I have a new friend and he’s a decoy duck. He’s old and his black paint is wearing off. He’s sort of cool, if you’re into that kind of thing, although he doesn’t have a fancy paint job or racing stripes. He’s a pretty plain guy and my cat tries to body slam him on the regular and play with his price tag just to annoy me. I might take my plain little decoy camping with me next time so I can trick all the wild ducks into believe he’s the real freaking deal and then woo the lady ducks with his sweet sweet loving. So he’s plain looking, so what! Doesn’t mean he’s not the suavest decoy you’ve ever seen. I will name him Sampson or Sherman and he’ll float next to me in the water when I’m sunbathing on a floatie in the lake. It’ll be a beautiful friendship based upon companionship and mutual regard. He’s old and wise. He’s seen many a lake in his day.
Goddamn it…I can’t pretend anymore!!! #%&*% SAMPSON!!! $%*&% SHERMAN!!
The truth is…I never wanted an antique decoy duck.
So there we were, at the antique auction. The hubs had bid on some items that he needed to pay for STAT, so I was left alone in the crowd with the bidding card. And I really can’t be trusted with a bidding card or with much else (my honesty and self-depreciation is ass-tounding). James (The darling hubs in question) was across the room waiting in line to pay as I sat there, not paying too much attention to whatever was up for grabs at the moment.
Suddenly a commotion began in James’ direction. There was frantic hand waving, grotesque hurry-up facial expressions of pure panic. It was James. Surely he was dying, surely something of great import was happening. And he was motioning for all he was worth in MY direction? What? WHAT???? WHAT DID THE BASTARD WANT????
My first thought was that there was no reason in heaven or in hell that he could want me. He had money to pay for his items, there was nothing he could possibly want from me in such a frenzy. And he didn’t look like he was dying. I mean he was…dying of something, but not an ailment. And then another thought…In a split second… I knew what he wanted. He wanted whatever damn object was up for bid at the moment…and I must bid on this beautiful piece of antiquity post HASTE!! OR else all would be LOST!! I didn’t even know what it was…but I put up my card because goddamnit….he was losing his mind and he wanted me to bid, now, now, NOW!!
$45 the auctioneer cried.
I looked. The item up for bid?
A sad looking plain black decoy duck.
I looked around frantically. Something was wrong. Things were not right. Why would Hubs want a decoy duck? It’s not his antique speed at all! This speed was much slower and the price was not right!! It wasn’t a tool, it’s wasn’t furniture, and he’s not even into fishing, hunting, elking or ducking paraphernalia!
Confusion reined supreme in my sorry sad little breast. (I said BREAST!! HAHA!)
I looked at the hubs for help because I was too dumbfounded to understand what in the WORLD was happening.
He was looking at me with his mouth open. A look that said…”what are you doing? You’re not doing the right thing AT ALL!! How could you misinterpret my frantic hand signals and my twisted up ‘I’m gonna die if you don’t bid RIGHT NOW’ face? That wasn’t what I was thinking AT ALL!! YOU DUMMY!! NOW LOOK WHAT YOU’VE DONE!!”
And then in a split second…the hubs’ facial expression turned to …of all things holy… amusement.
Now I knew something was wrong. That smile said it all, that grin that said I had screwed up and it was HILARIOUS!!
Oh no. Oh NOOOO!!!!
OH NO…OH NO!!!!
I’ve made a mistake!! I don’t want it!! I take it BACK!!! Where’s the card for taking back your bid? Turn it over? Use the blank side? What’s the code? What’s the etiquette?
OH NOOOO…I’m supposed to just suck it up? NO!! The sign says…no takebacks!!
Oh god….where are all the other cards? Where are the bids???
SOMEONE ELSE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BID ON THIS DAMN DUCK!!!
Now I was frantic. And the auctioneer kept saying….”I have $45, do I hear $50??
The silence around me was extreme. There was no sound of cards flying into the air, no papercuts in all directions. NOTHING!! No one!!
Going TWICE… (nothing, someone?? Something? Please?!!!! I’ll pay you people to BID. PLEASE!!)
CONGRATULATIONS you have won a decoy DUCK!!
The horrified cheapskate-spend-thrift-penny-pincher that resides inside me was blossoming into a white hot rage at the hubs. $45 for something we didn’t even want! HE TRICKED ME!!! HOW DARE HE!! And the worst part…
Here now… my decoy duck, floating blithely down the aisle in the hands of a worker bee, looking right at me and as his cold hard wooden little body slid into my hands, I heard “Thank you!” from the delivery person.
My humiliation was complete. I was the proud owner of a decoy duck that I did not desire. I had been duped. It’s not the right word, but I felt that I had been cuckolded. I had! I REALLY HAD!! I had been had in the worst possible way!! Molested out of my hard cash! And by a duck without a fancy paint job and by my own SPOUSE!! The rage that burned in my heart! $45!!!
The hatred that was brewing in my heart for the remainder of my time alone was extreme and my hand clenched the card and I forced myself not to raise it for any reason whatsoever. Even though the desire that your hand has at an auction is to bid on EVERYTHING!! It’s like money doesn’t exist…you just want to bid! For fun! But I resisted, held strong because that hard little $45 wooden body in my hands was a constant reminder that the hubs had tricked me. He has caused me to be foolish. To bid on something I didn’t want. What on EARTH could he have wanted me for? What was so important that frantic hand waving and death mask facial expressions were warranted? By God….he had caused me to spend $45 on something I didn’t even want! (repetition is my forte). Holy Hell, I could have bought so many things with $45 and now all I had to show for my money was something that I could put in a bonfire next summer. Nooooo!!!
When the hubs came back to sit down beside me, grinning, he laughed. HE LAUGHED at me and my duck. And told me that he didn’t even want anything important AT ALL!! That’s right, he didn’t want anything but to ask me a dumb question and he DARED to claim that his arm waving, beckoning motions and I’m about to poop face were not as extreme as I made them out to be. BULLSHIT!! And he sort of thought my duck was kind of cool. In an ugly duckling kind of way.
And the kicker….he told me he would happily pay $45 for that story and he couldn’t wait to bandy that story around to all our friends and family. The story of how Victoria won herself an old crummy decoy duck. and SHE PAID $45 for it!!! A HAHAHAHAHA!!!! (Trust me…my friends notice the duck when they come over…he’s a showpiece, he has swagger and daring do, despite his lack of racing feathers)
So now that you’ve enjoyed a $45 story, please feel free to donate to my duck fund. I have decided upon a collection of ducks. A family. A gaggle. Whatever it is one calls a lot of ducks. Afterall, once is a horrifying mistake, twice is on purpose and three times is a goddamned hording problem. And by GOD, I would rather have a hording problem than admit to a horrifying $45 laugh out loud to my family and friends, mistake.
Good DAY!! Friend Sampson and I have some fishing to do. Or duck hunting or ducking or whatever it is people do with decoy ducks. Maybe just some lady duck love. Either way, we’ll be floating easy on the lake this summer.
No one laughs at me or my duck. So there.