Day 337. R&R aka I&I.
We missed my husband’s reunion at West Point last weekend. I still giggle uncontrollably when I think of my social suicide at the formal dinner we attended for his twentieth. I went down dressed to the nines and in a dazzling blaze of glory. I am nothing if not stylish.
My sweetheart had arranged his rest and recreation (R&R) to coincide with the reunion. He was really looking forward to reconnecting with classmates, none of whom I knew. Both of us were excited to be sharing a jam-packed weekend of events and just spending time together after months apart. We hadn’t seen each other in what felt like forever and we were both glowing. Couples on R&R, regardless of age, tend to be giddy and to laugh a lot. Most of that weekend is a happy blur but my gaffe stands alone in perfect focus, like a tall fragrant cheese caught in a glaring spotlight.
I’m not big on acronyms. I think they’re confusing and mostly unamusing, except for one old chestnut that supposedly dates back to World War II. I first heard I&I at a party and delightedly shared it with my sweetie who laughed as hard as I did. I&I is a GI corruption of R&R that stands for intercourse and intoxication. When I explained to the wife of another Pointer that my guy was home on I&I, I also had to explain what it means. Her smile disappeared and she avoided me the rest of the weekend. I was shocked at her reaction. It seemed to show a complete lack of compassion and an inability to take an admittedly adolescent joke.
In reality R&R is rarely either. You get two weeks to make up for six or more months apart. Your Soldier is probably suffering from jet lag for the first couple of days. There’s a lot of pressure on you to do everything right, to be your most charming, attractive, and loving self. Making a goofy joke or two helps relieve some of the tension. If you can’t muster a sense of humor, please do avoid me next time my Soldier comes home.