1. Which celebrity couple, past or present, do you find particularly interesting?
I like the Obamas -- theirs seems to be a great marriage between two really cool people. But I suppose it's not *interesting* as much as it is (as far as one can tell) an ideal realization of the standard template.
For something slightly more intriguing, I kind of like another political pair, John and Abigail Adams, whose letters suggest the kind of mutual respect that a modern person doesn't assume necessarily existed between spouses in the 18th Century. (And Adams on his own comes off as one of history's most cranky-pants individuals, making the partnership even more unexpected.) Also, I love the duet between the couple's musical-ized versions in the play 1776.
Favorite fictional couple is Nick and Nora Charles in the first few Thin Man movies. They're equals and they make each other laugh. Dunno if it's *interesting* (because to me, that word suggests some unconventionality), but it's what I'd want to be part of (okay, maybe without all the liquor).
2. A couplet is a pair of rhyming lines of verse, one after another. In the form of a couplet, how would you describe your hopes for the weekend?
This Valentine's Day, as in other years,
A victory means staving off the tears.
3. With what (or whom) have you recently "consciously uncoupled"?
I finally gave up Netflix's DVDs-in-the-mail service, which I have been paying for all this time, but have only used sporadically in the last decade.
This wasn't as recent, but within the last few years, a friend and I tacitly broke up over Donald Trump. We're talking someone from my college years: back in the day, he was really more quasi-mentor than friend, but I got his Christmas letter for maybe ten years after graduation and he got a wedding invite plus the odd holiday card from me, which is better than I did with most of my other close college acquaintances. We'd been off each other's radar for quite some time before reconnecting on Facebook not long before my erstwhile spouse became erstwhile; in the aftermath of that event, when all was despair in my universe, said friend and I started meeting for a "same time, next year" lunch.
A sardonic co-religionist who enjoyed how far I seemed to have traveled from some of the uber-conventional spiritual views of my college years, he was also that rare soul who'd listen patiently while I wailed about the Man long after others considered the statute of limitations on my grief to have expired (the infrequency of our meetings may have helped him in that regard). Yeah, I was 100% the "taker" in the revived relationship, but, to be fair, I think my friend suggested the first lunch with that in mind (i.e., kind of as a good deed, maybe even paying forward someone else's past kindness to him).
But when 2017's -- or maybe, my COVID-blurred memory interjects, 2018's -- edition of our yearly Cheesecake Factory gab-and-wail-fest came along, enough awkward comments had been made by each of us on political posts in the other's FB feed (always polite-ish, but too often about guns) that apparently neither of us was motivated to send the annual text message to schedule the lunch. And so the moment passed, and since then I've actually had to unfollow him on FB (occasional re-visits to his wall tell me that this is still a good policy for me). I think we are done, and it's a shame, but I just don't have the strength for him (I find many of his political views hateful) ... and I can't believe my old friend finds me the best use of his energy, either (I mean, he clearly thinks me naive to the point of empty-headedness).
4. When did you last purchase something in a two-pack only because it doesn't come in a one-pack?
"Light bulbs" are the items that come to mind, but it's probably been a year since I've had to buy them. Oh, wait: it was car head-lamp bulbs, and it was about six months ago! They are so expensive that I do not replace both when just one burns out, and the smallish things are so hard to keep track of that I hate to buy the extra one when I'm not yet ready to use it. However, the single pack always seems to be out of stock at my Walmart, so I just buy the double and stash the spare in the glove box, hoping it'll still be there when I eventually need it.
And, okay, if I'm perfectly honest, this happens all the time with Berger cookies (aka the best commercially-made cookies on earth), which I bought in a two-pack as recently as yesterday. Problem is, each individual cookie has 220 calories, and I can't not eat the second one after the package is open, so I dearly wish a single-pack was available. As it isn't, I buy the two-pack and try to wait till I'm in the same room as Number Three Son to open it. Yesterday, I failed.
5. What were you doing a couple of hours ago, and what will you be doing in a couple of hours?
A couple of hours ago, I was finishing up my church service. In a couple hours, I'll be working on tests to give my students this week.