Five Big Ones

I’ll continue to let Davis cover Kook’s Kulture Korner, while I keep blogging about science and physics and astrophysics and the business industry.

Actually, today I’m going to write about a few of my co-workers at my new company and some of their secrets.


I know many of you have started the “How long before dddt gets Christian fired from his new job” countdown. Aint gonna happen.


Last night was a bad night. I don’t get too invested in very many sporting events, but this NBA Championship was different. I became very invested. Along with Davis, and all of you, I really dislike Kobe Bryant and wanted him to lose. The Lakers deserved to lose last night. Kobe deserved to lose. He played awfully. It would have been so gratifying for him to lose the entire championship because of his horrible game. Lame, lame, lame, lame, LAME!

But today is a good day for me. It’s my fifth wedding anniversary. It was five and a half years ago that I met my lady in Provo’s finest bronzing salon, Club Tan. I went in to buy a book for a history class. The building Club Tan was in used to belong to a print shop and the sales contract stipulated that the print shop still be allowed to sell books and other printed material to BYU students at the beginning of every semester, since Club Tan was right at the edge of campus (Right across the street from Wendy’s). I was sick and bedraggled. The women behind the register was in her 50’s, but sitting beside her was a pretty young maiden with an intriguing expression on her face.  And her face was all I could see, but unlike some people who don’t even think the teeny SYTYCD dancers are good enough for him, that beautiful face was all I needed to know. So I did my best to spread on the charm with the old lady taking my money, as Rebecca was listening to the entire conversation. I was paying with a check and had to go out to my car to get my license. On my way back to inside I said a little prayer:

“I would like to get that girl’s phone number. If you want that to happen, please help me.”

Went back in, extended my conversation with the old woman as long as possible to find some segue, any segue into conversation with Rebecca. It came and I got her digits. Our first kiss followed after a couple weeks, followed after a couple seconds by her looking at me with total surprise and a bit of annoyance and saying “I can’t believe you just did that. I wasn’t ready for that.”


Two weeks before I met Reba I had started feeling for the first time since returning from my mission that I didn’t want and wasn’t going to get married for a few years. I was graduating in a semester and I felt The Africer calling. For the first time in 4 years, this big cat was not on the prowl.

Even though I was often quick to be smitten, Davis had a different feeling about this one when we spoke on the phone after the first date. After marrying off our younger sister the month before (child bride laws in Utah are pretty relaxed), we were the last two left in the family. He told me he could tell I was going to marry Rebecca. I thought he was right. In Rebecca I finally found the combination of a few things (beauty and shark knowledge) I was looking for. She was beautiful, funny, quirky, smart, committed, and I knew she would make a great mother.

reba 1

Rebecca at a Def Leopard concert on her 7th birthday

We quickly learned that I’m the Venutian and she’s the Martian in our relationship. I’m a puppy dog for affection and can be a cheese ball, while she once admitted that it kind of creeps her out when I bring her flowers (while chocolate definitely doesn’t creep her out. And chocolate only creeps me out if you live in a country where the word “creeps out” means “I would give my left arm and first 3 children for more delicious CHOCOLATE!!!)

reba 2

Pictured with the medal she received for marrying me

I started out the proposal night by army crawling past the front desk into Club Tan while she was working. I put a few dozen roses onto an open tanning bed (I know you’re thinking “WHITE TRASH!” but this is where we met and I wanted it to be involved) in one of Club Tan’s many nasty, dark, stained-carpet rooms. Before her shift ended, the employee taking over told Reba she wasn’t feeling well and asked if she could go clean that last bed before she left. I was hiding in the furnace closet of the final rose ceremony room. Reba came in, looked confusedly at the 50 roses spread onto the tanning bed, and ran out. I didn’t know what to do. Then I heard her say to a tanner in the lobby,

“Um, I think you left your roses in the bed.”

Lolol. I love to imagine what had gone through her mind:

“Geez, this lady really likes to pamper herself during her twice-weekly, 15 minute tanning sessions.”

Her co-worker convinced her to go back into the room, I jumped out, and we went up the canyon where my friends had created a fire and comfy lounging area for the real proposal.

reba 3

Not sure why we don’t have any pictures with just the two of us.

