Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Panic-inducing Pamela--Post from Jay

I adore my wife, Pamela. She's sweet, loving, and generous. She's good-natured and doesn't complain (even though she's often in a great deal of pain). She's kind to animals, children, and the elderly.

But, like us all, the woman does have limitations. Her underdeveloped sense of danger is giving me gray hair before my time... 

(Walking into the kitchen in time to see her standing on top of the counter, slightly swaying as she starts to lean over...)

 Me (near panic): What are you doing?!

She (covering her guilty look with a disarming grin): Oh, hi, darling. I didn't realize you were in the house.

Me: What are you doing?!

She (shrugging): I couldn't reach this bowl. It was on the top shelf of the cupboard. 

Me: You're supposed to use a chair. Why didn't you use a chair? Or call me?

She (patiently): I just said I didn't know you were in the house.

Me: No excuse. Use a chair.

She: I don't need a chair; you're here. Catch me.

Me (lunging to grab her before she hits the floor): Next time use a chair. I mean it!

She (agreeably, as she walks away): Next time...you hope I...use a chair. Got it.

Me: I heard that! Use a chair.

I'm not just worried about her falling.

Me: What's that smell?

She: What smell?

Me: I smell something burning.

She: That's a Tahitian Vanilla candle.

Me: I'm a firefighter. I know when something other than a candle is burning.

She (sniffing): Did you change your clothes after you got home from the fire station?

Me: It's not me. Something is burning.

(Walking into the bathroom just in time to grab a scorched and smoking towel before it burst into flame...)

Me: Pamela! You can't put a lit candle on a shelf right below cotton towels!  

She (ambling in, unconcernedly): Oh, was the flame too close? Oops. Relax, darling, next time I'll put the candle somewhere else.

Me: No! Don't light candles!

She (frowning at the burned towel): Great, now I have to buy a new towel. I doubt they still carry this color.

Me (exasperated): Forget the towel, and listen to me. No more lighting candles!

She (agreeably): You don't like me lighting candles. Got it.

A week later... 

(Walking into the kitchen in time to see her with one foot on the steel wiring of the bottom shelf of the pantry, hauling herself up with fingers entwined in wiring of the top shelf...)

Me: What are you doing?!

She (innocently): What? Oh. I couldn't reach.

Me: Then use a chair! Or call me!

She (patiently): Honey, you said I couldn't climb on the counters. This isn't a counter.

Me: Don't climb the shelves either!

She (dismissively): Well, this is your fault, anyway.

Me: My fault?

She (with female logic): Yes. You put the Cheez-It box on the top shelf. If you didn't want me climbing, then you shouldn't have put it out of my reach. See? Your fault.

Me: Use. A. Chair.

She (eying the kitchen chairs dubiously): They're too far away. I have limited energy.

Me: Pamela! Those shelves weren't made to hold your weight. If they broke, then you could get hurt.

She (with a feigned injured air): So, you think I'm too heavy? Fine. I'll lose weight if it makes you happy.

(She walks away cramming Cheez-Its into her month.)

Me (calling after her): Use. A. Chair. I mean it!

In the evening...

Me: What's that smell?

She: What smell?

Me: I smell something burning.

She: Oh, I sprayed perfume in our room.

Me: I'm a firefighter. I know the difference between perfume and smoke.

(Walking into the bedroom just in time to snatch a scorched and smoking scarf off of a lamp before it burst into flame...)

Me: What is this?!

She: Oh, that? I felt bad about climbing the pantry shelves, so I was going to apologize in a romantic way. The scarf was for mood lighting.

Me: Mood lighting? Burning the house down is not the way to put me in a good mood.

She (dismissively): Well, this is your fault, anyway.

Me: My fault?

She (with female logic): Yes. You told me that I couldn't light candles. So, I had to improvise with a scarf. See? Your fault.

Me: Pamela! 

She (frowning at the scarf): Now I need a new scarf. 

Me: Listen to me. You can't put flammable material near a light bulb. 

She (blithely): Relax, darling. Next time I'll use a scarf that isn't flammable.

Me: No! Don't put anything over a light bulb, whether you think it's flammable or not. Just stay away from candles, light bulbs, lighters, matches or anything else that produces light or flame.

She (agreeably): Sure, honey. Don't climb on counters or use shelves as a ladder. Don't light candles or put things, flammable or otherwise, over light bulbs. Got it.

