Desperado

My husband doesn’t know it yet, but by the end of this three-day weekend, he will divorce me.  We’ve been married 25-1/2 years.  But they will be down the tubes in just a few days.

It’s sad.  And it all came about perfectly innocently.  Really.

It was a lovely morning, and today as I drove in to work, I was singing along with the radio when the song came on.  Desperado, as sung by Linda Ronstadt (not the lesser version done by the Eagles).

It just happened; I couldn’t control myself.  It tried, but really, I couldn’t help myself.  I sang with abandon.  With joy.  With knowledge aforethought.

Now, I need to tell you that my soon to be ex-husband is handicapped.  We have managed to make a good life together despite this, umm, problem.  But it can’t continue.

You see, my husband hears everything.  He cannot tune anything out.  Not music, not voices, not machinery.  I’ve never known anyone else with this particular disability.  Whenever a neighbor starts a leaf or snow blower, a power tool, anything, he hears it and is frustrated.  When a song he dislikes comes on the radio, when a commercial jingle plays, he hits the mute button faster than a Jeopardy contestant gets the buzzer.  John will scream and dive across the room to turn that damn thing off.

Poor John.  He’s never found my mute button.

And that, of course is the problem.

You see, I sing.  Now, and for the last 25-1/2 years, I have looked over my shoulder before belting out a tune.  I try to be considerate.  And usually that works out OK for both of us.

Now, you should know that I can sing.  Really!  Years of chorus and choir, voice lessons, starring roles in musical comedies written by unknowns who, tragically, went on to other careers.  I am even a critically acclaimed singer, with the reviews to prove it.  Bronzed.  One reviewer went so far as to say that I was stylish, although I am pretty sure that he was trying to get into my pants when he wrote the review.  Of course, the evidence is circumstantial, based only on the reviewer’s verbal comments to me.  Still, I’m sure his judgment wasn’t impaired.  Extra blood is known to increase musical appreciation in men.  Do I need to produce the medical studies?

Now I have a handicap, too.  Unlike my husband, I can tune out anything.  Including my own singing.  While I’m doing it.  I often just don’t notice I’m doing it.

John can deal with my singing sometimes; sometimes I just keep quiet.  It’s worked.

Except for one song.  Desperado, as sung by Linda Ronstadt (not the lesser version done by the Eagles).  You see, it gets stuck in my head.  And not even the whole song.  Just one verse:

Desperado

Why don’t you come to your senses,

you been out ridin’ fences for so long, now.

Oh, you’re a hard one

But I know that you’ve got your reasons

These things that are pleasing you

Will hurt you some how

 That’s all I can ever remember.  And that, of course, is the problem.

“Lease, you’re doing it again. Those same lines — from the middle of the song.”

“Yeah, but they’re the best lines,” I respond.  (John is never amused by that line, no matter how many times I’ve used it.  Or how cute I look while saying it.  Silence and pursed lips follow. )

This morning, when the song came on the radio, I forgot.  I forgot that I cannot ever listen to that song again.  I forgot that hearing it, even once, will result in divorce.  I forgot that it might lead to a serious change in my life.

I didn’t change the channel.  I didn’t turn off the radio.  I did not drive into a tree or a ditch or another car simply to keep myself from hearing my beloved song – the one that my husband hates above all others.

Nope, I belted it out with abandon.

And it’s still there in my head.  It wants to come out.  In fact, it will come out.  Sigh.  And I know that my marriage simply cannot stand even one rendition.  Sigh. Oh well.  What’s 25-1/2 years anyway.

Mrs. Sparkly. Or should it be Ms.?

So it is a damn good thing that Janice at AuroraMorealist gave me the Mrs. Sparkly Award.  Because I’m going to need to supplement my income with some singing.

Thanks Janice!  For anyone who is unfamiliar with Janice’s blog, check it out.  She has heart and talent and gives love with every post.

72 Comments

Filed under Awards, Driving, Family, Humor, Music

72 responses to “Desperado

  1. Sounds like me, everytime I’m in a vehicle with the radio on. I know words to songs I’ve never even heard before.
    Oh…..the lesser version is totally the best!

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  2. His smile expands when I stop :).

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  3. funny, funny. You just keep singing girl – he may grumble but I’m sure he smiles and thinks of you fondly after the moment.

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  4. GOF

    You have a mute button!?
    Do you think Mrs GOF might have a mute button too.
    Where might I find it? Please.

