love is a battlefield

Over the past year or so, D and I accidentally developed a favorite sport that could readily go by the name Stump The Sweetheart. The game can start anytime, any place, when one partner lobs the first pitch: “I love you” followed by a nonsense nickname. The second player answers with “I love you” followed by an unrelated nonsense nickname.

The volleys continue until a player bursts out laughing, falters, or delivers an inaudible. “I love you, [mumblety-peg]” would be a losing stroke. Oddly enough, “I love you, Mumblety-Peg!” would not.

The faltering, when one of us is simply unable to concoct a nonsense endearment, occurs with surprising regularity. It’s harder than you’d think to keep tossing out absurd cooing endearments without pause. You try it sometime. “I love you, Rosencrantz,” suits the game down to the ground, but a return of “I love you, Guildenstern,” gets the buzzer.

A sufficiently hilarious salvo from the instigator gets the (significant) other cracking up, resulting in an ace: the schmoopie equivalent of a hole in one. “I love you, Fry and Laurie” was a recent inexplicable example.

Some contenders for the No-You’re-The-Schmoopie doorprize around these parts:

I love you, Bruce Lee
I love you, perfessor
I love you, cuttlefish
I love you, Dr. Beardface
I love you, guv’ner
I love you, rambling rose
I love you, Tipsy McDrunkerton
I love you, sans serif
I love you, Iron Chef
I love you, Harper Lee
I love you, Señor Biggles
I love you, moon pie
I love you, wifi
I love you, bagel face
I love you, Mister Bingley
I love you, Spiderpig
I love you, Chief Shoot ’em Up

Honorable mention goes to “I love you, monkey,” a phrase disallowed in the game, as it’s the standard endearment chez nous.

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