My husband has never really been a “holding hands in public” person. I was surprised by this discovery very early in our marriage, mainly because his family is a hugging, demonstrative group and he has always been okay with:
1) The arm around my shoulder (or mine around his) in church or other location, such as a restaurant;
2) Asking me to scratch his back or rub his shoulders briefly in public if he gets an itch or has a sore muscle; or,
3) Giving hugs to me, or the girls, his mother or other family members.
All these constitutionals are okay. But, he thinks the act of holding hands is just weird. What if you want to pause and pick up something? What if you’re not synchronized in your pace or stride? Holding hands gives you less freedom, in his opinion, and it’s just really not for him.
This lack of holding hands, however, is made up for one-hundred fold by a tradition that began while attending Oklahoma State University (OSU) football games together: the ritual of giving each other a kiss every time the Cowboys score.
Extra points count too.
If you happen to be listening to the game on the radio, then the touchdown sequence would sound something like this as Dave Hunziker our announcer calls the play:
“…and Weeden, under a blitz, throws it over the middle, Caught By Cooper, PISTOLS FIRING, Touchdown Ok-la-ho-ma STATE!…(the crowd roars in the background).” Then, I look at Mick, he motions me over to his side, we kiss, then look up at the jumbotrons to watch the replay…watch the setup for the extra point…. “and…it’s GOOD!…(Hunziker is ALWAYS excited)” then I go back in for kiss number two, and…we’re back to the game.
Mick is a good five to six inches taller than me, so when I look up to kiss him, sometimes I see other things going on. Like, for instance, the little boy in the photo above looking down at me and smiling. Other times, I get a big bear hug right after the kiss so I look sideways and down, and sometimes see things like this:
But most of all, I get a sense that everything between us is alright. Things are good. There is a tradition attached to OSU football that’s been around since we walked down the aisle…and we both count on it.
These kinds of traditions are especially important during seasons in our life like now: Our youngest is moving into her first home with two other roommates next week; this past weekend one of her friends from school was killed in a car accident; my stat class is eating my lunch; a skunk sprayed something at our house just now (it could have been the dog, our house, or just something close but our entire air space is now invaded with skunk nastiness), my great-aunt that I really like is getting pretty old and I’m worried she might die soon.
But, OSU beat Kansas 70 to 28 yesterday, and twenty times during the game my husband told me with a kiss that everything was okay. And everything IS okay; life will be fine.
Just in case I get a bit shaky this week, however, we’ll be playing Texas at 3:30 p.m. this Saturday. And, if you want to make a bet on the game, I can assure you that there will be a “lock” on Mick and Kelly celebrating every point scored by our team.