Sunday, August 14, 2005

The Solitude of Mr. Powers

The Solitude of Mr. Powers (by Ogden Nash)

Once there was a lovely man named Mr. Powers.
He was lonely because his wife fixed flowers.
Mr. Powers was a gallant husband, but whenever
he wished to demonstrate his gallantry
His beloved was always out with six vases and a
bunch of something in the pantry.
He got no conversation while they ate
Because she was always snipping dead blossoms
off the centerpiece and piling them on her plate.

Finally, he said "Hey!"
I might as well be alone with myself
as alone with a lot of vases that have to be
replenished everyday,
and he walked off into the dawn,
And his wife just kept on refilling vases -
never noticed he was gone.

Beware of floral arrangements;
They lead to marital dis-arrangements.
I don't think hubster is ready to "walk off into the dawn", but I have heard (rather loudly) several times here lately about how I am never around - or if I am - I am on the phone - or working - or engrossed in a TV show or crossword - or on the computer. Clearly he imagines himself to be forgotten and needs massive amounts of attention. That can be a problem when one person in a marriage still has a job and the other is retired and has few hobbies other than pipe smoking and geneaology. What is to be done? Between flowers, clients, blogs, cooking, cleaning, laundry, my cats, friends and family, reading and TV, there is little time to indulge in much of anything else.

Perhaps the moral of this story is to develop interests, hobbies and friends of your own (who are available when you require them), so that when your significant other is busy, you can find something amusing to do until he or she is free to indulge your whims.

Additionally, I was told recently that "You are not the person you present yourself to be on your blog". I am, apparently, a banshee in person (the very word used), while on the blog I pretend to be witty and observant. I submit that the banshee assessment is incorrect, and that the real me is somewhere in-between the two extremes. One thing is certain; I do not suffer fools easily, and perhaps that is where the trouble lies. I certainly do not suffer easily a smart person playing the fool for his own amusement at my expense, which happens all too frequently.
Any advice for me?


David Parsons WV said...

As long as you are the Good Banshee of North Carolina and not the Wicked Banshee of the West don't worry about being a banshee. I haven't heard the word "banshee" in ages. I guess a man would be a "banhee", right?

srp said... says this: banshee n : (Irish folklore) a female spirit who wails to warn of impending death
I had to look it up and make sure of what it meant. I don't think I've heard you wail. I've heard my dog wail when sirens were wailing. I've heard my daughter wail over, well just about anything. I've never heard you wail. Do you wail? Maybe Nyssa is the banshee. So much to think about. Don't change.

Maybe you could show your husband tidbits about plants. He could help in your business or at least in the garden. Or he could start a business looking into other peoples geneology since most of them don't have time to do it.

vicki said...

Well- it's been my experience that women do present a better side of themselves to the world at large; it's part of that communal living, socialization thing that can even be observed watching the lionesses and elephants on Animal Planet.
Men can be difficult in private and public- seems to make little difference to them.

And- I have a couple friends who have retired husbands who seem to walk around rather aimlessly bumping into walls. I think it's because, again, women do a better life-long job of staying connecting in various areas while men tend to connect and identify mostly with their work and once they're done with that...

Have I mentioned that I don't believe in therapy? That's tongue in cheek on my part. Now might be a good time to ship him off to one, reluctant or not. Life's transitions are hard and it's a good time to talk with a person of good insights to get some new ideas and perspectives- that we're not willing to take from our spouse. Maybe even his internist to talk about the sort of depression that sets in around this time of life. In other words, rather than sink with him, find a life raft with another ship's name on it. You'll both be better off for it.

I know! Get him to teach a class in geneaology at the local community college or a senior's center. Seriously, he might really enjoy that.

Scarlett said...

The ones you love tend to bring out the worst and the best in yourself. I would not think twice about it, either. Human nature, can't be changed.