Friday, July 23, 2010

Understanding Men

Okay, so you all know I write fiction, yes? And that I head up a line of fiction for a publishing house? And that one of my favorite lines is, "My whole life is make-believe"?

Just like the title of this post!

Understanding men. It shouldn't be that hard. Men are wonderful, protective, strong, funny, mesmerizing, tender-hearted, surprising, loving--SO many good things.

Then there are the other things:


and, most important of all...


I mean, really. How many times must one ask for trash or recycling to be taken out?

Observe a snippet from my life.
Monday, after returning home from yet another business trip and spotting the three recycling containers--one for pop cans and such that you get deposit back on, one for aluminum and cans with no deposit back, one for paper goods--filled to overflowing.

Me: Hey, hon, the recycling needs to go out. (Notice I didn't say all three containers are overflowing and threatening to overtake the kitchen? Huh?)
Darling Hubby: Yup, just saw that. I'll take care of it.

Tuesday, as we're getting ready for bed.
Me: Sweetie, the recycling is still--
DH: Yeah, yeah, I know. I'll take care of it.

Wednesday, as I'm fixing dinner and find NO ROOM for the cans in the no deposit recycling bin (and decide against tossing them on top of the ever growing pile that now seems just inches from the ceiling).
Me: Hon, come on. Recycling.
DH: I haven't forgotten it.
Okay, so I didn't really say that. But I thought it as I chomped on my tongue to keep from saying it.

Wednesday, later in the evening.
Me: Don. Paper recycling.
DH: I know, I know. I'll get it. Don't worry.

Thursday. Joy and jubilation! The recycling container for cans with deposit is empty! Progress! However, goopy can recycling and paper recycling still overflowing. After a day of staring at the growing piles--which now resemble dual volcanoes about to spew enough goopy cans and old newspapers to bury the house--and fuming. Yes, I could have just taken it out myself. But it's the principle of the thing. Ladies, you KNOW what I'm talking about.
Me: Don. (fixed stare)
DH: (eyes wide and innocent) What, love of my life?
Me: Don. (glare sweeps to the recycling container and its towering load)
DH: (indignation in his tone) What? I know it's there. Sheesh, I don't know why you get so frustrated with me.
Me: clenching teeth and turning away, wrestling the urge to throttle the man I love with all my heart. Gee...what could POSSIBLY frustrate me about him?

Friday. 102 degrees outside. 101 inside. I've been working and cooking all day. Double Potroast, some for meat, some for stroganoff. Lovely fragrances waft through the kitchen...tinged by the sour smell of spoiling crud from Mt. Recycling (Yes, I rinse stuff out before putting it in. He, on the other hand...).
Me: (peering at him where he's plopped in his recliner) Don. No kidding. Recycling. Paper. Cans.
Him: What? I'll take care of it.
Me: Donald Vincent! I've asked you every day this week--
Him: Not every day.
Me: (rolling eyes to the heavens, praying for patience). You're right. How about every day I've been home this week. Tuesday through Friday.
Him: On Tuesday you said recycling, right?
Me: Right.
Him: So on Wednesday I took out the pop cans.
Me: Thursday you took out the pop cans.
Him: Which was recycling. I did what you asked.

At this point, my father, who has been watching this little drama all week, starts chuckling. Deep in his chest.

Me: You're not helping, Dad.

Chuckles switch to laughter.

DH: TODAY you said paper recycling. So now I'll take care of--

Me: AAARRRGGGGHHH! Recycling is recycling! All three have been overflowing! You KNOW they have!

DH: (cheeky grin on his face) Well, now that I know what you want, I'll take care of it.

And as I sit here, sharing this bit of joy with you, guess what STILL sits in the kitchen, trembling, threatening to fall over and bury us all alive.

Ah, men. Love 'em to pieces. Respect 'em. Wouldn't want to do this gig without them. But understand them?

That's the biggest fiction of all.

Peace, friends.



Nicole said...

Passive aggressive vs. Type A. ;)

James L. Rubart said...

I have no problem understanding men.

B.K. Jackson said...

Kids. Husbands. Their dialogue is interchangeable. 8-)

Karen B. said...

James, you are a brat.

Patrick said...

As a man, I don't even understand myself. My wife understands me less.

Patrick said...

As a man, I don't even unde4rstand myself. My wife will laugh when I show her this story.

James L. Rubart said...

:) !!!!!!!

Erin Wicker said...

Oh man. I am so glad to hear that I am not the only one that says stuff over and over again and I keep hearing, "I'll take care of it." And then he ALWAYS responds to me with sweet nothings like, "What love of my life?" and doesn't understand that I am boiling inside. LOL!!!!!!!!

Pam Halter said...

And this is the reason I put out the recycling and trash myself. Probably not the heathiest thing, since I totally resent it, but I can't stand it all in my kitchen.

Viva la difference!

Steve G said...

Move the recycling into a place in the house or garage where it is in his domain/way. Who says it has to be in the kitchen? Convenience isn't an excuse to keep it there if it just doesn't work, and from what you wrote, it just doesn't work there.