Dear John/Al,

This is simultaneously the most difficult and most exciting letter I've ever had to write. First of all, I'm leaving you for my yoga instructor -- as if me coming home hung over from recurring weekend "fitness seminars" for the past eighteen months wasn't enough of a warning. Secondly, I'm a huge fan, going back all the way to Polka Party!, and just wanted to let you know how much I love your work.

John, if you find any part of this letter confusing, please know that Bryan and I are eloping to Tahiti in just a few hours, and even though I planned on writing a letter to both you and "Weird Al" Yankovic before I left, I only have enough time and envelopes for just one. I've included a stamp and the address for his fan club; I only ask you to please pick out the parts relevant to you, and forward this to the King of Parodies as you try to piece your life back together without me.

So you may be asking yourself, "Why now? Why, after all of these years, are you doing this now?" Well, it's complicated. Believe me, mulling this over has caused many sleepless nights on my part. Then, just as things were at their darkest, Bryan looked up from his third tequila body shot and gave me some important words of wisdom. "Do it, babe." Then I thought about all the time we spent together while I curled up in bed with "Addicted to Spuds" blasting through my headphones, keeping me laughing through those sleepless suburban nights. If I didn't do this now, I wasn't going to do it at all. Al, you light up my life.

We've had our good times and our bad times -- ask any of my friends. It's true I wasn't always there for you, and for that I am sorry. But as a woman grows older, her priorities change, as do her tastes. I look back at those times I left you for another, and I'm not exactly proud of myself. When you sought to challenge me, I could only interpret your words as juvenile nonsense. But I didn't realize how much you had to teach me. "Frank's 2000 Inch TV" was both a brilliant satire of consumerist culture, as well as a spot-on parody of R.E.M.'s distinctive sound. My only regret in life is not giving Alapalooza the respect it deserved when you needed it most. I should have listened to my heart instead of Dr. Demento's foul lies.

When I think about you, I can't help but remember how much my family mocked me for taking an interest in the first place. Those outlandish clothes, oversized glasses, and dated facial hair struck many as a peculiar choice, but these are the reasons I fell in love with you in the first place. You were never afraid to put your own unique spin on things, and that's what made you such an important part of my life. I talked to Bryan about this, and he gave me some much-needed perspective: "Your husband's a fucking dork who buys his asshole clothes at the idiot store." Sorry, John, but in retrospect the way you present yourself has always been a constant embarrassment to me, and despite my constant public reminders, you refuse to wear a damned belt. If you're wondering why I left and took our antique chairs, look no further than the empty loops circling your dorkish, asshole waist.

I'm running out of time and paper, so I'm afraid I'll have to bring this to a close. Know that I'll always treasure the time we spent together, and I truly look forward to seeing what you do with yourself in the future. I wish this letter could have been written under happier circumstances, but such are the trials of life. In closing, I only ask that you send me a ladies' medium Poodle Hat t-shirt, because I left mine at my ex-husband's house and I'd rather visit the titular fridge from "Livin' the Fridge" than go to that loser's rat-hole apartment again. Love ya, Al!

– Your Absent Wife

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