Thursday, December 18, 2014

You think so, huh?

Life is full of ‘sayings’ – so they say [QED – there’s one right there!]

Some of the ‘sayings’, - wait, I need to have my Thesaurus at hand – for want of a better word. Eureka

Some of the maxims, aphorisms and adages are merely postulations or theorems, but others are axiomatic.
“What he say, fool?”   I’ll save you the trouble – some are just BS, others are as obvious on the nose on your face, Rudolph!

Take, for instance, this book:

If you have never read it, your spouse probably has – ergo, proving the point of the title.

Indeed, it does appear that we are derived from different planets – there are so many things / issues that we are logger-heads over or do differently. Let me see if I can identify and describe a few that pertain to my wife and I.

The kitchen counter

That is where the Martian of the house (herein after, 'I') put the mail when it arrives – so that the Venusian of the house (herein after 'she') can see it when she arrives home later. God only knows where she puts it (the little that remains after the junk mail is pitched in the recycling bin) after she has read it. If I need to see a mail item again – good luck!  Typically un-Martian-like, she has 3 or 4 places that she puts the retained mail. I (think) I know where all the places are – but darned if I can figure out her system; so on Friday, I just yell, "Where’s the bloody ‘so and so’ that came from ‘such and such ‘ on Tuesday!" She on the other hand, calmly retrieves it for me - or maybe sometimes, later places it on the counter-top and announces - "There - it's where you left it!" .  

I often empty my pockets (and transfer stuff from my computer desk in the basement) onto the kitchen counter. Things that go there include my comb, eye-glass cleaner-cloth, my door keys, car keys, truck keys, loose ‘pocket-change’, notes that I scribbled to myself so I would not forget stuff to do or things to buy, pieces of (finally) retrieved mail that I haven’t yet decided what to do with, the occasional beer-bottle cap, my camera, AA and AAA batteries that I had not completed ‘the does this bugger still have life in it or not?’ test – and various and sundry other items. In spite of the fact that I KNOW she does not like to see all that stuff there for days on end, it usually remains there. ‘USUALLY’ – funny word, that. It has an ‘us’ and an ‘ally’ in it – two words that should convey some level of cooperation or understanding. It’s that second ‘U’ that comes between those two notions that causes the trouble. ‘U’ never can be sure just when, out of the blue, she may decide to ‘clear the decks’ and secret all my stuff away. There are 3 ‘junk drawers’ beneath that counter top – my stuff (no IT is NOT junk) may end up in any one, two, or all three of them – and/or in any unknown other places. ‘U’ also CAN be assured that if anyone (who is ‘not family’) is scheduled to visit – even if they won’t be there for 3 or 4 days yet – my stuff does its disappearing act.

I must note that her planet must have passed very close to mine at some time, because she also piles stuff up on one end of the counter – but it rarely stays there for more than one day before she whisks it away. I, of course, being a kindly Martian, never move here stuff. Well, I DO kick here handbag out of the way when she leaves on the floor beside the counter - in exactly the right spot for me to trip over it. 

Another group of items prone to disappear is ‘dishes & cutlery’; to those not knowing what the hell that is, it is what some people call 'silver-ware' while others call it ‘eating irons’! Just this morning, after I emptied the kitchen sink of last night’s ‘dishes & cutlery’ and put most of the pile away into the drawers, I arranged 1 plate, 1 bowl, 1 knife and 2 forks [1 fork to whisk my egg-beater, 1 to eat with] between the cooker and the sink - that is where I always ‘set up’ to prepare my breakfast. Bugger me, if when I returned 30 seconds later from the outside ‘fridge where I went to get pack of turkey sausages, the assembled items had been put away by 'Mrs Vacuum-cleaner Venus'!

The ‘Master-bathroom’

Huh!  That’s what we (in the US) call the main bathroom. You’d think the prefix in that hyphenated term might be indicative of something, would you not?  Well, you just might be from Pluto - oh that's right, they de-commissioned it as a planet a few years ago, didn't they?  Well, you are from way out there somewhere – maybe Neptune. Yeah, that’s it – he was a ‘watery’ guy. ‘Master’, it seems relates only to the relative size of the bathroom and has nothing whatsoever to do with gender or dominance in the ownership of its contents. It’s odd that a creature from Mars and another from Venus should have so many bodily similarities. Aside from those bits on each of us that exhibit that horrifying whiteness - caused by adherence to customary ‘beach and/or poolside decorum and modesty’ during the summer - we are pretty similar: two legs, two arms, one head and one torso - containing those white bits. That is where the similarities end! Judge not these aliens by their bodies, but by the tools they employ to preen themselves!  This preening chamber has two sinks and one large mirror – aside from a shower stall, a bath-tub, a towel closet – and a ‘water closet’! Each alien utilizes all those facilities in a somewhat similar manner – though the latter sees far more of the front of the Martian than it does of the Venusian, of course. 

I should now whisk your mind away from that object in the room that is doomed to precipitate millions of episodes of an inter-planetary war - because of its hinged portion. Unlike in the song about the ‘Grand of Duke of York’ and the location of his men on the hill (see bottom of this article), that piece of hardware has no such midway position as ‘being neither up, nor down’. My Solomon-like suggestion is predicated on an unscientific assumption (excuse the prefix there) that the purpose of either alien’s visit to the structure is equally divided between functions ‘number 1’ and ‘number 2’.  It’s like this:

Finding that darned hinged seat where the Grand Old Duke’s men were when they were at the foot of the hill, Venusians (needing not to touch it) will be so happy, they could – well, ‘number 2’ – even if the intended purpose was to just – well, half of that!  The Martian, on the other hand, would be happy half the time – and though you’d think he should be unhappy the half the time, he may simply say ‘Oh, p*** on it!’ and then proceed to do just that! 

Now, take the opposite situation – when the Grand Old Duke’s men are on top of the hill. The Venusians, having to touch it, will be so ‘number oned’, they could ‘number two’ – regardless of their intentions. But, the Martians would be ‘number oned’ if their intention was to ‘number two’, and though you’d think, in finding it already where it should be if they intended to ‘number one’, they could ‘number two’, they’d probably say:  

Notwithstanding what the Martian is likely to do, and based solely on how he should adjust that seat, you can see that in all four situations, EACH alien will find the hardware where it is desired only 50% of the time. So, my Solomon-like solution, based on a population of equal numbers of Venusians as Martians, is ‘leave the bloody thing the way you found it’ – or leave it as you would like to find it on your next visit – and hope the other alien variety does not get in line before you.

Do you remember – I know, it was a long time (a 5 second scroll up) ago – that I prattled about ‘sayings’? Well, here’s another you must have heard: ‘A picture paints a thousand words’. Let me first say that I use the sink on the left – nearest the door – and the Venusian of the house uses the sink on the right – next to that towel closet. I’ll let you ‘paint your own two thousand words’ to express concurrence with the veracity of the book’s title as illustrated in the following two photos.

Martian's sink

Venusian's sink

A Martian 'orbits' that room in 5 minutes - more than enough time for the 'originally-alliterative-but-sanitized-here' proverbial 'Number two, shower and shave'.  A Venusian, however is usually in there long enough an any one of those function to be in need of decompression upon exiting the chamber! 

Now it's time for your homework: