One Thursday evening, not too long ago, I came home and found an organ in my living room. No, Remix had not brought me the still-beating heart of my nemesis, it was the musical kind. An electric organ, six feet wide and extending four feet out from the wall, with a huge speaker on each side.
Actually, I was really very pissed off.
I had seen this organ before. It had been sitting at the Durham Rescue Mission Thrift Store for months. It was the kind of thing that I admire briefly and then move on, because c'mon, that thing is huge and ridiculous. It would be an incredible thing for someone else to own. Unfortunately, Someone Else turned out to be my fiance, who had thoughtfully set it up in the living room and then left it for me to find while he was at work.
I fired off some angry, angry text messages. I said unkind things. When he said it would grow on me, I compared it to cancer. I. Was. So. Mad. I briskly walked the dog, and I was still mad. I cleaned the floors, and I was still mad. I wrote in my journal, and that just made me madder. I went out in the backyard and pulled weeds, and that helped. Then later, after he got home from work and we were both there staring at it, we had a good old-fashioned in-person fight.
She said: Do not bring giant things to live in the house without discussing it with other house members.
He said: ORGAN!
She said: Could you not wait until you saw me to talk about it? You could have called from the store. Did you have to have it right that second?
He said: ORGAN!
She said: So when you were driving to go get the band van and find three friends to help you move this thing into the house, during all that, did it never occur to you that I might not want it?
He said: ORGAN!
Basically, Josh really really really wanted the organ. He thought it was beautiful and amazing, the desire for it was self-explanatory: ORGAN. He'd wanted it from the first time he saw it, and only recently had it been marked down enough to consider buying it. Once it got to that price point, he was convinced he had to act at that very moment, before someone swooped in and bought it out from under him. He further assumed, like maybe you did, that I would really want it, too. I mean, if I was okay with the sarcophagus, why would the organ be any different?
I felt a little sorry for him. His enthusiasm, which I had swiftly and deftly murdered, was very earnest. He had even talked to me earlier in the day, after he'd bought it, and it was all he could do to not spoil the surprise that awaited me at home. He was so sure that I would love it, just like he was sure that someone else would buy it if he did not (Note to self: Josh very bad at estimating other people's desire for electric organs). Then I compared it to cancer and hurt his feelings. I felt bad for ruining his new toy high, and I could see why he would figure that I would be okay, even happy, about it. But I reserve my right to be angry about giant musical instrument purchases made without consultation.
I am accepting it, because there is not much else I can do. The next morning, when we were no longer fighting, but the sight of it still made me burn inside, he remarked about how he was going to be glad that he bought it every day for the rest of his life. And I felt the rest of the room fade away so it was just me and the organ in all the world, as that phrase echoed in my head, "the rest of my life." I'm going to marry this man, which is marrying his stuff. The movie of our marriage will have a soundtrack full of carnival music.
"We can still get a piano."
"And get rid of the organ?"
"No, we'd have both!"
"It'll be a really cool piano. And we'll put the organ on CraigsList and find it a good home with someone who will play it and love it."
"It has to be a reeeeeeally cool piano." A pause. "A player piano."
"That would be amazing." Pause. "Challenge accepted." We shook on it.