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Posts Tagged ‘women’

Well, I lost the most recent TV battle with hubby.

 

I’ve mentioned, oh I don’t know, maybe 20 or so times in this blog, how important a TV is in our household.  In case you missed any of the posts you can read some (here, here & here).   As an outsider you probably think it’s absurd that I talk about electronics so much and, I can assure you, that as an insider I think it’s far more absurd than you do!

 

I have to take a teeny, tiny piece of responsibility for the most recent misstep but, it’s amazing how quickly things spiraled out of control.  Before I knew it, there was Googling, trips to Costco, CNET reviews, and then the ultimate losing proposition…. The-Trip-To-Best-Buy (this must be said in the most ominous voice possible)

 

I’d like to walk you through the most recent events so you can see exactly where I went wrong… and, hopefully you can learn from my mistakes.

 

Hubby & I participate in an office football pool.  We had a great end to this past season as I wound up winning the “suicide” pool and hubby wound up winning the overall, full season pool.  As a couple we got a nice envelope with our winnings at the end of the regular season.  So, mistakenly I say (this is where I opened the proverbial can of worms) “Hon, do you think you’re going to buy yourself a present with some of your winnings?”.

 

Now… I’d like to take a moment to go step-by-step through the things that were actually going on in my head when I said this. 

  • Hubby works hard.
  • Hubby just won a good amount of money and wouldn’t it be nice if he “rewarded” himself with a new present. 
  • Yes, we have bills and we have household projects on the long term to do list but, most of the money will go in the bank.
  • He’ll probably buy something like a video game or a new blue ray DVD.  Maybe even a nice bottle of scotch? 

 

But alas, these suggestions never actually came out of my mouth.  All I said was “new present”.. and, all he heard was “new present”. 

 

Hubby didn’t respond right away, but he mumbled something like “hmmmmm..buy myself something, I hadn’t really thought about that”. And…I think this is the exact moment where I started to lose control.

 

The next thing I know, hubby is emailing me links to new TVs from work.  New TVs? I still don’t think there’s anything wrong with our existing TV! (you can read about it’s supposed “blurring” problem here).  So, I’m like.. “Whoa dude… slow down.  What happened to a new video game or DVD?”  And, he’s like… “Huh?? You never said anything about a video game”.  And I’m all, “well, I may never have said anything but, that’s sort of what I had in my mind when I mentioned you should buy yourself something”.  And, he’s like “oh, well that’s not what I was thinking at all…. so, did you look at that link I sent you?”.

 

And at that moment, I could feel it all slipping away.   Here I was, the one who planted this seed in his head… this was ALL MY FAULT!

 

So, as we enter the ring, I’m prepared for our battle…and for 2 weeks we dance & we weave.  I hear about nothing but differences between LCD & LED TVs, recaps of industry debates over how to light LEDs… side lit, back lit, white lights, soft white lights, refresh rates, megahertz, Samsung, Sony….

AAAAHHHHHHHHH…. Just make it stop!! 

The tape measure comes out.. he measures, he re-measures.  55 inches.. 60 inches…. $1500 … $2000.  My world is spiraling out of control.. and I realize that I’m beginning to tire.  He’s wearing me down.  I keep swinging but it’s like I never touch him, he just keeps coming back at me.

 

Then it comes.  He hits me with the knock-out punch.  The TV he finally decides on, costs FAR more than the money he won in the football pool.  Can somebody please tell me how “buying yourself something with your winnings” went from a token item to taking money out of the bank to ADD to his winnings to buy a new TV??  All to solve a “blurring problem” that I swear I cannot even see?

 

Then, as I’m swooning from this punch.. he reaches out with the lightest of touches, and with a fingertip, he sends me falling to the ground in slow motion.  This lovely gesture came via another email outlining his well thought out argument about how he’s “earned” this tv.  “I’ve worked extra hard lately, I won the football pool, I got a bonus at work this year blah.. blah… blah… blah….”  [can you feel the heartstring tugs?]….But he’s not done yet….  “I know I’ll never be truly happy with my current TV, but I guess, if you’re totally against this, I suppose the one we have is good enough”  [he’s no longer tugging, he’s moved onto daggers through my heart]  Then, as I fall to the floor, I’m wrapped in amazing warmth as he gingerly covers me with this blanket of guilt.  So cozy and yet so heavy.  And, as I try to hang on to my senses, and I try to get back up, I realize that it’s time to admit defeat and I whisper to him … 

 

JUST BUY THE FRIGGIN’ TV…. I CAN’T TAKE THIS ANYMORE!

