Marie Willers loves her husband. But when he showed up Tuesday night with nothing for her on her birthday, it was time to take action.
In front of her house Wednesday, a 3-foot-tall sign written in all caps read, “I Chuck Willers gave my wife nothing for her birthday on purpose. I made her cry all night. I’m a man!”
She wrote the sign right after he left for work in the morning, much to the amusement of her neighbors.
“I’ve been married to this man for 30 years, and when he walked in my door last night without a card or a present, I said, ‘You dirty dog, I’ll get you,’” Marie Willers said.
When she asked him why he did not bring anything to her for her birthday, he said, “What’s the big deal?”
“I said, ‘I’ll make it a big deal for you.’ Don’t get mad, get even,” Willers said.
It’s not that her husband necessarily forgets her birthday, Willers said, because it is the same date as two of her nephews’ birthdays and she had been receiving birthday wishes before Tuesday. Instead, he will “forget” her birthday just to push her buttons.
This is probably the 10th time he has not gotten her a gift on July 10.
“That’s how we ended up here,” she said.
He “forgot” or intentionally did not get her a gift about six years ago, and she put signs up all over his pickup and drove by where he was working on a house.
This year, she followed him to work and yelled at him out the window. She then put the sign in the driveway and texted him a picture.
“There are better ways of dealing with men than getting really mad and arguing,” she said.
The sign created a stir in the quiet residential neighborhood in the 200 block of Eden Street near Stockton Street.
Neighbors came outside and started laughing. The neighbor across the street asked what “Chuckie” did this time.
The teasing is a two-way street, Willers said. Her husband will often startle her by hiding in the dark around the home and then jumping out.
“We do stupid stuff to each other. We have a fun relationship. Somebody has got to laugh,” she said.
While it may be an unconventional way to deal with what many consider personal matters, Willers said their relationship is still going strong after decades.
“It’s worked and a lot of people don’t make it. We fight it out, get over it and tomorrow is another day,” she said.
She cannot imagine her life without her husband, even if he does sometimes forget her special day.
“What would I do without him? There would be no one to fight with, no one to do stuff like this to. I guess you can say we love to hate each other,” she said with a laugh.