    Thoroughly entertaining read. Thank you.

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  5. Was it your singing or the song you were singing? LOL. This is a fun post Elyse. I can tell you guys have a good relationship. I’ve been married to the same man for 27 1/2 yrs and we dated for two, so we are already saying we’ve been together for thirty years!

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  6. Really funny. Do not worry. you just continue singing that song. I do not think it will create any problem, until you are singing that same some song from your heart. 🙂 You wrote this piece beautifully.

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  7. Damn, Elyse. You are such a good writer. I started to read this and was prepared to be bored (because I’m catching up on my blog reading after Yosemite). But you made singing a song interesting! Setting it up with the divorce. Perfect. How did you do that?

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  8. Funny Funny! I love that song. How about putting one of the singing dog videos on your computer screen and blaming them for all the singing? (or you could just get really annoying and play one of those singing dog videos over and over again….)

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    • Sadly, I don’t have to try to annoy because songs are ALWAYS getting stuck. I once walked down a very quiet hallway at Harvard singing “It Ain’t The Meat It’s the Motion” without really paying attention to myself. Others did, though! 🙂

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  9. He could build you a sound-proof music studio and sheet music with the words. Come one, your 26th anniversary is coming up. Isn’t that the sheet music anniversary?

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    • I will put both on my anniversary wish list. I’m just not sure where to register. Lowe’s would probably be the ahem, ticket. It sounds so much more lyrical than Home Depot!

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    • That’s a great post, D&O! Thanks for linking back. I’d never heard the term “earbugs” or “earworms” before now. There are a few that make me crazy, but often I find myself singing them without noticing and driving someone else (usually my husband) crazy!

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  10. I’m sure you ARE exquisite. Writing ability and singing ability often go hand in hand. 🙂

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  11. I love that song… Linda’s version (not the lesser Eagles version)…well, in truth, I like the Eagles version too. And I love to sing it…I try to make it as melancholy as possible, without actually sobbing.
    (and I am not a good singer, except in my own mind – where I am exquisite.)

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  12. I love Linda! Back in college I would sing every song off her ‘What’s New’ album.
    I don’t sing nearly as well as you and I still belt things out all the time. Usually off-key and I usually throw in a few made-up lyrics for good measure. I do try to limit my singing to the shower (like most people, I actually sound GOOD in there!) I’ve also sung in choirs my whole life so my singing really can’t be helped. I do feel for my husband but if we must divorce…we then I’ll sing at the divorce proceedings too…

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    • Oops. I am taking a brief blogging break from a visit with a friend. Many bottles of wine have been consumed. So Darla and MAGS, I’m sure you will forgive that I confused your two comments. Or maybe it was just one from both of you.

      As for singing at legal proceedings, I think it is a good thing. But my late Aunt Marion organized a small group of seniors to go and sing at funerals. She thought it was terrible that there could be a funeral with no singing. When I learned of this, I though, well, please don’t sing at mine — you’ll scare away the angels…

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  13. Hi,
    Don’t you just love those songs that just don’t want to go away. This usually happens to me with songs from the past that I have always really liked. Ear plugs may save the marriage, you never know. 😀
    I enjoyed listening to Desperado again, I haven’t heard that song for years. 🙂

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    • Funny thing here — my husband NEVER reads my blog. Until today! Oops. He told me it is not this song that drives him crazy but Linda Ronstadt’s rendition of “Desperado.”

      “What’s New” is a wonderful album. I love her versions of “I’ve got a crush on you” especially. Ah, Linda!

      Thanks for coming along for the memories, Mags!

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  14. Sing anyways ….
    Hugs
    MJ

    PS my hubbs doesn’t mean to but he mangles the lyrics when he sings. It makes me crazy. I think that’s his comeback for having to hear my Elvis music so much … 😉

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  15. First, love the fact you can sing, with all you heart, in all abandonement…and with the timeless, “Desperado” at that. I salute your courage and bravery…the passion is inspiring. As for your hubby, a super head phone might do the trick…..I wish he’ll find a cure for it or atleast a way to lessen his discomfort. Thanks for sharing a very enjoyable post. Best wishes…

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  16. I hope this marriage can be saved — maybe you could give your husband a set of earplugs as a late Valentine’s present. If earplugs aren’t effective, you should probably create a charity aimed at finding a cure for this terrible affliction.