 
And that, my dear blog readers is how I lost the TV battle with my hubby.

 

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You may have seen this before but I just received it today in an email  from a  friend, and I thought it was funny enough to share.

Since my dear hubby works in IT, I find this incredibly relevant.   If you read my post about what changes when you get married you’ll know that “upgrading” a boyfriend to a husband does indeed present some interesting challenges.

 

Dear Tech Support,

Last year I upgraded from Boyfriend 5.0 to Husband 1.0 and noticed a distinct slow down in overall system performance, particularly in the flower and jewelry applications, which operated flawlessly under Boyfriend 5.0.

In addition, Husband 1.0 uninstalled many other valuable programs, such as Romance 9.5 and Personal Attention 6.5, and then installed undesirable programs such as  NBA 5.0, NFL 3.0 and Golf Clubs 4.1.

Conversation 8.0 no longer runs, and Housecleaning 2.6 simply crashes the system.

Please note that I have tried running Nagging 5.3 to fix these problems, but to no avail.

What can I do?

Desperate

————————————————————————-

————————————————————————-

DEAR DESPERATE,

First, keep in mind, Boyfriend 5.0 is an Entertainment Package, while Husband 1.0 is an operating system.

Please enter command: ithoughtyoulovedme.html, try to download Tears 6.2, and do not forget to install the Guilt 3.0 update. If those applications work as designed, Husband 1.0 should then automatically run the applications Jewelry 2.0 and Flowers 3.5.

However, remember, overuse of the above application can cause Husband 1.0 to default to Grumpy Silence 2.5, Happy Hour 7.0, or Beer 6.1.

Please note that Beer 6.1 is a very bad program that will download the Farting and Snoring Loudly Beta.

Whatever you do, DO NOT under any circumstances install Mother-In-Law 1.0 (it runs a virus in the background that will eventually seize control of all your system resources.)

In addition, please do not attempt to reinstall the Boyfriend 5.0-program. This is an unsupported application and will crash Husband 1.0.

In summary, Husband 1.0 is a great program, but it does have limited memory and cannot learn new applications quickly. You might consider buying additional software to improve memory and performance. We recommend Cooking 3.0 and Hot Lingerie 7.7.

 

I’ve taken the liberty of linking many pieces of this email to older posts about hubby.   At first glance, you may have thought that “Desperate” could be me.  I can assure you it’s not BUT, it just goes to show that it could potentially be any of us.

And, like most other computer users out there.. after you realize that your operating system is just not working like it used to you have 2 choices: either throw the computer out the window or, start rebuilding your system to function the way you need it to….. much like way we need to treat many men!!

 

I hope you enjoyed!

 

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I read an interesting article today that attempts to review the “Why” behind a couple of gender based quirks.  It was an interesting read which can be found here: Why Does My Partner.  But, as always, I like to put my own spin on things.  So below, I’ll highlight a few of the male traits they addressed and I’ll relate them to hubby & me.

 

Why he prefers to spend five minutes precariously balancing a banana skin on top of the trash rather than empty it.

 

The Article Suggests:  “Real men test their masculine abilities on an overflowing trash bag.  It’s a challenge to get a thrill out of – a half-empty bag is boring.”

In My House:  If the banana peel actually makes it to the trash can, I’d celebrate!  The true test of his masculine abilities is to see how long he can tune me out as I ask him why certain items don’t make it to the trash at all.

 

Why he can’t find the keys when they’re in front of him. 

 

The Article Suggests: “Researchers aren’t certain as to whether this difference is down to hard-wiring of the brain or learned.  But, women tend to perform better when tested on location memory”

In My House: The reason he can’t find the keys when they’re in front of him, is because I’ve moved them from where he put them to where they are SUPPOSED to be.  And, he’d never in a million years be able to find them hanging on the key holder.

 

Why the way a gift is presented is nearly as important to her as what’s inside it.

Lord help the man who wraps his wife’s expensive gift in brown parcel paper 

 

The Article Suggests: “Because it’s not just about the present; it’s about the communication. And, .. women often try to read a guy’s emotions from his actions”

At My House: A true gift wouldn’t actually need to be wrapped at all.  It could come in the form of a clean bathroom, some folded laundry and a cooked dinner!

 

Why he can recall an obscure ’70s band but can’t remember your anniversary.

 

The Article Suggests: “Emotional memories such as anniversary dates are triggered by estrogen, whereas the ability to recall facts utilizes testosterone,”

At My House: I’ll be testing this theory tomorrow with a sprinkle of estrogen in his coffee… I’ll have to keep you posted!

