you all for the wonderful birthday wishes. He says he's had a great day and y'all helped make it great!

11:27 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

Late, but I hope B. had a great birthday!

Just look at it this way, Dix. Some guys get a girl popping out of a cake for their birthdays. Your B. got a girl popping out of a bathroom.

3:26 AM  
Blogger Irie said...

I hope you had a wonderful birthday, B. I hope you celebrated in style.

Dixie, I love that story. Sounds like something I would have done.

6:31 AM  
Blogger christina said...

Happy Birthday, B and many happy returns!

Awww, what a great story. And you were so brave! My kids have those accordion doors for their bedrooms and they can be a total b*tch to open sometimes.

9:36 AM  
Anonymous Lisa said...

Happy Birthday Handsome B!

Dixie, you two are too cute to be allowed, you know that? :)

9:21 PM  
Anonymous Jen said...

Hope B had a fantastic birthday, and that the year ahead is the best one yet!

2:20 AM  
Blogger sari said...

Happy birthday (a day late, sorry!) Burkie! I hope you had a wonderful day!

That story, it's classic. I can just imagine the stress you were under. I'd have been crying too.

3:54 AM  
Blogger Twango said...

i'm a couple of days late, but I do hope that B had a wonderful birthday

3:02 PM  

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