Sunday, 2 August 2009

The Perils of Being a Shrinking Violet

Now anyone who knows me will agree I’m a shrinking violet, of the type to be voted ‘the woman most likely to get the vapors if asked to choose 7 succinct words to sum up all about herself’, so you can imagine my panic at being asked to do just that by Little Brown Dog.

Starting with ‘anxious’ and moving rapidly along to ‘youthful’ maybe stopping briefly at‘stout’ and ‘truthful’ on the way. Alright, maybe not youthful, but it is hard to choose, there are so many that would make an agreeable fit, so I go for the easy way out, but sadly, not the best way to avoid marital strife.

I give him my most winning smile.

ME Sum me up in 7 words, my personality, you know, what I’m like.
(Heart fluttering, this is a man who loves me, who’s known me for years and years. I hope for ‘cultured, calm, sophisticated’, maybe even loveable’.)

HIM (eyeing me skeptically) Hmm! Bossy, Assertive, Indolent, Sensitive, Creative, Reserved and Focused

ME What do you mean BOSSY and ASSERTIVE. You must be joking, Me! Tell me exactly when am I ever ASSERTIVE. Am I ever BOSSY I’d like to know?

HIM (Putting on his cycling shoes) Oh! I don't know. You just are. I’m off out for an hour. (Please remember this is a man who broke his thigh bone only weeks ago while riding like a maniac on his mountain bike.)

ME If you are going on your bike take care and keep to the road, don’t go up on the Downs it’s far too muddy. You’ll come off and this time remember to take your phone. Don’t ride through the village. It’s too risky, they drive like maniacs. And if you’re going past the shop, pick up…

HIM Anything else?

ME Yes I want to know why INDOLENT, why do you say I’m indolent? (I’m on dodgy ground here. I can think of many answers to this one, so I press on quickly before he reminds me, who always makes the tea in the morning, or washes up, or gets up to answer the phone?) And SENSITIVE, am I that sensitive?

HIM (laughing) O.K. perhaps not all the time, but you can be a bit woossy. Perhaps emotional might be better. You get upset easily.

ME Yeh! I GET UPSET ‘COS YOU THINK I’M BOSSY. I can feel the tears pricking at the backs of my eye lids. He knows me so well. Perhaps I am a bit sensitive at times. (I’m thinking sensitive, that’s not too bad and I positively like creative.

ME CREATIVE. Is that ‘cos of my beadmaking , writing and stuff?

HIM (looking at me quizzically), No, not really. The garden, you’re creative in the garden.

ME (I can be creative with the household accounts too. I'm thinking about the two new tops hanging in the wardrobe that he hasn’t seen yet and wondering if I’ve destroyed the receipt. Two for one, I’d call it thrifty though it’s possible HE might have another name)

ME What were the other two. RESERVED, yes I agree with that. As a child I was called shy, but I’m not really. I just like to keep things too myself, sometimes I just can’t be bothered to be more sociable. I’m too idle to make the effort. (Blast - idle/indolent what’s the difference.)

HIM Don't forget focused too. When you start something you go off like a rocket. You can be a bit obsessed. Like all the time you spend on Purple Coo, and writing and your other stuff, um! hobbies.

ME O/K. I’ll accept focused, reserved and creative aren’t too bad, even being sensitive has its good points, but bossy and assertive. You can come up with something better than that, but he didn’t. He escaped out of the door and went off on his bike.