(Written in 2007) It was a rare, quiet Saturday yesterday. We are bracing for an exciting flourish of activity that begins today launching three weeks of exciting travel and ministry. I was working on editing some stories for a book when Lois came in from shopping.
For the last month we have been treated to a natural phenomenon that happens only once every seventeen years. It is the invasion of cicadas. If you haven’t experienced a cicada invasion the best way for me to describe it is to say it is like one of the plagues of Egypt. It is like a divine scourge of apocalyptic proportions. Cicadas are huge bugs that resemble locusts or grasshoppers, but they are bigger and louder and much, much uglier. They climb the trees and invade cars and houses and find their way into the most interesting places.
They ride in on your clothing. Every day at least one visits our staff meeting and announces his presence with loud singing. This weekend I saw a waiter hustling one out of Olive Garden in a napkin.
Lois came in from shopping and I heard her say, “Do you hear a cicada? I think I have one on me. Do you see it? O my,” she said, “I think it went down my shirt.” Since the plot had taken an interesting turn I put away my work to observe closely what would transpire next. The pitch, volume, and intensity of her voice rose and her face turned red as she began to dance around the dining room pulling at the neck of her shirt and saying, “I think it went down my shirt. I can hear it. I can feel it. Get it out! Get it out! I watched but made no move to help. To my delight she then took off her shirt faster than I have seen her do it in nearly thirty years of marriage no matter how eager she was to disrobe, and there nestled at her breast was the fortunate critter, happy as a bug in a—well, you know. She ended his pleasant ride by knocking him to the ground and stomping him to death, but it must have been a nice ride while it lasted.
Sometimes marriage is hard. Other times it’s more fun than you expected. Here’s to the happy surprises of married love. Happy Valentine’s Day.
February 14, 2011