25 March 2010


I'm not certain what compelled me to reach into the glove box two weeks ago for my auto insurance card, but when I did, I found not the current card, but the one from the policy which expired last December. Figuring I'd forgotten to transfer the new card to the car, I went to retrieve it from my files, but it was not there either.

Sometimes one's depth of self-delusion is impressive, because rather than consider that something was amiss, I assumed I'd accidentally shredded the card along with the old policy, and called our insurance agent to request a replacement. It was at this point that I learned that our policy had lapsed in October.


I called David to see if perhaps he might recall having forgotten to pay our insurance premium? He considered this for a moment, and answered, yes, it had possibly slipped his mind.

I pause now to give thanks for the grace of living in a society where we are the architects of our own destiny. While it may have distressed his mother, it good that David did not enter the medical profession, because he would have made a disastrous surgeon.

A feeling of unease settled in as I began to comprehend that we two reasonably responsible adults, had been driving uninsured for five months.

Did you know that not many reputable companies wish to add drivers with lapsed insurance to their risk pool? Nonetheless, our insurance agent managed to keep us out of the state pool, finding us a policy with a reliable company for an only slightly exorbitant rate. What's more, as a 6-month policy, we have time enough to reinstate our good name, and then shop for a better rate.

Legal once again, I set out on Monday afternoon to pick Sacha up from school, whereupon I proceeded to get into a fender bender while looking for parking. At lunch time. On Bellevue Avenue. In the bone-chilling rain.

Once I regained my mental faculties, established that no one was seriously hurt, and there was no major damage to my car, I remembered to contact David: Been in accident, Bellevue/Valley. No one seriously hurt, car ok, needs work. Good thing we're insured!

To which my ever loving husband fired back: Indeed; I'd hate to see you end up in the clinker!

Friends have expressed disbelief that I wasn't furious with my husband, but truly, I was not.

Had he behaved in a way that was completely out of character, I would have seen a blue streak. But for someone for whom attention to detail is not a strong suit, forgetting to make an insurance payment is unexceptional. Considering what could have happened — injury, penalty, fines, arrest — compared to what did — minor delays, mild embarrassment, inconvenience and expense — it's more an instance of catastrophe narrowly averted, which is just another way of saying grace.

You can't cherry pick your spouse's personality; you fall in love with the whole. On a day to day basis, that means while I can remind David to wipe down the chairs as well as the table, or vacuum with the lights on so as not to miss say, a piece of spicy tuna roll that sat on the rug for 24 hours*, I accept that he most likely won't.

In exchange, he doesn't tolerates my micromanaging his way of doing chores, because he knows that I am controlling, and I can't help myself. Such is the dance; over time, as we exchange some degree of passion for intimacy, we come to know our mate as well as we do ourselves. In this way our vines twine and twine, filling in cracks, and bolstering weak spots, to create something stronger.

*not that this has ever happened

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