Women insist on gifts, cards, feasts, church, cross-country travel, decorations, baking, caroling, tipping, and that whole over-the-top Santa thing.
Amid all the Christmas stuff, we had eight baby hamsters. Remember the hamsters? Well, they're mostly out of the house now (which is more than I can say for our children). The hamsters came into our life, I'm pretty sure, to remind me and Posh that there really can be an empty nest. It is a small sliver of hope, almost a godly gesture.
But before we could give them away, we had to "sex" them -- separate the boys from the girls. As you probably know, hamsters are the teenagers of the rodent world. They are mostly nocturnal and horny in ways that would scare Madonna. So, like teenagers, hamsters need to be kept apart as much as possible.
That's where I came in. My wife and I stood on the front porch one morning in late December, with a flashlight and a magnifying glass, examining hamster genitalia. Let me tell you, after an experience like that, it'll be amazing that the hamster men can perform at all.
"I think that one's a . . . girl . . . no, a boy . . . no, wait, that's definitely a girl," Posh would say.
I'd drop that hamster in the "girl bucket" and grab another.
"That's definitely a . . . hmmm, I don't see anything . . . oh-wait-oh-wait-oh-wait . . . I think I see . . . put that one in the indefinite bucket," Posh says.
It was like looking for ghosts. Two hours later we had five buckets. Girls. Boys. Movie stars (lots of genitalia). Rock stars (singers whose sexual orientation was unclear). And mice (actual mice).
How the mice sneaked in there, I'm not sure. In fact, why anyone would want to voluntarily enter our house is beyond me. Smart mice don't sneak into our house, they sneak out of it.
Which is how Posh and I ended up at the movies two weeks after Christmas, in need of a little popcorn therapy. Two exhausted mice, out on the town.
Turns out we're seeing a comedy this night, "Revolutionary Road," starring Kate Winslet and that guy from "Titanic," Leonardo DiVinci. I don't know how they're still together, because I thought he died when Celine Dion started singing incessantly.
Anyway, most of the jokes in "Revolutionary Road" go over my head, but there is one crazy character who gets a laugh or two. Me. When I finish the popcorn, I begin to eat the bucket.
You know, haven't seen Posh since.
Look for a new column by Erskine on Thursday in Sports.