“Sebastian, darling. Let’s go paint the town red!”
“Of course, Gertrude, my love. No price is too high for your exquisite tastes.”
Sounds a little like something from a daytime romance TV show, right? Well, actually, it’s just me and my husband playing a little game we like to resurrect every once in a while. It’s the name game, and we simply take on names that are not our own for our shear amusement.
Sometimes we’re Sebastian and Gertrude, the very exotic and extravagant Europeans. They tango, spend oodles of money, and never drink red wine with fish. Then there are Boris and Natasha. They are government agents, very high-profile. Boris always has a shoe phone, and Natasha is always ready for the unexpected, ninja stars strapped to her thigh. And of course, there are Dale and Betty, the average American couple who is busy with weekend bridge night and their ornamental garden gnomes.
Why do we engage in such nonsense? Why not? It’s something that makes us both laugh. It only takes one of us to start the charade, and then the other excitedly follows. It’s our own little way of making our marriage fun and unique.
It reminds us that we are not just marriage partners; we are playmates. We can have fun with each other, reveal our silliest selves, and make light-hearted memories with each other. That’s what best friends do. It’s also a way for us to forget about some of life’s daily struggles, if only for a little while. When there is an overwhelming car repair to be made, Sebastian and Gertrude lighten the mood by pawning a diamond bracelet in exchange for a Lamborghini.
Maybe our little name game is whimsical and even a little nuts, but it’s something we enjoy with each other. Nobody else is in on this game. It’s ours. We’re like members of an exclusive club.
I hope every couple has an exclusive club of their own. There is just something that makes you feel special about sharing something with one person that you don’t share with anyone else. Only my Victor could ever play the roles of Sebastian, Boris, and Dale.
In real life, Allison and Victor can’t afford that Lamborghini to sooth the trials of life. They usually end up with milkshakes from McDonald’s. But they may entertain the idea again next time. And when they do, I know a couple who will be eager to join in the fun with them.