Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Dual-Control

My dear friend, Candace, and I just finished walking our dogs. She has Missy, or Melissa, as Wil calls her, and I have Flicka. Flicka has been trained to walk on the left, and Missy/Melissa, on the right. We get our pace set; one that works for a big dog with a slower pace, and a littler dog with a faster one. The dogs do their thing, and we do ours, falling quickly into deep conversation, skipping entirely over the chit-chat phase. This is one of my favorite things about my time with Candace, it nourishes me at my very roots.

At the end of our walk I said to her, "Now, go into your studio and paint something beautiful."

"You go to your computer and write something that makes me laugh," she countered.

So, given that task, I will tell you about my earlier morning power struggle with Wil. Ever since I replaced my 17-year-old CR-V with a new CR-V, we've had an on-going issue over the heating and cooling system. Wil used to always ride in the back seat of my car, but when I got the new car, we made the switch to him in the passenger seat. I should have, but didn't, foresee the endless frustration on both our parts, with all the knobs and opportunities to fidget, with the new car. He is at it non-stop.

I thought the solution was inherent in the design of the car: dual-control. There is a button that says, "Sync" and when it's depressed, the driver's knob controls the whole car, but when the passenger side is adjusted by, oh, say, a passenger, then it's get "un-synced." Perfect, right? The passenger can be as warm or as cold as said passenger would like to be, while the driver can be fully independent from the whims of the passenger.

However.

Wil is not content just moving his knob back and forth a million times in the 10-minute drive to school, he wants to control mine, too. "DON'T TOUCH MY DIAL!" I shout each day. He vacillates between freezing me out and making my menopausal body sweat to death, and today, I was in no mood for it. None.

He'd already spent the better part of last night and this morning Googling a specific type of bubble gum (Extra/Classic), and giving me careful instructions as to where and when we would be purchasing this gum, for his new best friend.

"If you touch my dial ONE MORE TIME, we will NOT stop and get the gum," I said.

We all know what he did.

I did not stop.

He did not stop.

He lectured me for the remaining ride on his rights to adjust the dial anytime and anyway he sees fit, as the car is not all mine, it's his, too. Nothing is all mine.

Truer words were never spoken.

Nothing is all mine.

Not the power.

Not the control.

It's dual.

5 comments:

kario said...

Oy. I am so sorry. I completely regret the day I ever let either of my kids sit "shotgun." Now, when they aren't fighting about who gets it, the one in the front seat is fiddling with the music (no NPR with these people in the car) and changing the radio stations incessantly while the one in the back seat yells, "Hey! I love that song! Go back!" The settings all get changed on the seats, the navigation screen gets turned on (and I can't drive with it on - too distracting), the volume gets turned up, and they think it's funny to surreptitiously turn on my heated seat so I feel like my ass is on fire without ever knowing why. I've been sorely tempted to get them both a bus pass and call it good.

fullsoulahead.com said...

Love.

terry said...

That was a damn good piece of writing. Great analogy for anyone "in relationship".

Elizabeth said...

Oh, my gosh. This post made me laugh and then kario's post made me laugh very, very hard. All I can say to you is that you've made your bed and must, I suppose, lie in it -- again, as always -- with someone else. And as for kario, it sounds exactly like my car --

lily cedar said...

Too funny.