I might not be emotionally equipped to live in a house as the only male. And it’s not just the obvious, like the case of toilet paper we burn through in a week around here which I can’t explain.
I have a daughter, some of you may also have daughters.
Mine at the moment is without a bedroom door. She lost that door ;ast June because she was constantly going up to her room and shutting the door and taking naps. Falling asleep when she claimed to be doing homework. It was her thing, going up there and closing the door for hours on end. I’m told it’s a teenager thing. I’ve had make teenagers living here before, I don’t remember them hunkering down for months on end. Then again, Mrs S has been known to retreat to the upstairs as well when she wants to avoid something.Maybe it is a gender linked trait. Interestingly enough she has made no effort whatsoever to earn the door back. Priorities I guess.
Some times I can encourage Mrs S to go up stairs and shut her door. Putting some Neil Young on the iPod Speakers is surefire way to do it, when she hears that stuff she’s gone before old Neil can say “North Ontario”.
Personally I don’t go upstairs for my recharge time, I prefer to go down. Down down down. I suppose it’s practicing for when I shed this mortal coil and descend into the hotel I’ve build for myself down in Hell. That is if I believed in a hell which I don’t, but the metaphor is accurate.
And BTW a lot of the stuff I’ve shared with you all on this here site, part of the reason I’d be doomed to the H E double-toothpicks.
One of the thing’s which has kinda changed around here now that the XY’s are in the minority, family land mines. Days when just existing is an exercise in avoiding emotional tripwires and feelings bombs. Problem is, I have not a clue about either their location or their triggers because, and lets be honest here, much of the time I am oblivious.
For example; I happened by chance to head up stairs and passed the girls chamber sans door. Glanced in as is my habit and what did I see? Well, here’s the conversation-
“Dude” my pet name for her “You gotta clean this room up, it’s a little out of hand.” It was, really was bad, it looked like she was trying to earn her “Hoarder” badge from the girls scouts. Shit everywhere. Deep piles of clothes covering the stylish zebra carpet Mrs S bought her a year ago when we were converting her room from the kiddie room with the hand painted Babar the elephant on the wall (Mrs S did that, looked cool) to a teen chicks dream with purple and animal prints. Not to mention a bitch’n looking makeup table with a real mirror and all kinda places to put crap. Got her some cubby things and a nifty chest of drawers for her drawers..thank you very much I’m here all week.
Where we failed as parents was the part we train the kid to put her stuff into all the neat places designated for it. Failed miserably.
Hence my little gentle helpful prod, which resulted in the following chain of events;
- An eye roll so violent in nature that I’m surprised the nerves holding the optical organs in her head didn’t snap and cause those lovely brown eyes of hers fall right out of her head. Which would have been more thing to clean up.
- The exhale of a Zeppelins capacity of stale lung air. Frankly I’m not sure how a kid that small has the capacity to blow out a cubic yard of hot gas and still have enough leftover to create speech without inhaling. Must be a gender linked trait.
- An exclamation of “OH MY GAWD” that was so loud it was audible from the attic to the deepest depths of the utility room. I would suggest that it was so loud that had a Jehovah’s Witnesses been reaching for the spot where our doorbell at used to be (another story) at that very moment, they would have pulled back their hand and walked away comfortable in the knowledge that we are in fact G-d fearing folk.
- And finally the unload- a tearful angry diatribe of speech which admonished me for being an unfeeling and uncaring disciplinarian with unreasonable expectations all the while pointing out to the entire planet that I’m “lame”. And, reminding me that she has the sacred homework to do. You know, if my kids did half the damned homework they claimed to have when I asked them to do something we’d'a had three valedictorians in our house just say’n.
So I caved. Put my hands up in the defensive posture and slowly backed out of the tigers den, shaking my head. And a little afraid to be honest. You know what did cross y mind at that moment? That somewhere in the world some young man about her age just stopped in his tracks from a chill he couldn’t explain.. A future husband who has no idea what he in for, heh. Just wait scooter, just wait.
So I crossed the hall and went into the inner-chamber, the Master Bedroom or as I like to call Mrs S’s room. She was reading a book in bed.
I casually said to her “Whew that girls wound a little tight this evening huh? ..” and the response?
- An eye roll which while not quite as violent as the girls still got the point across. The point being I’d just heard the “click” of buried emotion mine. And while a mature woman eye roll is a little disconcerting, still better than a mature woman “look” which in my experience can ignite curtains.
- An exhale of air that evoked not anger and frustration like the girls but more the deep pathos. As in “you are one pathetic dude”.
- An exclamation of “really” that said more in one word than a Tolstoy novel.
- And finally “you know you can be a real pain in the ass sometimes”.
And before I could respond, the book was raised and I, was De-Smissed.
I tell ya, my world was spinning. This living with women, even if there are only two of them, is a constant state of angst for me. There’s more things to trip over around here than the Korean DMZ. Matter of fact I’d even suggest that some folks around here change up the mine fields with some regularity just to trip the old guy up. I’ve been in trouble for things that I would swear before a jury were perfectly fine only a few hours earlier. Good thing I’m have my boyish good looks and a happy go lucky disposition or I’d be in real trouble around here. Probably a good thing that I have my name attached to a direct deposit revenue stream as well.
After those exchanges let the upstairs team know that was going down to the lower basement where I’d be three floors away in the man cave, and that my friends, was that.