The Orkin Man

This is why I love advice columns:

For 15 years I was a happily married homemaker with a wonderful husband. “Duncan” and I attended church together, frolicked through the fields, even exterminated rodents together. He was my best friend. It was bliss.

It’s a romantic paradise worthy of a syrupy Nora Ephron movie, isn’t it? Tom Hanks, a sweet, lonely single father, spends weekends mindlessly parenting some annoying kid or other while longing to waste squirrels with a soulmate. Along comes Meg Ryan with a latte in one hand and a pellet gun in the other…

And yet, blissful rodent extermination isn’t even the end of the story! Read on:

Last year I found out my father had had an affair with Duncan’s mother the year I was born, which makes him my half-brother! The news was too much for my husband. He had a fatal heart attack not long after.

What should I put on his gravestone — “Loving Brother” or “Loving Husband”?

Abby suggests “He was everything to me,” which I thought was damned close to perfect. Sure beats my suggestion:

Together forever, and never to part
Together forever we two
And don’t you know I would exterminate rodents
To be together forever with you…

Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a trash-talking chinchilla in the yard that needs some schoolin’.