Monday, June 26, 2023

I try so hard to find stuff in my own house before I finally resort to calling Terry


No stereotype is universal, but some are pretty close.

One, in my experience, is that men are curiously unable to find things. Things that are right there in plain sight. Things that seem impossible to miss.

Yet I manage to do it.

Please understand, this is not for lack of trying. When Terry sends me to the basement to fetch something, I go down there with every intention of not looking like an idiot.

"Get me the big blue bowl," she will say. "It's behind the folding door, second shelf from the bottom, right next to the Christmas cookie cutters."

"That sounds easy enough," I think to myself. "Folding door, second shelf from the bottom, next to the Christmas cookie cutters. Got it!"

I make my way to the basement, slide open the folding door and kneel down to get a good look at the second shelf from the bottom.

No big blue bowl.

I look again. Still not there.

I move some things around on the shelf. Nada.

I look on other shelves, thinking maybe she just had the wrong one in mind. Again, nothing you could remotely describe as a big blue bowl.

I go back to the second shelf from the bottom. The situation there is unchanged. There are many things on that shelf, but as far as I can tell, nothing big, nor blue, nor bowl-like.

I head back upstairs to report that she is perhaps mistaken and ask her to think where else the big blue bowl might be.

"It's there," she tells me. "Look harder."

Annoyed, I go back to the basement, knowing the big blue bowl isn't suddenly going to appear out of thin air. And of course I am right. There is no big blue bowl on the second shelf from the bottom.

I yell up to her that she's welcome to come down and see for herself that the bowl is not where she believes it to be. As she comes down the stairs, I imagine the heartfelt apology she will offer when she discovers I am right.

She strides over, bends down, looks at the second shelf from the bottom and...pulls out a very big, decidedly blue bowl and stares at me for a moment.

I am dumbfounded. Gobsmacked, even. I don't understand it. I was looking right at it the whole time. But it never registered. I never saw it. It just...well, I blame my brain, which clearly doesn't understand what a "big blue bowl" is and has failed me yet again.

Terry shakes her head slightly and takes the bowl upstairs.

I pull out my phone to Google "treatments for cognitive impairment."

Somehow, after 31 years, we're still married.

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