I need to vent. Since I married my husband and part-time nemesis twelve long years ago, I have frequently found his chewed gum stuck in various places around the house; for example: on the bottom of my dinner plates, on the margarine container lid, on the bathroom sink, on the napkin holder, on magazines in the living room, and on the kitchen counter on a carefully laid out paper towel, which for some reason, it remained all night. Not only am I grossed out by this unsanitary behavior, I am totally baffled and as to why a grown man feels the need to save his chewed gum, especially since he never seems to re-chew it anyway.
In downtown Charleston, we have a wooden telephone pole where everyone, tourists included, stick their used gum—some kind of pop culture art that personally makes me gag—but my husband never thinks to stick his gum there, he walks by the pole as if its invisible, and then sticks his chewed gum to a spoon on the dinner table instead.
I realize he grew up under Communist rule in Bulgaria, and luxuries such as gum may have been scarce, but I refuse to give him a pass. He has been in America for over ten years now, and gum is abundant—and cheap. You can buy it in almost every store and gas station. There is no gum shortage here.
Well, what happened last week, at my son’s basketball practice was the straw that broke the camel’s back.
My husband called me on the phone sounding frantic. “I’m out of peanuts. You must go to the store and buy some peanuts. I will pick up our son from daycare, but I have to have peanuts so I can give him a snack before practice, he won’t eat bread in the car.” he said. (My husband is big on nutrition. He believes all you need to survive is peanuts and bread.) Anyway, I met him and son outside the gym and gave him the bottle of peanuts he requested. The two of them sat in his trunk and munched away while I waited outside. A few minutes later, my husband passed me the half-full bottle and the lid and said, “Here hold on to this we are going in to play basketball.”
When I went to put the lid on the jar, much to my dismay, I saw his chewed gum, folded over the threads. I stared the chewed gum in disbelief, and disgust, unable to fathom what in the hell possessed him to do such a thing. I glared at him and said, “Why on earth would you do something so gross?”
He ignored me and walked away as if I was being stupid.
Swearing under my breath, I placed the gum in a piece of scrap paper, and used a toothpick I had in my purse to remove the remains from the threads at the top of the jar, and then I saved the gum in the ashtray. After we got home, still grossed out, and determined to teach him a lesson, I found a more appropriate place to save his gum, on the inside of the crotch of a pair of his tightie-whites. Let him chew on that for a while! Bon Appétit!