“Debra, Debra, lovely wife, why am I stuck with you for life?” So says Ray Barone, sports columnist for Newsday. Well, Ray, I wouldn’t say stuck, buddy. I would say blessed. Debra Barone’s the first comedic character I’m including in my Women Who Wow Wednesday series.
Strong-willed, temperamental, the ideal organizer—Debra Barone makes the perfect compliment to her otherwise silly husband, Ray. Played by Patricia Heaton on Everybody Loves Raymond, Debra is the homemaker who will take it and equally dish it out. In her family there is no dictator. She says what’s on her mind, and she’s never afraid to stand up for herself. How’s this for telling her husband how she feels? “You know what, I’m tired! Could you just call yourself an idiot?”
Never one to pine away the hours in a depressed state of vomit-inducing withdrawal, Debra cleans, cooks, looks after the kids, takes them to their activities, does the laundry, does the dishes, hires exterminators, plans the family vacation, runs for school president and, and, and more. Nothing is too large a feat for her. She does it all. Ray may try to act manly and all, “Let’s try and get it spot free. This isn’t like at home where I let that stuff slide.” But in the end, Debra is the one who strikes fear in the hearts of men:
Debra: Where did you just come from?
Raymond: I went to the bathroom.
Debra: No, you didn’t.
Raymond: I’m doing it right now.
Debra’s mere height of 5′ 2″ doesn’t deter her willingness to fight Robert, Ray’s brother who stands 6′ 8½”:
Debra: Okay, Robert, listen. Stop feeling so sorry for yourself.
Robert: I’m not feeling sorry for myself.
Debra: Yes, you are. Spouting off at the family and insulting everybody. You just love playing the victim, don’t you?
Robert: OK, thank you, Debra. You can go back to being princess fabulosa now.
Debra: Hey, you better be nice to me, pal, because I’m the last person in the family that doesn’t wanna climb up there and strangle you!
But you know what? As strong as she is, she still cuts Ray some slack. Who else can put up with Ray’s greeting to his beloved wife? Precede these phrases with the customary “Hey, _______”:
Auntie Em, Baby, Baby-Bop, Baloney Bosoms, Banjo Pants, Blubber Head, Boobala, Bubble Wrap, Bully, Cap-a-Loo, Cheese Doodle, Clive, Cornflake, Cranapple, Crazy Broad, Darth Debra, Delilah, Eight Maids a Milkin’, Fat Legs, Girlie, Groucho, Honey, Honey-Bun, Hot Little Chuckle Monkey, Hot Mama, Hot Muscle Mama, Huck a Poo, Jambalaya, Jelly Cheeks, Krispy Creme, Lucky Pants, Ma’ Lady, Miss Hippy Go Free Free, Miss Smarty Pants, Miss Teen USA, Mommycakes, Moonshine, Mrs. Holey Moley, Muck-A-Luck, Nickel, Noodle, Pepper Squat, Pinky, Puddle Pants, Puka Shell, Pumpkin, Sister Girl, Skinny Girl, Slim Fast, Smelly Tramp, Sniggles, Snuggle Pants, Soda Pop, Squeezioli, Sweet Sister, Sweetie Pie, Sweetness, Swizzle, Teletubby, Thanksgiving Day Hooker, Tiny Dancer, Witchy-Poo, Your Highness.
In spite of the arguing, complaining, and explaining, Debra is your typical wife who achieves greatness with the ordinary. If she had a shotgun strapped to her thigh, she’d make the perfect zombie hunter.
RANGER MARTIN AND THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE, on sale October 22.
What do you like about Debra? What do you like about Everybody Loves Raymond?