The bane of every Important Newspaper Columnist is receiving what I might loosely portray as “crank” messages from one or two obviously deranged individuals. I myself, every so often, receive memos and occasionally voice-mails from one particular person that I will simply describe as “my wife.”
Just the other day — Aug. 11th to be exact — she left me a note wondering, “Why do you have your entire inventory of shoes littering the entry into our house?”
For a dangerously long millisecond I actually considered responding that at least the sum total of my shoes could be considered mere “litter” ... as opposed to her warehouse of footery that would form an impenetrable wall at our front door.
Obviously, I stopped myself in the nick of time because I’m still on the planet today and writing this needlessly reckless article.
At this point, all the guys reading today will be asking themselves, “How did he show such restraint? Can I learn that? And what the heck does ‘footery’ mean anyway?”
The answer is “yes” you can. You won’t have to spend hours sorting through the self-help section at the bookstore, and you won’t have to watch Dr. Phil or Oprah. All you need to know I can sum up in one ridiculously simple sentence: Men are odd, women are even.
That means, you take turns being right. Men are right on odd-numbered days and women are right on the even-numbered days.
Being a guy, this brilliant solution to original conflict between the sexes came to me while watching a basketball game on TV.
When two overpaid and abnormally large men are both holding the ball at the same time, the referee no longer calls for a jump ball. He simply looks over to the scorer’s table where an arrow points one way or the other. If the team with only three felons got the ball last time, the other team gets it this time. In other words, they take turns winning possession.
I applied this same logic to a small disruption in interpersonal communication being experienced in the Le Masurier household. Not wanting to bore you with the details, let me just say that my wife was acting like, well, a woman, and I was exhibiting perfectly rational thought and exquisite charm in encouraging her to admit her mistakes.
When it became clear this course of behavior was not getting us past sweating the small stuff and that the temperature was way too hot for any kind of chicken soup, I did what any man being chased by an angry bear would do: I played dead. I just plain gave up. I said, “Honey, it’s Aug. 11th and you are right.”
It worked like a charm. Now, on odd-numbered days wise decisions get made based on sound reasoning and judicious considerations. On the even-numbered days, well, it doesn’t really matter how obstinate or trifling she gets because when the calendar ticks over, reason will rule again. Throw away the counseling bills, the medications and the meddling relatives. Base your relationship on the Roman calendar and peace will visit your home.
NOTE TO GUYS ONLY: It’s very important to claim rightness on the odd-numbered days. That way you’ll get an extra odd-numbered day during seven of the 12 months, and an eighth day in 2012, which is a Leap Year.
George Le Masurier, publisher of The Olympian, can be reached at 360-357-0206 or firstname.lastname@example.org.