Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I love my wife. Especially when she finds a way of putting a good spin on one of my less than wonderful characteristics.

This happened the other night when I placed a drink awkwardly on the end table while watching TV and we ended up with olives, vodka and vermouth all over the floor. "I swear I put it in the middle of the table," I said, but I could see in her eyes that she doubted that the laws of physics had altered briefly just to make me look clumsy.

It probably wouldn't have been a big deal except that about a week earlier I had placed a drink awkwardly on the end table while watching TV and we ended up with olives, vodka and vermouth all over the floor. That time it really wasn't my fault. I had seen the glass hydroplane on the coaster and just scoot over the edge of the table. Honest. I did see it happen.

I should add that both of these were the first drinks of the cocktail hour, so it would be wrong to blame the vodka and vermouth for the misadventure since most of it ended up on the floor.

That may not be quite the case in explaining why I spilled a full glass of wine right after pouring it the other night. In that case I bumped it with my arm as I cleaned up the sink after spilling a little wine in it.

And then there's the tub of cottage cheese that I knocked out of the fridge this weekend, which then popped its lid and made a pretty pattern of curd on dark wood.

And since I was just preparing the first drink of the day yesterday when I dropped the tub of feta-filled olives, you know you can't blame the booze. I tried to blame it on a case of dropsy, but then I discovered that dropsy is an old word for edema and has nothing to do with dropping things. So even then I dropped the metaphorical ball, as it were.

LK was on the phone with our accountant at the time I dropped the olives. Since the olives were in one of those little plastic containers from the deli department, it didn't make any noise when it fell. LK first noticed that something was up while still on the phone when she glanced over and saw me kneeling on the floor with a soapy sponge and spray cleaner trying to get all the olive oil up.

Or perhaps she first noticed when she watched me grunting and groaning and very nearly going ass-over-teacups as I stood up after cleaning the floor. At any rate, when she was off the phone she asked what in the world was going on.

When I told her that I had dropped yet one more thing, she shook her head and said (quite calmly, I should add),  "Donald, you're not having a real good run right now."

Well, I replied, I guess those are the sorts of things that happen when you're clumsy.

And God love her, LK shook her head and said I wasn't really all that clumsy. "No," she said in a very thoughtful tone, "your problem is that you're always looking ahead to the next thing and not focusing on the current moment."

"You mean I don't pay attention?" I asked.

"Not exactly," she said. After a few seconds she came up with one of her specialties - a detailed hypothetical example to illustrate her point.

"Let's say we were both walking on the beach (that part lets you know this is hypothetical) and there's a minor car accident. You would remember so much more than I would. You would know how the accident happened, what the drivers did, what colors the cars were, maybe even the license plates."

Of course there was a "but . . ." hanging in the air, and I let her off the hook by completing her thought for her.

"But I would probably trip over something on my way to help them out. Isn't that what you're saying?"

"Exactly," she beamed. "You wouldn't pay attention to the things around you but would be very focused on what you were going to."

Bless her heart. I know she was doing her best to make me seem less like a klutz. But if I am totally candid, I would have to say that if I am a visionary, it still sounds like I am a very clumsy visionary.

And I think it was quite telling last night I went to get a bottle of wine from the storage fridge. "Oh Donald," she said, "you're not having red wine, are you?"

As a forward thinker, I understand exactly where she was heading.

No comments: