Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Funny Valentine

Tonight when my kind visiting teachers rang my doorbell at 7:07pm I was reminded of something: J does not understand how phone messages work. Since the phone’s been around for more than a hundred years, I assume it’s just J. When your visiting teachers show up and you are forced to usher them into a house that looks like grenades have been tossed about willy-nilly, it’s a problem.

Seriously, don’t leave a message with him on the phone. I’ve had many a person corner me and ask why I didn’t call them back. I’ll confront J later and he’ll apologize or look confused. When he does remember a message he says this, “Uh, someone called.” “Oh? Who called?” “Uh, a woman.” “Ok, what did she want?” “I don’t remember.” “Was she from the ward? Was it my friend or a young woman” “Sure.” “Did she sound old or young?” “Hmm, it could have been someone from the ward.”
So, no, Caller ID is not a luxury for us, it is confirmation that, indeed, someone DID try to call me. Sometimes I have to examine the evidence and perform an interrogation, “It looks like my mom called, did my mom call?” “Oh, yes, she did.” “Ok, what did she want?” “I think it had something to do with Guille.” “Did she say she couldn’t sit tomorrow?” “Maybe. I don’t know.” Riiiiight.

It’s not like he’s incompetent, just the opposite: he simply does not have the space in his brain to spend on such mundane fluff. I imagine that his head is filled with a continuous differential equation that just computes quietly, our child and I are the variables. He loves to be in restaurants that have paper on the table because then he can explain some principle of advanced calculus to me. All I’m thinking is he’s s-mart!


He can’t remember your name. Last year he called one of the kids in his Sunday school class “Parker’s friend” because he couldn’t remember the child’s proper name. I think he can only remember four of my friend’s names. Those names can rotate, but more than four just cannot be present at the same time. He’ll be very pleasant when he meets you, but he will never recall your name. There are deep questions about the universe being solved in there, no room for such things as “names.” I pointed out to him that he wants to be a teacher, a profession in which remembering your charges' names often comes in handy. He looked at me with a quizzical look and said, “It has absolutely nothing to do with the content of the lesson or my objectives, so why is it relative?” I guess in the most logical sense, he’s right. Oh my, it appears that I married my crazy high school math teacher.

It’s a challenge to get dressed in the morning. Sure, he can pull on pants and a shirt, but there is no telling what family of colors will appear that morning: khaki green with a bright orange and blue windbreaker? Blue plaid PJ bottoms with black pique polo? It’s been done. When he gets new clothes there’s a counseling session to make sure he knows what’s appropriate to wear outside the house. He has a closet full of gorgeous clothes but it's just beyond him to put them together by himself in any way that he doesn’t look two steps from homeless. However, I bet if you threw a box of toothpicks on the floor he could count them instantly.

Cars are just beyond him. When he delivered pizza more than a decade ago he didn’t have windshield wipers for two years. He’d just stick his head out if he really needed to see. A couple years ago I asked him to check the oil. He looked at me as if I’d asked him to name the cast of The Gilmore Girls. In the many years that he’d been driving he’d never checked the oil. He probably still has no idea where to put a quart but he could explain how speed is not the same thing as velocity.

No, he doesn't want to come to your party. A low timber voice and an introvert do not a happy party goer make. He'll go these days to make me happy, but it is painful to him. He might have to have a conversation with someone who does think speed=velocity. Most distressing. This disappearing husband phenomenon has resulted in his nickname from La Yen: Carina's Imaginary Husband.

When we first moved into our home we were living with the awful stencils of the previous owner. We'd lie in bed and stare at the grapes and vines going around the bedroom. The stencils annoyed me because the paint application wasn't even and they hadn't repeated the pattern properly (not to mention that they were stencils for heaven's sake.) They frustrated J because the grapes didn't add up to the expected mathematical result; they should have been multiples of seven based on the pattern and they weren't!

If you stop by my house, or call me when he answers the phone, leave a note or call back later, because I didn’t get the message. I have a husband who is brilliant; he doesn’t need to take a message.

Oh, and my house doesn’t always look like we have a deciduous Cheerio tree or blueberry bread growing from the carpet. If I’d gotten the message I would’ve picked up a little for you.


cabesh said...

Yes, yes and yes. I married a physicist. Things like dates, names, directions, etc. simply don't have room in our genius'heads, do they?

The Duke said...

It’s a challenge to get dressed in the morning
The advice most often asked of wives is what to wear. Men don't know what it means to match any more than they can remember their own office phone number. I feel this is mostly due to the fact that women see more colors than men do. Normal male eyes have three types of cones, which see color. Many women have six. This is why men are ten times more likely to be color-blind.

AzĂșcar said...

I should have restated: It's a challenge for me when he gets dressed in the morning.

The idea of matching doesn't even cross his mind. He's simply not even worried about it. Here's what he's looking for: a shirt, some jeans, and his shoes.

J, until a few years ago, owned ONE PAIR of shoes: black oxford black martens. I bought him a pair of adidas blue suede sneakers and he grumbled. He tried them on and decided to keep them eventually. Tell me, Duke, do you own less than three pairs of shoes?

The Duke said...

Yes I own more than three pairs of shoes. But only because Chantel bought them for me. In fact nearly 100% of my clothing was either bought for me by Chantel or sent to me from my sister Amy. I did ask for a pink tie this Christmas (which I got). In all fairness I've bought my wife some really stylish clothing items. I can buy a nice woman's blouse or some nice pants. Just don't expect them to match.

AzĂșcar said...

I have actually lowered my standards. I don't care if things don't match, I just don't want them to CLASH.

I remember once when we were dating J tried to leave the house wearing (I kid you not): green small plaid shorts, purple acid wash t-shirt with white lettering, white socks, and black doc martens.
His roommates laughed at his appearance. When your roommates laugh, you know you've crossed the line.
He wasn't doing it to be ironic, or funny, it was just what he pulled out.

Emmie said...

Thank you for reminding me of the reason why S can't remember if/when anyone called me. It directly corresponds with the reason his Sacrament meeting program is always covered with mathematical equations, and he can't be expected to remember anything that happened during the meeting.

Next time he forgets someone called, I'm going to say: "What am I - just a variable in your equation?"

The Duke said...

Speed = Velocity?!
Absolutely Not!
In Physics we have it worse, students think that:
Speed = Momentum?!
An Absolutely Massive Error!!

La Yen said...

I am so glad I married a metrosexual. Y'all make my head hurt with your fancy arithmatic and your interweb.

tiff-fay-fay said...

metrosexuals are overrated. mine ride's my ass if i leave a cup on my nightstand for longer than an hour.