Sunday, May 28, 2006

My own private river in Egypt

Denial is not just a river in Egypt it's also a highway in New Jersey, a bridge over the Mohawk and a twice annual argument over the marching of time.

I've spent the last several months thinking of all the things willed into non-existence thanks to differences of opinion that make it difficult for otherwise affable people to see eye to eye.

We all know these people, right? They are the folks who -- regardless of their esteem or genuine regard for you -- never believe a single word that you say.

When I was just out of college I met the KING off all disbelievers. He was a guy who, although highly educated, wasn’t terribly motivated and couldn't conceive of anything that conflicted with his view of the world – regardless of how sane and straightforward the information offered as proof may be.

His answer to virtually everything that went against his grain was always: "I don't think so."

For those who have never encountered such a person, let me further confound you with a hypothesis: The 'I-don’t-think-so' reply of his is virtually the same response as the more adolescent retort "SO?" There is really no way to refute either one. No matter what facts you throw at this naysayer, they won’t believe you.

If you think you haven't encountered someone with this particular gift, just try to send a seasoned Capital District driver over the Thaddeus Kosciusko Bridge. A few blank stares and a MapQuest search later, and they'll still be standing there dumbfounded and questioning your grip on reality until you add: "You know, the twin bridges? The Dolly Parton bridge?"

My husband still has disagreements with his grandfather over how best to get to the old family homestead in New Jersey. According to the elderly gentleman, who hasn’t driven on the highway since 1970, the I-287 bypass just doesn’t exist. Nothing his grandson can say, even hauling out a map and pointing out the line that clearly reads I-287, can convince him otherwise.

Of course, in my case, the tendency for folks to write me off as unreliable isn’t too far fetched. I am, after all, the person who believed for YEARS that Tommy Chong was killed in an airplane crash; that Mikey (who hates everything and is fed Life cereal anyway) died tragically when a chemical reaction between Poprocks and Pepsi caused his stomach to explode; not to mention that long-held fallacy of my youth that Sex Pistols front man, Sid Vicious made a guest appearance on Sesame Street.

But no matter, when you have lived through more than 30 sets of time swaps -- two a year -- it galls you to have to defend the "Spring Forward, Fall Back" dynamic.

ME: I hate this time of year. I never feel good until I get that hour of sleep back.

HIM: No. It's Spring AHEAD. We GAIN an hour.

ME: No. The CLOCK goes AHEAD, which means we skip an hour thereby losing an hour of sleep.

HIM: I don't think so …

ME: &$!@ #@&!! … We go through this EVERY YEAR. And every year I am right. Could you please, FOR ONCE, just suspend disbelief long enough to commiserate with me, and then you can go back to whatever it was you
were doing? HUH? Just this once!

HIM: (Eerie silence).

Before he tiptoes away from the crazy, sleep-deprived weirdo he married, I can see the glint of recognition in his eyes. "Oh, I get it. This is your road leading to New Jersey."

Yeah, something like that.


Alex said...

i dont think so


Be Still said...

What a funny story about about the annual argument!

We use "Ben Franklin" as a swear word in the spring and fall.

My husband and I have actually contemplated moving to Arizona, where there is no daylight savings just because we dislike it so much!

Suburban Turmoil said...

My husband and I HATE Daylight Savings with a passion. He says congress just passed an act to make it a week later from now on. Somehow it saves money...