By Andrew Lipton
Rosa, you love su esposo mucho? Sí? I cannot hear you. No, you cannot invoke the Fifth Amendment against self-incrimination like your brother Eddie who got arrested five times for selling bootleg tapes of Enrique Iglesias. Piensa. Your husband is like the famous comedian Rodney Dangerfield who said he didn’t talk to his wife for twenty years. Why? He did not want to interrupt her.
So it World Series time, your husband’s favorite time of year. It is time to return the favor. The following are the five rules of baseball that are mas importante.
You are on your best behavior as su Jose watches the first game on the old 21-inch in the dining room. You are watching Devious Maids on the eight-foot big screen HD TV with five girlfriends in the playroom.
Your girlfriends pass Jose as they leave that night, yakking very loud and arguing as to whether or not Roselyn Sanchez is that way in real life. They walk in front of Jose’s TV. Joe misses the most important play of the game as Alfonso Soriano hits a home run to win the game for the Yankees. Your friends continue to argue and block Jose’s TV. He cannot even see the replay. You cannot remember the last time you saw your husband cry.
No Visits from Girlfriends
Your mother decides to pay her annual visit from the Dominican Republic in October, instead of her usual time during the summer. After 20 years of marriage, at least your mother and husband fully understand and know each other. So there should be no problema. Or so you thought.
Because the kids are in school and you work, your mother has a lot of free time on her hands. So she helps you clean up the house. When she sees a baseball glove lying in a corner in the playroom, she assumes it’s Jose Jr.’s, your oldest son. An attentive abuela, your mother knows Jose Jr. does not play baseball in October and puts it way up high in your son’s bedroom closet.
You want Joe to enjoy the game so you go out with your mother to a very long movie. Cell phones are off.
Joe cannot find his good-luck charm – his glove – that he has worn for every World Series game. He spends half the game tearing the house apart and cannot find it. He is apoplectic. The Yankees lose and Joe is miserable.
No Mother-in-Law Visits.
Luckily the World Series will be at least five games. So you have a chance to make it up to Jose. So how can you best show your empathy? You spend the whole day shopping and cooking to make Jose his favorite dinner before the next game, Sanchoco.
You have finally put a big smile on Jose’s face and he is a very happy man as he sits down to watch the game.
In the middle of the game, you hear Jose yelling that the Yankees are losing. Despite spending the whole day working to make such a wonderful dinner, you decide that Jose’s favorite snack might put him in better spirits. Rice and beans.
Since you are too tired to bend, your five-year old daughter, Josie gets the beans from the bottom cabinet. She finds the last can of beans in the back of the cabinet. The label is a little torn and so Josie cannot see that the expiration date was two years ago.
Jose cannot watch the last two innings of the game because he is in the bathroom for over an hour with severe stomach cramps.
No Late Night Snacks
Seeing Jose so unhappy moves you beyond empathy. You want to share the experience of watching the World Series, even though you hate baseball and don’t understand the game. True love.
You haven’t watched a baseball game in twenty years. But you decide you will watch the last inning of the next game sitting next to him – and you will not say a word or walk in front of the TV. You will just hold his hand.
The Yankees are winning and need just three outs to win the game when you sit down next to him to watch. Jose knows right away this is not good carma but he does not want to offend you, especially after you hold his hand. As soon as you watch with him, the Yankees make three errors, which they haven’t done all year and lose the game.
Don’t Watch the Game with Him
Jose is almost a shell of the man you married. He has not been able to enjoy the World Series. Because you feel so bad for him, your love for him has grown. You will do the one thing that will definitely make him happy.
You will romance him.
You will do it in the middle of the game so he can enjoy the end of the game. Two National Pastimes in one night!
You find that Derek Jeter T-shirt you bought on the street for five dollars 10 years ago and used to wear as a nightie. It always worked. It fits even tighter than before, not because you gained any weight in the last ten years – no one would want to even suggest that – but because the hot water setting was too high on the last wash. And because of the many washings – and nothing to do with the quality of the material, you just got a great bargain – it is sheerer than before.
But you forgot that the World Series games start late and end around midnight, so Jose is normally fighting to stay up to watch the end of the game. Your plan works and Jose seems happy; but he is lights out and misses the end of the best game the Yankees ever won. Buena suerte in the morning. Only then will you know the last rule!