Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Missing in Action

The front door slams shut as footsteps pound down the hallway towards the kitchen where I am scrubbing veggies for dinner.  I hear frustrated mumbling from the upper regions of the angry stomping. My husband is on the warpath.
“What’s wrong?” I inquire with quiet calm. When the thunderclouds are gathering round my spouse, my best response is gentleness.
“Those blankety blank boys! They always borrow my tools and they never put them back! IT MAKES ME SO MAD!”
Really? I would have never guessed. “What’s missing?” I ask.

“My allen wrench set! The boys can never ever use my tools again! They can NOT enter my work shop EVER! Never ever ever!”

Later I asked our son if he and his buddies had used Dad’s allen wrenches. He insisted that they had not touched them. The only tools they had used earlier that day were out of son number one’s own tool box. Just to make sure I asked him to run out and look in his tool box in case one of his buds did happen to snag the wrench set and mistakenly put it away in son’s box. He did, and they hadn’t. Number one son also looked around the shop but couldn’t find them. My husband's shop is not exactly organized.
When Christmas came Santa left a new allen wrench set in Steve’s stocking.
Fast forward six months. Husband comes trudging into the kitchen where I was once again preparing dinner. Seems as if I do that a lot. Go figure.
“Ummm, well, ahhh,” mumbles hubby with head hung down and toe scraping floor.
“What dear?” I ask. There is more hemming and hawing. Then silence.
I turned to face my sheepish looking spouse who was staring down at his hands. In them were his new allen wrench set. Except the set was really dirty and worn looking.
“What did the boys do now?” I responded quizzically.
“Ummm, nothing…” answered Steve. “I found my old set.” His head dipped lower.
“What? Where?” I persisted.
“Well, I umm, I guess I was, ummm, maybe working on the car last fall and uhhhhh, sort of left them on the floorboards close to the front seat so they must have slid under the seat.” His voice had trailed off to a mumble.
Hmmm is right. I thought about asking him to apologize to the kids for thinking they lost them. I thought about telling him that he should put his tools away as soon as he is done using them.

Then I thought about how much effort it took for him to even admit to me that he had found them. He absolutely hates admitting that he is not perfect. What person does?
So I kept my mouth shut with Steve, and told eldest son the outcome myself. He did not look shocked or surprised. In fact, he laughed!

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