The Games Married People Play

The rules vary from cruise line to cruise line, but inevitably, there’s always a game show during every cruise that seeks to test married couples’ knowledge of one another. These shows take on hokey names like “The Newlywed/Not-so Newlywed Game” or “Love & Marriage.” As for the questions asked, we’re not talking simple trivia like “What’s your husband’s favorite color?” or “Which is your wife’s favorite flower?” but instead such gems as “What celebrity would your spouse like to make sweet, sweet love to, if on a deserted island and given the opportunity?”

One question from a game show I saw as a kid has always stuck with me: “How does your spouse squeeze out the toothpaste? From the front, from the back, or in the middle?”

I’ve always told Joe that we need to be preparing ourselves for important, telling questions such as this, should we be so unfortunate as to find ourselves thrust onto the stage and into the spotlight, interrogated in front of portly mid-westerners about our sex life and toiletry habits.

For the record, I squeeze from the middle; Joe does too, except that once the paste starts to wane, he’ll begin squeezing from the back in an effort to move all the goods up front.

And so begins a little game that WE play at home: Toothpaste Roulette

The object of Toothpaste Roulette is very simple, you see. The loser is the person that has to get out a new tube of fresh, unopened toothpaste from our under-sink bathroom storage drawer. The winner is the person that DOESN’T have to burden his or herself with such an arduous, strenuous task, and instead, gets to spread that last bit of paste on their brush and have their morning or night routine proceed uninterrupted by such nuisances as toiletry refill.

Here’s an example of toothpaste that has AT LEAST 4 more days of twice daily brushing, easy:

summer 09 001

As you can plainly see, there is still plenty of product near the cap; I pity the fool who would throw valuable paste in the trash. The key to extracting the most paste (and thereby WINNING Toothpaste Roulette) is to procure some kind of heavy cylindrical object–a rolling pin, say–and do your best to mush as much of the paste towards the business end as possible. Once there, you can bend and fold the tube over on itself, creating enough pressure to get a good serving of paste on your brush. But be smart, friend: towards the end of a game of Toothpaste Roulette, all players walk a fine line between taking more product than is necessary (so as to screw over your opponent, of course), but risk taking so much that, at their next brushing, your opponent will get by with a pea-sized drop of paste, in turn screwing YOU.

The good news is, ceding a game of Toothpaste Roulette only makes you more lovable in your partner’s eyes. That’s because you did your sweet baby a solid, and leaned over, opened a drawer, tore open a flimsy box, and put a new tube of toothpaste out on the counter. If that’s not romance, I sure as hell don’t know what is.

. . .

Last night, a similar folly unfolded when I took out my contacts for the evening, squeezed out every last bit of fizzy contact solution, and threw away the empty bottle–a checkmate in the world of Toiletry Roulette games.

(quick explanation: there are two types of contact lens cleaning solution. Some is still, and some is fizzy. With the fizzy stuff, you need a special container that creates bubbles, which help clean more gunk off your lenses. With the still stuff, you just squeeze it into a container, and let your lenses soak in it)

It was the last bottle of fizzy solution we had on hand, meaning (uh oh!) one of us is the poor sucker that has to go to Walgreens to re-stock. Given that we have, LITERALLY, 4 full, unopened bottles of STILL solution, I figured Joe would just want to use that for a while. After all, he’s the one who lost Fizzy Contact Solution Roulette, and fuck if he’s gonna haul his ass to Walgreens to get more of it.

Tonight, as he took out his contacts, he reached for the omni-present bottle of fizzy. But alas, it was not there!

He said, “Do we have any more of the good (read: fizzy) contact solution?”

Me: “No, we’re totally out. Guess we have to use the other (read: still) stuff for a while.”

At this point I walked into the bathroom to point out to him that he, an obvious asshole, had lost at Fizzy Contact Solution Roulette, while I, living up to my name’s meaning, was 100% victorious, and therefore Supreme Goddess of the World.

Then, he said, “Can you stop by Walgreens tomorrow and pick some up?”


“Why do I have to pick it up?” I moaned. “I don’t even work close to a Walgreens anymore. You work one block away from one. ONE BLOCK AWAY, MAN.”

“Please just do it. You ask me to run errands for you all the time, and I do it no questions asked.”

He has a point, there.

Ugh, guess I’m the asshole. You win this round, Joe.

God dammit.

Leave a Comment


  1. 8.6.09
    Steph said:

    HA! I love you guys.

  2. 8.6.09
    Joe said:

    For me that’s at least 2 weeks of toothpaste…for Victoria it’s 4 days