I have been divorced since May, 2009. I guess you could say it was a friendly divorce. We even rode together to the divorce hearing. The judge was a little shocked. “Well, in all the time I have been doing this, I’ve never heard of the divorcing couple car- pooling to the courthouse.” But, we did. We also didn’t use lawyers, so it was quick. He even treated me to lunch at the 8th Street Confectionery after the hearing. A meatball hoagie and a divorce on the same day. Life is good.
My ex-husband and I remain close and he still calls me a couple of times a week. So, it is nothing out of the ordinary to hear his voice on the other end of the phone line.
One day this past spring, Magoo (my nickname for him because he can’t drive) called me with some unsettling news. He asked me if I had received a certified letter from the clerk of the circuit court. Nope, never received one. I always seemed to get mail a day later than he did. That was normal. There was a pause on the other end of the phone. “Why?”
Magoo told me that the letter informed us that since lawyers were not used in our divorce, part of the divorce process was not completed and the certified letter was sent to inform us that they had to render the divorce null and void. We were supposed to come back to the courthouse for a meeting with the family law judge who granted our divorce. There was silence on my end of the phone, because I was at a loss for words. I am never at a loss for words. I could feel my blood pressure rapidly rise and I thought that my head was going to explode.
“What the f*&%????……. Are you saying that we are still married? ………. Oh my God! ………..Read it to me!” I couldn’t believe that a judge could be so inept to overlook protocol in a divorce proceeding. What a moron. I called her worse names. I was a torrential ranter. My sentence structure was nothing but a long string of adjectives….
“That stupid, moronic, inept, worthless, incompetent, bumbling, absurd, insipid, lame, banal, unfit, impotent, brain-crippled, window-licking short bus riding bitch!……”
He read it to me. “blah blah blah….protocol was not followed……form 425 not signed or notorized……..blah blah blah……divorced rendered null and void……must appear before Judge _____ within 30 days to begin divorce process…..”
I was shocked. “Are you freakin kidding me?” I looked at the clock and then asked if he wanted to meet me down at the courthouse right now. He replied, “I will come and pick you up in about 20 minutes. Vickie, this means we are still married.”
“Shit, Magoo, this is absurd!!” I was ranting and rambling and I was so mad I couldn’t see straight. I wondered if we should call the Judge’s office to find out what the hell was going on. He said, no, we should just drive down. I asked him to read the letter to me again, one more time. He said he already read it to me once. I didn’t give a shit. I wanted to decifer it. Tear it apart with a fine toothed combed. He went to get the letter. I guess he walked with it into another room while we were talking.
As I was pacing, waiting for him to come back to the phone, I stopped by my front door and just happened to look at the calendar. I just couldn’t believe that after almost a year, we found out that we were never divorced. I also found out something else.
Magoo got back on the phone. I yelled into the phone, “YOU SON OF A BITCH!”
I noticed on the calendar that it was April 1….April Fool’s Day………Damnit, he got me!
His laughter was deafening. It went on for quite a while. I let him have his fun. It was the first time he was ever able to pull an April Fool’s joke on the Queen of April Fool’s jokes.
He tried to talk through his hyena-like howling. “I am the Master!……After 30 years, I am FINALLY able to pull an April Fool’s joke on you.” And he began cackling again. Cackling like a little school girl if I may say so.
He must have written down some of my remarks, because he was able to regurgitate everything I had said. He was a regurgitator.
He called me back two more times that afternoon. All I could hear was laughing. I hung up on him. And then I smiled.
That was a good one.