JOPLIN, Mo. —
I suppose I should be happy with my wife’s decision to finally throw away a bunch of stuff we don’t need, but I can’t help but be a bit irritated.
By the way, “a bit irritated” is pretty much how veteran married people go through life.
“Hey, Ralph. How ya’ doing?”
“I’m a bit irritated, Hank.”
“I heard that.”
It’s a scientific fact that it’s impossible to spend your life with someone and not have them irritate you just a bit. I know, for example, that my wife would kill to only be “a bit irritated.”
I don’t mean that literally. My wife wouldn’t actually kill me just to be only a bit irritated.
At least I don’t think she would.
The reason my wife finally agreed to let me throw away some stuff is because of the ongoing work being done to our house.
I don’t mean to exaggerate here, but our house has had more work done on it than Joan Rivers. Our house has had work done on the top floor, on the middle floor, on the outside, in the front yard, in the backyard, in the side yard and now in the basement.
We have lived in our house for 12 years. When we moved into the house, we spent the first year or two working on it. Then I figured we were done.
Back then I was not a veteran husband. Sure, I had been to battle a few times, but I didn’t have the wise perspective that comes from being a bit irritated for months.
Back then I didn’t know that there is a difference between a woman having work done on a house because it needs to be done and having work done on a house because she wants it done. I know that is sort of confusing, but veteran husbands know what I’m talking about.
Two years ago, my wife started reading me a list of things she wanted done to our house. She is still reading that list to me.
As I mentioned, the latest house project involves remodeling both rooms in our basement.
“But we remodeled those rooms when we first moved in,” I said to my wife.
“I don’t care,” my wife said.
“I see,” I said, even though — as always — I didn’t see.
About a month ago, Brian and Kevin, who have been doing most of the work on our house, started remodeling the first basement room, and now they are almost finished.
That means Brian and Kevin will soon want to start working on the other basement room. Normally that would be good news, but there is a slight problem: The other basement room is full of stuff we don’t need.
In order for Brian and Kevin to remodel the first basement room something had to be done with the stuff we don’t need and that my wife didn’t want me to throw away. So we put that stuff in the second basement room that was already full of stuff my wife didn’t want to throw away. Also in the second basement room is a lot of stuff my wife didn’t want to throw away that came from other rooms in the house.
What would happen is every time Brian and Kevin would start work on a room, we would take the stuff my wife didn’t want to throw away and move it to another room and then, when it was time to remodel that room, we would move all the stuff to another room.
We are now down to the last room.
“We could buy a second house,” I said to my wife.
“I’ve thought of that, too,” my wife said.
“I was kidding,” I said.
“Oh right,” my wife said slowly. “Me too.”
“So what should we do?” I asked my wife.
“Ooooh. I’ve got a great idea,” my wife said. “Let’s throw some stuff away.”
So I’m happy. But I’m also a bit irritated.
Do you have an idea for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.