Reasons not to over-analyse events
Ah, what crap I give out.
Let me tell you the facts. The theme can speak for its flipping self. I'm fed up of it now.
1. The sound of the answerphone.
A few days ago, one of my daughters left a message on our answerphone. 'Oh, never mind, it's OK,' it went. 'I'll try your mobile.' I couldn't work out which daughter it was. I texted the younger one. 'Hi, is everything OK?' She came back. 'Yeah, fine, just eating a peanut butter sandwich. Why?' (This can be roughly translated as: Not my paranoid mother AGAIN! Can't a person eat junk food for dinner in peace?') I texted again. 'Did you call home?' She texted back. 'No, why?' (Indeed. Why call home? They're only my parents, blood relatives, closest kith and kin, who conceived, gave birth and cared constantly for me for 18 years, after all.) So it wasn't her, then.
I texted the older one. 'Did you call home?' No text arrived back. So, I guessed that meant 'no', roughly translated as 'Stop trying to pretend you think I called home just as an excuse to contact me and ask me for a minute-by-minute run-through of my day, feelings and inner motivations.'
So, I'd puzzled about this message for days.
Then, today, (oh yes, you think, you were telling us about today about half an hour ago ...) I listened again to the answerphone.
Then I realised. It was me.
I'd rung Husband from work that day to see if he was in. It had taken only the hour between my ringing and my arriving home for me to forget that I'd called.
Very, very worrying.
2. The sound of breaking glass.
7pm tonight. We've had dinner. I'm marking Steinbeck essays. Husband is undergoing a procedure he calls washing up but which I call 'far too much fuss with rinsing and washing and rinsing again and drying and wiping and not letting things drain naturally'. I keep out of it. I'm in the other room, with the door shut. I can hear him rinsing and it makes me want to call a solicitor.
Then, there's a massive crash and that splinter-splinter-splinter sound that goes on for eternity and foretells a long, long session with the vacuum cleaner. In the ominous seconds of silence which follow, I manage to make two acerbic comments about someone's lack of punctuation. Then, the plaintive cry: 'Can you come and help? I'm in here in my socks.'
This is one of those sentences which needs a pragmatic interpretation. What he really means is, 'I'm BEHIND the broken dishes in my socks' which is, of course, quite a dilemma. I pad through, also in socks, and we both stand there, in socks, having a cosy 'oh, we're both in socks' moment, before I spring into action like a ... like a ... spring ... and hand him his shoes from the hallway, and a broom. Then I go back to my marking. At least, for a while, I'm not having to listen to the rinsing. Even the sweeping of broken glass (which we only bought on Saturday) is an improvement on that.
3. The sound of live music - and envy.
7.30pm. Sister texts. (Thank goodness my phone flashes, 'This is your SISTER texting, DUMBO' or something similar, because I could have mistaken her for anyone the way things are going.) 'We're in the pub listening to live music,' she writes. I text back. 'I'm marking Steinbeck essays and listening to live smashing of casserole dishes, live cries of despair and live vacuum cleaner noises. You think you've got it good?' That's the thing about jealousy. It makes your voice oily with sarcasm, and on a text, it sounds even worse. When she got the text, I bet I sounded really bitter and twisted. Texting is very bad on intonation. You can text, 'I love you' and someone can read it as 'You spineless dork, don't ever come near me again'. Anyway, she texts back with, 'Enjoy!' which I think is Textish for 'Whoops! Bad time to let you know I'm having a great time!'
So, as you see, it's all been about sound today. Now, if I were a good English student, and not just an English teacher who doesn't have to actually DO the stuff any more, just teach it, I would be able to link all these underlying but sadly disconnected themes together and force them artificially into some kind of intelligent conclusion about life.
But all I can think of is: 'So, my conclusion is that all these underlying themes of sound mean that my day was all about sound.'
Which wouldn't get me a double tick.