She was right. It was the fourth day before the swelling in my black eyes had subsided sufficiently for me to barely open one eye. (I hasten to say this is not true, lest it really does come to pass.)
Continuing with more episodes from “Life With What’s Her Name,” there are other things that drive me nuts, in addition to those I depicted in “Funny Female Foibles.”
While directing the Network Daycare Services before her retirement, WHN was christened the “Steel Magnolia” by employees. This because of her ability to get things done in a genteel fashion, without giving direct orders.
“She can call you in her office, and talk pleasantly with you for 15 minutes,” once said her friend and employee, Anne Fennell. “Ten minutes after you walk out, you suddenly realize you’ve just been chewed out.” This trait of being too nice to be too direct, has carried over into our married life, and it drives me crazy.
“I SURE WISH that lamp was off,” she said as we watched TV recently. It would have been so much simpler if she could have merely said, “Would you turn off the lamp for me?” which obviously was the only way it was going to get turned off, unless the bulb blew out. Another example:
“Did you forget to take out the garbage last night?” she asked. “It smells bad.” What a dumb question! Of course I had forgotten to take it out! Otherwise she obviously wouldn’t be seeing and smelling it. “Wouldn’t it be easier to be more direct and just say, ‘You forgot to take out the friggin’ garbage last night, and it stinks?”‘ I asked.
“My mother taught me that it isn’t nice to use the word ‘stink,’” was her reply.
“Do you want me to bring you a cup of coffee?” I asked her one morning.
“If you want to,” was her strange reply, again trying not to be too much trouble.
“Look,” I said. “I don’t give a flyin’ flip whether I bring it to you or not! A simple yes or no is the answer I had in mind.”
“You’re right,” she said.
“Do you want me to mix your yogurt with your peaches?” I asked her at breakfast a few days later.
You guessed it. Her answer — “If you want to.”
“I’LL BE GLAD when you finish reading the paper,” she remarked at breakfast one morning. I realized I was getting some sort of sugar coated roundabout request. The possibilities appeared to be:
a. She wants the paper.
b. She wants me to pay attention to her, instead of reading.
c. She can’t see my handsome physiognomy when the paper is covering it.
d. The paper is blocking her view of the TV.
Answer (a.) was obviously the most likely reason. However having had almost four years experience in interpreting her devious mind, I have found that the most likely is not always the right selection. Thus instead of (a.), I selected (d.), And I was right! But again, how much simpler it would have been if she had requested that I lower the paper so she could see the TV.
The WHN logic is also a little difficult to follow at times. “I need to give away some clothes, since I have too many that are old, and not enough closet space,” she stated one day. Then she paused and pondered for a moment, and added, “Then I guess I’ll need to buy some new ones to replace them.” That one had my head spinning the rest of the day.
AND LIKE MANY females she still won’t keep her glasses on her nose where they belong, and thus I have to spend my valuable time helping search for where she last left them. Vivian Vance once said on the Lucille Ball TV show, as she looked in a mirror, “Now that I don’t see so good, I don’t look so bad.” Perhaps that’s the reason for hesitancy on the art of womankind to wear their specs?
Many years ago, author Dorothy Parker made famous this ditty:
“Men seldom make passes,
At girls who wear glasses.”
A gentleman by the name of S. Oman Barker came up with an answering ditty:
Whether men will make passes, At girls who wear glasses, Depends quite a bit, On the shape of their chassis.”
Thus continues the saga of “Life With What’s Her Name”. It’s been a difficult, but interesting adaptation.
I’ll close with a bit of philosophical wisdom from the Peanuts comic strip’s Charlie Brown, which I find is all too true.
“Do you mean you got beat by a mere girl?” Linus asked Charlie.
“Girls aren’t nearly as mere as they used to be!” was Charlie’s sorrowful reply.
Jack Runninger of Rome is a retired optometrist and state and national award-winning humor columnist. His most recent book, “Funny Female Foibles,” is available now. Readers may contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.