There are some questions in life to which we will never really know, or understand, the answers. We real women hate that. We like to be in control, know why things happen, and have everything move smoothly. We can learn to live with not knowing some of the big answers, like the meaning of life, the reason for loss, or why we’ll never be happy with our weight. But it’s those little things that drive us batty. It would be easy to say the answers lie in a simple truth of sheer laziness. But I really don’t think that’s quite right. It seems to be more an inability to take just one more step. Let’s look at a few examples.
- The empty paper towel roll, and it’s cousin, the empty toilet paper roll. Someone used the last piece, the last square, pulling it free of the tube center. And there it sits, in all of its cardboard nakedness, waiting to be noticed, which will happen when the next person comes along in desperate need of the squares that aren’t there. Why was a new roll, which is stored nearby, not put into service right away? No answer. Just a missed step.
- A sink full of dishes. Not the pile that appears immediately following a big meal – there’s a reason for those. But what of the random bits that show up magically during the course of the day, gathering as if they are having a small dirty dish party? There they hang out, celebrating the fact that for some reason they were not placed inside the dark depths of the dishwasher which is less than 24” away. Are they being trained to jump into the washer by themselves? History would show this is not a successful mission. Next step abandoned. Don’t know why.
- A dropped item left where it fell. This could be anything from an item of dirty laundry dropped in the middle of a floor, an item knocked off a retail shelf, or food spilled in the microwave. It is like the item instantly becomes invisible to the dropper, or the effort to bend over and correct the issue seems insurmountable. Or maybe It is a scientific experiment to see if gravity could truly be reversed. A misstep.
- Empty nip bottle litter. They are everywhere, scattered like plastic seeds that will never germinate, or left in a heap along the roadside. SO many unanswered questions here. Why are they there? Are they all being tossed out a car window? And by who? Teens participating in underage partying? Alcoholics hiding the evidence on the way home? And why always
nip sizes? If one is going to drink 10 nips, wouldn’t buying a full size bottle be more economical? And why is it almost always Fireball? And most irritating of all, why litter? Can’t the responsible person toss them into a paper bag in the back seat until they get near a trash can? Epically failed step.
- Abandoned shopping carts. Just this evening I pulled into a lot at a local market and sure enough, there’s an empty cart hanging out straddling the line between two parking spaces, just one row away from the cart return. Forlornly waiting for a gust of wind so it can gain its own power to go bumping into parked vehicles. This annoys me almost as much as the discarded nips. The person who used that cart had likely just walked all the way around and through the store, then to their car. Were those last few steps just too much to make? Quite literally, steps not taken.
We spend most of our time taking extra steps to pick up after others, to keep life rolling along the way we like it to roll. And that’s the issue. Some choose to follow a different course, move along a different path, and take different (or fewer) steps. We just need to let it go. If we can’t fix it of course. My husband and I have a saying we use with each other: “I’m not a control freak, but let me show you how to do that.”
I guess us non-control freaks should stop looking for answers where there aren’t any. Or hoping for extra steps.