Life Deconstructed: Don’t be surprised if you see a bonfire on the porch

Maria Jiunta Heck - Life Deconstructed | May 3rd, 2017 7:55 pm

Nancy and I just celebrated our 30th anniversary this past week.

Let me rephrase that: Nancy celebrated himself this past week. Because, although I thought making it to year 30 — without him having any visible, physical damage that can be proven in a court of law — was an enormous accomplishment, he did not.

Just another day in the neighborhood.


The last time we had a vacation of any sort, we were celebrating our 20th anniversary. Now, I don’t understand core math, but even I know that’s 10 years and several glycolic peels ago.

Ten. Years.

It has been 10 years since we had a vacation! I thought that for this milestone anniversary, he may have surprised me with a trip. A little getaway. Well. He surprised me all right.

I just don’t understand how, after about 100 years of total togetherness, he does not understand the concept of death wish. As I was perusing the internet to come up with a cost effective, yet highly enjoyable anniversary trip — perhaps just for a weekend — he walked into the room and announced, “The boys and I are going away for our annual golf weekend this Friday!”

And he smiled.

He smiled!

“But … but … it’s our 30th anniversary!”

“Are you sure? Already? Wow. Huh …”

“So you won’t go?”

“Oh, no. I’m going. We can celebrate when I get home …”

“You’ll be lucky if all your underwear and old-man generic jeans aren’t in a bonfire on the front porch when you get home, you buffoon.”

He laughed and laughed, rubbed his hands together excitedly, and went to polish his clubs. Who the hell polishes clubs? And why? They’re only going to be used in a police line-up when they find his body later in the week.

Well, he went away for his golf weekend, and I celebrated myself with a mediocre pedicure, a few pairs of shoes and a really fascinating trip to Joann Fabrics. No one lives the high life quite like Maria.

When I came down to breakfast on our actual anniversary, two days later, I rolled my eyes as I spotted the card that is always at my place at the table for each of the last 30 years. It says HAPPY 50th ANNIVERSARY, and on the inside, he wrote, “This should hold me over for a while.”

It was cute 29 years ago.

It’s no longer cute.

I flung it to the side and simmered. He giggled. Did I marry a man or Howdy Doody? A hybrid of both, I think.

You and I both know what marriage is all about. It’s about screaming to each other from several floors away and when we don’t understand the answer, just deciding it’s “yes, dear”.

It’s about deciding that you still like each other 80 percent of the time, and the other 20 percent, you can barely tolerate him because he couldn’t even buy you a fresh anniversary card.

I would say it’s all about respect and compromise, but that’s just a lot of crapola. If it were about compromise, you can bet your golf weekend that I’d be in Cancun right now and not returning all the ugly shoes I bought for my own anniversary gift.

Marriage is fun. Like pulling-out-nose-hairs fun. Sometimes we laugh; sometimes we cry; and sometimes we start bonfires on our porch. He needs to sleep with one eye open this week.

Ain’t love grand?

Maria Jiunta Heck

Life Deconstructed

Maria Jiunta Heck, of West Pittston, is a mother of three and a business owner who lives to dissect the minutiae of life. Send Maria an email at