  A few days later...

(Following the odor of smoldering cloth into the kitchen in time to see Pamela standing on the stove, reaching into a top cupboard...)

Me: What are you doing?!

She (patiently): Relax, darling. I used a chair to get up here, and I am not climbing on the counter or up the shelves.

Me: I don't want you climbing on the stove either! You could get burned!

She (clearly offended): I'm very careful. I took precautions so I wouldn't burn myself.

Me (relieved): Well, that's good. 

She: I put a towel over the hot burners.

Verse of the day: (James 1:2-3) "Consider it joy when you encounter tests and trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." I think of this verse when Pamela casually says, "The good news is that I'm giving you a wonderful opportunity to grow in patience, but the bad news is that while I was accidentally on the roof..."


  1. LOL. I love it! Pamela, you sound so much like me!! Guess my husband wasn't as patient, though. :/ Kudos to Jay for taking it like a man, and for caring like a man should.

    1. He was so pleased about the story that I said I was going to tell people that I questioned the content. He protested, "It all happened!" I answered, airily, "I didn't say it was inaccurate--I just reserve the right to question it." (Good thing I know how to make him laugh.)

  2. Hilarious!I swear, not the burning down the house conversation but the climbing on the counters conversation has been going on in my house for years... While reading this I thought you had been viewing our home through closed caption television! LOL! Be safe Pamela... your hubby loves you... Why didn't God give us longer arms or longer legs, huh? LOL
    There is a song... Short people got...no body! LOL

    1. OK, I may as well confess that I have a listening device in your house--I need ideas. It's hard to come up with something funny every week ;oD

  3. In all fairness, Pamela, my CHILDREN aren't allowed to climb on the pantry shelves! One time a few years ago, they hid in my linen closet, on the shelves - multiple kids on multiply shelves. They bent the shelves and ripped the drywall! Could have killed them (and maybe the babysitter) when I got home from our date (aside from their safety, now I was going to have to fix/replace these shelves before we could ever sell our house again!!!).
    NOW, that being said, aside from my concern for your safety, have respect for all your husband and friends/remodelers have done on your house. Don't make him/them have to redo stuff before you ever have to put it on the market (I'm just trying to love you AND help you be prudent with finances :)!
    And from the daughter/sister/granddaughter of fire fighters, PLEASE don't burn down the house! Seriously!

    love you! mean it!

    1. He's learned to only put stuff I don't like on the top shelf to help me avoid temptation. The bottom two shelves are "my" shelves. And, I'm much better about fire these days. Repetition works with me. But the climbing on the roof, on the other hand...

  4. Hahahaha....great job, Jay! You are both wildly funny writers and EVERYONE can relate. At least everyone that's married, that is.

    1. Well, everyone who is married to shorties like us, that is.

  5. A star is born! Jay is *almost* as talented a writer as you, Pamela! In fact, I questioned more than once as I was reading if you had ghost-written this for him. (I don't really doubt he wrote it). A very well-constructed and entertaining story.

    P.S. I hope you used a chair when you climbed on the counter for the story photo!

    1. I should be a bit more clear--he came up with the story and I helped him word it (because I can admit my faults--well, these faults, anyway), so it is in my writing style. And, no, I didn't use a chair for the photo because I wanted a "real" expression on my face--which I got because he was panicked and scolding me the whole time he was taking the picture. But I, like a good girl, didn't try to get down until he grabbed me.

  6. Pamela, I don't get what's wrong...we're both short, cabinets are high, chairs are heavy, what's wrong with climbing on the counter? Easy, convenient, and I do it all the time!


    1. Yeah, I don't get it either. Men--just can't figure them out.

  7. You are a very entertaining writer!

    That makes sense actually, as Pam is the only girl I ever knew who was a better reader than I, going back to 7th grade. She looks like she hasn't aged a day, and it sounds like she is still the sweet, kind, girl I remember from Kyrene Jr. High. I'm delighted to know that what comes around, goes around. She is beautiful and loved, the Lord works in mysterious ways.

    I tell my daughters that firefighters are heroes, it's nice to know one, however distant the acquaintance.


    1. P.S. I meant to add, that of course she would only choose a man with a literary bent. Well done, Pammie. :)

    2. Aw, thanks, Betsy. If you look at my July post "Firefighter Funny," you can see that I, too, appreciate the firefighters. Whether or not they appreciate me quite as much is debatable...