After some years of exasperated perplexity, I finally figured my husband out: anything you can say about him, the opposite is also true. He is or has been, simultaneously or sequentially, both extremes on every continuum you care to name. The strongest, the weakest. The kindest, the cruelest. The crassest, the most sensitive; the cheapest, the most generous. Wise and dumb. Stubborn and accomodating. Tender and violent. An heir, a slave.
I thought he must be the only one of that kind. I hadn't yet encountered Gregory Sippican Sullivan.