 

Well, there you have it.  You just got a glimpse into our household… pretty scary huh?!! 

And, even after all that….I’ll admit, I still don’t really understand the “Why”.

Do you?

 

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Yesterday I mentioned that men & women have different levels of need when it comes to information.  I also provided an example of how a woman might provide an overflow of information. 

Well, today, I’d like to share an example of how a man might provide insufficient information.  Because as you probably know… this issue swings both ways!  And, somewhere in the middle lies the ever so elusive balance.

 

Detail gathering tasks almost always fall to the woman in a relationship… and, here’s why.

 

 

Hubby: “I spoke to Chris today… they [Chris & his wife] want to hang out next weekend”

Me: “Ok, which day?”

Hubby: “I’m not sure”

Me: “Did he mention where they want to go or what they want to do?”

Hubby: “No”

Me: “Do they want to come down here by us, or would we drive up to see them?

Hubby: “I have no idea”

Me: “Did he give you any idea of timing?  We have some stuff to do in the afternoons”

Hubby: “Nope, I didn’t ask him”

Me: “So the 2 of you had a conversation about hanging out, but you didn’t actually discuss anything?”

Hubby:  “I guess”

Me: “I just don’t get you”

Hubby:  “Can’t you just call his wife?”

 

A conversation with my father-in-law:

 

FIL: “I called to see if you guys want to meet us out for dinner”

Me: “Ok, where?”

FIL: “Asia Star”

Me: “What time?”

FIL: “I don’t know”

Me: “You called to invite us out, but you don’t know what time?”

FIL: “No, let me check with the boss”

Me: “Is this a family trait.. or a male trait?”

FIL: “What?”

Me: “Well, you & hubby seem to have the same inability to gather sufficient information to complete a task?”

FIL:  “I have no idea.. Here, I’ll put Mom on”

Me: speaking to MIL “What’s wrong with them?”

MIL: “Who?”

Me: “Men”

MIL: “Where do you want me to start?”

 

And… I’ve found that this phenomenon is not just isolated to planning… it’s extends to virtually every conversation that hubby has with someone.

 

Hubby: “I spoke to Jim today.. he just got a new job”

Me: “I didn’t realize he was in the market for a new job”

Hubby: “Neither did I”

Me: “Well, that’s awesome anyway!  What will he be doing?”

Hubby:  “No idea”

Me: “You didn’t ask him about it?”

Hubby: “No, not really”

Me: “So, he mentions he has a new job and you say what,  ‘oh great, so did you see that game last night’ ?”

Hubby:  “Well, sort of”

Me:  “You weren’t interested in any more details?”

Hubby: “That’s not it…. If he wanted to share more info he would have… Honey, we’re, guys.”

 

So, I’ve realized a couple of things over the years:

 

  • If two men are sharing info… there’s just no hope of getting a full picture or a full story
  • If a man & a woman are sharing info.. AND (and, this is an important AND) the woman has mastered the art of extracting information, you may have decent idea of what’s going on
  • If two women are sharing info.. you’ll likely get not only a full story, but a full back-story, a dissection of the story, an analysis of the story, and a recommendation for next steps.

 

seesawLike I mentioned earlier, I’m sure there’s a spot right in the middle that makes the most sense, but from what I’ve seen, it’s a difficult place to stay.  It’s sort of like being on a see-saw and keeping it perfectly balanced at all times.  It’s just not that easy to do.  Too LITTLE info and one side lowers… too MUCH info and the other side lowers (and, quite possibly, somebody’s head explodes). 

 

The best way for me to try to maintain the “balance” in my own home is this:

 

 

Me: “Honey, do you think you can do me a huge favor”

Hubby:  “Sure”

Me: “Next time you are having a conversation with someone, about almost anything that you think you might mention to me later, can you pause for a moment and ask yourself… What other info might she ask me about?  And, if anything pops into your head, can you please try to gather that info before you tell me the story?  It will make it so much easier on both of us!”

Hubby: “Yes, dear”

 

And there they are…..those magical words that every woman wants to hear… “yes, dear”.  Even though, I know that next time he shares information with me… we’ll be right back to where we are today. 

Because, after all, he said it himself….. “Honey, we’re guys”

 

 

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An actual quote from my lovely hubby:

 

“If I actually listened to everything you had to say, my head would explode” 

 

(How could you not love him!?)

