Why Can't You Be More Like My GPS?
When someone asks me if I know how to get to where we're going, I usually say: "No, but Carol will tell me how to get there." My gps sounds like a nice librarian so I named her Carol. That is, she used to sound like a librarian, but lately Google has given her a more youthful, more casual voice.
I didn't care about the voice, the old Carol was just fine, because what I really like about her is that she never, ever gets mad at me. I can ignore her while I'm tuning my music and she never says: "You never listen. I'm talking to you and I know you're not listening because you missed your turn back there."
Now that's another thing. Carol would never say that last part. If I disregard her clear instruction to take Exit 3B, she never says, like some people I know, "I told you to take this offramp and now we're going to have to go five miles out of the way, turn around and come right back here!"
The exclamation mark illustrates another thing Carol doesn't do--she doesn't raise her voice. If I miss Exit 3B, she merely says: "Continue on Freeway 5 south for five miles." Unlike others riding with me in the car, she doesn't even drum her fingers and look sullen and angry while the 5 miles go by. No, she patiently waits awhile and then gives me another heads up: "In two miles, take Exit 3B."
Meanwhile, Sullen #1 says: "Now do you think you can find it THIS time!"
Now Carol would never imply that I was a little slow. I could miss that exit 500 times and she would still act as if I was the smartest person in the world, about to take an important turn in my life, and be so proud to be a partner in this epic direction.
Usually about the same time as Sullen #1, Angry #2 chimes in: "I don't have time for this. We're going to be late and it's all your fault!"
Did I mention that Carol has never blamed me once for even the stupidest activity. I once ignored her helpful direction and decided I knew a better way. Even after I got hopelessly lost in a part of town where most people would never go and usually don't return from, she patiently took me street after street until I was safely back on track. I was sure I would hear something when my mad dash made me run out of gas and Carol had to power down until I got back. When I got the car started and turned her back on, she not only did not complain, but simply picked up where she left off.
If that had happened to others I know, they would never have trusted me to drive again.
Now I'm not saying that all my loved ones should become robots or programs. I'm just saying that it's strange to me that the milk of human kindness, patience and forbearance is often more present in my gps program than in the actual human beings that use them. For example, special occasion days.
For some reason, the remembering of a special date in a relationship is so important (especially to the female humans) that it becomes a barometer for the amount of love we possess or how much the offended one considers their devaluation by our forgetting said event. It is almost like there should be in the wedding vows: "Do you promise to love, honor and cherish and to prove it by remembering the anniversary of everything you did right in the relationship?"
It's not enough that you worked your tush off trying to get that first date or ponied up to make that lifelong commitment, you have to prove it wasn't just a fluke effort by remembering and commemorating your few romantic achievements every year for the rest of your life. Your scorecard will determine the validity of the acts themselves, so you better keep up and never lose track...
And women wonder why men never ask directions. We don't want to admit we don't know because it would be like not remembering.
If she were like most wives, she would wait until I got to that all important turn onto Exit 3B and as I passed it, she would say: "You forgot, didn't you?" Then after a painful silence, she would burst into tears: "I told you how important this turn was. I have told you many times that you need to take this turn--in fact, it was just before this turn that you first turned me on and let me tell you where to get off on a regular basis.
No, that's not Carol. She not only warns me well in advance of the all important turn, but she gives me a nudge just before and even reveals the correct side or lane which will insure that my distracted brain will not miss it. Carol would never let me go past it just to judge me for my incompetence or lack of concern for her. That's why I am not ashamed to ask her for directions.
Real men use gps and if they were more like Carol, they would probably even ask their wives.