The other night, Graham and I were discussing how to share the utility bills at the new house. We decided that the gas, water, and sewer would be in my name (which may be an apt description for my life), and that he’d take the electricity and cable/Internet. I said that it would be best to schedule hookups for all of them on the Wednesday before we moved in. Graham is off on Wednesdays, so he can just hang out there with a chair and a book to meet everyone.
While standard utilities are an obvious thing to care about, I was really concerned about the cable/Internet. When Graham said, “I can spend a week without the Internet, I don’t care,” I looked at him like he’d insulted me. Like this, actually:
I mean…what in the what? I couldn’t believe that I had to explain my position on this to a person I’ve been dating for four and a half years.
1. I use the Internet not only for my own personal pleasure and time wasting efforts, but also for things like blogging, getting and submitting writing assignments, and gathering information.
2. Unlike him, I don’t have an iPhone to get my Internet and therefore must rely on my 5-year-old laptop covered in stickers and a few weird stains.
3. What is so wrong with getting things done beforehand so that the actual move goes much smoother, and all we have to do to settle in is sit down on the couch and stare at all the boxes that won’t unpack themselves?
4. Seriously, what is so wrong with that?
Does this man know nothing about me? I may not be terribly ambitious about things like cleaning the house or exercising, but when it comes to moving, which is statistically one of the top 3 most stressful experiences you can voluntarily have, I am a champ. I’ve moved a lot. Several of my moves were of the cross-country variety, and only one of those moves involved professional movers. Do you know what it’s like to move from the east coast to the west coast in a U-Haul? It’s the worst is what it is. That’s the answer to the question. The worst. U-Haul trucks are shuddering deathtraps and I’m pretty sure that an old lady on a bicycle could have trucked up a mountainside faster than we did. And if you’re traveling on Interstate 8 through Arizona and California, you have the distinct pleasure of being stopped at the bottom of every hill by Border Patrol, leaving you with zero momentum to get to the top of the next one.
Even in that case, I arrived in San Diego to an apartment with running water, working electricity, and probably also natural gas service, but I wouldn’t know because it’s not like we ever turned on the heat.
The point is that when I can control certain parts of the moving process that will ultimately make the experience just a little less stressful, then I will exercise that option. I know Graham’s idea of a good time is not sitting in an empty house all day and waiting for some technicians to show up and make the place habitable. I understand this. But I’d do it if I were off on Wednesdays, and I really think he can take one for the team. Ultimately, he needs to ask himself: would I rather live with Erin for a week without the Internet, or would I rather make a single phone call to take care of it before we move in and not listen to her bitch for seven straight days?
When it seemed like he was dragging his feet on some of this stuff, I asked if he really wanted to move in or if I should just kiss all my money goodbye and pay the rent to live there by myself. He said that he did want to and was excited about living together, but said “I’m a little worried about the actual moving in…you seem like you might be kind of crazy.”
Well. One person’s crazy is another person’s “BITCH I GET SHIT DONE,” so I’m afraid he’ll just have to deal with the crazy on that single day he’s spending moving his stuff into the house. I’m moving my stuff in the day before he is, too, in an effort to keep out of the way and have some stuff put together for the first night we spend in the house together. Crazy like a fox is what that is, and I’ll still have my cable and Internet.