I mean, really, I don't blame her. In biology, or sex-ed, or wherever I first learned about the beautiful and wondrous act of human reproduction, I don't remember gerbils ever being mentioned. In, out, sperm, egg. That was it. Nine months later you never get a decent night's sleep, and you take out a second mortgage on your house. Those were the rules.
So, when asked about this odd practice, I paused briefly in wonder and amazement at how such an act was created. Who, do you suppose, was the first gerbiler? Richard Gere? Certainly not. Personally, I blame it on the Greeks. After all, the Ancient Greeks were well-known for strange sexual practices, and as we all know, their servant-boys were rarely constipated. They must be the culprits. But still can you imagine?
"Whaddya nuts, Zorba? Ya want me to put Murray where?" (In my daydreams, everyone speaks with a Bronx accent. My Robert De Niro fixation has gone too far.)
I must explain something else about this slippery situation. My wife adores all of God's creatures, big and, yes, small. Tact was a must.
"Well, honey, it's when people put gerbils...well, you know..."
Of course, she didn't know.
"...in their bums."
Shock and disbelief followed, followed by anger misdirected at me. Even after several attempts to convince her I wasn't the one performing this bizarre sex act, she was still whacking me in the shins with a ballpine hammer.
"People should respect animals more," she huffed, storming off in her suede boots.
Then, I uttered the three words every married man knows so well, the three words that smooth over every marriage's rough spots: "You're right, dear."
All I have is a simple request to the American public, hell, the world: Please, only place small, fuzzy creatures on a flywheel. Let them live out their short lifespans in a nice, cozy, little cage. It's the only humane thing to do. And if you absolutely feel the urge, please, don't tell my wife about it.