Thursday, February 26, 2015

Miss Perception

I am becoming more and more convinced that men and women have such a hard time understanding each other because we understand the world very differently. It's not that men are from Mars and women are from Venus, because that would mean that we live in the same solar system. It's more like men are from Sakaar and women are from Krypton. Different worlds, different galaxies, different universes, different studios even. However, with enough communication and plenty of reminders, we do somehow seem to bridge the gap when necessary.

So MyTy and I had an argument last week, which rarely happens. Neither one of us is overly emotional or unwilling to share our thoughts, so we tend to talk things over before they become arguments. This usually ends in both of us getting only half of what we want, but then that's the mark of a true compromise. However, in any relationship, there will be the recurring issues that have to be resolved, again and again, due to personality differences or varying priorities. This particular argument was centered around my apparent inability to get my clothes successfully into the hamper, along with one or two minor complaints I had against MyTy.

On that note, just for a moment, I do have to admit that it is remarkable how I can focus so entirely on the simple act of putting an object into a receptacle when I'm on the basketball court, but completely lose interest when the object is a pair of underwear or a sock and the receptacle is a hamper. When I play ball with the guys after work, I am trying to think two or three moves ahead, taking powerful blows from opponents blocking me out of the key or setting picks for me to run full-speed into, all just to revel in the moment when I finally make a basket. My heart swells every time I make a three-point shot, which is usually out of range for me, and I go through a minute or two of self-loathing whenever I miss a shot that I know I can make, especially when the game is close. If I don't shoot at least 50%, I make myself stay after and shoot fifty more baskets before I leave the court. Often, I come home and brag about how many points I made, and I can report them in either overall points, points per game, or game averages. Then, I generally take off my sweaty clothes, throw them at the hamper, sink only about 20%, and get in the shower feeling perfectly fine with myself. I say all of this simply to say that my wife may have a legitimate gripe on this issue.

Anyway, this was the argument, which included some colorful language and some quasi-raised voices on both sides. If you don't know what "quasi-raised" voices are, then you've never tried to work out an issue while your toddler sleeps in the next room. From the outside, it looks a little like watching an action scene in a Will Smith movie, but with the volume turned all the way down to six or seven. Afterwards, however, we came to a compromise and apologized on both sides, hugged it out, and breathed a little easier, knowing that all was right in Christendom once again.

This is where the difference in perception comes in. A few days later, we ended up talking about the argument with a third party, and MyTy called it a BIG FIGHT. I actually got confused, because I didn't remember any other fight but that one, and I didn't consider it to be a BIG FIGHT. From my point of view, it was just working things out, albeit a little strenuously, and when it was over, I just felt very relieved that I had gotten to say what I wanted and that we weren't angry with each other any more. I really didn't think about it much after that. I have been involved in BIG FIGHTS before, and that wasn't one, at least not to me. Apparently, my wife was a little more rattled by it than I was.

I'm definitely not concerned about the state of the union, but my real concern is this: given the different lenses that we use to view the world, how am I supposed to know when we are in a BIG FIGHT? Or is every argument a BIG FIGHT?

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