The first time I suspected my wife was trying to kill me was about four years ago when we were still living in Vancouver’s Yaletown district. I remember walking into the kitchen to get a drink when I noticed a half-filled spring water bottle sitting by the sink. “Is this okay to drink?”I asked Fondy. She was so focused on sautéing up our lunch that she glanced over as she replied: “Yes.” Now, you may think it a strange thing to ask but Fondy has always been a bit of a germophobe, always quick to lecture me on the dangers of eating or drinking anything that has been sitting around for more than three days. Had this particular bottle of water passed the 3-day “don’t go there” point? Fondy seemed somewhat distracted on my first attempt, so I tried again: “Is this okay to drink?” “Yes!”she snapped back, this time offering an annoyed look back before redirecting her attention back to the stove. Satisfied, I uncapped the bottle and took a nice, long drink. It was until the second swallow that I became fully aware of the brackish taste at which point the realization hit me: it wasn’t water. “Don’t drink it! Don’t drink it!”Fondy warned, also coming to the realization that I’d made a big mistake. Perhaps the fact that I was vomiting into the sink was the big giveaway. As it turns out, the bottle did contain water. Well, approximately 50% water. The other 50% was OxiClean, a bleaching agent she would use to clean up after our dogs. Fortunately, I’d only swallowed a couple of mouthfuls and, thankfully, had thrown up most of it. A quick call to Poison Control put my mind at ease and I forgot all about the seeming attempt on my life – until several months later.
It was the weekend and I was fast asleep when the phone started ringing at about 8:00 a.m. When someone calls this early in the morning, it can only mean one of two things: 1) Something terrible has happened, or 2) It’s Fondy’s sister calling who has yet to grasp the three hour time difference between east and west coast. There was no way to tell and, when I rolled over in bed, realized Fondy was already up. But why hadn’t she answered? On the phone’s fifth ring, I leapt out of bed, bleary-eyed and confused, and charged out of the bedroom – and right smack into the plate glass sliding door separating our bedroom from the solarium. Understand – I knew the door was there but in the 2+ years we’d been living in the apartment, we had never bothered closing it because the solarium offered us the quickest route from the bedroom to the living room. It was a fairly solid door that thrummed loudly but thankfully didn’t shatter. The same could be said for my skull. Fondy later apologized and explained she had slid the door shut so that I wouldn’t be disturbed while sleeping – by, say, the ringing phone she finally got around to picking up herself. By the way – it was her sister calling.
The third incident occurred about a year later. I walked into the kitchen to make myself a shake and, to my delight, discovered Fondy had already emptied the dishwasher and set the blender back into its cradle. Perfect, I thought as I grabbed the milk and poured it into the blender, intent on making myself a shake. What I’d failed to notice, however, was that while the glass pitcher section had been placed atop the mixing unit, the actual base of the blender and the blades had not been attached so that when I poured the milk in, it spilled out the bottom and all over the counter top. A messy inconvenience, yes, but did I mention the blender had been plugged in? For some reason, I was saved from a fate that would have had me doing a fair imitation of Martin Sheen’s wife’s sizzling death scene in the opening scene of The Believers.
I’m happy to say that since then, my marriage has been relatively attempted murder free. Although, now that I think of it, that could just be because she’s gotten better at concealing her failed attempts.
Playing catch-up with all those questions…
NowIWillDestroyAbydos writes: “1) About the Cello scene in “Unending,” Does Amanda Tapping know how to play cello? If so, how good is she? 2) How many episodes will Beau Bridges be in for Atlantis Season 4? Which episodes? 3) Any chance of having Brad’s “lost” script for “Judgment” (The final chapter of the Aschen Trilogy) seeing the light of day, so us, the fans, can see what it would look like if it had been produced?”
Answers: 1) She doesn’t know how to play the cello. That was the magic of television. 2) So far – 0. Between the movies and his own series, Beau will be very busy in 2007. 3) Since Brad’s script was an SG-1 story, it’s unlikely we’ll see it anytime soon.
Smiley-Face06 writes: “Have you ever tried a Nutella and peanut putter sandwich?”
Answer: I used to enjoy them all the time when I was a kid. Sometimes, for variety’s sake, I’d even throw in sliced bananas.
Royal Nonesuch writes: “I really enjoyed “A Wizard of Earthsea”, what did you think of it?”
Answer: LeGuin is a wonderful writer – however, I preferred The Dispossessed.
Nate writes: “Have you ever had Kobe beef?”
Answer: The kobe beef I had in Tokyo was, without a doubt, the greatest beef I’ve ever had. However, it’s extremely pricey.
Arctic Goddess writes: “What did you think of Childhood’s End? I read that book and a few other Arthur C. Clarke novels several years ago. I have found him interesting. But it is difficult to pick up the rhythm of his writing, initially. What do you think?”
Answer: I liked Childhood’s End a lot and had no trouble making my way through although I know other people, Brad for instance, who echo your sentiments with regard to this particular book and found it a bit of a challenge to get into.
Anonymous #1 writes: “To be even more specific, is RDA going to the Arctic to shoot for the movie. Is it officially a done deal that Rick will be in Continuum?”
Magic 8 Ball says: Signs point to yes.
Anonymous #2 writes: “Have we any chances of seeing Jonas Quinn again?”
Answer: On Atlantis – unlikely.
Anonymous #3 writes: About four months.
Craig writes: “If you are able to i was wondering if you could share exactly what it is about Irresponsible that irks you so much about the end product?”
Answer: You name it, it went wrong.
Riana writes: “Question, though perhaps you might not have the answer, but when actors are cast for a show like SG-1 or Atlantis, what kind of background and/or education do you think is most helpful?”
Answer: When it comes to casting, talent is what really counts.
Anonymous #4 writes: “Do you really like Anime, if so, what is your favorite?”
Answer: Off the top of my head – Cowboy Bebop, Berserk, Kino’s Journey, Noir, GTO, Now and Then Here and There, Evangelion, Utena, Samurai Champloo, Last Exile.
38Trekker writes: “Any chance of RDA doing a guest spot or three on Atlantis this season?”
Answer: At present, there are no plans to have Jack make another guest appearance on Atlantis.
Anonymous #5 writes: “Do the guys at Bridge get a kick out of reading your blog?”
Answer: Martin Gero and Carl Binder are regular readers and I know that Robert Cooper and Alan McCullough swing by on occasion to peruse. So far, none has threatened to sue me.