How to impress your new bride

I wanted to put together a how-to guide on how to impress your new bride. I figure there's somebody out there who could stand on the shoulders of my experience.

How to impress your new bride...
... and how to salvage things when the first attempt doesn't work at all.

1. Book a beautiful cabin retreat in the mountains for your honeymoon. Hot tub? Check. Clean and spotless. Bed? Check. It's a king. Jacuzzi? Check. Chain saw alarm clock? Check. Wait.... chain saw alarm clock? Yup--one of those too. Note the happy bride in front of the washing machine.Everything was perfect until 7 Monday morning, when 15 construction workers began work a few feet away to continue construction on the adjacent cabin. Tuesday was no better. The tree cutters arrived promptly at 7 to do their work. Somebody needs to let their boss know that they were, indeed, on time for work. We heard, "saw, saw, saw....... crack...... thud." "saw, saw, saw....... crack...... thud." "saw, saw, saw....... crack...... thud." "saw, saw, saw....... crack..... scratch...... thud." I felt that last one. "Did that just hit the roof?" Says one lumberjack to another.

The details are a little hazy now, but I think that both a branch or two and my blood pressure were hitting the roof.

How to recover: After an engaging conversation with the booking agent, we packed our bags after lunch and headed to downtown Greenville for dinner and a stay at the Hyatt.

2. Make sure she comes home to a spotless new home. OK, so we're not even close on that one. I'm hoping we can catch up to the apartment by the end of the month.

How to recover: Baby, I'm calling Papa John's.
2b. Allow her to nest. You can't take your stuff to heaven when you die. You can't take it to your new apartment when you get married either. While moving her stuff in, make sure it's placed in neat piles in special places throughout the apartment. Leave for a while while she's nesting. Return several hours later to find a happy bride with all of her stuff tucked neatly into it's places. Notice that there is now only one pile in the living room. It's the trash pile, and all of your stuff will be in it.

How to recover: Keep your mouth shut while you take your possessions to the dumpster.

3. Impress her with your handyman skills. I spent the better part of the morning changing the new-to-me dryer plug from a 3 wire plug to a 4 wire plug. This should be a simple, 15 minute chore to complete before the next thing on my growing "do this or die" list. I went to Walmart to find a dryer cord, only to find that Lowe's would be a better choice. I returned an hour and half later with all the tools to do the job.

  1. Eat breakfast.
  2. Turn off the breaker to the dryer (30amp).
  3. Take off the faceplate. Check.
  4. Take off the old 3 wire cord. Check.
  5. Put on the new cord. um...
  6. Don't drop any nuts into the dryer. oops.
    How to recover if you drop a nut:
    1. Shake the dryer and try to listen for the nut. This doesn't accomplish much, but it makes you feel better because you get the pick the stupid thing up and vent a little.
    2. take off the top of the dryer.
    3. take off the front of the dryer
    4. Vacuum out all the escaped lint stuff
    5. Stop vacuuming dummy! You might suck up the nut that you're looking for.
    6. Feel around unit. Wish you had vacuumed up all that crazy lint.
    7. Find nut and get it back. Set it somewhere special and safe.
    8. Finish that vacuuming for no good reason.
    9. Play with the dryer guts. Watch the blower spin really fast when you turn the tub over. Act like you know what you're doing if your new bride walks in to see your hideous mess.
    10. Put front panel back on. Screw in securely.
    11. Put top back on. Screw in securely.
    12. Use previously recovered nut to secure the last dryer cord wire.
      What to do if you forgot where your "special and safe" spot was:
      1. clean up tools.
      2. search laundry room
      3. search kitchen floor
      4. check inside dryer
      5. realize it was on the kitchen floor all along. Why did I ever think the kitchen floor was a "special and safe" place to put a nut?
    13. Repeat step 4
    14. Replace faceplate.
  7. Oh yeah... plug in new cord.
  8. Try out the dryer
  9. Realize that it doesn't work
  10. Eat lunch.
  11. Remember to turn on the breaker
  12. Watch her flip the breaker
4. Give her your undivided attention whenever she asks for it. Only rest after completing your tasks. And most importantly, never let her work alone or do your laundry while you're sitting around goofing off.

Um.. gotta go. I just got caught.