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    • Well, it is Sunday morning, and I have made it through the first day of the three. I am hopeful that we CAN save it. And it helps that I am “out of voice” today — I sound awful today. So today should be safe. That leaves only tomorrow …

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  17. as one who can hear the breath of a fish in the ocean, I understand him. As one who busts the car windows with blasting music, I hear you! Maybe you can sing something he likes…make both of you happy? 🙂

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  18. Elyse. Both my husband and I can sing but neither one of us ever remembers the words but we each think that our version is the correct one–every single song and every single time. Road trips are hilarious. Fun story. . .it made me giggle.

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  19. Hehe you make me laugh whenever I visit. I know exactly how it feels to have a song stuck in your head and start singing it out loud. My singing voice on the other hand is not so good, but I still love to sing!

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    • Singing just makes a person feel good. Do it. Of course, if you can’t sing, please don’t do it near me! (Actually, often folks who think they can sing can’t and those that think they can’t can. Go figure!) Thanks for stopping by!

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  20. TwinDaddy, you are often wrong — usually in your politics :).

    (How could I resist that one? I ask you. How? If you give me an opening, I will take it.)

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  21. 1. Well, you learn something new every day. I had no idea there was another version of this song other than the Eagles’. This version is better as she has a much better voice.

    2. My condolences for your upcoming divorce.

    3. Your contention about your singing is questionable. Sure, you received rave reviews, however when men are…engorged…there’s simply not enough blood for the brain to operate sufficiently. Therefore, any comments made whilst trying to get into your pants should be treated as suspect. I propose that you plug a microphone into your computer and capture the evidence in MP3 format and upload it to this very website and let us, your faithful readers, decided how ably you carry a tune.

    4. As usual, another great post. Keep them coming.

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    • Linda’s version is WAY better — although not the video I posted, I fear. My husband was in the room and would not leave as I was trying to find a video — so I didn’t actually play it until this morning!

      I may take up your suggestion on proving my singing ability. I actually have a recording on it on vinyl somewhere. Funny, no one has wanted to record in more recently until you. I am, however, often asked to start “Happy Birthday” when I go to parties! Does that count?

      I may just have to see if my technical adviser, my son, can help me do this when he’s home from college. Alcohol will be involved.

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      • Well, alcohol SHOULD be involved!

        As to the happy birthday thing. . . . .I’m not so sure. I think that may mean no one else was brave enough to be the first one singing. But, I’ve been wrong before.

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  22. Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

    This cracked me up at several points. First, my wife likes to sing – but unlike yourself, she needs a wheelbarrow to carry a tune. Fortunately, she does most of her singing in the car to/from work.

    Secondly, using medical to support getting a good review to get into your pants was a hoot … well, because I know that you would produce the studies!

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    • Glad you liked it Frank. And be nice to your wife — practice makes perfect with singing, you know!

      I’m off to look for those studies — I bet there are some!

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  23. Now, now, Momshieb. Are you claiming that, like your Dad, I cannot sing? 🙂

    I think it is so very funny that it is the things that drive us most crazy about the people we love that we miss the most. But had we known each other 30 years ago, I might have been able to help you. I had a dog who howled whenever anyone sang “Home On the Range” (but no other songs). He stayed on key, though. Maybe he could have helped your dad find the key!

    Thanks for finding my blog and commenting!

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  24. Hahaha!!
    This makes me think of my late Dad, who thought he could sing but who was nearly tone deaf. He’d putter around the house all weekend singing the same lines from “Oh, give me a hooooome! Where the buffalo rooaam!”
    It drove us all nuts, especially my Mom; but she kept him anyway. And we’d sure love to hear those wobbly flat notes now….

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  25. John is like that with smells, too. When we were dating I used to wear perfume, until I learned that he couldn’t tolerate it. He doesn’t complain about the others, though.

    You are living high maintenance! I bet she’s worth it. John certainly is, except of course when I want to throttle him!

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  26. bigsheepcommunications

    My 14 year old daughter suffers from this same disability – she can HEAR from across the room if my husband changes his facial expression, she watches TV with the sound on level 3 and mutes the commercials, she probably hears every annoying sound her brother makes even though he’s 2 hours away at college. I suspect your marriage will survive : )

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    • Brilliant line: “she can HEAR from across the room if my husband changes his facial expression” — wish I’d thought of it!
      The sensitivity to sounds, I learned through a blogger, is an actual medical condition, called “misophonia” (here’s a link to the Wikipedia page on it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Misophonia). Until I read this, I thought my husband was just being a pain. Now it’s still a pain but I have a modicum of sympathy for him!

