My husband touched it as if it were pure bullion, and to him, it was. It stood there proudly, gleaming from a recent coat of hand-polished wax—a dark green, four door BMW. My mouth hurt from my happy smiles for my man.
In order to understand his joy, one should be aware that for the previous four years my husband had driven a very old work van that was equipped with a steering-wheel and not much else. A healthy tax return had enabled us to find this precious pot of gold on EBay, and we couldn’t wait to smell the plether.*
For the occasion, we drove the family down to the big city in a rented minivan. I had a GPS licked to the windscreen, which helped us to get onto the right overpasses and into the parking lot where this little gem sat waiting. It was the smallest model one can buy in the BMW series, and my husband had wanted one that was a manual drive so that he could pick up on power. The smile on his face after he drove it around the block should have been on a TV show.
I sat with the kids while he flourished the pen over the sale documents, and jumped up to rejoice with him when he waved the key in our direction.
He planned to follow close behind our minivan so as to benefit from our GPS system. Cars were lined up on both sides of the exit. My husband pulled up beside me so that he could pull out at the same time and stay on my tail. Frontage road traffic was swift and voluminous, and just as we saw a gap and were about to pull out, a vehicle pulled up to the exit wanting to get in. My husband looked over his left shoulder and started to reverse, at the same moment as I looked over my right shoulder and did the same thing…
I knew what had happened, but I didn’t want to acknowledge it.
“What happened Mommy,” said a little voice from the back.
“I think I crashed into your daddy’s new car.”
That was an understatement.
My shaky hand managed to find the door handle and I slipped from on high and let my feet find their way over to where my husband stood—right beside the foot-long dent in the back door.
His eyes congregated with mine.
His arms lifted up to rest around my torso.
And he said…
“It’s only a car.”
I don’t believe anything that good went through his mind in those split seconds of crunchiness, but he made a choice as he stepped out of his waxed piece of mangled metal, and because of it, I have canonized him as my personal saint.
He made a choice in those moments.
Because of it, he is still alive to tell the tale…
P.S. If you want him to be the main speaker at your next men’s group, call 1800-BE-SMART. It could save lives.
*plether = fake leather
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