- So, I was reading through the list on the site The Things My Girlfriend and I Have Argued About (pointed out to me by my friend Lisa - @Glowbird), and I came across these two points, which - perhaps not coincidentally - were listed back to back. Before I even got through reading the first one, I came to the sudden realization that this must happen more often than I think, as it was close to the top of the list of things about my last serious girlfriend that drove me fucking insane. When I got to the next bullet point, I had to go back to the website and make sure the author wasn't dating my ex, since that point was #2 on the list of things that tempted me to strangle another human being.
- Arguments. There are many arguments we have over arguments. 'Who started argument x', for example, is a old favourite that has not had its vigour dimmed by age nor its edge blunted through use. Another dependable companion is, 'I'm not arguing, I'm just talking - you're arguing,' along with its more stage-struck (in the sense that it relishes an audience - parties, visiting relatives, Parent's Evenings at school, in shops, etc.) sibling, 'Right, so we're going to get into this argument here are we?' An especially frequent argument argument, however, is the result of Margret NOT STICKING TO THE DAMN ARGUMENT, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE. Margret jack-knifes from argument to argument, jigs direction randomly and erratically like a shoal of Argument Fish being followed by a Truth Shark. It's fearsomely difficult to land a blow because by the time you've let fly with the logic she's not there anymore. A row about vacuuming gets shifted to the cost of a computer upgrade, from there to who got up early with the kids most this week and then to the greater interest rates of German banks via the noisome sexual keenness of some former girlfriend, those-are-hair-scissors-don't-use-them-for-paper and, 'When was the last time you bought me flowers?' all in the space of about seven exchanges. 'Arrrrrrgggh! What are we arguing about? Can you just decide what it is and stick to it?'
- The key to a successful relationship is communication. That's the First Rule. Margret's corollary to the First Rule is the Timing clause. This states that the best time to initiate a complex and lengthy talk about, say, exactly how we should go about a loft conversion is (in reverse order of preference):
- When you see that Mil is playing a game online and is one point away from becoming Champion Of The World, Mil is racing out of the house to catch a train, Mil is in the middle of trying to put out a kitchen fire, etc.
- During the final minutes of a tense thriller Mil has been watching for the past two hours. Ideally at the precise point when someone has begun to say, 'Good Lord! Then the murderer must be...'
- Just at the moment, late at night, when Mil has finally managed to fall asleep.
- In the middle of having sex.
I guess it's a common complaint among men. Glad I don't have to worry about that in my current relationship.