Monday, May 26, 2014

Blame It on Michael

I can't believe it happened again. Soggy clean tissue pieces clung to my freshly washed clothes. Although he didn’t seem to be present, I knew Michael was still here, because he always leaves tissues in his pockets.

Years ago I fell deeply, obsessively, insanely in love with a guy called Michael, Mr. GQ, tall, dark, and handy. It was dreadful. I would have been better off falling out of an airplane without a chute. Within a couple months, I deduced he was using me financially. Yet after he confessed my list of suspicions to be partially true, I kept him around anyway. Not only was he a gifted musician who could play any instrument (any instrument), he was a skilled handyman who had built a house, and I had a house that continually needed repair.

Like a feral cat always looking behind for a possible threat, I found myself being paranoid that he’d leave with something in his dexterous, scrubbed hands. Being intuitive, I was right. He left, and with him he took my heart.

Now granted, my boot was still stuck in his sweet, tight arse when he flew past the new, woodgrain front door just before his bags hit the ground. And I knew I was going to miss him, but not for the things you might imagine. I needed Michael for reasons quite practical. I needed him to blame when things went bad, because that is how he made me feel. Very bad. For that reason alone, his name would suffice.

Allow me to share some recent examples, and please understand, if you, your husband, brother, father, or friend are named Michael, this is not about you or them. I have a very specific Michael in mind, and I doubt he remembers how to read since he landed on his head.

1. As I gathered ingredients from the fridge to make fettuccini alfredo, my cute, little nose swept over the cream that smelled slightly past ripe. I knew immediately Michael had slipped into the house and exchanged my fresh cream for his soured. Just like him, the stinker.

2. Then on Wednesday morning when I arose to find the dog’s prior meal regurgitated on the carpet, the signs all pointed to Michael.

3. Before church on Sunday, I cranked the bathroom lights to spotlight intensity, hoping to awaken in a flash, when pop! the switch blew. The burning odor clearly indicated Michael had lit a fire in my circuitry. Fortunately, I knew Michael could easily replace the switch—a different, nicer Michael model.

4. Then the long-haired cat I call Piercing was overcome with diarrhea. Proof again, Michael had given him chocolate or a bacterial infection.

5. And when the water heater no longer heated water, I swear I heard Michael chuckling and clearing his throat in the lower level. I raced down the stairs and, sure enough, wisps of his energy still hovered around the gurgling, now-defunct appliance.

Now you see how the system works and can use the technique yourself. When the car breaks down, or the toilet overflows, or a bird poops on you as one did upon my cousin, or the IRS chooses you as its next audit victim, or your favorite lover becomes afflicted with dengue fever, blame it on Michael.

I’ve never agreed with the phrase “Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all,” but then again, having done so sure takes a load off.

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