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BuffyW's Links

APRIL 26, 2009 2:26PM

Couples need codes sometimes.

Rate: 23 Flag

At what point in a relationship do we find ourselves relying on a secret code language? You know, a word or short sentence needing no further explanation to the other, once you have uttered it aloud.  Of course it helps if you both have a sense of humor too.

You can be in a crowded room or simply sitting next to each other, alone yet needing to make the particular point the word or a combination of them can express.  Shorthand for couples.  There are certain looks, which convey messages, but today I want to point out some of our personal words or phrases.

                           mag us 

With us it began soon after we started living together.  For many people it begins, almost innocuously, with a cute little name you call each other.  They can be as simple and universally understood as “honey” or “dear”.  For us it began as “Wooge”.   Actually, just seeing it written out here I realize it needs to have a certain intonation when said, to be fully understood. It was more like, “Woo-oo-ge”, and was frequently said when we were out in public or sometimes while lying together spooning in bed.  The private joke was the meaning...”I’m horny, let’s do it NOW.” 

Time marches on; we no longer utter it with the same frequency nor urgency.  We reduced it further to a mere look or touch.  We can even mouth the word and we know what the other is thinking. 

Many of these secret codes we use have been taken from television and popular culture like commercials. They have tickled our mutual senses.  Sometimes it is a line taken from a television series we watch. There have been many of them over the years, some much more memorable than others.

When trying to think of some, the first one that comes to mind is from a situational television show we saw years ago on.  I cannot remember which one, unfortunately, but we immediately recognized the value of it in our own code language.  Building on, or taking from, the basic insecurity of acknowledging another person’s attractiveness we began to say,  “She seems nice.”  We use it in the same way the show did; when one of us wants to acknowledge (without drooling) another persons’ physical beauty.   It is non-threatening, yet still holds the possibility in all relationships, that once you peel off the façade maybe she (or he) will not be nice.  Thus the implied, “I’ll stay with the devil I know.”

The next example would fall under the heading of just plain annoying.  Sometimes one of us will hear something on a tv commercial that makes us cringe.  Usually it is something, which has been played to death, making one of us go screaming out of the room when it comes on.  I have two of those; the first came from the Mazda commercial where the kid whispers, “Zoom-Zoom”.   I have no idea why it gets under my skin, but if my husband wants to up the ante and rile me up, all he has to do is utter under his breath a single “Zoom”.  Thankfully we have passed by this one now.

The latest phrase he says to make me crazy is his uttering of, “Five doll-ah foot long.”   The most annoying part is when he throws in (what I call) the “hula hands” for added emphasis. Without a doubt the fact he is tone deaf, having no ear at all for music makes this a really bad one.  So not only is his attempted singing of the jingle bad, but he does not dance either!  This is tantamount to a double whammy in my humble opinion.  I know he only does it to see my reaction, and yet predictably, I do not let him down very often.  It has become our joke now.  I am patiently waiting for the price of those damn sandwiches to go back up and end it for the last time.

Taking an educated guess I would bet many of you know the next one; our latest and arguably the one we have the most fun with.  It is taken from (of all things) a commercial for Cheerios¨™cereal.  There are a few of them running, but the one hitting home with us is the forty-something couple bickering back and forth about what the cereal box says.  He is reading the box out loud implying she is taking it for the medicinal purpose until finally the woman finally asks him, “What else does the box say?”  He knows immediately from her tone, expression and body language where he crossed the line.   Understanding this he answers her.... “It says, shut up Steve.”  This gives us permission to communicate a feeling we ordinarily might stuff; yet by mimicking the character the sting of being personal is removed.  Besides all of this... it is heart healthy.







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Heh. Pair-bonding is a marvelous thing. Nice post, Buffy.
"I'll see you at command central" which implies he is heading into the den to maneuver his way out of reality using all the remote controls known to mankind. This may explain one of the reasons why his show is not getting renewed for another season. Great post!
my marriage communication skills are way rusty. but always can learn, can't I? --rated--
Eye signals. Blinks, winks, wide-eyes, you get to know these quickly.
Excellent post, and yes you're a really cute couple.
Aw dammit. That bleedin' ZoomZoom kid. Honest to God, I want to punch the television every time I see that commercial.

Anyway, for us (or for me, really) it's TPR, as in Tiny Perfect Redhead, which I began calling her lo these many years ago. I think it originated in a photo of her on a windswept moor in England, her hair blowing around like some Celtic goddess or summat. Anyway, it stuck.
With us, it's the heartfelt, catch-all "Jackass!" from Oscar Leroy on the show "Corner Gas". And yeah, my utterance of "Shut up Steve" is a catch-all "mea culpa" to my wife. These plus, "Bum Bum Bumblebee", "Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar" comprise the bulk of our TV inspired catch phrases which drive us nuts. But dayem, Buffy--you sound more than a bit like a clone of my wife. I just wish that after 4 years together I could get her onto some kind of catch phrase as "wooge". She's immune to what she terms "junior high school" approaches.
You two are the cutest! Mad About You did a show about this. They were at a party and wife did all the signals to tell hub she couldn't stand the person she was talking to and that she wanted to leave. Problem was, hub had previously talked to that woman and mildly flirted with her and gotten her business card because she was in teh movie business too and told her all the signals! Oops.
There was an episode of Family Ties when a light bulb has burned out and Mallory says, "Well, what are we going to do now?" Obviously, this was a long time ago but it has stuck with us. When things don't turn out the way we thought one of us will say it. The answer could be as simple as putting in a new bulb.
Not tellin'

:) Rated
This was great... touching and funny. Secret codes can put breath into a relationship!
Oh, but if I shared them, they wouldn't be secret anymore!

