I consider the novel I’m writing to be a comedy of manners. The reason I love comedies of manners (the novels of Jane Austen being a perfect case in point) is that they do not neglect or gloss over the big, dramatic concepts of Life and Love and Heroism and Truth, etc. Quite the opposite. A comedy of manners takes those big, capital-letter issues and forces them into small, everyday gestures. The result is that seemingly innocuous acts are imbued with profound meaning – and I can relate to that so much more than sweeping gallantry or fights to the death.

Take my own personal hero, Mr. Dare.

(Let me say first that I require a large amount of caffeine to continue existing in this world. And my beverage of choice after 11AM is diet Pepsi. Mr. Dare, of course, does not drink diet anything. Ugh. How unmanly that would be.)

So last night, I took the last diet Pepsi out of the fridge to drink with dinner. I didn’t put more cans in. Yes, yes. I am one of those people. You can all feel free to hate me now. So lunchtime rolls around today, and I’m jonesing for a diet Pepsi fix. And as I swing open the door of the fridge, I remember that there will be no chilled diet Pepsi awaiting my lazy-girl self, who did not put more cans in last night. But lo and behold – there they were. Six perfectly lined-up cans of love, placed there by my own dear man without my even asking.

Sigh. My hero.

What little expressions of capital-L Love do you find in your everyday life – from your partner, kids, postal employees, etc?

7 comments to “My Hero”

  1. CM
    · January 25th, 2007 at 5:03 pm · Link

    Let’s see. Mostly, Mr. M cleans up after me. Because I do not clean at all, myself. Especially not this year.

    How do I express my love for him? Um. Let’s see. Um. Um. Mostly it’s in things I don’t do when he’s around. Like, I do not throw my clothing all over the bathroom floor. And I do not throw his bears on the floor. On the positive side, I refer to hockey periods as “triads” which drives him batty, and pretend to be an entirely unknown person (or worse yet, someone he does know), which also drives him batty.

    To me, this seems a very uneven trade, but apparently he’s willing to put up with it.

  2. beverley
    · January 25th, 2007 at 5:24 pm · Link

    Okay will only an ex-husband, I do have my son who says, “Mommy, I just want to be your big boy.”

    It just makes my heart go…(sigh). I do love my baby.

    Lucky you. A man who does little things like that. That’s a novelty to me. I guess that means you’ll keep him huh. 🙂

  3. Maggie Robinson
    · January 25th, 2007 at 5:30 pm · Link

    Yesterday was my wedding anniversary. I should say our wedding anniversary. My husband had a bouquet of roses delivered to the library, one rose for every year. There were a hell of a lot of them. He fixed dinner too because I come home later than he does.He opened a bottle of Bardolino and let me eat the last cannoli. And I didn’t even get him a card.

    He puts gas in my car without fail every Saturday. Thus have I been protected from sticker shock at the pump the past year.

    I’m going to keep him. I want more gas and roses.

  4. Gillian
    · January 25th, 2007 at 5:34 pm · Link

    Darling husband, who is finally home for longer than a week, emptied the upstairs “no-no” room (the living room with all the breakables in it), carried 4 bookshelves, 2 chairs, and a massive oak desk upstairs, (not to mention a bazillion books…) and over the course of the last week made me a library/writing center. And then planted a computer in the middle of the desk with a password that none of the kids know.
    Yes, I do love that man….

    And on a personal note–I have left comments on blogs, finally! It was the word verification that threw me. I thought I had to have a blog in order to leave a comment. I know, I am an internet idiot, but I am learning, very, very slowly….:)

  5. Tessa Dare
    · January 25th, 2007 at 5:52 pm · Link

    Gillian! It’s so exciting to “see” you! I’ve been wondering how you are. Got any new recipes to share?

    CM, I think Mr. M could be a very positive influence on Mr. Dare. In our house, no one cleans at all, except the shell-shocked housecleaners who arrive every other Thursday. Those Regency scientists that didn’t know about entropy? They should have come to live with us. (Side note: Mr. M has bears? What sort of bears?)

    Sigh, Maggie – that is so wonderful. Gas and roses – the practical and the romantic. What a guy.

    And Beverley – no gas, roses, or diet Pepsi from a man can ever hold a candle to a big ol’ drooly kiss from your baby.

  6. CM
    · January 25th, 2007 at 6:06 pm · Link

    Yes, well. If we are going to be exact, Mr. M’s “bears” are rabbits and cats. Mr. M has apparently childishly held on to the notion that any stuffed animal is a “bear” even if it is not, in fact, a representation of a bear.

  7. Sara Dennis
    · January 26th, 2007 at 1:17 am · Link

    Mr. Dennis (good lord, that looks weird, let’s stick with The Engineer) will occasionally bring me home silly things. Hershey’s kisses from the office jar or a slice of cheesecake (see, he does love me!) from an office party.

    He also doesn’t balk (much) at the fact that I don’t really clean either. Or at my nesting tendencies. Or my book collection. Or my lotion supply. Or…