      And yes, my marriage will make it through the weekend. It’s made it through Christmastime, after all. 🙂

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      • bigsheepcommunications

        Thanks for that link – fascinating, isn’t it? And, it’s not just sounds that she’s hyper-sensitive to, it’s anything sensory – from too much light to tags in her clothes to ordinary odors that most people don’t even notice. (We live a high-maintenance existence.)

        As for you, rock on!

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      • Hey Elyse and Lisa – jumping in because I have a similar sensitivity to loud noises, smells, the tag in the clothes, etc. Not as bad as you two describe, but I never knew it was an actual condition. I’ll check out the link.

        Not only are you both funny as all get-out, you’re walking public service announcements – thanks!

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        • Thanks Peg — until I heard that it was a real condition (through another blog, although sadly, I can’t remember which one), I was less understanding. Now I’m understanding as hell, in between songs :).

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  27. You are so funny!!! I love singing but my hubby loves it. Guess I’m just lucky. – Maureen

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  28. nigelld

    Sorry I prefer the lesser version 😉

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    • You and your comment were stuck in spam. Apparently, Word Press prefers Linda’s and my version, too! But you’re entitled. I’ll sing along with that one too!

      And I survived the weekend with my marriage in tact.

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  29. I love this song, and it’s better than “Kookaberra Sits in the ol’ Gum Tree” which has been lodged in my ear cells for the last week. Maybe if you sing that…it’ll get stuck in your beloved’s head and save your marriage?

    And you got Two-Panned on my post. Thanks in advance for your good sense of humor.

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    • If I get the Kookaberra song stuck in my head, he will kill me. John is a mild-mannered guy for the most part, but he is human and the Kookaberra song would, well, loosen the last threads keeping him from murdering me!

      I am honored, thrilled and delighted to have had a personal appearance in Two Pan! Here’s the post for anyone who hasn’t been there: http://barbfroman.wordpress.com/2012/02/17/tight-lacing-your-corset/
      It’s Barb’s version of the Way Back machine and it’s great fun to visit.

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  30. I love that song and totally agree about Linda Ronstadt. I once talked my parents into taking me and my sisters to her concert when I was 11. (my dad was not amused by the couples on the lawn “doing it” under blankets nor the scent of pot wafting in the air!)

    Oh, and one more thing we have in common…my husband and I have also been married 25 1/2 years!

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    • Ohhhh, I would have LOVED to see Linda. No, I wanted to BE Linda. And my dad wouldn’t have been amused by the spectators either.

      25-1/2 is a special time. In my case if I don’t stop playing/singing this song, it will be a “paper” anniversary — as in “divorce papers!”

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  31. Funny you should blog about Desperado. That song tells my life story. The whole song gets jammed in my head for days whenever I hear it. Especially he very last line.

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    • I am not sure if you are GLAD the song will be in your head for days or not. But I may be able to share some of the duct tape I will use to preserve my marriage if you need it!

      It’s such a great song, I love it. It’s playing now as I answer your comment. Yes, I live dangerously!

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  32. You could buy a white noise machine so that he doesn’t hear your singing. Not only did it save our 16 year marriage, but it saved Oregano’s life. His snoring got so bad I contemplated smothering him with his own pillow. With the white noise machine running, I don’t hear him at all.

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  33. It would be less irritating if I sang TWO verses, I imagine! But it’s actually really hard to sing BADLY. But, actually, my good singing days are long gone — I damaged my voice about 15 years ago when one of our dogs got lost and I spent hours shouting “CHARLIE!!!! HERE CHARLIE!!!!!!” 😦

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  34. At least you can sing! Can you imagine how irritating it might be if you couldn’t sing? Have you tried singing off key so he will appreciate the on key singing?

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  35. He even hears through “noise cancelling” headphones. Sigh.

    I haven’t thought about making the lyrics all about him, though. It is certainly worth a try, although, he is incredibly smart, so I may have to lobotomize him first. But still, maybe it’ll work. I will keep you posted.

    To any law enforcement folks reading — I’m just kidding. Really.

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  36. Um…Can you buy him a walkman with headphones?
    Or rework the lyrics so it’s a song about him…

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Play nice, please.

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