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Big heart, small space

Want to test your marriage?  Move into a poorly ventilated, one bedroom apartment.  You will learn quickly if you and your betrothed have what it takes to be the last couple standing.  My husband and I declared amidst the howling winds of January that we would move out of our tiny apartment before summer hit this year.  Well, that didn’t happen.  And here we are.  We’ve made our bed and now we have to sweat in it.

We have two air conditioners.  They are built into the wall and are circa 1983, or thereabouts.  If we were to keep our apartment cooled to a reasonable 78 degrees, our electric bill for the month would exceed $200.  So, we pick our battles.  When the temperatures soar well in the 90′s the A/C goes on.  At all other times, it’s every man for herself.

Naturally, under these circumstances, we can occasionally get pissed off.

“You’re the one that pushed to take this apartment…”

“No, we both agreed we liked the skylight, remember?”

“We should have…”



“We should have what?  Gone into finance?  Yes, we should have.  But it’s too late for that, now isn’t it!?”


The potential for an all out blood bath is high.  When these moments flair, it’s time to pull out our marriage communication skillz 101.

Step 1:  LAUGH

There’s not much more you can do.

Step 2:  HYDRATE

Offer your lover ice-cold water.  It immediately diffuses the fire within.


Give plenty and give often.  It reminds the other that even though they are a sweaty mess, you still find them sexy and attractive.

Caution: Avoid full body hugs.  They create too much heat.


See a movie, get iced coffee, crash a corporate board meeting, etc.  Just make sure you go where this is a copious amount of central air.


Commit to being in an apartment that has cross breezes and more efficient air conditioners by the following summer.  Stick to it. Threaten divorce if need be.  Do whatever it takes!

Love is built on like.  I have the same fiercely loyal and innocent adoration for my husband as I did for my best friend when I was a kid.  What got me through the hot summers of my youth was play and plenty of it.  No reason why a summer spent in a sweltering New York City apartment should be any different than a summer spent skipping stones with my best bud.  It’s all perception, right?  At least, that’s what I have written on my vision board

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to spend the rest of the afternoon on craigslist looking for a new place to live.

-Cathleen Carr

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