Marriage is a mercurial arrangement. Sometimes you think “Devil! I hate your face and hope you’re eaten by snow leopards!” Other times you feel to worship at the feet of your spouse for the mercy and love and support they extend when you don’t deserve it, or even when you do deserve it. But most the time you’re in that middling place of life’s daily mix of struggle and contentment where you realize how healthy it is to have this person intimately tied up with your life. How it gives you structure and regular love and motivation and self-improvement and children and empathy and compensation for your weaknesses and support and strength in numbers. I’m glad Club Tan was created and that I walked in that day and that I said a prayer and that I got her number that Rebecca didn’t have a thing for petite male noses or non-vampire canines.

Happy Anniversary, Reba. You’re the best.

reba 4

And that’s not even our kid, but I like this picture of Reba

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12 Responses to Five Big Ones

  1. Ryan says:

    If it creeps her out when you send flowers, I think it was the perfect proposal to lay fifty flowers in a tanning bed in a private back room of the salon and hide in the closet waiting to jump out at her when she’s back there all alone.

  2. Ryan says:

    Just kidding- my proposal story can just as easily be manipulated for creepiness. Great story, though, Kook. Congrats on the anniversary.

  3. Christian says:

    lol. That’s funny. I found out flowers creep her out aaafter I did the proposal.

  4. Braden says:

    Great post, Kook. I don’t think I had heard all of that story. Hey guess what! Some really cool 5th grade teachers from my school have started reading your blog!

  5. Christian says:

    That’s great. Looks like you’re the one getting fired soon then.

  6. Rachel says:

    Happy Anniversary! Who knew that Cathy Warner would play such a pivotal role in your life? I’ll bet she still takes 100% of the credit for your meeting Rebecca and I’d also be willing to bet she gave a lot of (un)needed advice after you left that day. I do recall her “trying” to instruct me on proper intimacy with my husband after she got married to the illegal alien. That was a conversation I don’t wish to remember. You should do a post on Cathy. Classic.

    Oh, and I knew it was just a matter of time before Golom made it onto DDDT. Love that kid.

  7. Ben Pratt says:

    Congrats! What a day!

  8. Oh man! I lived in Chipman Hall my freshman year and got a stinkin 3 month unlimited pass to Club Tan with the girls on my floor. I remember those dark rooms and the playboy bunny tan lines I’d see on my roommates.

    What a cute story, and I absolutely love that BYU required Club Tan to sell books and materials. Whaaaat? I laughed so hard throughout this post. I love that your proposal involved a bunch of roses and hiding in a random closet. Zack’s lead-in to the proposal also involved lots of roses and hiding in a laundry closet. I’m laughing about Braden’s comment about the roses. Congrats guys!

  9. Serene says:

    Totally dig the proposal story. At least it’s a little better than ours!
    Happy Annniversary!
    Mine was yesterday!

  10. Christian F. says:

    Great post, but I would really prefer to read your co-workers secrets. Happy Anniversary.

  11. Christian says:

    Rachel. lol. Anyone over 40 giving any “intimacy” advice automatically causes either dry heaving or creepiness.

    Ben, thanks man.

    Danica, lolol, no BYU didn’t force Club Tan to sell books. The print shop that sold the space to Club Tan force them to sell it’s printed material to students. Lol. I like picturing the church doing that though.

    “Hey Club Tan, we’re going to need you to sell some textbooks for the school”

    “Um, no I’m not going to do that.”

    “Actually, you will do that if you don’t want yourself and everyone you know excommunicated.”

    “Fine, I’ll do it.”

    Serene, happy anniversary to you too. I just commented on your blog asking the same question, but what’s your proposal story?

    Christian F, I’m sorry, I just saw your comment because I have been too busy working, so please forgive me for getting back to you this late.

  12. Jessica Sedgwick says:

    Okay, I like to get on your blog when I need a good laugh (Dave is out of town tonight, and I’m miserably sitting at home at 37+ weeks pregnant). I think this blog post might just put me into labor while he’s gone. Hilarious, laughing til my tummy hurts. I LOVE the picture of Reba at a Def Leppard (by the way, you spelled it wrong; come on, what kind of fan are you?) concert at 7 years old. And the medal she got for marrying you. You get the prize for best captions, Christian.

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