We do a lot of silly things, like calling the (both male) cats by very elaborate Edwardian ladies' names. "Where ya going, Priscilla T. Purseblossom?" A certain type of handsome but oblivious to his own good looks yuppie is a "Clark," implying that he secretly rips off his suit in a phone booth to reveal his Superman outfit.

I'm more likely to tweak my husband on purpose than the other way around. (I guess this is because he annoys me enough by accident that he doesn't think it would be a good plan to do it on purpose!) One thing that annoys him is answering, "Quite." "It's a lovely day, isn't it?" "Quite." If he's done something to tick me off, I can let him know by dropping a couple of quites into the conversation - he will get the idea.
The Husband has a way of driving me crazy... well, many ways. But the latest happens when I'm telling him about something, he interrupts me and I try to get the floor back, saying, "May I finish??"

His mock-snide reply: "Only if you can." Aaarrrggghhh.

Now of course it's code whenever we're listening to someone ramble on and on and on.. we'll look at each other and mouthe, Only if you can.

We do have one frequent whispered aside, inspired by this story's part 2, A Walk in the Woods.

And then there's our version of Wooge. It comes from TV, at the very beginning of our relationship. Before we became romantic lovers we were 'friends with benefits' ... a lot of fun and a lot of laughter. (Hmm, that hasn't changed). One time we began to make love with the TV still on. I was, ahem, on top and he said (as a joke), "Move your head, I can't see Kojak." We both fell apart (literally) laughing.

27 years later, we still say to each other, "Wanna go watch Kojak?"

[Ok, maybe all this was TMI?]
Now this is my idea of intimacy. Thanks for letting us in on some of your secret codes.
Duaneart—nice try, lol.
ManTalk—Thank you!
Jane—My parents played too, but I never paid attention.
Cartouche—I may need to borrow this...it’s excellent!
Mr. M.—I think friends do it also.
Lea—Yep, eyes are the most effective in some instances. I’ll pass your compliment on.
Boanergis1—I love your TPR, bet she does too.
Walter—Thank you for coming by! Awww, sorry she feels that way.
Annimal—Thank you. I remember that episode, hilarious.
Lifehalflived—sometimes the old ones say the most!
Iamsurly—Fair enough, lol.
JK—My husband would look at me like I am crazy if I made it up...well, he does anyway sometimes.
MAWB—About time I did something light huh!
Allie—Oh I can see how this would be annoying. Kind of like “whatever” in my house.
Sally—I’ll never think of Telly Savalas in the same way!
Leonde—Yes, it is very intimate!
too fun...this was great. I'm married to an actor and needless to say he can be a tad "dramatic" but one of ours....when he's ready to go... is "beam me up Scotty" he says ..My response? "As soon as you can act, Captain."
Our code needs a tune up. I remember well the little nuances of "the code" in early marriage. It has significantly dwindled down to quiet comfort, few words, more familiar actions and simple knowingness. There are always a few things that will melt the heart of your sig-o and for mine, it is just a gesture of laying my head on his chest, whether standing, watching tv or in bed. That is the silent language he loves and the response needs no explanation.
Lovely, loving post about love.
We create codes to prevent arguements from getting out of control. But we always forget them when we need 'em. Don't argue often so we just forget what they were.
“She seems nice.”

You think Mrs. Cap'n would prefer that to "I'd do that"?
Oh geez, we have a bunch. Let's see... we call each other "triple L" which means my love, my lover, my life when we're feeling particularly affectionate. When he wants to tweak me a little, he yells out "wicky-woo" which doesn't really mean anything; it's just silly. When I feel the need for some quality cuddle time, it's "Sit. Stay. Shut up."
I thought I was the only one who broke out into hives with the "Five dollar foot long" commercial. Fortunately, I rarely watch TV and when I do it's usually the History Channel, which doesn't seem to run as many of the obnoxious commercials.

When I was younger (I'm thinking Jr. High or High School, maybe younger) there used to be a commercial for Cheerios in which an animated stick figure would sort of yodel "Cheeriooooooooooiiiiiiiios". This is still stuck in my head. I find myself adding the "oooooooiiiiiiiio" in song to everyday tasks such as "I'm going to turn on the radioooooooiiiiiiioooooo". I could hurt the person who came up with that jingle.

When I was married, my husband and I had pet names for each other which sounded cute unless someone knew that, no matter how sweetly spoken, it meant that the other was being warned. For example, I've always hated the pet name "honey bunny" as it seemed so grossly sweet as to require immediate insulin shots. Therefore, when I would call him "honey bunny", it usually translated into "you need to stop what you're doing, pronto, before I morph into an inbred redneck on steroids with easy access to sharp objects". Ahhh, the memories. Thanks.