The weather finally turned Arctic last week, so after nearly a year of borrowing my neighbor’s blankets, I went shopping for new bed linens Friday. Because really, what better way to spend a Friday night than shopping for bedsheets with your mom and kid?
Comforter shopping with my mother was awesome intercultural training. While my mom and I were looking for a double-sized comforter, the bald, middle-aged pudger with nothing better to do on a Friday night than explain the sweat-wicking capabilities of polyester was trying to sell us on two separate twin comforters.
Because, you know, Germans and Americans have different sleeping habits. Andy has explained this in more detail over at his blog, but to boil it down for you: an anomaly culturally, Americans like to actually share bedspace and blankets (they sure do love their personal space everywhere else, just not in bed) whereas Germans are independent and do not not not want anyone anywhere near their own personalized mattress or blanket.
So after catching me in the corner fondling the king-sized down, pudger came over to practice up his brilliant interpersonal skills for later in the evening.
“How often do you share your bed?” was literally the first question out of his mouth.
Of course I snorted in his face. “Dude, my mom’s right there,” I said, but he didn’t even crack a smile.
“Yes, but do you sleep alone? Or do you sleep with someone else?”
Thank fuck my mom speaks not a single word of German. And I told him that, right after I told him that was a personal question I couldn’t believe he’d ask while still Sie-tzing me. He still did not smile. C’mon, dude, you’re asking a woman how often she shares her bed and you can’t even joke about it? I’m blanket-shopping on a Friday night, bud. How frequently do you think there’s somebody else crawling under those covers with me?
So I told him, “Sometimes.” This is a bold-faced lie, unless a 3-year-old footballer-in-training counts as someone else, but pudger doesn’t need to know that.
Still, he stays all business. “Well then, that comforter there’s not going to work for you. It’ll be too hot for two people. It traps the heat.”
“Well I would hope that if I were sharing my bed with someone else, we wouldn’t be beneath the covers, nor would we be too worried about sweat, now would we?”
Dude did not even flinch when I said this, just kept right on going, trying to sell me two twin-sized polyester-filled duvets. I gotta give it to him for trying, but alas, I disappointed him and bought the king-sized down. He won’t be there cuddling beneath the ducky with me, so it’s a risk I’ll just have to take.