One of the great things about being male is that it's culturally acceptable for us to wear pants with pockets in them.
Every day for thirty years, I've had the same things in my pockets. Front right, keys. Front left, change. Back left, wallet. Back right, comb. Every morning, I touch all four pockets before I leave the house, making sure that my life equipment is present. (I know what you're thinking, that I probably have to count how many Cheetos are on the paper plate while I watch cartoons, too... you and Nora have been talking about me again, haven't you... I know you have...)
One of the things about moving into a new home is that it takes a while before you know naturally where things are. There are 55 light switches in the house (don't say anything... I know what you're thinking... how does he know that there are 55 light switches, 48 of which are standard toggle and seven of which are paddle-style... that doesn't include the three pull-cords or the four garage door openers, two for each door... I just do. And I keep my food separated on my plate, and I always have the current computer window maximized so that I don't see any of the desktop while I'm working. Leave me alone.) I know where all the light switches are, but I don't know what any of them do yet. It's like playing three-card monte; if I want to turn on the porch light, I have a one-third chance when I turn on one of the three switches in the mudroom, but I guess right about one out of twenty times.
Being that today is Saturday (265th day of 2012 [leap year], 101 days remaining...), we slept in a bit, only to be awakened by a call from the internet provider's field technician, letting us know that he was coming to the house to check on our complaint of slow service. Nora got up, performed ablutions, and came back into the bedroom to dress for the day. She opened a drawer. She opened another. She said, "Where are my underwear? I don't have any rituals that can help me find my underwear..."
Yes, she laughs at me, but she too needs rituals in order to find her underwear. (Mine are in the upper right drawer, folded into thirds, in stacks of no more than four pairs. My socks are in stacks by color, folds to the back and toes and ankles to the front. And my phone goes into the dashboard cubby by my left knee, I never put my cue case onto the table, and I always push the slits for the straw on the plastic top of the Dunkin Donuts iced tea cup open with my finger first because they're too tight and they crush the straw. Leave me alone.)
It takes a while to learn how to live with a house. Nora and our friends hung some pictures while I was away, and one of the hangers pulled out of the wall. So I put in a new, heavier gauge, hanger, which has a longer hook, so to keep that picture level, I had to put the nail in higher. But it still wasn't level, so I stretched the wire a little, but the wire was old, so it snapped and I had to get new wire from the tool box and tie that onto the eyelets on the frame, and I had to adjust that five or six times to get it the right length so that the picture would be level with the one next to it. And finally I got it level, and then I got down from the stepladder and stepped back and looked at it and it doesn't look level from the floor because the heavier gauge hanger holds the picture out a little further from the wall.
There are places on the lawn where the grass grows faster than other places. I don't know if there are dead bodies buried there and the soil is richer or what, but there are patches of grass that need to be mowed twice as often as the areas immediately adjacent. And when I drive the mower back and forth, I try to keep the grass cut level and the mowing lines straight, but between the terrain and the dense grass areas and the trees and shrubs and the property line angles you have to make some adjustments. Why aren't property lines straight, and aligned with the cardinal directions? That's what I would do.
I wrote checks for the gas bill and the Comcast bill last night, and I used the pen that Nora had left next to the computer. I can use any pen that's handy, but I prefer a uni-ball Vision
Elite rollerball, 0.5 mm, blue not black. And when I teach, I carry a
box that has one of each color of dry-erase markers and an eraser
because you never know what you're going to find in the classroom, and
if I have ten minutes allotted to make a presentation at a conference,
I've practiced half a dozen times with a watch and know that I can say
what I want to say in nine.
Nora sprayed bug spray at the porch lamp this morning, because the wasps started yesterday to build a nest up under the flange at the top of the chain. You can spray them in the morning, because it's cold and they haven't warmed up enough to be active yet. We had no idea how many wasps were up there, but the poison spray resulted in several minutes of dead and dying wasps falling from the light fixture. Nora looked at the carnage on the porch floor and said, "I can't believe how many there were up there. There's thirty of them!"
Thirty six, actually.