 

I have to admit, I do think he’s onto something here.  No, I’m not allowing him to use this excuse as a way to justify his Selective Listening BUT, there’s something to be said for women needing to receive or give tons of info and men needing/wanting very little.

 

A woman wants to know & share everything… all the little details, the before, during & after, the thoughts, reactions, emotions, and so on, and so on, and so on.

A man wants to know just enough information to move on to the next relevant topic (all other information is just white noise)

 

A conversation that I initiate with hubby…

 

Me:  “How was work today?”

Hubby: “Fine”

Me: “Anything good happen?”

Hubby: “No, not really”

Me: “So, there’s nothing worth sharing?”

Hubby:  “It’s work, there’s nothing worth sharing”

Me:  “Ok, I just thought there might be a good story or something”

Hubby: “Nope”

A conversation accidentally initiated by hubby….

 

Hubby: “Did you get a chance to call the lawn guy today?”

Me:  “Yes, I called the lawn guy and he said that they’ll be out to do the weed treatment next week.  You know….. I was looking at the lawn today, and, I was thinking….. we could really use some flowers to add to that ugly area by the gate.  So, I went to Home Depot and bought some daisies, phlox and peonies.  You know peonies, they’re those cute flowers that Missy had at her house that I liked.  And, while I was at Home Depot I was looking at the grills.  I think that one you wanted just went on sale.  I like that one but I also like the one with the extra burner.   Speaking of grills, don’t forget that we have Joe & Kim’s bbq this weekend.  Did you know that Joe & Kim just went on vacation to Cancun?  I’d like to go to Cancun…maybe we can plan our next vacation there?  You know how much I love margaritas.  Maybe we should go out for Mexican tonight?”

Hubby:  “Good lord, I just wanted to know about the lawn”

Me: “What do you mean, I told you about the lawn?”

MI-064-0295

And, then… His Head Explodes…..

(or at least, this is the dramatic reaction he’d have you believe occurs… as a result of my overflow of unnecessary information)

 

I recently came across a great video by Mark Gungor that provides a fantastic explanation of the Differences Between the Male & Female Brains.  Mark is a marriage speaker who has an entire series called “Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage” (more info can be found here: http://www.laughyourway.com/).  And, let’s be honest, laughter is part of the fabric of my marriage (otherwise hubby would never let me share these stories!)

 

 

In one of my previous posts about men “making an effort”, I discussed Male Sleep Mode.  The interesting skill men posess where they can seemingly shut off their mental faculties and think about nothing.  I’ll admit, at the time, I was unaware of the “nothing box”.

 

Thank you Mark… for the enlightening details (you know how women crave details!).

 

And, while the nothing box probably does indeed exist, I’m not convinced that this male behavior doesn’t also include a type of “battery conservation mode”.  After all, as confirmed by my hubby,  we know that if a man’s brain is strained in any way, he needs to “take a break” so it doesn’t explode…so, off to the nothing box he goes!

 

For a woman, the challenge of course, is extracting him from his nothing box and/or his sleep mode.  As I mentioned in my other post, I’ve found that one of the only surefire ways to “wake him up” is to press a button (sort of like a computer in a similar mode).  And, as a woman who likes to see immediate results, I can be pretty good at pressing buttons.

 

Just be sure that, if he’s not “rebooting” quick enough, you don’t push too many buttons at once.  The last thing you want to do, is cause an all system shut down.  I can assure you this can cause a whole new problem that you won’t want to deal with!

 

So, what boxes does your hubby have in his head??

 

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Last night hubby told me he was “multi-tasking”.  He was, and I quote…..”eating dinner & watching tv at the same time”.

 

We all know that women are far better at juggling many different tasks at once.  We’ll even at times, stop in the middle of one task, to quickly complete another as we’re walking by.

 

A very basic example…

 

If I’m brushing my teeth and notice that there’s a speck of something on the mirror, I’ll grab a towel and clean it off (all the while still brushing)

Hubby on the other hand (in this same scenario).. has actually PUT the speck of stuff on the mirror, while he was brushing his teeth.  But, “cleaning day” is Saturday so the speck will have to wait.

 

Men can really only focus on a singular task at hand.  And, even with their focus on one, and only one task…if at any time they feel “overloaded”, watch out for a full system shut down.  Perhaps this is another factor in male sleep mode.  It’s obvious they’ve been asked to do too many things at once and their system just can’t handle it.

 

So, in the true spirit of male/female comparisons,  I’ve come up with my own version, of what I believe to be an accurate description of the sexes.

