Do All Couples Act Like Lunatics in Private?

If space aliens were to observe the way my boyfriend and I interact, they would think the human race was mentally primitive.

Sep 7, 2011 at 11:00am | Leave a comment

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When my boyfriend and I are alone together, we act like fucking crazy people.

We sing songs, both popular songs with the lyrics changed to be about our relationship, and tuneless creations we make up ourselves with lyrics like "I love my boooo" or "Vampire love/it lasts forever."

We do dances, ridiculous ones where he pulls his boxers up to his armpits and does a sort of crotch-thrusting hula or where I gyrate wildly and tell him it's in celebration of the spaghetti we're having for dinner. "LOOK AT MY SPAGHETTI DANCE, BOO," I might yell.

We bellow movie titles like "LIMITLESS" and "UNSTOPPABLE" to punctuate dramatic moments.

We do a funny-to-us character we call "dumb boyfriend" who lets his tongue hang out of his mouth and repeats the phrase "Got any pigs in a blanket?"

We talk about how our disgusting, lazy cat should get a job and make up new names for him, like Senor Superchunk.

Just now I went into the bedroom to bring him a bottle of water and asked him in a weird and possibly racist accent if he "pahtied too hahd last night."

Sometimes, I get a flash of perspective and imagine a third party witnessing our antics, which make up a good portion of our daily interactions. That person would probably think we belong in a mental insitution.

Do all couples act as weird as we do when they're alone together?

Part of it is the cryptic shorthand couples develop. When I shout "LIMITLESS" at my boyfriend, I am conveying something about the overblown drama of the moment, as well as evoking a shared memory of watching the movie together.

And after 7 years together, I am utterly unselfconscious. True intimacy like the kind that allows the "spaghetti dance" is rare, so rare. I certainly can't imagine our relationship would have blossomed if that girl had shown up on our first date. 

But now I appreciate the gift of silliness. The comfort of a long-term relationship seems to brings out our animal nature, playful and unconcerned with appearances. Alone with this man who knows me so well, and loves me so unconditionally, I'm closer to monkey than girl.

While I could possibly put forth a more compelling image to my partner, I like that the selves we are together exist only to each other. And while the people who experience my day-to-day persona would probably rank it as more appealing, tickets to the spaghetti dance are very exclusive.

In fact, only one person's invited.