Wives poking fun at their
hobby-obsessed husbands is not a new thing. Good-natured articles contributed by
wives have appeared in all kinds of specialty magazines for decades. This one entitled
"Why Not Authentic, Prefabricated Husbands?" was written by the wife of a model
airplane, rocket, and boat builder. Her name is Laurie Cunningham, which makes me
wonder if she is the better half of Chuck Cunningham, who wrote the "Cunningham
on R/C" column for R/C Modeler magazine for many years. Mrs. Cunningham's
experience is not unlike my own wife's (Melanie) dilemma living with me going on
four decades (39 years and counting). Throughout our house on display are Estes
rocket models, plastic and balsa model airplanes and boats, and even a helicopter
or two. Most of them are ones I've never flown or floated for fear of messing up
the carefully applied finish. Fortunately, the in-service models are now all electric
so there is not a mess of glow fuel dripping onto the floor - just an occasional
tire mark on the wall. In exchange for her tolerance, I support her sewing and cooking
habit as much as I can. It has worked well for us all these many moons.
Why Not Authentic, Prefabricated Husbands?
By Laurie Cunningham
There is a Rascal in my bedroom. Being good-natured I don't mind this too much,
but that Rat in the center of my dining room table is somewhat bothersome. To say
nothing of the Sidewinder on my window sill. Honest John and Little John are around
here somewhere too. These are all models of missiles I hasten to add.
You see, my husband's hobby is making models and I sympathize with any wife who
finds herself in the same boat - the "boat" would be an authentic scale model, of
course. The amount of dust these things will collect is amazing. If my husband HAS
to have a hobby I wish he would collect stamps. It's considerably more profitable
than collecting dust.
Almost every weekend my better half will settle himself in the den surrounded
with complicated-looking sets of blueprints, bits of plastic in all shapes and sizes,
cement, paint, my best scissors and any number of other things I can't even give
a title to. As far; as I'm concerned it boils down to one big MESS. And I daren't
interrupt him during one of these orgies for fear of disturbing his power of concentration.
After looking over a few of his model blueprints I can see where it would take a
powerful lot of concentration. They're IMPOSSIBLE! I have heard that twelve-year-olds
enjoy this hobby, but I don't believe it. The assembly instructions are enough to
confuse a Professor of Abstract Mathematics. I tried reading one once in the belief
a wife should share her husband's hobby. This is what it said:
A. Locate, do not cement, Part 41 to the holes in Parts 42 and 43.
B. Carefully locate, do not cement, Parts 44 and 45 to Part 46.
C. Now slide, do not cement, Part 46 into the grooves of Parts 42 and 43.
Snap, do not cement, the left and right superstructures into place. Finally snap
Parts 41 and 46 to Parts 13.
By this time it was my mind that had "snapped" and I decided he could keep his
hobby to himself.
Take that word "locate" that keeps appearing in a set of instructions. The manufacturer
knew what he was doing when he wrote that in. When you have a hundred and thirty
oddly assorted pieces spread around the entire room it's a wonder anybody can "locate"
anything at all.
After my husband has FINALLY completed one of his models he makes a tour of the
house searching for a likely spot to display it. By now there are few likely spots
left. The "Flying Cloud" is floating on the mantle. The "N.S. Savannah" is docked
on my coffee table. The "Jupiter C." is ready to blast off the T.V. That Rascal
is still in my bedroom and a Sherman Tank is threatening my love seat. Comes the
day I have to take a bath with the "U.S.S. Arizona" I'm going to turn my husband
in on a new model ... if somebody ever puts out a kit for one, that is.
Authentic scale model husbands should sell like hot cakes.
Posted April 16, 2022