(and you’ll notice that I use an ELECTRONICS example to compare ….this way it will be easier for men to pay attention & understand)

 

Women Are Like  Food Processors
food processor

  • They can slice, dice, chop, puree
  • They often come with attachments that can do a whole assortment of other things
  • They have a variety of settings & speeds
  • The output could be a whole assortment of foods & tasty treats
  • If you get too close to it while it’s working, you could lose a finger

 

Men Are Like Toasters
toaster

  • You can only put things in and out in one specific way
  • It really only runs on 2 settings… on & off  (or,  hot & cold)
  • If you leave anything in there too long it comes out charred & burned
  • Even if you find one with bells & whistles, the only output is really still…. just toast
  • If something gets stuck and you try to pry it loose, you could be electrocuted

 

 

This is not to say, that a toaster does not provide a valuable service in my home.  There’s actually nothing better in the early morning than a freshly toasted bagel!  But,  if I’m cooking a dinner…. you better believe that I’d take the mulit-tasking ability of my food processor over the toasting ability of my toaster! 

And, I’d probably do it while juggling 4 or 5 other activities… all while hubby “eats & watches tv”!

 

Feel free to share your thoughts!

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Yesterday I talked about Selective Vision:

  • The unique ability of men to “not clutter their brains with unnecessary information”
  • The male ability to literally choose to not see things around them, that they deem unimportant.

 

Well today, I’d like to address an even worse affliction… Selective Listening.

 

Yes, we’ve all been there.  We talk to our spouse, perhaps just one word, maybe one comment, perhaps 3 or 4 sentences and then we stop.   Anxiously awaiting acknowledgement, a response, an answer, a sign of life…. AND….. SILENCE

 

 

“Honey” I say politely

No response….

“Babe?” I try again

Silence

“Honey” slightly louder

Still nothing

“HONEY” even louder still

Am I talking to myself???

“ROD!”

Finally… “huh?”

“I’ve been trying to talk to you for like 2 minutes.”

“Oh, I didn’t hear you”

“Well, I tried to get your attention like 5 times”

“Yeah, well, what do you want?”

“Can you carry this downstairs, it’s kind of heavy?”

“Yeah sure”

 

I got his attention… HOORAY!!

The wheels are in motion (so I think)….

Then there he goes… right back to watching tv.

 

This is the moment of realization for me… that I really didn’t have his attention at all.  Even after he stopped, looked at me, and formed responsive words…. He really wasn’t LISTENING.  But, I’m a reasonable gal, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.

 

I go about my day

Heavy item is still sitting there

We have dinner

Heavy item is still sitting there

We snuggle up to watch tv

Heavy item is still sitting there

I mention to him, in my most loving voice…. “honey, don’t forget to carry that downstairs”

“I won’t”

We go to bed

Heavy item is still sitting there

 

The next day comes……

He goes to work…….

I stare at the heavy item….

I sigh…..

 

 

Hubby comes home from work, STEPS OVER heavy item in the middle of the kitchen (I’ve shuffled it over to a can’t miss location). He employs “Selective Vision” and goes to get a snack.

I watch, wide eyed.

 

“Honey, do you think you can carry that downstairs?”

“I just got home from work”

“I know, but I can’t do it myself”

“I told you I’d do it”

“ok”

 

We have dinner

Heavy item is still sitting there

We sit down to watch tv

Heavy item is still sitting there

 

“Honey, I know it’s late but do you think you can carry that down tonight?”

“You just don’t ever want to let me relax, do you?”

“That’s not it, I just don’t want to have to walk around it all day tomorrow”

“FINE.. ”  he gets up grumbling…. “and, you don’t think you’re a nag”

 

Once again, I have to ask…. If men admittedly don’t remember to do stuff, but when we remind them about anything, it’s nagging……. what’s the right way to communicate with a man??

I have yet to uncover the mystery solution…

 

Maybe it’s not even a true issue of communication.  Maybe, just maybe, it’s a topic that I haven’t even addressed in this entry.  Perhaps it’s the concept of “timelines & scheduling”.  It could be that, where we are misaligned, is actually the simple fact that my project completion timeline did not match up with hubby’s for this given task (but that’s a blog topic for a completely different day!!)

 

The one good thing is, that I’ve learned to recognize “Selective Listening”.  At least this way, I can properly set my expectations.  I’ll admit, I haven’t mastered controlling my response to his actions but at least I’m no longer surprised when the heavy item sits, in the middle of my kitchen, for days!

 

 

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