Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Watch Cho’ Mouth

Now, I don’t know if you would consider me an experienced husband. I’ve only been married for about four years. Still, I feel I have seen just about everything when it comes to causes, and possible escapes from, arguments with my spouse. Even with all of my vast experience, whit and charm I still find myself tripping over an awkwardly phrased statement once in a while. Oh yes, I have enough foresight to stay away from certain “hot subjects”, unless I’m actually looking for a fight that is. However, every once in a while my internal diplomat takes leave and my personality and my mouth are left to ride roughshod over any conversational topics. I make mention of this because I got into trouble a few days ago over something as innocent as cookies.
LJ, at my insisting, made some delicious oatmeal raisin cookies. It was the first time she had ever made these particular kinds of cookies so she was a bit nervous over how they would come out.
*Note: all that follows is my uneducated, stupid, and tasteless opinion. It should not reflect on the actual yumminess of the cookies in question. I am a dumb ol’ guy with dumb ol’ guy opinions.
The first batch tasted awesome, yet they were still kinda soft (think of half baked cookie dough). She added some flour and tried again. This batch was pretty much the right consistency, if a little “bready”, but the spices were now off due to the extra flour. The third batch was adjusted to have more spices and ended up being a little overpowering. When LJ asked how they tasted I said something like “Great! I love them. Thanks for making them”. To my almost immediate sorrow this simple assertion, while well intentioned, was spoken with just a hint of falsehood.
I, like most men, can sense when I’ve fucked up before a word is spoken. It is similar to the sensation you get on a trampoline. You are headed up and everything is great, but then gravity takes hold and you start heading down, down, down. You can just feel it in your gut. I imagine ‘Scooter’ Libby felt much the same way when he was told he had to go back to court to explain some inconsistencies in his former testimony.
“What was that supposed to mean?” “What was ‘what’ supposed to mean?” I asked in the most futile of male time-buying statements. “That tone.” At this point I knew I was busted. It was time for damage assessment and control. There was just one problem though, my god damned internal diplomat was AWOL and I was on my own. “Well, the cookies are good. They really are. They’re just not the best I’ve ever had.”
Don’t start. I already know. I knew as the words were coming out of my mouth like dripping napalm. I just couldn’t stop. It was like watching a car with no brakes barreling down a hill. You know it won’t end well, but you’re on the edge of your seat to see just how bad it will be. The answer; bad. I don’t need to go into the rest. You all know. There was screaming, heartfelt reassurances, veiled and not so veiled threats concluding with an uncomfortable cease fire.
The resolution reads like a declaration of surrender. 1) I had to take all the remaining cookies to work to pass out and then report on all the compliments they received. 2) I may never get oatmeal raisin cookies again. 3) I have to be “on top” for the foreseeable future and maybe longer. All things considered I feel like I got off easy. I could be eating Ramen Noodles right now in a cheap motel room. It is just remarkable how a simple tone and then a thoughtless chain of words can lead to a total breakdown in communication. After that phrase was uttered it was Armageddon. Thing is, I’m not so sure that this will ever end. I can easily see my dad and my grandfather enduring the same reprimands to much the same effect. LJ will get pissed at me for using the wrong tone when referring to her cooking at age, like, eighty and I’ll never have stuffed manicotti again. Oh well, at least she’ll still be cooking.


Thousandlegs said...

Well, I believe that LJ does a good bit of "puttin up" with some of the things you say. Hell, all wives do it. We just don't think of the tone in which we say things most of the time. "My GOD this is delicious." sounds completely different than "My God this IS DELICIOUS." Being male, I'm not completely sure which is the right way to say it but, be assured, whichever way you think is right, the other one is usually the one you should have said.

mommyjolle said...

"why can't a woman be more like a man?"

"how do you write so well for a woman?"
"I take away reason and accountability"

Men don't get it...they never will

Matthew Lumpkin said...

the worse one I had ever said;

My Dad "So you guys joined a Gym"

Me "Yeah we're trying to get in shape and lose some weightz'

Emily "Matt you've already lost enough weight"

Me "Yeah, "I" Have"