A man’s castle can be a garage | PostIndependent.com

A man’s castle can be a garage

Fried RiceHeidi Rice

“Are you, like, moving out?” I asked husband-head with surprise, as I watched him pack up a box of stuff.”Well, kind of,” he admitted. “But I won’t be far. I won’t write, but I promise I’ll visit.”With that, he picked up the box and left out the back door of the house without even saying good-bye.I watched as he walked the 500 feet to the garage.Technically, I suppose it is a garage. But we have always used it more or less as a large storage unit where we save a bunch of stuff that we will most likely never use again in our lifetimes.But recently, husband-head got a wild hair and decided to clean the garage out, making trip after trip to the dump.”I have to dump a load!” he screamed out to me each time before he left.I prayed the neighbors next door understood he was talking about the local landfill.I didn’t really pay much attention to what he was doing in the garage – as I was furiously cleaning the house – but I was just glad that we were getting rid of all the junkIt wasn’t until husband-head finished taking all his loads to the dump that I became suspicious. He then began moving receivers and stereo equipment, TV’s and taking food and beer out of the refrigerator.”What are you DOING in there?” I asked while I was dusting. “Why are you pilfering stuff out of the house?””I’m very busy,” was all husband-head would say.After several hours, he came back all sweaty and dirty.”Come look,” he urged. “I want you to see what I’ve done.”What he’d done was transform the garage into his own personal space, complete with furniture, satellite TV, music, a refrigerator and a workshop space.”It’s my playhouse,” he smiled proudly. “This is my house and that is your house.” Til death do us part?”Except that I’ll still need to use the bathroom in your house,” husband-head added. “I don’t have plumbing yet.””OK, but I’m going to charge you,” I warned. “I don’t let just anyone use my facilities.”With that, he cranked up his stereo full blast and took out a couple of beers for us from his fridge.”Isn’t this cool?” he said with a smile. “I can watch all my Packer games out here and blare the music as loud as I want!””Yes,” I agreed. “As long as you still help pay the mortgage on the main house.”I decided it must be a guy thing to want your own space in an old wood garage…The next day, he came back from Wal-Mart with another surprise.”These are walkie-talkies,” he said, showing me the hand-sized instruments. “This way we can talk to each other when you’re in your house and I’m in mine.”He promptly went out to the garage and began talking on the miniature radio.”Can you hear me now?” he asked. “And can you hear me NOW?”It felt like we were on a cell phone commercial.”10-4 good buddy,” was all I could think of to say. For the rest of the day, he called incessantly on the little radio.”Why do we need walkie-talkies?” I asked when he finally came back into my house. “Now when something rings I’m not going to know whether it’s the telephone or the cell phone or this stupid thing…””Because I might need some service out there,” husband-head answered simply. “I can just call you and tell you to bring more beer or a pizza or something.”Unless, of course, my walkie-talkie gets mysteriously thrown down the toilet by accident…But despite having his new personal place, husband-head still slept in our bed that evening.”Why are you sleeping in my house?” I asked curiously. “I thought you had your own place.””Because I love you and this is where we sleep,” he smiled. “Besides, your house is cleaner…”Heidi Rice is a staff reporter for the Post Independent. Her column runs every Friday. Visit her Web site at http://www.heidirice.com.


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